Zoning Amendments Other Than Petitions

One of the principal duties of the Planning Board is to propose amendments to the Jackson Zoning Ordinance. The Board of Selectmen and/or village district commission also has the ability to propose zoning amendments.

A zoning ordinance may be enacted or amended after a ballot vote of a majority of the voters present and voting at the Annual Town Meeting on at a Special Meeting. RSA 675: 3 governs zoning amendments other than those by petition.

A voter petitioned amendment, by contrast, can only be presented at the Annual Town meeting after following the proper procedures. See Zoning Petitions on the Planning Board for more details.

Planning Board Public Hearing - In all cases the Planning  Board must hold at least one Public Hearing for the amendments with prior notification as provided in RSA 675:7. After the Public Hearing, the Planning Board must, by vote, determine the final form of the amendment, or amendments to be presented to the town.

For a Petitioned Amendment, the Planning Board must not revise it, but must vote on whether to recommend adoption or defeat it, which will be on the ballot for Town Meeting. (Voter petitioned amendments must be received 120  and 90 days before the annual meeting. See Zoning Petitions on the Planning Board page for details.)

For an amendment proposed by the Planning Board or Board of Selectmen, an additional hearing must be held if the Planning Board is making substantial changes following public comments made at the Public Hearing.

Notice Requirment - RSA 675: 7 states notice of the Planning Board Public Hearing must be posted in two places and published in a locally circulated newspaper, 10 days prior to the Public Hearing. If the Planning Board anticipates a second Public Hearing, there must be 14 days between the two hearings, and the ten day notice again applies.

Ballot Question - The Planning Board must provide the Town Clerk with a final copy of the warrant article no later than the fifth Tuesday before the Annual  or Special Meeting.

Effective Date of Amendment - If approved at Town Meeting, the effective date is the date that the public notice appeared for the Planning Board Public Hearing on the amendment.

Summary -

  • Posting of Notice of Public Hearings - 10 days before Public Hearings
  • Public Hearing is held
  • Second Public Hearing is held, if substantial changes are made to Planning Board or Board of Selectmen amendments.
  • (Public Hearings must be 14 days apart, and 10 day notice still applicable.)
  • Final copy of Warrant article and amendments sent to Town Clerk - no later than the fifth Tuesday before the Annual or Special Meeting
  • Town Clerk shall include each question on the ballot, in the same manner as provided in RSA 675:3, VII

The above information was summarized from the Planning Board in New Hampshire, 2005 published by the NH Office of Energy and Planning. To read the entire document see the link on the Planning Board page.