Town of Dover, MA
Norfolk County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Zoning Board of Appeals 3-4-2004. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Zoning — See Ch. 185.
Licenses and permits — See Ch. 5, Art. II
A. 
Sections 264-2 through 264-7 of these rules establish procedures for applications to the Zoning Board of Appeals for comprehensive permits granted under the Anti-Snob Zoning Act (Chapter 774 of the Acts of 1969), M.G.L. c. 40B, §§ 20-23. They are required by M.G.L. c. 40B, § 21, as amended by Stat. 1989, c. 593, and by 760 CMR 31.02. The purpose of that act and these rules is to facilitate the development of affordable housing in Massachusetts. Further explanation of the background and purpose is provided in the regulations of the Housing Appeals Committee, 760 CMR 30.01. These rules alone are not sufficient to describe comprehensive permit procedures before the Zoning Board of Appeals. They must be read in conjunction with and implemented in a manner consistent with the complete regulations of the Housing Appeals Committee, 760 CMR 30.00 and 31.00 and with the Guidelines for Local Review of comprehensive permits, published periodically by the Department of Housing and Community Development. In addition, the Board's general rules for conduct of hearings under M.G.L. c. 40A apply to comprehensive permit applications. In case of inconsistency or conflict between those general rules for conduct and these rules, these rules shall govern.
B. 
Section 264-8 of these rules establish procedures for assessing review fees for all other applications and matters before the Zoning Board of Appeals.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
A. 
For §§ 264-3 through 264-7 of these rules: an application for a comprehensive permit;
B. 
For § 264-8 of these rules: any application or request made to the Zoning Board of Appeals other than for a comprehensive permit.
APPLICANT
Any person or entity making an application to or requesting action by the Zoning Board of Appeals.
BOARD
The Zoning Board of Appeals established under M.G.L. c. 40A, § 12, in the Town of Dover.
COMPREHENSIVE PERMIT
A permit requested or granted under the Anti-Snob Zoning Act (Chapter 774 of the Acts of 1969), M.G.L. c. 40B, §§ 20-23.
LOCAL BOARD
Any local board or official, including but not limited to any board of survey; board of health; planning board; conservation commission; historical commission; water, sewer, or other commission or district; fire, police, traffic, or other department; building inspector or similar official or board; city council or board of selectmen. All boards, regardless of their geographical jurisdiction or their source of authority (that is, including boards created by special acts of the legislature or by other legislative action) shall be deemed local boards if they perform functions usually performed by locally created boards.
A. 
The application for a comprehensive permit shall consist of:
(1) 
Proposed site development plans prepared by a licensed, professional engineer or registered land surveyor showing, at least:
(a) 
The locations and outlines of proposed buildings, roads, streets, drives, parking areas, walks, paved areas, rights-of-way, easements, utilities, drainage and other improvements including cross-sections, profiles, details and specifications;
(b) 
Boundary, lot, and property lines;
(c) 
Elevations of the proposed buildings and structures;
(d) 
Existing and proposed topographical lines at 2-foot contour intervals on the tract and within 50 feet thereof; and
(e) 
Lot area in square feet and acres.
(2) 
A report on existing site conditions and a summary of conditions in the surrounding areas, showing the location and nature of:
(a) 
Buildings, structures, wells, and stone walls;
(b) 
Bounds;
(c) 
Open areas;
(d) 
Natural features such as large trees (over 8-inch caliper), wooded areas, rock outcrops, water bodies, wetlands, streams and stream obstructions within 500 feet upstream and downstream;
(e) 
Existing trails and cart paths;
(f) 
Historic artifacts;
(g) 
Street elevations and traffic patterns;
(h) 
The names of all abutting owners and all persons and entities having any rights in easements on the property;
(i) 
Existing structures on adjacent properties within 50 feet of the property line;
(j) 
Zoning district barriers;
(k) 
Easements; and
(l) 
Rivers, streams, and wetlands (state and locally defined) and applicable buffer zones.
This submission may be combined with that required in § 264-3A(1), above;
(3) 
Proposed, scaled architectural drawings. For each building the drawings shall be signed by a registered architect, and shall include typical floor plans, typical elevations, and sections, and shall identify construction type and exterior finish. An applicant proposing to construct or rehabilitate four or fewer units may submit a professionally drawn sketch of the requested matters of this paragraph and need not have an architect's signature.
(4) 
Proposed landscape plan, including, but not limited to, location, size, species, and total square feet of all proposed landscaping/and recreational areas;
(5) 
A tabulation of proposed buildings by type, size (number of bedrooms, floor area) and ground coverage, and a summary showing the percentage of the tract to be occupied by buildings, by parking and other paved vehicular areas, and by open areas;
(6) 
Where a subdivision of land is involved, a preliminary subdivision plan;
(7) 
A proposed utilities plan showing the proposed location and types of sewage, drainage, and water facilities, including hydrants;
(8) 
A proposed lighting plan;
(9) 
Documents showing that the applicant fulfills the jurisdictional requirements of 760 CMR 31.01, that is:
(a) 
The applicant shall be a public agency, a nonprofit organization, or a limited dividend organization (for example, corporate articles of organization of the applicant, certificate of good standing, and a certificate from the MA Commissioner of Corporations and Taxation stating that the applicant is a registered nonprofit or limited-dividend corporation);
(b) 
The project shall be fundable by a subsidizing agency under a low- and moderate-income housing subsidy program, including but not limited to a site approval letter from the subsidizing agency; and
(c) 
The applicant shall control the site.
(10) 
A list of requested exceptions to local requirements and regulations, including local codes, ordinances, bylaws or regulations. The applicant shall identify the section number of the Dover Code for each requested exception and specify the extent and nature of the exception requested;
(11) 
A copy of the most recent deed and plan of record of the site and all documents demonstrating applicant's interest in the site. If the site is subject to options to purchase, a complete copy of said agreement shall be provided. If the applicant is not the current owner of the property, documents identifying the authority of the applicant to make the application, including but not limited to as applicable, certified corporate vote identifying the individual authorized to act on behalf of the corporation, a certified copy of the declaration of trust describing the power of the trustees to act, or appropriate provisions of the purchase and sale agreement for the property;
(12) 
Detailed wastewater treatment plan and supporting engineering data;
(13) 
FEMA 100-year floodplain and any zoning overlay districts;
(14) 
Identification and statement of any easements, covenants or restrictions applying to the parcel being subdivided, and copy of each and every decision by the Board or any other local boards concerning the property;
(15) 
Location and results of soil, percolation, and water table tests using the Department of Environmental Protection Soil Evaluation procedures under Title V. Water table tests are required under all proposed drainage facilities, under all buildings and adjacent to any road cuts greater than three feet;
(16) 
Engineering studies and all hydrological reports for the proposed site;
(17) 
Phase I site assessment for hazardous materials at the site, and a Phase II site assessment, to the extent the Phase I site assessment indicates the need for additional investigation. All other environmental studies prepared concerning this property. The site assessments or other environmental reports shall be prepared by a qualified environmental scientist, with qualifications provided to the Board and with at least a master's degree in ecological science from an accredited college or university or be a competent licensed site professional with at least two years of experience in environmental analysis. In addition to its usual contents, the Phase I site assessment shall assess the impact of the development on the environment within and adjacent to the development;
(18) 
All financial information for the project, including all funding sources and showing costs and projected profit, including marketing studies, appraisals, cost estimates and all other documents that refer or relate to the data contained in the pro forma;
(19) 
Traffic analysis and impact report showing the impact of the proposed project on the traffic patterns and volume, including average daily traffic counts for streets that provide access to the site. The report shall include:
(a) 
Intersection turning movement counts on intersections likely to be affected;
(b) 
An inventory of roadway characteristics, showing the width of principal approach streets, the presence or absence of curbing and its conditions;
(c) 
Estimated trip figures including the estimated inbound and outbound vehicular trips for the a.m. and p.m. periods and a typical one-hour off-peak trip generation and the estimated distribution of new trips by approach streets; and
(d) 
Estimated off-street parking and loading requirements and time of peak accumulation.
(20) 
A detailed narrative statement of the impact of the project on Town services, and the impact on schools, traffic, transportation, recreation, open space, roads and road maintenance, solid waste, police, fire, and safety services and utilities;
(21) 
List of abutters (as defined in the Zoning Bylaw) certified by the Board of Assessors showing names and addresses of abutting property owners;
(22) 
Detailed drainage studies, plans, and calculations for the proposed project;
(23) 
Information regarding all measures proposed to prevent pollution of surface water or groundwater, soil erosion, increased runoff, and flooding;
(24) 
Percent of building lot coverage and percentage to be paved area used for parking, loading and access;
(25) 
Projections of down gradient concentrations of nitrogen phosphorous, and other relevant chemicals to be disposed of on-site, at property boundaries and at other locations deemed pertinent by the Board, prepared by a hydro-geologist or registered professional engineer possessing experience and education in water supply protection and hydrology;
(26) 
A stormwater management plan;
(27) 
A narrative summary of the vital statistics of the project, including number of parking spaces and estimated amounts of water consumption and sewage discharge;
(28) 
A plan showing the location, names, and present widths of the secondary streets bounding, approaching, or within reasonable proximity of the site, and including the tracts of land, ownership, and topography taken from assessor's plans or field survey, if available or properties therein;
(29) 
List of state and other local approvals necessary prior to the issuance of a building permit and whether the project requires an environmental notification form or environmental impact report pursuant to the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act, M.G.L. c. 30, §§ 61-62H;
(30) 
Statement of the proposed term of affordability for the affordable units;
(31) 
A comparison with the most applicable zoning bylaws to the proposed project;
(32) 
A long-term monitoring plan that identifies the government agency or other entity that will be responsible for project monitoring;
(33) 
Information on the project's impact on loss of historical, archaeological, open space, wildlife habitat or recreational resources; municipal services, public safety; water supply; sewage disposal; construction impacts, noise, dust, and erosion releases; wetlands and wetlands protection; infrastructure; drainage and utilities; plans to utilize municipal facilities; and benefits that the project might provide;
(34) 
A summary of the developer's credentials and experience with similar projects; and
(35) 
Any and all additional information that the Board determines is relevant in deciding on the application.
B. 
Application fee. An application fee must be submitted with the comprehensive permit application in the amount of $150.
C. 
Notification of local boards.
(1) 
Within 7 days of filing of the application, the applicant shall notify each local board of the application by sending such local boards the following:
(a) 
A cover letter provided by the Board inviting local boards to participate in the hearing process on the application and stating the date of the initial hearing on the application, if such a date has been established at the time of the notification of this section;
(b) 
A copy of the list required by § 264-3A(10), above;
(c) 
A full submission package shall be provided with the cover letter referenced in Subsection C(1)(a) above to the following local boards within 7 days of filing of the application: Board of Selectmen, Planning Board, Board of Health, Conservation Commission, and Dover Housing Partnership; and
(d) 
A statement from the Applicant inviting local boards other than those listed in Subsection C(1)(c) above to request the full application submitted to the Board and providing the name of the applicant's contact person and contact information (including address, telephone and facsimile numbers) for such a request. The Applicant shall comply with a request from the local board for the full application within 5 days of its receipt of such request.
(2) 
Prior to the first hearing on the application, the Applicant shall certify to the Board that such notification pursuant to this section was given, and such certification shall list the local boards to which notice was given.
A. 
If, after receiving an application or at any time during the hearings on the application, the Board determines that the assistance of outside consultants is warranted, the Board may hire outside consultants pursuant to M.G.L. c. 44, § 53G; c. 40B, § 21, and this regulation. In hiring outside consultants, the Board may engage engineers, planners, traffic consultants, urban designers, attorneys, housing specialists, financial analysts, hydrologists, environmental consultants, or other appropriate professionals who can assist the Board in analyzing a project. The Board may also retain a recording secretary to keep minutes of the hearings and to compile and index all submissions.
B. 
The reasonable costs for outside consultants (including a recording secretary) will be borne by the applicant. The applicant and the Board shall work in good faith to agree upon the type and identity of outside consultants as well as the budget for their services. However, ultimate authority on issues of the need for and identity of outside consultants (subject to the appeal procedure of § 264-4G) is retained solely by the Board and failure to cooperate with the Board on funding of outside consultants is ground for denial of the application.
C. 
Minimum review fee. An applicant for a comprehensive permit shall submit a minimum review fee for outside consultants at the initial hearing on the application in a form appropriate for deposit in a special account described below. The minimum review fee is the sum of the acreage fee and unit fee as described below.
(1) 
Acreage fee:
Acres of Proposed Project
Fee
Greater than 0 and less than and including 5
$8,000
Greater than 5 and less than and including 10
$10,000
Greater than 10 and less than and including 20
$12,000
Greater than 20 acres
$15,000 + $2,000 for each additional 5 acres over 20
(2) 
Unit fee: $250 per each proposed unit of housing. [NOTE: By way of illustration, a project proposed for a 12-acre lot with 32 units would have a $12,000 acreage fee and a $8,000 unit fee, for a minimum review fee of $20,000.]
D. 
Replenishment of review fee special account. When the special account described below is depleted by 75%, the Board may require the applicant to deposit additional funds for anticipated expenses as determined by the Board. Additional funds in the amount that the Board determines is reasonably necessary shall be deposited by the applicant within 10 days after notice that the remaining funds are insufficient to cover consultant review costs. Failure of an applicant to pay a review fee shall be grounds for the denial of a comprehensive permit.
E. 
Establishment of review fee special account. Any funds received by the Board to cover consultant review fees shall be deposited with the Treasurer of the Town of Dover who shall set up a special account for this purpose pursuant to M.G.L. c. 44, § 53G. Expenditures from this account shall be made only in connection with the specific project for which a review fee has been or will be collected from the applicant. However, expenditures from this account may be made at the discretion of the Board in connection with the application for which they were collected without further appropriation.
F. 
Review fees may only be spent for services rendered in connection with a specific application for which they were collected. Accrued interest may also be spent for this purpose. At the completion of the Board's review of an application and the issuance of a decision on the application, any excess amount remaining in the account after the payment of all fees and costs associated with outside consultants, including interest, attributable to a specific project, shall be repaid to the applicant. A final report of said account shall be made available to the applicant.
G. 
Administrative appeal from outside consultant selection. The applicant may take an administrative appeal from the selection of the outside consultant to the Board of Selectmen within 10 days of the Board's selection of that outside consultant. The grounds for such an appeal shall be limited to claims that the consultant selected has a conflict of interest or does not possess the minimum, required qualifications. Minimum qualifications shall consist of either an educational degree in or related to the field at issue or three or more years of practice in the field at issue or a related field. The required time limit for the Board's action on the application shall be extended by the duration of the administrative appeal. In the event that no decision is made by the Board of Selectmen on the appeal within one month of filing the appeal, the selection of the outside consultant made by the Board of Appeals shall stand. The applicant must pay the consultant fee within 10 days of the denial of the appeal or the permit will automatically be denied.
H. 
The municipal accountant shall submit annually a report of the special account to the chief elected body and chief administrative official of the municipality for their review. This report shall be published in the city or Town annual report. The municipal accountant shall submit annually a copy of said report to the Director of the Bureau of Accounts.
A. 
Applicant's responsibility to distribute materials. The applicant shall be responsible, at its own cost, for distributing information concerning the application submitted by it or other parties to interested local boards and persons in a timely manner.
B. 
Mailing list. The applicant shall maintain a list of local boards and interested persons to whom it is responsible for distributing information concerning the application ("mailing list"). The contact person designated by the applicant in its notification pursuant to § 264-3C shall be responsible for maintaining the mailing list.
C. 
Submissions list. The applicant shall maintain a list of materials submitted by it and other parties to the Board as part of the hearings on the application ("submissions list"). The submissions list shall include, at a minimum, a description appropriate to identify each submission, the date on the submission, and the date the submission was presented to the Board, if different from the date on the submission.
A. 
The Board shall hold a public hearing on the application within 30 days of its receipt, unless such period is extended by written agreement of the Board and the applicant. The Board may request the appearance at the hearing of such representatives of local officials as it considers necessary or helpful in reviewing the application. In making its decision, the Board shall take into consideration the recommendations of local officials.
B. 
The Board shall render a decision, based on a majority vote of the Board, within forty days after termination of the public hearing, unless such time period is extended by written agreement of the Board and the applicant. The hearing is deemed terminated when all public testimony has been received and all information requested by the Board has been received.
C. 
The Board may dispose of the application in the following manner:
(1) 
Approve a comprehensive permit on the terms and conditions set forth in the application;
(2) 
Deny a comprehensive permit:
(a) 
As not consistent with local needs;
(b) 
Based on the applicant's failure to provide the Board with any material information necessary or information required under these regulations to make a properly informed decision; or
(c) 
For failure, neglect, or refusal to pay and local taxes, fees, assessments, betterments, or any other municipal charges, including those assessed pursuant to M.G.L. c. 40, § 21D, in accordance with M.G.L. c. 40, § 57 and Dover Code §§ 5-13 to 5-15.
(3) 
Approve a comprehensive permit with conditions with respect to height, site plan, size, shape or building materials that do not render the construction or operation of such housing uneconomic.
A. 
If the Board approves the comprehensive permit, any person aggrieved may appeal within the time period and to the court provided in M.G.L. c. 40A, § 17.
B. 
If the Board denies the comprehensive permit or approves the permit with conditions or requirements that the applicant believes are uneconomic, the applicant may appeal to the Housing Appeals Committee as provided in M.G.L. c. 40B, § 22.
A. 
If, after receiving an application or at any time during the hearings on the application, the Board determines that the assistance of outside consultants is warranted, the Board may hire outside consultants pursuant to M.G.L. c. 44, § 53G, and this regulation. In hiring outside consultants, the Board may engage engineers, planners, traffic consultants, urban designers, attorneys, housing specialists, financial analysts, hydrologists, environmental consultants, or other appropriate professionals who can assist the Board in analyzing a project.
B. 
The reasonable costs for outside consultants will be borne by the applicant. The applicant and the Board shall work in good faith to agree upon the type and identity of outside consultants as well as the budget for their services. However, ultimate authority on issues of the need for and identity of outside consultants (subject to the appeal procedure of § 264-4G) is retained solely by the Board and failure to cooperate with the Board on funding of outside consultants is ground for denial of the application.
C. 
Upon a determination by the Board that the assistance of outside consultants is warranted on an application, the Board shall make a request for a review fee to be paid by the applicant within a reasonable period of time.
D. 
Establishment of review fee special account. Any funds received by the Board to cover consultant review fees shall be deposited with the Treasurer of the Town of Dover who shall set up a special account for this purpose pursuant to M.G.L. c. 44, § 53G. Expenditures from this account shall be made only in connection with the specific project for which a review fee has been or will be collected from the applicant. However, expenditures from this account may be made at the discretion of the Board in connection with the application for which they were collected without further appropriation.
E. 
Review fees may only be spent for services rendered in connection with a specific application for which they were collected. Accrued interest may also be spent for this purpose. At the completion of the Board's review of an application and the issuance of a decision on the application, any excess amount remaining in the account after the payment of all fees and costs associated with outside consultants, including interest, attributable to a specific project, shall be repaid to the applicant. A final report of said account shall be made available to the applicant.
F. 
Administrative appeal from outside consultant selection. The appeal procedure for an applicant of the Board's selection of an outside consultant is contained in § 264-4G.
G. 
The municipal accountant shall submit annually a report of the special account to the chief elected body and chief administrative official of the municipality for their review. This report shall be published in the city or Town annual report. The municipal accountant shall submit annually a copy of said report to the Director of the Bureau of Accounts.
The provisions of these regulations are severable. If any regulation is held invalid, the remaining provisions of these regulations shall not be affected thereby.