BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS
The Ulysses Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA) ensures that building and land use in the Town of Ulysses comply with the Zoning Law to protect the health, safety, and general welfare of all Town residents and property owners. Occasionally, circumstances arise where homeowners and businesses want to make alterations to their property that would put them in non-compliance with the current Zoning Laws. To make such a modification, the property owner must meet with the BZA to request a variance of the Zoning Code.
Under the Town of Ulysses Zoning Law, the Board of Zoning Appeals is responsible for handling all requests for changes in the use or dimensions of property within the Town limits.The BZA will assemble to hear, consider, and either grant or deny the applicant’s request to make the property change outside the parameters of the Zoning Law.
Common Variance Requests Include
- Area – Entails a request for dimensional changes, like reducing side, front, or backyard setbacks for an addition to existing buildings or the addition of a new outbuilding. An area variance is often permitted when practical difficulty can be demonstrated--for example when the location of a septic system precludes locating an addition or outbuilding in an area that would comply with side or backyard setbacks.
- Use – Involves a request to change how a property is used--for example changing a residential property (family home) to a business (office or retail). A Use Variance is rarely permitted under New York State Town Law Zoning as it usually comes into direct conflict with the Town’s Comprehensive Plan and Zoning Law that guides land use.
- Special permit requests– Are required when the property owner seeks approval for a development that is allowed in a zone by special permit. The request needs to show how these changes will improve the property, the use and activities that will be connected with the development, and the hours of operation and number of employees that will be associated with the new development.
There are five members (volunteers) on the Board of Zoning Appeals who serve staggered terms of five years each. Letters of Interest to serve as a member of the BZA may be sent to the Town Clerk at the above address.
All Members of the Board of Zoning Appeals
- Must be resident of the Town of Ulysses
- Must submit a Letter of Interest and be appointed by the Town Board
- Are expected to fulfill the New York State attendance and training requirements for BZA members
- Follow Town Law, Section 267 (a)
The BZA meets as needed on the third Wednesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. at the Ulysses Town Hall, 10 Elm Street, Trumansburg, New York. Meeting minutes can be reviewed at Board of Zoning Appeals Meeting Minutes