Correction: The ZBA meeting is Thursday, Oct. 10 at 7 p.m. at North Reading High School. An earlier version of this e-mail included the correct day but incorrect date. Thanks to an eagle-eyed supporter for pointing out the error and apologies for the error and second e-mail.
October 9, 2019
Packed Town Meeting Approves Funding for
20 Elm Legal Expenses; ZBA Vote on Appeal Thursday
On Monday evening, nearly 650 North Reading voters appropriated $125,000 to fund North Reading's appeal of the Department of Housing and Community Development finding for 20 Elm developer Nick Yebba in his appeal of the ZBA's 40B Safe Harbor declaration. The vote was all but unanimous, with the highest Town Meeting attendance in many years. Defend Ipswich River Communities thanks all those who exercised their vote to allow the town to defend itself against the developer's lawsuit.

Next Steps
Following the DHCD decision finding against the Safe Harbor declaration, the North Reading ZBA has 20 days to appeal that decision to the commonwealth's Housing Appeals Committee (HAC). The ZBA will meet this Thursday, Oct. 10 at 7 p.m. in the NRHS Performing Arts Center to vote on whether to file the appeal. Should the ZBA appeal, the Town Meeting appropriation will allow the town to fund such an appeal. North Reading recently tapped 40B experts, Jonathan Witten and Barbara Huggins Carboni of Town Counsel KP Law, along with attorney Amy E. Kwesell , to handle all legal matters regarding 20 Elm on the town's behalf. The town will present an update on 40B inventory at the ZBA meeting, according to Town Administrator Michael Gilleberto's Town Meeting statement.

Thursday's ZBA meeting is expected to be brief, but DIRC encourages all those able to spare another hour this week to attend.
Donations Needed to Continue DIRC Oversight
Much of DIRC's work surrounding 20 Elm over the next few months will be behind the scenes, assuring that every detail is examined during the legal wrangling. We will continue to rely on our expert legal team, which has gotten us this far. The work is important, but it is also expensive. Please consider a donation (or an additional donation if you were so generous as to give already) to help us keep up due diligence. Thank you for your support! We could not have gotten this far without your generosity!