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ZONING APPEALS BOARD
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Zoning Appeals Board
Function & Responsibility
1) Membership
a) The Board of Zoning Appeals shall consist of five members appointed by the Mayor, subject to confirmation by the Council, for staggered terms of three years.
b) Two alternate members shall be appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the Council for terms of three years and shall act only when a regular member is absent or refuses to vote because of interest.
c) The Building Inspector shall attend meetings, upon request, to provide technical assistance as requested by the Board.

2) Officers
a) Chairperson: The Mayor shall designate the Chairperson of the Board.
b) Secretary: The Clerk-Treasurer or his designee shall serve as Secretary to the Board.
c) Powers and duties: The Board shall have the powers and duties prescribed in § 62.23(7)(e), Wis. Stats. (see below)


§ 62.23(7)(e), Wis. Stats:

62.23(7)(e)2.
The board of appeals shall consist of 5 members appointed by the mayor subject to confirmation of the common council for terms of 3 years, except that of those first appointed one shall serve for one year, 2 for 2 years and 2 for 3 years. The members of the board shall serve at such compensation to be fixed by ordinance, and shall be removable by the mayor for cause upon written charges and after public hearing. The mayor shall designate one of the members as chairperson. The board may employ a secretary and other employees. Vacancies shall be filled for the unexpired terms of members whose terms become vacant. The mayor shall appoint, for staggered terms of 3 years, 2 alternate members of such board, in addition to the 5 members above provided for. Annually, the mayor shall designate one of the alternate members as 1st alternate and the other as 2nd alternate. The 1st alternate shall act, with full power, only when a member of the board refuses to vote because of interest or when a member is absent. The 2nd alternate shall so act only when the 1st alternate so refuses or is absent or when more than one member of the board so refuses or is absent. The above provisions, with regard to removal and the filling of vacancies, shall apply to such alternates.

62.23(7)(e)3.
The board shall adopt rules in accordance with the provisions of any ordinance adopted pursuant to this section. Meetings of the board shall be held at the call of the chairperson and at such other times as the board may determine. The chairperson, or in the chairperson's absence, the acting chairperson, may administer oaths and compel the attendance of witnesses. All meetings of the board shall be open to the public. The board shall keep minutes of its proceedings, showing the vote of each member upon each question, or, if absent or failing to vote, indicating such fact, and shall keep records of its examinations and other official actions, all of which shall be immediately filed in the office of the board and shall be a public record.

62.23(7)(e)3m.
If a quorum is present, the board of appeals may take action under this subsection by a majority vote of the members present.

62.23(7)(e)4.
Appeals to the board of appeals may be taken by any person aggrieved or by any officer, department, board or bureau of the city affected by any decision of the administrative officer. Such appeal shall be taken within a reasonable time, as provided by the rules of the board, by filing with the officer from whom the appeal is taken and with the board of appeals a notice of appeal specifying the grounds thereof. 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.

62.23(7)(e)5.
An appeal shall stay all legal proceedings in furtherance of the action appealed from, unless the officer from whom the appeal is taken certifies to the board of appeals after the notice of appeal shall have been filed with the officer, that by reason of facts stated in the certificate a stay would, in the officer's 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 appeals or by a court of record on application, on notice to the officer from whom the appeal is taken, and on due cause shown.

62.23(7)(e)6.
The board of appeals shall fix a reasonable time for the hearing of the appeal or other matter referred to it, and give public notice thereof, as well as due notice to the parties in interest, and decide the same within a reasonable time. Upon the hearing any party may appear in person or by agent or by attorney. In any action involving a listed property, as defined in s. 44.31 (4), the board shall consider any suggested alternatives or recommended decision submitted by the landmarks commission or the planning commission.

62.23(7)(e)7.
The board of appeals shall have the following powers: To hear and decide appeals where it is alleged there is error in any order, requirement, decision or determination made by an administrative official in the enforcement of this section or of any ordinance adopted pursuant thereto; to hear and decide special exception to the terms of the ordinance upon which such board is required to pass under such ordinance; to authorize upon appeal in specific cases such variance from the terms of the ordinance as will not be contrary to the public interest, where, owing to special conditions, a literal enforcement of the provisions of the ordinance will result in practical difficulty or unnecessary hardship, so that the spirit of the ordinance shall be observed, public safety and welfare secured, and substantial justice done. The board may permit in appropriate cases, and subject to appropriate conditions and safeguards in harmony with the general purpose and intent of the ordinance, a building or premises to be erected or used for such public utility purposes in any location which is reasonably necessary for the public convenience and welfare.

62.23(7)(e)8.
In exercising the above mentioned powers such board may, in conformity with the provisions of such section, reverse or affirm, wholly or partly, or may modify the order, requirement, decision or determination appealed from, and may make such order, requirement, decision or determination as ought to be made, and to that end shall have all the powers of the officer from whom the appeal is taken, and may issue or direct the issue of a permit.

62.23(7)(e)10.
Any person or persons, jointly or severally aggrieved by any decision of the board of appeals, or any taxpayer, or any officer, department, board or bureau of the municipality, may, within 30 days after the filing of the decision in the office of the board of appeals, commence an action seeking the remedy available by certiorari. The court shall not stay proceedings upon the decision appealed from, but may, on application, on notice to the board of appeals and on due cause shown, grant a restraining order. The board of appeals shall not be required to return the original papers acted upon by it, but it shall be sufficient to return certified or sworn copies thereof. If necessary for the proper disposition of the matter, the court may take evidence, or appoint a referee to take evidence and report findings of fact and conclusions of law as it directs, which shall constitute a part of the proceedings upon which the determination of the court shall be made. The court may reverse or affirm, wholly or partly, or may modify, the decision brought up for review.

62.23(7)(e)14.
Costs shall not be allowed against the board unless it shall appear to the court that the board acted with gross negligence or in bad faith, or with malice, in making the decision appealed from.

62.23(7)(e)15.
All issues in any proceedings under this section shall have preference over all other civil actions and proceedings.

62.23(7)(ea)
Filing fees. The common council may by ordinance or resolution establish reasonable fees for the filing of a petition for amendment of the zoning ordinance or official map, or for filing an appeal to the board of appeals.




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