|Name and Contact Info
|Planning Board - General Email
|Keith Torrico - Chair
|Sheila Parekh Blum
|Nancy Wright - Associate Member
Special Permit Notice
The Planning Board voted to on August 31, 2022 to set a fee of $300.00 for Special Permits.
The Mount Washington Planning Board has a vacancy for an Associate Member.
Any town resident who is a registered voter and who has an interest in this position should send an email to Keith Torrico, Chairman of the Planning Board: email@example.com, as well as to the two additional members of the Select Board:
The Planning Board meets roughly once a month. The Associate Member would be expected to attend all meetings either in person or remotely.
“The Planning Board is authorized to have one (1) associate member. The Board of Selectmen and the Planning Board appoint the associate member for a three (3) year term. The Chairman of the Planning Board may designate the associate member to sit on the Planning Board for the purposes of acting on a special permit or site plan review application, or any other matter for which a quorum is required, in case of absence, inability to act or conflict of interest on the part of any member of the Board or in the event of a vacancy on the Board.”
Role of the Planning Board
The establishment of municipal Planning Boards is authorized by Massachusetts General Law, chapter 41, section 81A. Among its many diverse roles, the Planning Board is charged with the following duties, paraphrased here from the Mass. General Law:
- Drafting and submitting zoning amendments when there is interest by townspeople to do so or when there is necessity.
- Adopting a master plan (If deemed necessary) and official map of the city or town.
- Conducting studies, and, when necessary, preparing plans of the resources, possibilities and needs of the city or town for submission to the Selectmen for their consideration.
- Serving as the special permit granting authority (i.e. Special Permit).
- Serving as Site Plan Review Authority (When applicable).
- Is always the “party of interest” in administrative appeals, special permit applications, and variance petitions within the municipality and in adjacent cities and towns.
- Under Massachusetts General Law Chapter 40, 15C, the Scenic Roads Act, the Planning Board is enabled to recommend roads for municipal consideration, and empowers the planning board to oversee specified activities.
- Serving as the local authority for the Subdivision Control Act; adopting Rules and Regulations governing the subdivision of land; reviewing all preliminary and definitive plan submittals.
Roles on the Board
Chair – The Chair of the Board is appointed on an annual basis by members of the Planning Board.
The Chair person is expected to prepare the meeting agenda for the Planning Board and share it with their board for comment before it must be posted (48 hours before a meeting). The Chair is expected to lead the meeting; keeping the board discussion to posted agenda items, facilitating civil conversation between board members, and being mindful of time.
Clerk – The Planning Board Clerk is appointed by members of the Board on an annual basis. Any member of the Board can hold the position as Board Clerk. The Clerk can hold a dual role within the Board, for example the Board Chair or Secretary can also serve as the Board Clerk.
The Clerk is expected to take meeting minutes during the meeting and send a draft to all members of the Board for review ahead of the next meeting. The Clerk is also responsible for filing a hard copy of the approved minutes at the Town Hall and a digital copy for the Town’s website, including all other materials entered into record for the corresponding meeting.
Secretary – The Secretary of the Board is appointed on an annual basis by members of the Planning Board.
The secretary is expected to handle all document requests, filings, mailings, postings, and coordination with the Town Clerk and Town Secretary in regards to Special Permit Applications and Public Hearings.
General Board Member – General Planning Board members are elected for terms of five (5) years, and so arranged that the term of at least one (1) member will expire each year.
General Board Members are expected to attend each Planning Board meeting, notify the chair of an absence if unable to attend, review agenda items and corresponding materials ahead of each meeting, and participate in civil conversation with other board members in regards to each agenda item.
Associate – The Planning Board associate member is appointed for a three (3) year term pursuant to M.G.L. c. 40A §9.
According to §215-13E.1.a. Of our town zoning bylaw, the Chair person of the Planning Board may designate the associate member to sit on the Planning Board for the purposes of acting on a special permit or site plan review application, or any other matter for which a quorum is required, in case of absence, inability to act or conflict of interest on the part of any member of the Board, or in the event of a vacancy on the Board. For special permit reviews and general matters, a quorum is defined by the Open Meeting Law as a simple majority of the members of a public body. In this case, if two (2) Planning Board members are absent or inable to vote for reasons listed above, the Associate may vote in their place. For site plan reviews, a decision must be made by a super majority. In this case, if one (1) Planning Board member is absent or inable to vote for reasons listed above, the Associate may vote in their place.
Statement on Rolling Board Responsibilities
In order to ensure all Board members are equitably sharing the responsibilities, educational development, and workload associated with the Chair, Clerk, and Secretary roles of the Board, it is expected these roles will rotate annually among Board members.
If any General Board Member is unable to fill one of the roles listed above due to accessibility considerations, current life circumstances, etc., they may opt out of rotation.