Zoning Board of Appeals

Zoning Board of Appeals Members:

  1. Frank Broughton (2021) – Chairman
  2. Paul Cesana (2022)
  3. Kathy Vespa (2020)
  4. Joe Gardyjan (2019)
  5. Carrie Andolina (2018)
  6. Alternate: Chris Czech

The Zoning Board of Appeals consists of five Regular members and one alternate member.

The Town Board has the power to remove any member of the Board of Appeals for cause and after public hearing.

Regular members and the alternate shall not hold any elected office in the Town of Brant, nor are they permitted to act on any matter in which he or she is directly or indirectly related both personally and financially. Board of Appeal members shall adhere to Town of Brant Code of Ethics.

Duties of Board of Appeals:

The Board of Appeals shall have the powers and duties prescribed by Article 16, Sub Section 267 of the Town Law of the State of New York and by this chapter which are more particularly specified as follows:

Interpretation. Upon appeal from a decision by an administrative official, to decide any question involving interpretation of any provision of this chapter, including determination of the exact location of any district boundary if there is uncertainty with respect thereto.

  1. Variances. To vary or adopt the strict application of any of the requirements of this chapter in the case of exceptionally irregular, narrow, shallow or steep lots or other exceptional physical conditions, whereby such strict application would result in practical difficulty or unnecessary hardship that would deprive the owner of the reasonable use of the land or building involved buy in no other case. No variance in the strict application of this chapter shall be granted by the Board of Appeals unless it finds that:
  2. There are special circumstances or conditions, fully described in the findings of the Board applying to such land or buildings and are not applying to such land or buildings and are not applying generally to land or buildings in the neighborhood, and that said circumstances or conditions are such that strict application of the provisions of this chapter would deprive the applicant of the reasonable use of such land or buildings.
    1. For reasons fully set forth in the findings of the Board, the grant of the variance is necessary for the reasonable use of the land or buildings and that the variance as granted by the Board is the minimum variance that will accomplish this purpose.
    2. The granting of the variance will be in harmony with the general purpose and intent of this chapter and will not be injurious to the neighborhood or otherwise detrimental to the public welfare.
  3. In granting any variance, the Board of Appeals shall prescribe any conditions that it deems to be necessary or desirable.

Other Information:

The Board of Appeals shall act in strict accordance with the procedure specified by law. All appeals and applications made to the Board shall be in writing, on forms prescribed by the Board and available from the Code Enforcement Officer. Each appeal or application shall refer to the specific provision of this chapter involved and shall exactly set forth the interpretation that is claimed, the use for which the special permit is sought or the details of the variance that is applied for and the grounds on which it is claimed that the variance should be granted, as the case may be.

At least (30) days before the date of the hearing on an application or appeal to the Board of Appeals, the Secretary of said Board shall transmit to the Planning Board a copy of this notice of the aforesaid hearing and shall request that the Planning Board submit to the Board of Appeals its opinion on said application or appeal, and the Planning Board shall submit a report of such advisory opinion prior to the date of said hearing.

Failure to submit such report shall constitute approval of said application or appeal by the Planning Board.

Every decision of the Board of Appeals shall be by resolution, each of which shall contain a full record of the findings of the Board in the particular case.

Every Rule, regulation, decision and determination, amendment or repeal thereof made by the Board of Appeals shall be available in the Town Clerk’s Office as required by Article 16, sub section 267 of the Town Law of the State of New York.

Notice of Hearings:

The Board shall fix a reasonable time for the hearing of appeals and shall give due notice of the time set for the hearing to the applicant. Such notice shall be served upon applicant. Public notice shall be by the publication of a notice in the official newspaper of the town ad shall briefly describe the nature of the appeal and the time and place of the hearing.

The applicant shall, at least five (5) business days prior to the date of the hearing, give notice, in writing, by registered mail or by service in person, with adequate proof of contact thereof to all property owners within one thousand (1000) feet of property to be affected by said appeal or to all property owners of contiguous land or properties adjoining said property to be affected and other interested property owners as may be designated by the Board of Appeals. The applicant must furnish proof of services in writing and properly notarized.


Town of Brant Local Law pertaining to the Zoning Board of Appeals:

Article X. Board of Appeals

§ 161-50. Organization.

There is hereby established a Board of Appeals to consist of five members, to be appointed by the Town Board, which shall also designate the Chairman of such Board of Appeals. The Town Clerk shall act as the Clerk of the Board of Appeals.

§ 161-51. Terms of office.

Of the members of the Board first appointed, one shall hold office for the term of one year, one for two years and one for three years, one for four years and one for five years from and after his appointment. Their successors shall be appointed for terms of five years from and after the expiration of the terms of their predecessors in office.

§ 161-52. Vacancies.

If a vacancy shall occur otherwise than by expiration of term, it shall be filled by the Town Board by appointment for the unexpired term.

§ 161-53. Removal.

The Town Board shall have the power to remove any member of the Board of Appeals for cause and after public hearing.

§ 161-54. Meetings.

All meetings of the Board of Appeals shall be held at the call of the Chairman and at such times as such Board may determine and shall be open to the public.

§ 161-55. Clerk to the Board of Appeals.

The Town Board may appoint a Clerk to assist the Town Clerk in the performance of his duties as Clerk to the Board of Appeals and to perform such other duties as required by said Board of Appeals. Such Clerk so appointed shall serve at the pleasure of the Town Board.

§ 161-56. Chairman.

The Chairman or, in his absence, the Acting Chairman, shall preside at all meetings of the Board of Appeals and may administer oaths and compel the attendance of witnesses.

§ 161-57. Records to be maintained.

The Board of Appeals shall keep minutes of its proceedings, showing the vote of each member upon every question or, if absent or failing to vote, indicating such fact and shall also keep records of its examinations or other official actions. Every rule, regulation, every amendment or repeal thereof and every order, requirement, decision or determination of the Board of Appeals shall immediately be filed in the office of the Town Clerk and shall be a public record.

§ 161-58. Voting. [Amended 9-16-1992 by L.L. No. 2-1992]

Three members of the Board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, and the concurring vote of the majority of the Board shall be necessary to reverse any order, requirement, decision or determination of the Code Enforcement Officer or to decide in favor of an applicant in any matter upon which it is required to pass under this chapter.

§ 161-59. Powers and duties.

The Board of Appeals shall have the powers and duties prescribed by Article 16, § 267 of the Town Law of the State of New York and by this chapter which are more particularly specified as follows:

A. Interpretation. Upon appeal from a decision by an administrative official, to decide any question involving the interpretation of any provision of this chapter, including determination of the exact location of any district boundary if there is uncertainty with respect thereto.

B. Variances. To vary or adopt the strict application of any of the requirements of this chapter in the case of exceptionally irregular, narrow, shallow or steep lots or other exceptional physical conditions, whereby such strict application would result in practical difficulty or unnecessary hardship that would deprive the owner of the reasonable use of the land or building involved but in no other case. No variance in the strict application of this chapter shall be granted by the Board of Appeals unless it finds that:

(1) There are special circumstances or conditions, fully described in the findings of the Board applying to such land or buildings and not applying generally to land or buildings in the neighborhood, and that said circumstances or conditions are such that strict application of the provisions of this chapter would deprive the applicant of the reasonable use of such land or buildings.

(2) For reasons fully set forth in the findings of the Board, the granting of the variance is necessary for the reasonable use of the land or building and that the variance as granted by the Board is the minimum variance that will accomplish this purpose.

(3) The granting of the variance will be in harmony with the general purpose and intent of this chapter and will not be injurious to the neighborhood or otherwise detrimental to the public welfare.

C. In granting any variance, the Board of Appeals shall prescribe any conditions that it deems to be necessary or desirable.

§ 161-60. Procedure. [Amended 9-16-1992 by L.L. No. 2-1992]

A. The Board of Appeals shall act in strict accordance with the procedure specified by law and by this chapter. All appeals and applications made to the Board shall be in writing, on forms prescribed by the Board, and available from the Code Enforcement Officer. Every appeal or application shall refer to the specific provision of the chapter involved and shall exactly set forth the interpretation that is claimed, the use for which the special permit is sought or the details of the variance that is applied for and the grounds on which it is claimed that the variance should be granted, as the case may be. At least 30 days before the date of the hearing on an application or appeal to the Board of Appeals, the Secretary of said Board shall transmit to the Planning Board a copy of this notice of the aforesaid hearing and shall request that the Planning Board submit to the Board of Appeals its opinion on said application or appeal, and the Planning Board shall submit a report of such advisory opinion prior to the date of said hearing. Failure to submit such report shall constitute approval of said application or appeal by the Planning Board.

B. Every decision of the Board of Appeals shall be by resolution, each of which shall contain a full record of the findings of the Board in the particular case.

§ 161-61. Board of Appeals office designated.

The office of the Town Clerk shall be the office of the Board of Appeals and every rule, regulation, amendment or repeal thereof and every order, requirement, decision or determination of the Board shall immediately be filed in said office as required by Article 16, § 267 of the Town Law of the State of New York.

§ 161-62. Notice of hearings. [Amended 9-16-1992 by L.L. No. 2-1992]

The Board shall fix a reasonable time for the hearing of appeals and shall give due notice of the time set for the hearing to the applicant. Such notice shall be served upon the applicant. Public notice shall be by the publication of a notice in the official newspaper of the Town and shall briefly describe the nature of the appeal and the time and place of the hearing. The applicant shall, at least five days prior to the date of the hearing, give notice, in writing, by registered mail or by service in person, with adequate proof of contact thereof to all property owners within 1,000 feet of the property to be affected by said appeal or to all property owners of contiguous land or properties adjoining said property to be affected and other interested property owners as may be designated by the Board of Appeals. The applicant must furnish proof of services in writing and properly notarized.


Reference Material:

PDF FileEthical Standards for Planning and Zoning Boards – Exploring Standards of Ethical Conduct for Members of Planning Boards and Zoning Boards of Appeals: Article 18 of the GML & the Common Law

PDF FileGlossary of Terms

Guidelines for Applicants To the Zoning Board of Appeals PDF File– This publication has been written to aid potential applicants in understanding and appreciating the appeals process, and to provide an explanation of the rules and standards under which appeals and variance decisions must be made.

PDF FileGuide to Planning and Zoning Laws – This publication, part of the Department of State’s “James A. Coon Local Government Technical Series,” is designed to help municipal officials and attorneys make more efficient use of planning and zoning laws. The guide provides the text of each pertinent section of law with notations in the margin to assist in referencing.

PDF FileRecord Keeping Tips for the Zoning Administration – Zoning review can be a very bureaucratic process. It involves handling a lot of paper – site plans, special permits, subdivisions, appeals, building permits, certificates of compliance, and enforcement actions. Properly managing this paperwork and keeping it organized is often difficult, even in the best of circumstances, but it is essential to effective zoning administration and enforcement.

PDF FileVariance Application – Application for Variance – Town of Brant Zoning Board of Appeals

PDF File Zoning and the Comprehensive Plan – New York’s zoning enabling statutes (the state statutes which give cities, towns and villages the power to enact local zoning laws) all require that zoning laws be adopted in accordance with a comprehensive plan. The comprehensive plan should provide the backbone for the local zoning law.

PDF File Zoning Board of Appeals – New York State Department of State – Includes All Statutory Changes Through the 2005 Legislative Session

PDF FileZoning Ordinance of the Town of Brant, Erie County, New York

Town Law of the State of New York

Zoning Ordinance of the Town of Brant, Erie County, New York