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Board of Adjustment
Board of Adjustment.
(a) Establishment. A board of adjustment is reestablished in accordance with the provisions of V.T.C.A., Local Government Code § 211.008 regarding the zoning cities and with the powers and duties as provided in the statutes.
(b) Membership. The board of adjustment shall consist of the members of the city council, as authorized by V.T.C.A., Local Government Code § 211.008(g). The city council shall also appoint two alternate members of the board of adjustment who shall serve in the absence of one or more regular members when requested to do so by the mayor or city manager. All cases to be heard by the board of adjustment will always be heard by a minimum of four members. These alternate members shall serve for the same period as the regular members and any vacancies shall be filled in the same manner and shall be subject to removal the same as the regular members.
(c) Meetings. Meetings of the board shall be held at the call of the chairman and at such times as the board may determine.
(d) Hearings. The hearings of the board of adjustment shall be public; however, the board may go into executive session for discussion but not for a vote on any case before it. The board shall hear the intervention of any owner of property adjacent to, in the rear of, or across the street from a lot as to which the granting of any building permit is pending, and shall also hear any other parties in interest. All hearings are to be heard by at least four members of the board.
(e) Rules and regulations. The board shall keep minutes of its proceedings, showing the vote each member upon each question or, if absent or failing to vote, indicating such fact, and shall keep records of its examinations and other official actions, all of which shall be immediately filed in the office of the board by resolution in which four members must concur. The board shall adopt from time to time such additional rules and regulations as it may deem necessary to carry into effect the provisions of this chapter, and shall furnish a copy of the same to the building inspector, all of which rules and regulations shall operate uniformly in all cases. All of its resolutions and orders shall be in accordance therewith.

Powers and duties of board.
(a) Subpoena witnesses, etc. The board shall have the power to subpoena witnesses, administer oaths, and punish for contempt, and may require the production of documents, under such regulations as it may establish.
(b) Appeals based on error. The board shall have the power to bear and decide appeals where it is alleged there is error of law in any order, requirements, decision or determination made by the building inspector in the enforcement of this chapter.
(c) Special exceptions. The board shall have the power to hear and decide special exceptions to the terms of this chapter upon which the board is required by pass as follows or elsewhere in this chapter:
(1) To permit a public utility or public service or structure in any district, or a public utility or public service building of a ground area and of a height at variance with those provided for in the district in which such public utility or public service building is permitted to be located, when found reasonably necessary for the public health, convenience, safety, or general welfare.
(2) To grant a permit for the extension of a use, height or area regulation into an adjoining district, where the boundary line of the district divides a lot in a single ownership on the effective date of the ordinance from which this chapter is derived.
(3) Permit the reconstruction of a nonconforming building that has been damaged by explosion, fire, act of God, or the public enemy, to the extent of more than 50 percent of its fair market value. The board must find some compelling necessity requiring a continuance of the nonconforming use and the primary purpose of continuing the nonconforming use is not to continue a monopoly.
(4) Waive or reduce the parking and loading requirements in any of the districts, whenever the character or use of the building is such as to make unnecessary the full provision of parking or loading facilities, or where such regulations would impose an unreasonable hardship upon the use of the lot, as contrasted with merely granting an advantage or a convenience.
(5) To determine in cases of uncertainty the classification of any use not specifically named in this chapter.
(d) Variances. The board shall have the power to authorize upon appeal in specific cases such variance from the terms of this chapter as will not be contrary to the public interest, where owing to special conditions, a literal enforcement of the provisions of this chapter will result in unnecessary hardship, and so that the spirit of this chapter shall be observed and substantial justice done, including the following:
(1) Permit a variance in the yard requirements of any district where there are unusual and practical difficulties or unnecessary hardships in the carrying out of these provisions due to an irregular shape of the lot, topographical or other conditions, provided such variance will not seriously affect any adjoining property or the general welfare.
(2) Authorize upon appeal, whenever a property owner can show that strict application of the terms of this chapter relating to the construction or alternations of buildings or structures will impose upon him unusual and practical difficulties or particular hardship. Such variances from the strict applications of the terms of this chapter must be in harmony with its general purpose and intent, and only when the board is satisfied that a granting of such variation will not merely serve as a convenience to the applicant, but will alleviate some demonstrable and unusual hardship or difficulty so great as to warrant a variance from the comprehensive plan as established by this chapter. At the same time, the surrounding property must be properly protected.
(e) Changes. The board shall have no authority to change any provisions of this chapter and its jurisdiction is limited to hardship and borderline cases which may arise from time to time. The board may not change the district designation of any land either to a more restrictive or less restrictive zone.
Application Materials
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Variance Application