My husband is a 100 percent disabled veteran. Due to his disabilities, we wanted to place a garage on our property. There is a law that states all garages must be to the rear of the residence. On our property, this would mean not only increased expense, but totally negate the purpose of alleviating physical distress for my husband.
We inquired about a variance, and were told it would have to be a usage variance, not an area variance. We contacted a lawyer for advice. The lawyer did not agree with the City of Watertowns official opinion that our use required a usage variance, but offered little hope of any success in obtaining a variance. We were told we could challenge under an Article 78, but this would entail thousands of dollars, and is not an option for us.
The garage would have been purchased from North Country Barn, and would not be a permanent structure, as it could be moved at any time.
This city promotes its support of the military. The garage would have helped my disabled husband, especially during winter months.
I realize this letter will probably have no positive effect, but I had to voice it. We have been good residents of Watertown. We have invested monies to improve our home, resulting in improving the neighborhood. We are sometimes appalled at the appearance of some homes here. Apparently there are no zoning laws to enforce property owners to clean up their rundown properties that affect their neighbors property values, but there are zoning laws for the disabled.