FAQ – Enforcement of the Zoning Ordinances

1. Who enforces the zoning ordinance and who interprets its requirements?

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The Building Commissioner is responsible for the enforcement, administration and interpretation of the City of Beverly Zoning Ordinances. If the commissioner is informed or has reason to believe that any provision of this By-Law is being violated, he/she shall make or cause to be made an investigation of the facts and inspect the property where such violation may exist. If upon such investigation and inspection he/she finds evidence of such violation, he/she shall give notice thereof in writing to the owner and occupant of said premises and demand that such violation be abated within such time as the Building Commissioner deems reasonable. Such notice and demand may be given by mail, addressed to the owner at his address as it then appears on the records of the Board of Assessors and to the occupant at the address of the premises. If after such notice and demand the violation has not been abated within the time specified therein, the Building Commissioner shall institute appropriate action or proceedings in the name of the City of Beverly to prevent, correct, restrain or abate such violation of the Ordinances.

2. What are the penalties for violating the zoning by-law?

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Anyone who violates a provision of the Zoning Ordinance, or of any condition of a Variance, a Special Permit or a Special Permit with Site Plan Review, shall be punishable by a fine of not more than fifty dollars ($50) for each offense. A violation of the sign ordinance shall be punishable by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars ($100). Each day during which any portion of a violation continues shall constitute a separate offense.

3. What if I believe that my neighbor is violating the zoning by-law?

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Simply call the Department of Municipal Inspections and we can tell you if a violation exists. If you wish to file a formal complaint for enforcement action, the complaint must be in writing. You will be informed of any action taken on your written complaint.