Annual Zoning Ordinance Updates

Each year, the Planning Board reviews our town ordinance and discusses the possibility of making changes, clarifications or corrections.  This is a regular, annual process.  The Planning Board begins talking about any number of issues in late spring, early summer.  This year, the Planning Board has chosen to address a few areas that our ordinance does not currently adequately address.  The process by which a property owner might seek to build on property on a Class VI road is just one of these issues.

There is an existing NH law – RSA 674:41 – which forbids all development on Class VI roads unless access is possible via a Class V road.  It overrides all local ordinances, grandfathering, and includes modifications to existing structures UNLESS the local Planning Board creates a procedure for granting any type of activity.  In NH, our regulations are permissive, meaning you may not do something unless that specific item is allowed by description (ie in an ordinance or law).

Here in Wilmot there already exist options for property owners who wish to build on Class VI roads – they are outlined in our town ordinance which can be found on the town website.  Wilmot has experienced a significant number of property transfers over the past 2-3 years.  The Planning Board is working to improve the clarity of our ordinance so property owners understand a little bit better what Class VI roads actually are (town owned roads that by law MAY NOT be maintained by the town, we MAY not expend money on Class VI roads) and the process one needs to follow with requests.

The process is very transparent and open to the public.  All of our agendas, meeting minutes and attachments are available to the public via our website or upon request from our office prior to and following meetings.  The discussions about any ordinance change take place in public meetings.  There is (as with any warrant item for the town meeting) a hearing process for the public to voice their concerns about what actually ends up being proposed by any board (this happens in early January before the town meeting).  Then any ordinance changes MUST go on the ballot and are voted on by the town. 

Assessed property values in Wilmot already consider the location and road access of property.  The public can see the rating system on the assessment data via our website and our office is here to assist anyone who has questions about where to find the information and what it means.

The public is encouraged to attend any and all board meetings and participate in the public comment periods of the meetings

We encourage all who are interested in these issues and the many other issues we deal with in the management of the town to sign-up for our town newsletter via our website – the information shared includes meeting agendas and a great deal of information that will allow for the public to be informed about issues. Please do not hesitate to contact Meghan Foley, Town Administrator via phone (603 526 4802) or email (, or encourage others to do so, if they have questions.

Meghan Foley
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