To the Editor:
I would like to take this opportunity to commend the Woburn Zoning Board of Appeals for the time they have spent over the past 11 months reviewing documents and most of all listening to the concerns of residents. After countless meetings and hundreds of hours of testimony the 5 member Board unanimously voted to deny the modification to the Ledges of Woburn 40B permit.
The next step in the process will be filing the ZBA decision with the City Clerk. Prior to filing the decision the ZBA must meet and list the reasons why they voted to deny the modification. This meeting is scheduled on Thursday, October 4, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. in City Council Chambers. The petitioner will have 20 days from the date that the ZBA files their decision with the City Clerk to appeal the decision to the MA Housing Appeals Committee.
On Friday September 28, 2012 I attended a 40B Training Session on the latest developments on the Affordable Housing Law. Over 200 people in attendance consisted of Planning and Zoning Board members, public officials, municipal staff and affordable housing developers from Cities and Towns all over Massachusetts. The training was in a three workshop format consisted of the most up-to-date information regarding Chapter 40B and how our community can work with existing and new developments under the comprehensive permit process. Over the next few months I will add a 40B information web page to my website.
I believe the ZBA vote to deny the modification was strongly influenced by the participation of the residents. In speaking with most public officials they can never remember a series of meetings that had the overwhelming citizen participation that the Ledges meetings had. This decision is a victory for all residents especially those who took the time to attend and had the courage to speak out.
Since July of 2011, it has taken 27 meetings that I have participated in to get to this point of victory for the residents who have fought long and hard on this issue. I am prepared to continue to represent residents of North Woburn by participating in as many meetings as it takes to see this issue through to the end. Please join me on Thursday, October 4, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. in City Council Chambers to show our support for the ZBA decision.
Editor's note: Letters to the Editor are printed upon receipt; content is unedited and is the letter writer's opinion.