What is a Conditional Use?

A Conditional Use is a use of property which is permitted as long as the applicant can meet the explicit criteria contained in the Zoning Ordinance for that particular use.

A Conditional Use requires a public hearing before Town Council. In most circumstances, Town Council acts in a legislative capacity. However, in the case of a Conditional Use, Town Council acts in a quasi-judicial capacity in order to determine if the Conditional Use criteria are met.

Where the applicant can establish through evidence and testimony that the criteria have been met, Council is required to approve the Conditional Use application. A decision must be based solely on the evidence presented at the public hearing and the applicable law – no presuppositions, preferences, biases or public opinion may be taken into account.

Council is required to carefully consider the evidence put forth by the applicant, any interested party-objectors and the public in general at the public hearing. This evidence may include testimony and other documentary evidence such as plans, reports and drawings. Council is permitted to ask questions during the public hearing but should not give its opinions or take a position either for or against the application.

Town Council will review the evidence presented at the public hearing and is required to issue a written decision either approving or denying the Conditional Use application. If Council approves the application, Council may attached reasonable conditions which are consistent with the Town’s Zoning Ordinance and state law.