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Zoning Gets Down to Business

Entrepreneurs may soon look no farther than their own homes for office space. Text Amendment 611 of the Planning and Zoning Commission regulations is up for approval. The proposed amendment defines what constitutes a home-based business in Westport and how it can operate. “I can't say how many new businesses we could expect but I think it would encourage some people to look into home offices,” said Planning and Zoning Director Bradley.

Bradley will present the amendment at the May P&Z Commission's public hearing scheduled for May 6. If the commission is ready, they could vote on the amendment after the public hearing or table it for a later date. There is no state or federal mandate driving the amendment so the commission can set whatever timetable they see fit to vote on it.

The amendment defines three levels of home-based businesses that residents would be allowed to operate including Home Office, Home Occupation Level 1 and Home Occupation Level 2. A Home Office designation would require no zoning permit but the business may not employ anyone other than residents of the home. The "Home Occupation" tiers allow employees with the proper permits. Level 1 can have one employee and 10 client visits a day with the filing of a zoning permit. Level 2 would allow more employees but require a site plan and special permit.

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