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Zoning News- 2024- 01

Posted on January 9, 2024

2024 January Zoning News

2023 Zoning Recap

Jim Corbin, Zoning Enforcement Officer

Zoning Laws were enacted to protect the health and welfare of residents and visitors. They protect the investments residents and businesses make in their properties. They foster and control economic growth and protect the Village’s natural and historic resources…all of which make Sackets Harbor a great place to reside, work, and visit.

Each year on average the Village processes 45-50 zoning applications. This year the Village processed 66, half of which were referred to the Planning Board for review on the application’s impact on historic resources, proposed or expanded business uses, and special use permits. In addition to this activity I, as Zoning Enforcement Officer, responded to many inquiries about proposed actions. I also investigated complaints and educated residents on and enforced the Zoning Law.

In most cases of non-compliance, education and seeking voluntary compliance is a successful enforcement tool, which saves the Village on the legal expense of prosecuting a case. Unfortunately, in 2023 five cases of non-compliance were sent to Town Court. Most of these cases are still awaiting final resolution. Failure to obtain compliance with the law undermines the integrity of the law and is unfair to residents who follow it.

There were two cases of violations of Sec 3-7 KEEPING OF ANIMALS. Non-compliance with this section had an impact on neighbors because of the species of fowl, number of, and how the fowl were penned and cared for.

There was a violation of Sec 3-6 OUTDOOR STORAGE. Improper storage of items had a negative impact on the aesthetics of and character of the neighborhood, which was in the Historic Preservation Overlay District on a main thoroughfare used by residents and tourists.

There were two violations of actions being done without the benefit of Zoning Permit Sec 7-3 ZONING PERMITS.

One case involved the expansion of and changes to architectural features of a residence in the Historic Preservation Overlay District, a violation of Sec 4-3 SPECIAL REGULATIONS FOR THE HISTORIC PRESERVATION OVERLAY DISTRICT.

The other case involved construction of a fence with a height that exceeded what is permitted in a front yard, Sec 4-8 FENCES AND WALLS. An application was voluntarily applied for but denied by both the ZEO and upheld by the Zoning Board of Appeals, which also denied a request for a variance.

As is always the case, residents with questions on the Zoning Law, application process, or a zoning complaint are welcome to contact me. Contact info is on the Village Website.


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