Board of Adjustment

The Waseca County Board of Adjustment and Appeals consists of five-members appointed by the County Board. The Board of Adjustment conducts public hearings the first Thursday of each month when meeting in regular session. They are a decision-making body. A Variance grants the applicant permission to vary from the ordinance's standard requirements such as setbacks, lot width or depth, lot coverage, and height limitations. The Board of Adjustment may attach conditions to the Variance to ensure compliance and to protect adjacent property owners and the public interest. All decisions by the Board of Adjustment and Appeals in granting or denying variances and appeals shall be final except that any aggrieved person shall have the right to appeal within thirty (30) days after receipt of notice of the decision to the district court.

When Required:

  • For floodplain development.
  • Variances from front, side, ordinary high water mark of lake, river, or stream, or rear yard setbacks may be required in any zoning district to place a home, building, or addition, on a lot which could not other wise be used due to its extreme topography, wetlands, odd shape, or other dimensional deficiency.
  • To locate new feedlots or residences when proposed separation distances are less than that specified in the Waseca County Zoning and/or Feedlot Ordinances.
  • To rebuild non-conforming uses when over 50% destroyed by fire or other natural disaster, providing that the use may not be intensified.
  • To exceed density, height, building size, and lot coverage requirements.

Processing Time:

  • Varies from 5-8 weeks from the submittal of a complete application. This depends on the date of application submittal and the date of the Board of Adjustment meeting.
  • Requires Public Hearing in front of the Board of Adjustment and Appeals.

Fee: $600 (non-refundable). This fee may be adjusted periodically by the County Board. If variance is approved, there is also a $46 recording fee.

Required Submittal Information:

Proof of ownership and/or owner authorization. legal description of the property and a Survey showing:

  1. Existing structures, proposed additions, proposed structures, and property lines.
  2. Location of existing and/or proposed septic system(s), and well(s).
  3. Distance between the proposed building or addition and centerline of roadway, ordinary high water mark of lake, river or stream, all property lines, and existing buildings.
    • Septic system plans drafted by an MPCA Certified Designer when upgrades are required.
    • Landscaping and/or drainage plans.
    • Narrative describing the request and outlining the circumstances (hardship) which make the request necessary and unique.
    • Additional data as may be required by the Planning & Zoning Administrator to justify the hardship.

Review and Approval Procedures:

  1. Applicant must submit completed application with all supporting documentation to the Zoning Administrator.
  2. The Zoning Administrator will review the documents and will work with the applicant to ensure that all necessary information has been submitted. Staff will draft a report and recommendation and forward it to the Board of Adjustment to be heard at the next meeting.
  3. Notice of the Public Hearing will be sent to all affected property owners within 500 feet or the 10 nearest property owners, the affected township, and all municipalities within two miles.
  4. Notice of the Public Hearing will also be published in the official County newspaper 10 days before the date of the hearing.
  5. The Public Hearing will be held by the Board of Adjustment at its next regularly scheduled meeting. The applicant, and any other interested party, will be given an opportunity to speak for or against the proposal.
  6. The Board of Adjustment may:
    1. Approve the request with such attached conditions as are necessary to ensure proper development of the property and to protect surrounding areas.
    2. Deny the request.
    3. Table the request pending revision or submittal of additional information.
  7. Appeals from the decision of the Board of Adjustment must be based on a point of fact and must be filed with the District Court within 30 after the decision.
  8. The Variance shall run with the property. Changes in ownership shall not affect it once granted.
  9. A certified copy of the Variance shall be filed with the County Recorder.