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Zoning Board Contact Info

Kristen DiFiore

Zoning Board Secretary

phone icon (845) 677-3419 ext 112
fax icon (845) 677-2085
email icon Email


Office Hours

Monday - Friday
1:30pm - 3:00pm

home icon 10 Reservoir Dr.
        Millbrook, NY 12545

2023 ZBA Meeting dates with application due dates

The Zoning Board of Appeals meets the third Tuesday of the month at 7:30 PM.

John Parisi                                                                                         Kristen Di Fiore
Chairman                                                                                              Secretary


  • Fletcher Coddington
  • Frank Redl
  • Katherine Briggs
  • Tate Kunkle

 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Town of Washington Zoning Board of Appeals was established pursuant to Section 420, of the Washington Town Code.  Section 420 shall be administered by the Zoning Bord of Appeals with the cooperation of the Zoning Administrator and the Planning Board.  The Zoning Board of Appeals shall perform all the duties and powers prescribed by the Laws of New York State and the Town of Washington as regards appeals to review decisions of the Zoning Administrators, to grant variances and to resolve questions of interpretation.

AREA VARIANCE: Please read the Area Variance Information before completing the Application for a Variance

2023 ZBA Meeting dates with application due dates 

Washington ZBA Area Variance Information

Washington ZBA Area Variance Application


New York State Guidelines for Applicants to the Zoning Board of Appeals

Zoning Board of Appeals FAQs

A variance is permission granted by the Zoning Board of Appeals so that property may be used in a manner not allowed by the local zoning code.

-Use Variance: a request to use land for a purpose not allowed in the zoning regulations.

-Area Variance: a request to obtain relief from the dimensional requirements of zoning regulations, such as setbacks from property lines or maximum lot coverage.

Variances provide flexibility in the application of the zoning law and afford the landowner an opportunity to apply for administrative relief from certain provisions of the law.

The Zoning Board of Appeals has been delegated the statutory authority to issue Use and Area variances. The jurisdiction of the Zoning Board of Appeals is limited to reviewing the decisions of, or hearing appeals from, determinations made by the administrative official charged with enforcing the Zoning code. The Board is limited to granting the MINIMUM variance necessary that addresses the need for a variance while preserving the character, health, safety and welfare of the community.

When an application for permission to build is made to the Building Inspector that does not comply with the literal requirements of the Zoning Code, the Building Inspector must deny the application. If the reason for the denial is that the application violates the use or area provisions of the law, the applicant may apply to the Zoning Board of Appeals for a Use or Area Variance.

To obtain a Use Variance, the applicant must demonstrate that the applicable zoning regulations cause an unnecessary hardship. To prove unnecessary hardship, the applicant must establish that the requested variance meets ALL four of the following statutory conditions:

1) No reasonable return: The property owner cannot realize a reasonable return on the property, as zoned, provided that the lack of return is substantial, as demonstrated by competent financial evidence.

2) Unique circumstances: The hardship must be unique to the owner's property and not applicable to substantial portion of the zoning district.

3)Granting the variance will not alter the essential character of the neighborhood.

4) The hardship must not be self created.

These four conditions are requirements that must be reviewed by the Zoning Board of Appeals during reviews of applications for Use variances. Furthermore, the Board must find that the applicant has met all four elements before a Use variance may be granted.

For the Zoning Board of Appeals to grant a variance from the dimesional and area requirements of the Zoning code, it must find that the benefits to the applicant of the requested variance will outweigh the detriment that the granting of the variance would cause to the health, safety and welfare of the neighborhood. The Board must weight the benefits of the requested variance to the applicant against the five factors set forth in the statute, however, for Area variances, satisfying all five factors is not required under the law.

1) Change to the neighborhood character: Will an undesireable change be produced in the character of the neighborhood, or a detriment to nearby properties be created by the granting of an Area variance? 

2) Alternatives: Can the benefit sought by the applicant be achieved by some method, feasible for the applicant to pursue, other than an Area variance? For example; can a proposed addition be constructed in a different location on the property where a varaince would not be required? The applicant should at least explain the possibility of various alternatives and explain why they may or may not be feasible.

3) Substantiality of the request: Is the requested Area variance substantial or minimal?

4) Effect on physical or environmental conditions: Will the proposed Area variance have an adverse effect or impact on the physical or environmental conditions in the neighborhood or zoning district?

5) Is the alleged difficulty self created?

The Zoning Board of Appeals, when granting a Use or Area variance, may impose reasonable conditions and restrictions that are directly related to, and incidental to, the proposed use of the property. Once granted, Use and Area variances will continue to apply to the subject property, along with any reasonable conditions, and are not personal to the property owner. For example; the ZBA may not restrict a variance to use by only the current property owner.