P&Z hits property owners again

Damn!

Damn!

Their latest proposal, to be heard this Tuesday, January 7th, at Town Hall, is to require applicants to pay the fees of any outside experts the P&Z deems necessary to evaluate the project. Already, P&Z’s strictures on floor area ratios, grade planes, flood elevations, open space, etc. etc. require homeowners interested in even the smallest of projects to incur huge professional fees for architects, surveyors and lawyers. Now, the commission wants you to pay for their side too. I say “side” deliberately: the planning and zoning process was once a collaborative effort between the town and its citizens. Now it’s adversarial, pitting those same citizens against a hostile, entrenched bureaucracy. And the citizens pay their salaries. Funny,huh?

NEW Section: 6-14 (a) (23) HIRING OF OUTSIDE CONSULTANTS

The Planning and Zoning Director and/or the Planning and Zoning Commission may require additional technical assistance in evaluating either a preliminary or final site plan applications submitted, or a modification to an application, if it finds that the nature and intensity of development may have a significant impact on the site and its surrounding areas. After such determination is made, the applicant may be required to pay for hiring one or more outside consultants to assist the Planning and Zoning staff and Commission in analyzing, reviewing and reporting on areas requiring technical review. Such consultant(s) may include, but shall not be limited to engineers, traffic engineers, surveyors, architects etc.
The expense of the additional technical assistance shall be estimated by the Director or Commission based on a preliminary estimate from the consultant chosen by the Planning and Zoning Commission or Director of Planning and Zoning. The estimated cost of reviewing the application times one hundred-fifty percent (150%) shall be paid by the applicantand deposited with the Planning and Zoning Dept. This amount shall be held in escrow until the technical review (s) are completed and the Commission finds the reports and reviews satisfactory. Upon completion of the technical review and final action by the Commission on the application, the Town shall determine the costs incurred for the review and refund the excess monies to the applicant. This payment shall be considered as an integral component of the application and failure by the applicant to make this payment shall render this application incomplete as determined by the Planning and Zoning Commission. Applicants shall not be responsible for the costs incurred for technical assistance which exceed one-hundred fifty-percent (150%)of the Commission’s estimate. Donald Heller, Chairman Richard Maitland, Secretary Dated: December 30, 2013 at Greenwich, CT

16 Comments

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16 responses to “P&Z hits property owners again

  1. If competent Landscape Architects were hired first instead of last all of this would be a non issue.

  2. Cos Cobber

    Such a regulation, if it makes any sense – which I have my doubts about, should be applicable to only projects of X amount in expenditure, say 10 million. In other words, for really big proposals, I could see this making some sense – like that proposed seniors apartment complex proposed on US 1 near the car dealerships about 18 months ago.

  3. Anonymous

    You really can’t make this stuff up.

    Only in gov’t do you get hired (and paid well) to hire outside consultants to do the job which you were hired to do in the first place.

  4. Once

    The public “servants” have clearly become “the masters”.

  5. housecat

    I fucking hate these people. Seriously. Why can’t they be fired, again?

  6. CatoRenasci

    Does this one have to pass the RTM? I’m willing to bet it won’t pass if it comes up to the RTM.

  7. greenwich dude

    we have gone full retard. who runs this asylum, anyway? unreal that no one has been fired over misa, fema regs, the re-districting fiasco, etc. no wonder the people running town treat us like shit – we lay back and take it every time.

  8. Pinzgauer

    I think the real kicker here is that it says “outside” consultant, not “independent” consultant.
    In other words, as you pointed out, the applicant has to actually fund the P&Z’s reason for denial.
    Amazing what non-elected bureaucrats can do these days.

  9. No outside consultant has ever been hired with public input or competition.

  10. Anonymous

    P&Z Outside Consultant Recommendations:
    – Christopher Fountain, Esq., GAR, REA, KCOBE,
    – Walt

    No others will do.

  11. Anonymous

    This is like China charging the family for the cost of the bullets used when executing a relative.

  12. Anonymous

    I wonder if this is something done in other CT towns or if Greenwich will once again lead the way in foolishness.