Permit Advisory Committee

Meeting Schedule: Regular Monthly Meeting - Salah Meeting Room

Depending on the size and scale of your project, it may be to your advantage to have the Building Commissioner schedule a meeting for you with the PAC. The Building Commissioner shall call together the PAC within fourteen (14) days of receipt of your application. You will be asked to bring certain information including a concept site plan. A fully engineered plan with utilities is not needed. The PAC was created to help streamline the application and review process by performing a preliminary staff review of proposed projects. The Building Commissioner or Designee acts as a coordinator for projects reviewed by the PAC and is responsible for Agenda/scheduling the meetings.

Thus the focus of PAC will be to expedite the development review process in Canton and:

meet with prospective permit applicants to share information and offer guidance and assistance;

listen to the prospective applicant's proposed ideas for development;

inform the applicant of the Town's approval process, bylaws, requirements, rules and regulations with which the applicant and the proposed project must conform (however, as stated earlier, this in no way changes the applicant's responsibility to understand all applicable state and local laws and requirements pertaining to the proposed project; while the PAC may help the applicant identify all the applicable laws and regulations of which they are aware, the responsibility for understanding and complying resides solely and unequivocally with the applicant);

coordinate Town concerns and departmental responsibilities to communicate requirements to permit applicants;

assist the Canton regulatory boards by identifying the salient issues regarding proposed development projects, with which the Town is rightly and justly concerned;

facilitate communication among Town departments and professional staff who regulate and advise on land use development.

Based on the issues raised by the proposed project, the PAC may recommend where the prospective permit applicant might best begin the permit application process (i.e., which local regulatory board should first review the proposed project).  Unanswered questions and unresolved issues between Town staff and prospective applicants are noted for both the applicants and the boards.  All applicants, at their request and expense, can avail themselves of a pre-qualified Engineering Consultant, identified by the Town to assist the Committee and prospective developer and address any contemplated development issues.

Town boards are not obligated to follow the PAC recommendations, when they feel they have good and sufficient reasons not to do so.  Town staff will advise, but does not direct, Town boards.

Whether or not the Town's regulatory boards follow or modify the recommendations and agreements you may have reached with the PAC, there still remains good reason to meet with this committee for a preliminary review of your proposed project before your formal meetings with the Town boards. The Town boards will almost invariably ask for a review or report on your proposed project (if it is sufficiently large or complex) by some or all staff, such as the Fire Prevention Officer, the Public Safety Officer, the Department of Public Works, Health Director and the Conservation Commission to name a few. You can avoid interruptions and delays in the board review of your proposed project if such staff reviews have already occurred via the PAC.

You are not obliged to follow staff recommendations made at a PAC meeting, unless they apply to a potential violation by your project of state or local codes and bylaws.  You have the option to wait until the appropriate regulatory board(s) begins its review of your project proposal, before you make any changes.