ARTICLE 12 – APPEALS
12.1 Appeals to the Board of Appeal - procedure
12.1.1 A party aggrieved by an action of the Planning Board or the Administrative Officer on matters of land development or subdivision shall have the right to appeal that decision to the Zoning Board of Review in its capacity as the Board of Appeal.
12.1.2 The appeal shall be taken within twenty (20) days of the day the decision is recorded in the land evidence records and posted in the Town Clerk's Office.
12.1.3 The appeal shall be in writing and shall state clearly and unambiguously the issue or decision that is being appealed, the reason for the appeal, and the relief sought.
12.1.4 The appeal shall be hand-delivered to the clerk of the Board of Appeal or shall be sent to the clerk of the Board of Appeal by certified mail, with a return receipt requested.
12.1.5 When the Board of Appeal receives an appeal, it shall inform the Administrative Officer, who shall immediately transmit to the Board of Appeal originals or certified copies of all of the plans and documents constituting the record of the action being appealed.
12.1.6 The filing of an appeal shall stay all proceedings in furtherance of the action being appealed.
12.1.7 If an appeal is taken from denial or approval of a final plan, and a public hearing was conducted during preliminary plan review, the appeal shall be limited to elements of the approval or disapproval that were not included in the Planning Board decision approving the preliminary plan.
12.2 Appeals to the Board of Appeal – Hearing
12.2.1 The Board of Appeal shall conduct a public hearing on an appeal within forty-five (45) days of the day the clerk receives the appeal.
12.2.2 Notice of the public hearing shall be advertised in a newspaper of general circulation in Richmond at least fourteen (14) days before the date of the hearing. Notice shall be sent by first class mail to the appellant, to the property owner, if the property owner is a person other than the appellant, and to any person who received notice during the review of the matter under appeal.
12.2.3 The Board of Appeal shall conduct the public hearing at a meeting called specifically for that purpose according to the procedures specified in the Zoning Ordinance.
12.3 Appeals to the Board of Appeal – Decision
12.3.1 The Board of Appeal shall not substitute its own judgment for that of the Planning Board or Administrative Officer, but shall consider the issue upon the findings and record of the Planning Board or Administrative Officer.
12.3.2 To reverse a decision of the Planning Board or Administrative Officer, the Board of Appeal must make a finding of prejudicial procedural error, clear error, or lack of support by the weight of the evidence in the record.
12.3.3 The board shall render a decision within ten (10) days of the close of the public hearing. The concurring votes of three (3) of the five (5) members of the board shall be necessary to reverse any decision of the Planning Board or Administrative Officer. The decision shall be in writing and shall include reasons for the decision.
12.3.4 The decision shall be posted in the Town Clerk's Office.
12.3.5 If the Board of Appeal reverses a decision of the Planning Board or Administrative Officer, the matter shall be remanded to the Planning Board or Administrative Officer at the stage of review from which the appeal was taken. Further proceedings before the Planning Board or Administrative Officer shall be consistent with the board's decision.
12.4 Appeals to the Superior Court
An aggrieved party may appeal a decision of the Board of Appeal to the Superior Court according to the provisions of R.I. Gen. Laws § 45-23-71, as amended.
(Adopted 9/9/03, amended 8/11/09, 10/24/17)