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Candidate profiles: Lyndeborough Zoning Board

Scott Roper

Occupation: Geographer

Time living in town: 14 of the last 17 years

Previously elected offices: Selectman, March 1999-July 2002; Budget Committee, 2010-2013

Other qualifications: Since 1997, also served on Citizens’ Hall Renovation Committee, Planning Board (as Selectmen’s Representative), Conservation Commission, Monuments Committee, Historic District Commission, Meetinghouse Committee, ZBA (alternate member), and others.

What are two issues you feel are important and how do you plan to address them?

The Zoning Board of Adjustment considers appeals of zoning ordinances, building codes, and Historic District regulations. It is basically a local judicial board.

Because of the nature of its responsibilities, the condition of the economy, and the quality people serving on it, the ZBA does not face any serious issues right now, though an eventual increase in the number of cases heard by the ZBA is inevitable. But no matter how many cases the board hears or who serves on the board, ZBA members have to be able to balance the rights of individual landowners with those of the community as a whole.

In serving the community, I have always tried base my own actions on common sense informed by compassion and respect for the rights of individuals. Yet our boards can’t be arbitrary in their decisions; they have to protect everyone’s rights. Only by adhering to the RSAs (including both land-use laws and the Right-to-Know laws) can we ensure that town government is fair and honest.

We are lucky in that current ZBA members understand local ordinances and state laws and are able to consider the needs of applicants honestly and transparently. I don’t claim to be a lawyer, and even after all these years I am still learning. But serving on the Board of Selectmen and on various commissions has allowed me to learn a lot about municipal land-use law.

Walter Holt

Occupation: Carpenter and farmer

Time living in town: 42 years

Previously elected offices: Budget Committee (1977-80)

What are the issues you feel are important and how do you plan to address them?

Just want people to get a fair shake when it comes to dealing with land and its usage and the environment.

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