Wednesday, May 27, 2015   

Board of Adjustment

The Zoning Board Of Adjustment is a "quasi-judicial" administrative body that performs the following duty: to hear and decide appeals from; and to review and order requirements, decisions, or determinations made by the Zoning Administrator. The Board's function is that of granting variances and/or Special Exceptions.

A Variance is a request to deviate from current zoning requirements. The Zoning Board Of Adjustment may grant variances in certain situations, enabling a property owner to make use of his/her property in some way that conflicts with the literal provisions of the Brunswick County Unified Development Ordinance. For more information on Variances refer to Section 3.7 of the UDO.

A Specific Exception is a special permit granted Zoning Board of Adjustment. Certain uses in a given zoning districts are only permitted by special exception. A special exception permit allows for certain land uses in a given zoning district to be studied more thoroughly because of their unique characteristics. For more information on Special Exceptions refer to Section 3.3 of the UDO.

Board of Adjustment Brochure
Board of Adjustment Special Exception Application
Board of Adjustment Variance Application
Board of Adjustment Meeting Schedule

Scheduling A Meeting

First, schedule a meeting with a staff member. This may be done by contacting the Planning Department:, 910-253-2025 or 800-621-0609.

Information Needed:

  • Address of property in question.
  • Property owner's name.
  • Parcel number of property (available from the Tax Office).
  • Detailed Site Plan
Submitting An Application

When the specific request is determined, a formal application is submitted to the Planning Department not fewer than 30 days before the Board of Adjustment meeting.

The application should include the following:

  • A detailed statement of all proposed uses of the property.
  • Completed application forms.
  • Site plan showing all buildings, outdoor facilities, parking lots, all signs, proposed lighting, sanitation facilities, and utilities. Site plan must include dimensions of parcel of land, dimensions of existing structures and/or proposed structures -- including set backs (i.e., distance from adjacent properties).
  • Detailed plan for any amplification or other entertainment equipment located outdoors.
• Special Exception (BOA) - $250.00
• Variance - $100.00

After the Zoning Administrator has reviewed the Application for completeness, a date will be scheduled for public hearing by the Board Of Adjustment.

Staff Review

Before the case is heard by the Board Of Adjustment, the Zoning Administrator reviews the application and prepares a public notice to be mailed to all adjacent property owners. A sign is placed on the property to notify interested parties that a special exception/variance request is pending. Anyone interested in a particular request may call the Planning Department to address their questions. Public notice concerning the request -- as well as the time, date, and place of Board Of Adjustment meeting -- is mailed to adjacent property owners.

Board Of Adjustment Hearing

At the Board Of Adjustment meeting, the property owner or his agent, who must be present at the meeting, can explain plans for the property including a description of its proposed use.

The Case Hearing is not to solicit broad public opinion about how the board should vote on a matter; rather, it is a time for submittal of relevant factual evidence into the record by applicants, opponents, and staff -- all parties being sworn in advance at the opening, as required by State statute.

At the conclusion of the hearing, the Zoning Administrator shall place into the record relevant evidence as a series of findings of fact.

Next, at this same meeting, the Zoning Board Of Adjustment shall make a full statement of both the evidence and findings, and either:

  • Issue the Special ExceptionVariance as is; or
  • Issue the Special ExceptionVariance with further appropriate conditions and safeguards; or
  • Deny the request.