At the 2018 Town Meeting, the voters approved the Registration and Maintenance of Vacant Commercial Buildings Bylaw, sponsored by the Economic Development Committee. This bylaw is meant to promote economic health and vitality of the area businesses and business districts by improving the appearance of buildings once they become vacant.
The bylaw provides that owners of vacant (not used for 90 consecutive days or more - see complete definition on attached registration form) nonresidential buildings must maintain their buildings and also, register with the Community Development and Planning Department (CDPD) within seven days after a unit becomes vacant. The registration fee is $250, or a waiver may be obtained from the Planning Director by agreeing to display public art on the building or by demonstrating financial hardship. Specific information is contained within the attached bylaw itself. The goal of the bylaw is to improve the appearance of vacant buildings and the amount of the registration fee is meant to encourage owners to seek waivers to display public art. The CDPD may provide technical assistance securing the artwork to be displayed.
Based on your circumstance please follow these instructions:
- If your non-residential building is currently occupied there is no action required at this time.
- If your building is currently vacant you are required to submit the registration form and either pay the fee or request a waiver as indicated on the form.
- If a seasonal business that closes for more than 90 days is operated in your building, or if a vacancy is impending, you may want to submit the form now and we can begin the process.
We appreciate your attention to this matter. Please call the Community Development & Planning Director with any questions.