DerryNews.com, Derry, New Hampshire

September 19, 2013

Londonderry Zoning Board gets new member

By Julie Huss
jhuss@derrynews.com

---- — LONDONDERRY — It’s one of the town’s most important boards and one that requires a lot of attention to detail.

That’s what many officials say about the Zoning Board.

Town councilors last week gave the OK to having Jackie Benard take an open seat on the Zoning Board.

The group’s vice chairman James Hooley announced he would be stepping down.

As the newest member, councilors asked Benard many questions about why she wanted to serve and if she had the time to do it.

Benard said she wanted to serve because she had the time to do it and wanted to get more involved in her town.

She said she did some reading already into the directives that the board follows and what is expected.

“It is quite a task,” she said, “but it’s about community.”

Councilor Joe Green is a former Zoning Board member and said it’s a group that requires a lot of research and objectivity when it comes to making decisions.

“It’s very involved,” Green said. “Some people come and go. We want to make sure you understand what you’re getting into. I’m not trying to scare you off.”

Councilor Tom Dolan said the ZBA is a very important part of the town’s landscape when it comes to how to handle zoning.

He said members are expected to decide cases on variances, strict points of law and then have to rule accordingly. All zoning deliberation is also done in public.

“It’s a lot of responsibility, but we’re glad you stepped up,” Dolan said.

Councilors voted unanimously to add Benard to the board.