Planning and Community Development

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Contact:  
Rebekah L. DeCourcey - Director of Planning & Community Development 
Address: 126 Main Street, Ware, MA  01082
Phone:    413.967.9648  x186
Contact the PCD Department if you have questions or concerns. During this state of emergency, all emails and voicemails to the PCD Department are still received. 

Small Business Grant 
Microenterprise Assistance Grant for businesses adversly impacted by the pandemic.

Housing Rehab Program


Main Street Improvement Project

This state funded project begins in April 2020.

Ware Regional Recovery Center. 
Spearheaded by the Quaboag Hills Substance Use Alliance and using a peer-driven community approach: Learn more about the ongoing project by clicking the link above. WRRC  Planning meetings occur the 1st Wednesday of the month 9:30-11:30am. August's meeting will be held on August 13. The Ware Regional Recovery Center (WRRC) is committed to being a safe and welcoming space to cultivate recovery, support families and bring together the growing recovery community in the region. 

FEES:  All application fees and fees associated with public records requests must be paid by check or money order. We are unable to accept cash.
 
Rules and Regulations of the Planning Board

COMPLETE STREETS POLICY
The link above is the final draft of the Ware Complete Streets Policy.  The intent of this Policy is to create an equitable, balanced, and effective transportation system where every transportation user can travel safely and comfortable,  and where sustainable transportation options are available to everyone.


Duties & Responsibilities:
The Planning and Community Development department is responsible for performing studies and preparing plans related to land use and development of the town, (including the Master Plan); to draft regulations which carry out those plans, and to administer said regulations (see the CD page for more on those efforts). The department includes, among others, the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals. 

PLANNING BOARD

         Planning Board Members            
Title   Term Expiration (June 30th)
Richard Starodoj  Chairman  2021
Josh Kusnierz  Vice Chairman, PVPC Delegate   2021
Joseph Knight  Clerk, PVPC Alternate  2023
Ed Murphy, III    2024
Kenneth Crosby    2025
Jennifer Muche     Alternate  2021


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ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS

Zoning Board of Appeals Members  Title  Term Expiration (June 30th) 
 Lewis Iadarola  Chairman  2021
 Phil Hamel                 Vice Chairman                2023
 Chuck Dowd    2023
 Greg Eaton    2023
 Jodi Chartier    2022
 David Skoczylas  Alternate  2021
 George Staiti  Alternate  2022


The Planning Board is responsible for the administration of the Subdivision Regulations under the purview of ML ac 41 §81 AK to GG as well as all site plan applications and most of the special permits required under the Zoning Bylaw. The Board is responsible for creating and updating the town’s master plan; and they usually take the lead in updating the zoning bylaw as well. The Board also participates in other planning activities in town, such as the Open Space & Recreation Plan, redevelopment planning, and neighborhood planning. Finally, the Board provides advice on the development of the town or on specific proposals when requested by other boards and commissions. The Planning Board meets on the first and third Thursday starting in 2020 of each month at 7:00 PM in the Selectmen's Meeting Room at Ware Town Hall (please check postings for current dates and cancellations).

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The Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) is a quasi-judicial body which operates under the authority of Chapter 40A of the General Laws of the Commonwealth for the purpose of promoting the health, safety, convenience, and general welfare of the Town of Ware. The ZBA reviews requests for variances submitted by applicants who want an exemption to the local zoning bylaw in order to use their land in a particular way. The ZBA may be asked to review requests submitted by residents or business owners who are aggrieved by a decision made by the Building Commissioneror the Planning Board. The ZBA reviews requests for Comprehensive Permits submitted under Chapter 40B by developers who wish to create affordable housing. The Zoning Board of Appeals meets when necessary on the fourth Wednesday of every month at 7:00 PM in the Selectmen's Meeting Room at Ware Town Hall (please check postings for current dates and cancellations).

Zoning Districts:
R           Rural 
RR        Rural Residential
SR         Suburban Residential
BLR      Beaver Lake Residential
DTR     Downtown Residential
RBI       Residential Business
DC        Downtown Commercial
MY        Mill Yard
HC        Highway Commercial
CIA       Commercial Industrial
I             Industrial