City of Biddeford, ME
York County
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[Ord. No. 2002.67, 9-3-2002]
A. 
Authority. The City of Biddeford Planning Board (hereafter the "board"), originally established under the provisions of 30-A M.R.S.A. § 4326, is hereby continued as provided by law, 30-A M.R.S.A. § 4313 [now repealed]. The powers and responsibilities of the board allowed under the pre-1971 legislation (30 M.R.S.A. § 4964) are maintained.
B. 
Duties and responsibilities. The board shall have the following duties and responsibilities:
1. 
Prepare, and revise a comprehensive plan in accordance with 30-A M.R.S.A.
2. 
Review and approve, approve with conditions, or disapprove subdivision and other development plans that deal with specific real estate. This includes site reviews and conditional uses.
3. 
Review and approve, approve with conditions, or disapprove development plans in the Shoreland Zone as required by Article XIV of this ordinance.
[Amended 2-2-2010 by Ord. No. 2009.98]
4. 
Draft for approval by the municipal officers, ordinances and other provisions to facilitate Subsections 1 through 3 above.
C. 
Membership.
1. 
The Board shall consist of seven members, five voting members and two associate members. Each member shall be nominated by the Mayor, confirmed by the City Council, for a three year-term. Members may be reappointed at the end of their terms, not to exceed three consecutive terms. All current appointments shall have a term of office expiring no later than December 31, 2005. The Mayor shall have the discretion of appointing members and associate members to the Planning Board with terms expiring after two years but less than three years for the purpose of staggering appointments throughout a calendar year.
2. 
Associate members may be made voting members of the Board upon the retirement or nonappointment of a voting member.
3. 
All members of the Board shall be registered voters and residents of the City of Biddeford. No serving municipal officer or official of the City of Biddeford shall serve as a member of the Board.
4. 
Members of the Board shall reflect as much as possible several geographic areas of the City, and shall have diverse professional or employment backgrounds. This is to insure as much as possible that the interests of the City and applicants are fairly and reasonably represented. In no case shall more than two members be from the same ward.
5. 
Members of the Board are required to sign the Biddeford Planning Board Rules of Procedure and Code of Ethics prior to taking the oath of office. Any individual appointed to the Board shall not be administered the oath of office and shall not be seated until the Rules of Procedure and Code of Ethics have been signed. Failure to sign will invalidate the appointment and shall require a replacement appointment.
[Added 2-21-2012 by Ord. No. 2012.8
D. 
Term of office.
1. 
Members of the Board shall be appointed for a three-year term. No member shall serve more than three consecutive terms, including any term or part of a term served under any predecessor in this section. Any member appointed to fill a vacancy for which more than half of the unexpired term remains, for purposes of this provision, shall be deemed to have served one full term.
2. 
When there is a permanent vacancy, the Mayor shall nominate with confirmation by the City Council a new member to serve for the remainder of the unexpired term.
E. 
Removal from office.
1. 
Members of the Board may be removed from office by the municipal officers for the following reasons:
a. 
A member is no longer a resident of the City of Biddeford; or
b. 
A member is absent from three consecutive regular Board meetings without prior satisfactory explanation; or
c. 
A member is absent from six meetings or workshops of the Board without prior satisfactory explanation; or
d. 
A member conducts himself/herself in a manner that is inconsistent with the official position of the Planning Board, i.e. consistent conflicts of interest or unprofessional behavior toward applicants, City employees or members of the public.
2. 
Removal action may be initiated by the Mayor, the City Council or a member of the Board. A letter shall be submitted to the municipal officers stating the reasons for the removal request.
3. 
The Board member in question shall be provided a copy of the letter and shall be given the opportunity to reply to the municipal officers.
F. 
Board officers.
1. 
A Chairperson shall be appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the Council each January. The Board shall elect from its voting membership the following officers:
Vice Chairman;
Secretary.
2. 
The terms of these officers shall be one year. The Chairperson may not be reelected for more than two consecutive terms. The Board shall hold elections during the January meeting, the results of which shall be submitted to the municipal officers.
3. 
Elected officers shall be responsible for the following:
a. 
Chairman: Conduct of meetings, scheduling and announcing meetings, signing official correspondence for the Board. The Chairman shall vote only in case of a tie.
b. 
Vice Chairman: acts in place of the Chairman when he/she is absent or required to leave the Chair because of conflict; acts as Chair for special subcommittees of the Board as needed.
c. 
Secretary: ensures that the records of meetings are accurate and available for the Board's review and reference.
G. 
Staff. The Board shall empower the Planning Department to hire professional staff to assist in planning matters and issues as needed. This assistance shall include the hiring of independent engineering and traffic consultants, and legal counsel. Opinions presented by the Board's legal counsel shall not be binding upon the City of Biddeford.
H. 
Meetings.
1. 
The Board shall conduct monthly meetings, or at least regular meetings during a calendar year. Meetings shall convene on the first Wednesday of each month, unless prior arrangement and public (as described elsewhere in the Code) announcement has been made by the Board.
[Amended 3-5-2019 by Ord. No. 2019.14]
2. 
Upon motion by the Board the Chairman may call for special meetings and workshops as needed.
3. 
All meetings of the Board shall be open to the public. Materials and records of the meetings shall be maintained and available for public inspection.
[Amended 3-5-2019 by Ord. No. 2019.14]
4. 
The Board shall publish rules for the conduct of meetings to insure orderly conduct and efficient processing of applications and planning matters. The Board shall adopt Roberts Rules of Order.
5. 
Board meetings shall be called to order when a quorum of the voting members are present. For this purpose a quorum shall be three voting members. When a regular member of the Board is unable to serve because of conflict of interest, incapacity, absence or lack of confirmed appointment to fill a permanent vacancy, an associate member shall be designated to vote by the Chairman.
6. 
The Board shall issue a written decision on matters when determined by the Board to be necessary, appropriately signed by the Chairman. The decisions shall include:
a. 
A statement of findings and conclusions.
b. 
Any conditional actions and the time-table for completion.
In addition to the normal established distribution, a copy of the above shall be given to the Code Enforcement Officer for use when issuing a building permit, or for documentation on appeal or variance request.
7. 
The Board shall issue a written decision on all matters when determined by the board to be necessary, appropriately signed by the chairperson. The decisions shall include:
I. 
Conflicts. Any questions raised by any interested party of whether a particular issue involves a conflict of interest sufficient to disqualify a member from voting shall be decided by a majority of the members present except the member who is being challenged.
A. 
Office of the City Planner.
[Amended 6-7-2016 by Ord. No. 2016.41]
1. 
The office of the City Planner is hereby created.
2. 
(Reserved)
3. 
The City Planner, and his/her assistants as needed, shall be appointed by the Economic Development Director, subject to approval by the City Manager.
B. 
Duties and responsibilities.
1. 
The City Planner shall be the primary advisor to the Planning Board and shall act as primary staff for the Board. He/she shall advise the Board concerning the completeness of applications. He/she shall prepare agendas and arrange meetings for the Board. He/she will contact and coordinate between the various departments and applicants to ensure timely resolution of planning issues relating to applications and planning proposals.
2. 
The City Planner shall advise the Mayor and Council concerning land use and general planning issues affecting the City and comprehensive development. He/she shall provide written position papers and other documents needed to assist City officials in making sound decisions concerning land use and planning issues.
3. 
The City Planner shall develop a budget for the operation of the Planning Department and Board.
4. 
The City Planner shall respond to citizen inquiries concerning planning issues and provide information relating to development proposals as much as possible.