Members of the Zoning Board of Appeals are appointed by the Selectmen. They are responsible for issuing variances and special permits in accordance with Massachusetts General Law and the By-Laws of Topsfield. Major areas of concern are variances from the: Table of Uses and Density and Dimensional Regulations in the Topsfield Zoning By-Law; the Subdivision Control By-Law.
The Zoning Board of Appeals is also responsible for 40B ComprehensivePermits, which authorize the construction of multi-unit developments, at least 25% of which are affordable under Massachusetts General Law 40B.
The Zoning Board of Appeals also hears appeals of decisions made by the Building Inspector.