A Zoning Board of Adjustment is hereby established pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:55D-69 et seq. consisting of seven residents of the Borough of Riverdale appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the governing body to serve for terms of four years from January 1 of the year of their appointment. The terms of the members first appointed shall be so determined that to the greatest practicable extent the expiration of such terms shall be distributed evenly over the first four years after their appointment, provided that the initial term of no member shall exceed four years. Thereafter the term of each member shall be for four years. Nothing in this chapter shall, however, be construed to affect the term of any present member of the Zoning Board of Adjustment, all of whom shall continue in office until the completion of the term for which they were appointed.
No member of the Zoning Board of Adjustment may hold any elective office or position under the Borough.
A vacancy occurring otherwise than by expiration of term shall be filled for the unexpired term only.
Alternate members may be appointed to the Board of Adjustment and shall be designated at the time of their appointment as "Alternate No. 1" and "Alternate No. 2." The term of alternate members first appointed shall be distributed evenly over the first two years. Thereafter, the term of each alternate member shall be two years. Alternate members may participate in discussions of the proceedings but may not vote except in the absence or disqualification of a regular member.
[Added 10-3-1983 by Ord. No. 10-83]
A vote shall not be delayed in order that a regular member may vote instead of an alternate member. In the event that a choice must be made as to which alternate member is to vote, Alternate No. 1 shall vote.
[Added 10-3-1983 by Ord. No. 10-83]
The Board of Adjustment shall elect a Chairman and Vice Chairman from its members and shall also select a Secretary who may be either a Board member or another municipal employee.
There is hereby created the Office of Attorney to the Zoning Board of Adjustment. The Zoning Board of Adjustment may annually appoint, fix the compensation of or agree upon the rate of compensation of the Zoning Board of Adjustment Attorney, who shall be an attorney other than the Municipal Attorney.
The Zoning Board of Adjustment may also employ or contract for and fix the compensation of such experts and other staff and services as it may deem necessary. The Board shall not authorize expenditures which exceed, exclusive of gifts or grants, the amount appropriated by the governing body for its use.
The Board shall adopt such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry into effect the provisions and purposes of this chapter. In the issuance of subpoenas, administration of oaths and taking of testimony, the provisions of the County and Municipal Investigations Law of 1953 (N.J.S.A. 2A:67A-1 et seq.) shall apply.
The powers of the Zoning Board of Adjustment shall be in accordance with N.J.S.A. 40:55D-70 et seq. and amendments and supplements thereto and with the provisions of this chapter.
[Amended 4-1-1985 by Ord. No. 4-85]
Where by reason of exceptional narrowness, shallowness or shape of a specific piece of property, or by reason of extentional topographic conditions, or physical features uniquely affecting a specific piece of property, or by reason of an extraordinary and exceptional situation uniquely affecting a specific piece of property or the structure existing thereon, the strict application of any regulation pursuant to Article 8 of the Act would result in peculiar and exceptional practical difficulties to, or exceptional and undue hardships upon, the developer of such property, grant, upon application or an appeal relating to such property, a variance from such strict application of such regulation so as to relieve such difficulties or hardships; and where in an application or appeal relating to a specific piece of property the purpose of the Act would be advanced by a deviation from the Zoning Ordinance requirements and the benefit of the deviation would substantially outweigh any detriment, grant a variance to allow departure from regulations pursuant to Article 8 of the Act; provided, however, that no variation from those departures enumerated in Section 57d of the Act shall be granted under this subsection; and provided further that the proposed development does not require approval by the Planning Board if a subdivision, site plan or conditional use in conjunction with which the Planning Board has power to review a request for a variance pursuant to Subsection 47a of the Act.
In particular cases and for special reasons, the Board may grant a variance to allow departure from regulations pursuant to Article 8 of the Act to permit a use or principal structure in a district restricted against such use of principal structure, an expansion of a nonconforming use, deviation from a specification or standard pursuant to Section 54 of P.L. 1975, c. 291 (N.J.S.A. 40:55D-67), pertaining solely to a conditional use, an increase in the permitted floor area ratio as defined in Section 3.1 of P.L. 1975, c. 291 (N.J.S.A. 40:55D-4), an increase in the permitted density as defined in Section 3.1 of P.L. 1975, c. 291 (N.J.S.A. 40:55D-4), except as applied to the required lot or lots for detached one- or two-dwelling unit buildings which lot or lots are either an isolated undersized lot or lots resulting from a minor subdivision. A variance under this subsection shall be granted only by affirmative vote of at least five members, in the case of a municipal board, or 2/3 of the full authorized membership, in the case of a regional board pursuant to Article 10 of this Act.
No variance or other relief may be granted under the terms of this section unless such variance or other relief can be granted without substantial detriment to the public good and will not substantially impair the intent and the purpose of the zone plan and Zoning Ordinance. In respect of any airport hazard areas delineated under the Air Safety and Hazardous Zoning Act of 1983, P.L. 1983, c. 260 (N.J.S.A. 6:1-80 et seq.) no variance or other relief may be granted under the terms of this section permitting the creation or establishment of a nonconforming use which would be prohibited under the standards promulgated pursuant to that act except upon issuance of a permit by the Commissioner of Transportation. An application under this section may be referred to any appropriate person or agency for its report: provided that such reference shall not extend the period of time within which the Zoning Board of Adjustment shall act.
Appeals to the Zoning Board of Adjustment may be taken by any person aggrieved, or by an officer, department, board or bureau of the municipality affected by any decision of the Administrative Officer. Each appeal shall be taken within the 65 days prescribed by the statute by filing a notice of appeal with the officer from whom the appeal was taken, together with copies of said notice with the Administrative Officer. Said notice of appeal shall specify the grounds for said appeal. The officer from whom the appeal is taken shall forthwith transmit to the Board all the papers constituting the record upon which the action appealed from was taken.
A developer may file an application for development with the Board of Adjustment for action under any of its powers without prior application to an Administrative Officer. Applications addressed to the original jurisdiction of the Board of Adjustment without prior application to an administrative officer shall be filed with the Secretary of the Board of Adjustment. Four copies of the application shall be filed. At the time of filing the appeal or application, but in no event less than 10 days prior to the date set for hearing, the applicant shall also file all plot plans, maps or other papers required by virtue of any provision of this chapter or any rule of the Board of Adjustment. The applicant shall obtain all necessary forms from the Administrative Officer. The Administrative Officer shall inform the applicant of the steps to be taken to initiate proceedings and of the regular meeting dates of the Board.
An appeal stays all proceedings in furtherance of the action in respect of which the decision appealed from was made, unless the officer from whom the appeal is taken certifies to the Zoning Board of Adjustment after the notice of appeal shall have been filed with him that by reason of facts stated in the certificate a stay would, in his opinion, cause imminent peril to life or property. In such case, proceedings shall not be stayed otherwise than by a restraining order which may be granted by the Board of Adjustment or by the Superior Court of New Jersey on application or notice to the officer from whom the appeal is taken and on due cause shown.
Public notice on any application for variances shall be given in accordance with N.J.S.A. 40:55D-12.
In exercising the above mentioned power, the Board of Adjustment may, in conformity with the provisions of P.L. 1975, c. 291, or amendments thereto or subsequent statutes applying reverse or affirm wholly or partly or may modify the order, requirement, decision or determination appealed from, and make such other requirement, decision or determination as ought to be made, and to that end have all the powers of the Administrative Officer from whom the appeal was taken.
Any variance from the terms of this chapter hereafter granted by the Zoning Board of Adjustment permitting the erection or alteration of any structure or structures, or permitting a specified use of any premises shall expire by limitation unless such construction or alteration shall have been actually commenced on each and every structure permitted by said variance, or unless such permitted use has actually been commenced, within one year from the date of entry of the judgment or determination of the Board of Adjustment; except, however, in the case of a use variance which also involves a subdivision or site plan, approval of the variance shall extend for the full period of preliminary approval, i.e., three years; and except, however, that the running of the period of limitation herein provided shall be tolled from the date of filing an appeal from the decision of the Board of Adjustment to the governing body, or to a court of competent jurisdiction, until the termination in any manner of such appeal or proceeding.
The Zoning Board of Adjustment shall render its decision not later than 120 days after the date an appeal is taken from the decision of a municipal agency or its authorized committee or designee, or the submission of a complete application for development to the Board pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 40:55D-70b.
[Amended 4-1-1985 by Ord. No. 4-85]
Failure of the Board to render a decision within such one-hundred-twenty-day period or within such further time as may be consented to by the applicant shall constitute a decision favorable to the applicant.
The Board of Adjustment may refer any application to any appropriate person or agency, including the Planning Board, for its report, provided that such reference shall not extend the period of time within which the Board of Adjustment shall act.
Whenever review or approval of the application by the County Planning Board is required by Section 5 of P.L. 1968, c. 285 (N.J.S.A. 40:27-6.3), in the case of a subdivision or Section 8 of P.L. 1968, c. 285 (N.J.S.A. 40:27-6.6), in the case of a site plan, the municipal Board of Adjustment shall condition any approval that it grants upon timely receipt of a favorable report on the application by the County Planning Board or approval by the County Planning Board by its failure to report thereon within the required time.