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Frequently Asked Questions

What requires a Zoning Permit?

A Zoning Permit is required for Land Development, excavation, construction on a land parcel or building, expansion, and alteration or change of use within any existing structure.  See Section 130 of the Zoning Regulations for development this is exempt from a Zoning Permit.  Please contact the Planning and Economic Development office with any questions.

Is a Zoning Permit needed to build an accessory structure?

An accessory structure is defined as a structure on the same lot with, and of a nature customarily and clearly incidental and subordinate to, a principal structure. Examples of accessory structures are sheds, patios, decks, detached garage, hot tubs and pools. Accessory structures less than 100 square feet in size do not require a zoning permit (provided it is the only accessory structure less than 100 square feet on the property). The construction of any other accessory structure requires a Zoning Permit. Set-back requirements exist for all accessory structures.  For specific information regarding setbacks, check your Zoning District and Section 580 of the Zoning Regulations. If your property is in the Flood Hazard (FH) Zoning District a zoning permit is required for ALL accessory structures regardless of size. The Zoning Permit fee for accessory structures can be found on the fee schedule here.

Do I need a Zoning Permit to build a deck?

For an attached deck a Zoning Permit is required.  If the proposed deck is detached, and there are no other accessory structures (detached garage does count as an accessory structure on the property), and the deck is less than 100 square feet, a Zoning Permit is not required (provided that the proposed deck is at least five feet from all other structures). For all decks larger than 100 square feet a Zoning Permit is required before construction. All decks constructed in the Flood Hazard (FH) Zoning District, regardless of size, require a Zoning Permit. A deck is considered an accessory structure.

Do I need a Zoning Permit to put up solar panels or wind turbines?

Solar panels and wind turbines are considered accessory structures. However, most solar panel and wind turbine projects qualify for exemption from local zoning regulations. All solar panel and wind turbines projects with a Certificate of Public Good from the Vermont Public Service Board are exempt from local zoning regulation. All roof mounted solar panels projects that do not extend beyond the roofline of an existing structure, and roof mounted wind turbines that do not extend beyond the height requirement within the district they are located, are exempted from local zoning regulations (the only exception being projects located within the Flood Hazard (FH) Zoning District. All roof mounted solar and wind project within the FH Zoning District require a Zoning Permit).

Do I need a Zoning Permit for a swimming pool?

Yes.  A swimming pool is an accessory structure. Additionally, an in-ground pool must have a fence, wall or other structure at least 4 feet high around the entire pool with a self-closing and self-locking gate per Section 581 of the Zoning Regulations. For an above ground pool, the fencing requirement is not required if the pool is at least 4 feet high around the entire pool, and the pool is accessed via detachable, portable stairs that are removed from the pool when not in use.

Do I need a Zoning Permit for a Fence?

A Zoning Permit is not required for fencing in Milton according to Section 130 of the Zoning Regulations.  A fence cannot be built within right-of-ways or easements.

Do I need a Zoning Permit for a sign?

Yes, a Zoning Permit is required for signs.  See Section 830 of the Zoning Regulations for information regarding signs.  The fee for a sign permit can be found here.  Please contact the Zoning Administrator for any questions regarding signs. 

When does a Zoning Permit expire?

Zoning Permits expire one year from the approval date.  A Zoning Permit can be renewed for an additional year for an additional fee.  If a renewal is required, contact the Department of Planning and Economic Development prior to the permit’s expiration.

Once construction associated with an approved Zoning Permit is complete, what is the next step?

Certificate of Compliance is required for each approved Zoning Permit.  Once submitted, the Zoning Administrator will perform an inspection of the construction ensuring the project meets the requirements of the Zoning Permit. If the Certificate of Compliance is approved, Staff will contact you via phone to return to the Town Office to file the certificate with the Town Clerk and pay applicable fees.

Can a Letter of Compliance be issued verifying that there are no outstanding permits or violations on a house/property be issued?

Although the issuance of a Letter of Compliance is common in some Vermont towns, the Town of Milton does not partake in this practice. The Town of Milton requires that a Certificate of Compliance be completed for each approved Zoning Permit. If you have a specific permit number, Staff can check to see if a Certificate of Compliance has been issued.

What are the fees associated with new single-family, duplex and triplex construction?

The Zoning Permit Fee for new single-family, duplex and triplex construction is calculated based on a flat fee plus a fee per square foot of finished space (basements, porches, and garages are included in the square footage calculation). Impact Fees are due before acquiring a Certificate of Occupancy. The Impact Fees are listed in the fee schedule, which can be viewed here. There is a reduced Impact Fee for elderly housing and one-bedroom residential dwelling units. Accessory apartments are exempt from Impact Fees as of December 31, 2012. (Some residential construction may require additional permits and/or Development Review Board approvals. Please contact the Department of Planning and Economic Development regarding new single-family, duplex and triplex construction.)

What are the Impact Fees?

The Impact Fees are listed in the fee schedule, which can be viewed here.  Commercial and industrial development are not subject to an impact fee.  The Impact Fees are due upon Certificate of Occupancy Application.  See the Impact Fee Ordinance for additional information regarding Impact Fees.

Is a Zoning Permit needed for remodeling the inside of my single family home?

The Town of Milton does not require a Zoning Permit for interior improvements within a single family home.  However, if your property is in the Special Flood Hazard District, you may need a Zoning Permit for some interior changes.  Please contact the Planning and Economic Development office for further information.

When does a construction project require review by the Development Review Board (DRB)?

Planned Unit Developments, Minor and Major Conventional Subdivisions, Conditional Uses, Variances, Site Plans, and Appeals, Expiration of Subdivision Approval require review by the DRB.  See our Application Forms and Fees page for specific application fees.  The DRB meets the second and fourth Thursday of each month at 7:00 PM in the Community Room unless otherwise indicated.  We encourage that you set up a pre-application meeting with a Department of Planning and Economic Development staff member prior to submitting an application.  At that time, we can confirm the type of application needed, information and materials needed, timelines for when the hearing will be scheduled, and the fees due upon application submittal.  To learn more about the DRB, visit the DRB's page here.

What are the fees associated with new commercial and industrial construction?

The Zoning Permit Fee for new commercial or industrial construction is calculated using a base fee plus a fee per square foot of finished space. The complete fee schedule may be viewed here.  New commercial construction may require additional permits and/or Development Review Board approvals.  Please contact the Department of Planning and Economic Development regarding this issue. Please contact the Department of Planning and Economic Development regarding all commercial construction.

For issues relating to Municipal Water, Wastewater, and Highways contact the Department of Public Works.  For issues relating to private water and waste water systems, contact the Vermont Drinking Water and Groundwater Protection Division at 802-879-5656.

If you have questions regarding underground utilities, please contact Dig Safe at 1-888-DIG SAFE or www.digsafe.com.

For information regarding State and Federal Permits, contact Vermont State Permit Specialist Jeff McMahon at 802-879-5676.

Planning Department Staff

Jacob Hemmerick, Planning Director
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Jeff Castle, Town Planner
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Amanda Pitts, Zoning Administrator
Health Officer/Service Officer/E911 Coordinator
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Kristen Treanor, Planning Assistant
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Roger Dickinson, Deputy Health Officer 
(Evenings & Weekends)
(802) 893-7749

Gina Clithero, Planning Intern
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