ZBA Rules of Procedure

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  1. Regular meetings of the City of Wilmington Board of Adjustment (the “Board) shall be scheduled by the Board.
  1. Special meetings may be called by the Chair or at the request of two members provided, that notice of the same has been given to each member, except that the announcement of a special meeting, at any meeting at which all the members are present, shall be sufficient notice of such meeting.
  1. A quorum of the Board shall consist of two members.


  1. Every matter shall be brought to the Board of Adjustment on forms prepared by the Board which can be obtained at the Board’s web page or from the Department of Licenses and Inspections.
  1. In any case where the written consent of any person is required as a condition to the issuance of any permit by the Zoning Manager, no appeal or application shall be heard by this Board unless such written consents are filed with the Zoning Manager before the appeal or application to this Board is made.
  1. Every appeal or application for variation from or exception to the terms of the Building Zone Ordinance made by the owner, agent, architect or contractor, shall be taken within thirty days from the time for the refusal of a permit by the Zoning Manager or from the date of any order, ruling, decision or determination by such Zoning Manager from which the appeal or application is taken; and the appeal or application for rehearing of any other person affected or interested shall be taken within thirty days from the date of any permit granted.
  1. Appeals or applications shall be filed with the Secretary of this Board or his designee and the Zoning Manager notified by the appellant or applicant immediately in writing of such action thereof. It shall be the duty of the Zoning Manager to transmit to the Secretary of this Board all information, documents or papers bearing upon the application to him, together with a copy of his decision or determination.
  1. No communication purporting to be an appeal or application shall be regarded as such, unless it is made substantially in the form required.
  1. Upon receipt of any such communication, the writer shall be supplied with the proper forms for presenting his appeal, and if he fails to file with the Zoning Board of Adjustment the form properly filled out and executed, and to supply the required data within ten days from the date of refusal of a permit by the Zoning Manager or from the date of any order or decision of such Zoning Manager, his case may be dismissed for lack of prosecution.


  1. Each appeal, filed in proper form, with the required data, shall be placed upon the Calendar of the Board by the Secretary thereof. The Calendar numbers shall begin anew on the first day of each month with the number of the month and year in which said appeal is filed. Each number shall be followed by a period. For example, the first matter heard in January 2018 heard in January would be 1.1.18.
  1. Appeals will be assigned for hearing in the order in which they appear on the calendar, except that an appeal may be advanced for hearing by the Board Chair, upon good cause being shown, or for the convenience of the Board if it so determined.


  1. The appellant shall appear in his own behalf or be represented by counsel or agent at said hearing. At such hearing the appellant’s side of the case shall be first heard, the Zoning Manager or his representative next, members of the public next, and the appellant shall then be given an opportunity to reply thereto. No further argument shall be allowed unless by the unanimous consent of the Board.
  1. Members of the Public are limited to one public comment period of up to two minutes each per matter before the Board. The Chair may extend the time at the Chair’s discretion.


  1. The final disposition of any appeal or application to the Board of Adjustment shall be in the form of a Resolution, which may reverse or affirm, wholly or partly, or may modify the order, requirement, decision or determination appealed from and may embody such order, requirement, decision or determination as ought to be made. The concurring vote of two members shall be necessary for a decision.
  1. Any appellant or applicant may withdraw his appeal or application at any time.
  1. When an appeal or application has been denied, any appellant or applicant may not resubmit the same or substantially similar request for at least six months.


  1. No rehearing of the decision by the Board of Adjustment shall be heard except:

    1. On a motion to reconsider the vote, or

    2. On a written request for a rehearing.
  1. If the motion to reconsider receives two affirmative votes, the Board of Adjustment may vote on the motion to grant said request for a rehearing, subject to such conditions as said Board may, by Resolution, in each case stipulate.
  1. No request to grant a rehearing will be entertained unless new evidence is submitted, which could not reasonably have been presented at the previous hearing. If the request for a rehearing is granted, the case shall be put on the Calendar for a rehearing. In all cases, the request for a rehearing shall be in writing, reciting the reasons for the request, and shall be duly verified and accompanied by the necessary data and diagrams. The person requesting the rehearing shall be notified to appear before the Board on a date to be set by said Board.
  1. Written requests for a rehearing must be received by the Board within 10 business days of the final resolution disposing of the matter.


  1. The Chair shall be elected from the members of the Board who shall preside at all meetings and hearings of the Board. In the event of the absence or disability of the Chair, the Vice Chair shall be Acting Chair to preside at such meeting.
  1. The Vice Chair shall be elected from the members of the Board.
  1. The Chair, subject to these rules, shall decide all points of order or procedure, unless otherwise directed by a majority of the Board in session at that time.
  1. The Chair shall report at each meeting on all official transactions that do not otherwise come to the attention of the Board.
  1. The Chair shall, subject to these rules and further instructions from the Board, transact all official business of said Board, engage the necessary employees, direct their work and exercise general disciplinary powers.
  1. Subject to these rules and the direction of the Board, the Secretary, who shall be the Chief Engineer or his designee, shall conduct all official correspondence; sent out all notices required by these rules and the order of the Board; attend all meetings and hearings; keep the minutes of the Board’s proceedings; compile the required records; maintain the necessary files and indexes and generally supervise all the clerical work of the Board. Such records will be help in the Department of Licenses and Inspections.
  1. The Board shall have power to appoint an Assistant Secretary whose duty it shall be to perform such ministerial or other duties of the Secretary as he shall be required to perform by the Secretary.
  1. The Chair, or in his absence the Acting Chair, shall have the power to administer oaths and compel the attendance of witnesses.


  1. The Board shall have the power to adopt forms that from time to time are necessary.


  1. These rules may be amended or modified provided that such amendment be presented in writing at the regular meeting and action taken thereon at a subsequent regular meeting.
  1. For the amendment to take effect, it must be approved by the City’s Administrative Board.


  1. Every resolution not otherwise provided for shall require two affirmative votes of the Board for passage.
  1. Every resolution shall specify that, unless the applicant applies for the related building permit(s) within 1 year from the date of said resolution, said resolution shall be null and void and of no effect whatsoever. Application for any of the related building permits with will stay the one year deadline as long as applicant is actively pursuing the project.


  1. Records of appeals or applications to the Board of Adjustment shall be kept in the office of the said Board in the Zoning Manager’s Office, City Hall, in files, and each appeal or application shall be kept in a separate file and numbered serially. The files may be maintained electronically by the Zoning Manager. Regardless, said records shall be accessible to the public.

Approved by Board on February 26, 2018

Approved by City of Wilmington Administrative Board on April 3, 2018