§ 156.410  ORGANIZATION.
   (A)   Creation.
      (1)   Pursuant to S.C. Code Title, 6, Chapter 29, there is hereby created a Board of Zoning Appeals, to be composed of seven members appointed by the Mayor and Town Council.
      (2)   It is the declared policy of Town Council that it will consider and approve only those persons who:
         (a)   Are residents of the town and have been so for a period of at least one year prior to the appointment; and
         (b)   Have demonstrated their general knowledge of the community and concern for the welfare of the total community and its citizens.
      (3)   Members shall represent a broad cross- section of the interests and concerns within the town.
   (B)   Term of office.
      (1)   Town members of the Board of Zoning Appeals currently serve terms of four years, pursuant to their appointment to one of seven specifically numbered seats.
      (2)   As of March 12, 2002, the terms of office for the current members of these respective seats shall be as follows:
Seat Numbers
3 and 4
January 1, 2004
5 and 6
January 1, 2005
1 and 7
January 1, 2006
      (3)   Thereafter, the terms as shown above shall expire, in respective four-year increments, on January 1 of the calendar year in which they fall.
      (4)   As provided herein, no Board member may serve more than two successive terms.
      (5)   The current designation given above shall constitute the first such full term of office for those now serving, regardless of its indicated expiration.
      (6)   Upon the expiration of any term, the then-serving member shall continue service until the Town Council appoints a successor.
      (7)   Upon the expiration of a term, the Council shall act promptly to make appointments as soon as may reasonably be accomplished.
      (8)   While serving on the Board, none of the members shall hold any other public office or position in the municipality or county.
   (C)   Vacancy and removal.
      (1)   A vacancy in the term of office shall occur whenever it is found that a member has resigned, is unable to serve for whatever reason, or is removed in accordance with the provisions of this section.
      (2)   Neglect of duty, no longer being a resident of the town, or misconduct in office shall constitute just cause.
         (a)   Each member is required to attend 75% of called meetings per year on a rolling-year basis which shall be measured on the first of every month for the preceding year. Each member shall be afforded one excused absence which shall not be counted towards the attendance requirement.
         (b)   Excused and unexcused absences are to be determined by the Chairperson or, in his or her absence, the acting Chairperson, and are to be stated on the record at each meeting.
            1.   EXCUSED ABSENCES are generally defined as medical or family emergencies, or unavoidable business/personal conflicts.
            2.   Each member is responsible for notifying the Chairperson or the appropriate staff at least two full working days prior to the meeting, if he or she will not be in attendance.
            3.   The member shall also state a reason for the anticipated absence.
            4.   Emergency situations that arise within this 48-hour period can be considered excused by the Chairperson.
      (3)   If removal for cause, except due to attendance, appears imminent, the Chairperson shall contact the member and ascertain whether removal should be considered by the Mayor and Town Council. The Chairperson shall then make a recommendation to Council, prior to Council action on the matter.
      (4)   If removal due to attendance is necessary, the Town Administrator shall remove the member from the Board prior to the next scheduled meeting and shall notify Town Council.
      (5)   Any vacancy in the membership shall be filled for the unexpired term, as soon as may reasonably be accomplished by the Mayor and Town Council, in the same manner as the original appointment.
      (6)   In determining eligibility for future service, appointments to a vacant term with 24 months or more in duration left under the four-year term of office shall constitute a full term of service.
      (7)   Appointments to a vacant term with less than 24 months in duration left under the four-year term of office shall be eligible for two subsequent, successive four-year terms of office.
   (D)   Chairperson; Secretary; rules of procedure.
      (1)   The Board shall organize itself electing, by secret ballot and majority vote a Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson from among its members.
         (a)   Said election shall be held at the first meeting in the creation year of the Board, and at the first meeting of each calendar year thereafter.
         (b)   The term of office of the Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson shall, in the creation year, be from the date of the vote until the end of that calendar year, and thereafter for a period of one year.
         (c)   If a vacancy occurs in an office prior to the expiration of the full term, another election to fill the remainder of the term of office shall be conducted at the first meeting thereafter.
         (d)   The election procedures stated herein shall be followed in filling an unexpired term of office.
      (2)   The Board shall appoint a Secretary, who may be an officer of the governing authority or of the Board of Zoning Appeals.
      (3)   The Board shall adopt rules of procedure at the first meeting in the creation year, and at the first meeting of each calendar year thereafter. Robert's Rules of Order shall govern the conduct of meetings, except as otherwise provided by the Board.
   (E)   Meetings and quorums.
      (1)   Four members of the Board shall constitute a quorum for conducting business.
      (2)   Meetings of the Board must be held at the call of the Chairperson and at such other times as the Board may determine.
      (3)   Public notice of all meetings of the Board of Zoning Appeals shall be provided by publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the town or county.
      (4)   In cases involving variances or special exceptions, conspicuous notice shall be posted on or adjacent to the property affected, with at least one such notice being visible from each public thoroughfare that abuts the property.
      (5)   The Chairperson or, in his or her absence, the Vice-Chairperson, may administer oaths and compel the attendance of witnesses by subpoena.
      (6)   All meetings of the Board shall be open to the public.
      (7)   Members of the Board shall:
         (a)   Regularly attend meetings; and
         (b)   Serve without compensation, except for reimbursement for authorized expenses attendant to the performance of their duties.
      (8)   The Board shall keep minutes of its proceedings, showing the vote of each member upon each question, or if absent or failing to vote, indicating the fact, and shall keep records of its examinations and other official actions, all of which must be immediately filed in the office of the Board and must be a public record.
('81 Code, § 155.50) (Ord. passed 8-13-79; Am. Ord. passed 12-11-90; Am. Ord. passed 1-12-93; Am. Ord. 97065, passed 12-9-97; Am. Ord. 99012, passed 4-21-99; Am. Ord. 00039, passed 7-11-00; Am. Ord. 02010, passed 3-12-02; Am. Ord. 02024, passed 6-11-02; Am. Ord. 09053, passed 8-12-09; Am. Ord. 14047, passed 8-12-14; Am. Ord. 16055, passed 8-10-16; Am. Ord. 18035, passed 6-14-18)