A Bedford pizza shop owner had the audacity to ask for a variance for a very small LED OPEN sign for his Rt. 101 business, which for some reason is located in the town’s historic district.
It looks as though the Bedford Historical Commission has given Pizza Bella conditional approval for the now “historic” sign (in a hundred years it will be an antique as well).
Here is a comment from a commission member:
“I hate to have to micromanage this stuff,” said Laura O’ Donnell, a commission member. “I know we have to, but at the same time it’s like, with this economy, I don’t think it’s fair to local businesses to have these historic restrictions on their signs.”
First of all, I doubt anyone who is on a historical commission hates to micromanage anything of someone else’s – why else do people get on a historical commission? Micromanaging is the intent of a historical commission.
If Laura O’Donnell really doesn’t want to micromanage then I suppose there will be a warrant article, drafted by her, to amend the historic district to exclude a commercial area full of businesses on a state highway.
Pizza Bella could look to the Town of Pittsfield after March when we will know if that town has approved a warrant article abolishing zoning in an effort to attract business and raise more in property taxes without raising the rate on existing taxpayers.
All any business in Bedford has to do is get a traffic count that matches one in Pittsfield and you have a start.
Then a business could leave a town like Bedford where historic commission members wring their hands at how unfair their regulations are to businesses and where the ZBA uses their authority to punish political opponents.