2007 -- H 5483 SUBSTITUTE B
A N A C T
RELATING TO PROPERTY
Introduced By: Representatives Ginaitt, and Naughton
Date Introduced: February 27, 2007
It is enacted by the General Assembly as follows:
SECTION 1. Section 45-23-42 of the General Laws in Chapter 45-23 entitled
"Subdivision of Land" is hereby amended to read as follows:
45-23-42. General provisions -- Major land development and major subdivision --
Public hearing and notice. -- (a) A public hearing is required for a major land development
project or a major subdivision or where a street extension or creation requires a public hearing for
a minor land development project or minor subdivision.
(b) Notice requirements. - Public notice of the hearing shall be given at least fourteen
(14) days prior to the date of the hearing in a newspaper of general circulation within the
municipality following the municipality's usual and customary practices for this kind of
advertising. Notice shall be sent to the applicant and to each owner within the notice area, by
certified mail, return receipt requested, of the time and place of the hearing not less than ten (10)
days prior to the date of the hearing. Notice shall also be sent to any individual or entity holding a
recorded conservation or preservation restriction on the property that is the subject of the
application. The notice shall also include the street address of the subject property, or if no street
address is available, the distance from the nearest existing intersection in tenths (1/10's) of a mile.
Local regulations may require a supplemental notice that an application for development approval
is under consideration be posted at the location in question. The posting is for informational
purposes only and does not constitute required notice of a public hearing.
(c) Notice area.
(1) The distance(s) for notice of the public hearing shall be specified in the local
regulations. The distance may differ by zoning district and scale of development. At a minimum,
all abutting property owners to the proposed development's property boundary shall receive
(2) Watersheds. - Additional notice within watersheds shall also be sent as required in
section 45-23-53(b) and (c).
(3) Adjacent municipalities. - Notice of the public hearing shall be sent by the
administrative officer to the administrative officer of an adjacent municipality if (1) the notice
area extends into the adjacent municipality, or (2) the development site extends into the adjacent
municipality, or (3) there is a potential for significant negative impact on the adjacent
(d) Notice cost. - The cost of all notice shall be borne by the applicant.
SECTION 2. Section 45-24-53 of the General Laws in Chapter 45-24 entitled "Zoning
Ordinances" is hereby amended to read as follows:
45-24-53. Adoption -- Notice and hearing requirements. -- (a) No zoning ordinance
shall be adopted, repealed, or amended until after a public hearing has been held upon the
question before the city or town council. The city or town council shall first give notice of the
public hearing by publication of notice in a newspaper of general circulation within the city or
town at least once each week for three (3) successive weeks prior to the date of the hearing,
which may include the week in which the hearing is to be held, at which hearing opportunity shall
be given to all persons interested to be heard upon the matter of the proposed ordinance. Written
notice, which may be a copy of the newspaper notice, shall be mailed to the statewide planning
program of the department of administration, and, where applicable, to the parties specified in
subsections (b), (c), (d), and (e) of this section, at least two (2) weeks prior to the hearing. The
newspaper notice shall be published as a display advertisement, using a type size at least as large
as the normal type size used by the newspaper in its news articles, and shall:
(1) Specify the place of the hearing and the date and time of its commencement;
(2) Indicate that adoption, amendment, or repeal of a zoning ordinance is under
(3) Contain a statement of the proposed amendments to the ordinance that may be
printed once in its entirety, or summarize and describe the matter under consideration;
(4) Advise those interested where and when a copy of the matter under consideration
may be obtained or examined and copied; and
(5) State that the proposals shown on the ordinance may be altered or amended prior to
the close of the public hearing without further advertising, as a result of further study or because
of the views expressed at the public hearing. Any alteration or amendment must be presented for
comment in the course of the hearing.
(b) Where a proposed general amendment to an existing zoning ordinance includes
changes in an existing zoning map, public notice shall be given as required by subsection (a) of
(c) Where a proposed amendment to an existing ordinance includes a specific change in
a zoning district map, but does not affect districts generally, public notice shall be given as
required by subsection (c) of this section, with the additional requirements that:
(1) Notice shall include a map showing the existing and proposed boundaries, zoning
district boundaries, and existing streets and roads and their names, and city and town boundaries
where appropriate; and
(2) Written notice of the date, time, and place of the public hearing and the nature and
purpose of the hearing shall be sent to all owners of real property whose property is located in or
within not less than two hundred feet (200') of the perimeter of the area proposed for change,
whether within the city or town or within an adjacent city or town. Notice shall also be sent to any
individual or entity holding a recorded conservation or preservation restriction on the property
that is the subject of the amendment. The notice shall be sent by registered or certified mail to the
last known address of the owners, as shown on the current real estate tax assessment records of
the city or town in which the property is located.
(d) Notice of a public hearing shall be sent by first class mail to the city or town council
of any city or town to which one or more of the following pertain:
(1) Which is located in or within not less than two hundred feet (200') of the boundary of
the area proposed for change; or
(2) Where there is a public or quasi-public water source, or private water source that is
used or is suitable for use as a public water source, within two thousand feet (2,000') of any real
property that is the subject of a proposed zoning change, regardless of municipal boundaries.
(e) Notice of a public hearing shall be sent to the governing body of any state or
municipal water department or agency, special water district, or private water company that has
riparian rights to a surface water resource and/or surface watershed that is used or is suitable for
use as a public water source and that is within two thousand feet (2,000') of any real property
which is the subject of a proposed zoning change; provided, that the governing body of any state
or municipal water department or agency, special water district, or private water company has
filed with the building inspector in the city or town a map survey, which shall be kept as a public
record, showing areas of surface water resources and/or watersheds and parcels of land within
two thousand feet (2,000') thereof.
(f) No defect in the form of any notice under this section shall render any ordinance or
amendment invalid, unless the defect is found to be intentional or misleading.
(g) Costs of any notice required under this section shall be borne by the applicant.
(h) In granting a zoning ordinance amendment, notwithstanding the provisions of section
45-24-37, the town or city council may limit the change to one of the permitted uses in the zone
to which the subject land is rezoned, and impose limitations, conditions, and restrictions,
including, without limitation: (1) requiring the petitioner to obtain a permit or approval from any
and all state or local governmental agencies or instrumentalities having jurisdiction over the land
and use which are the subject of the zoning change; (2) those relating to the effectiveness or
continued effectiveness of the zoning change; and/or (3) those relating to the use of the land; as it
deems necessary. The responsible town or city official shall cause the limitations and conditions
so imposed to be clearly noted on the zoning map and recorded in the land evidence records;
provided, that in the case of a conditional zone change, the limitations, restrictions, and
conditions shall not be noted on the zoning map until the zone change has become effective. If the
permitted use for which the land has been rezoned is abandoned or if the land is not used for the
requested purpose for a period of two (2) years or more after the zone change becomes effective,
the town or city council may, after a public hearing, change the land to its original zoning use
before the petition was filed. If any limitation, condition, or restriction in an ordinance is held to
be invalid by a court in any action, that holding shall not cause the remainder of the ordinance to
(i) The above requirements are to be construed as minimum requirements.
SECTION 3. This act shall take effect upon passage.