I have heard many different sides of the question, should ZBA alternates sit at the table if they are not acting in a full capacity for a member who is not in attendance. On one hand, I have heard that they should so they can be part of the discussion in the event that the particular case goes more than one meeting. On the other hand, I have heard that they should not sit at the table because they are not voting members for that meeting, and that the discussion should be limited to voting members, therefore they are just citizens of the community.
I lean to the side of no an alternate member is not a voting member until they are filling in for a member, but per state regulation, shall be acting on a voting member for the entire duration of that case if it runs over multiple meetings. I feel that only voting members should be permitted at the table and be part of discussion.
What are your thoughts?