(a) The historic preservation commission shall approve an application and issue a certificate of appropriateness if it finds that the proposed change, erection, or demolition conforms to the general design standards established by the commission, is compatible with the character of the historic property or historic district and does not detract from the value of the historic property or historic district. In making this determination, the commission shall consider, in addition to any other pertinent factors, the historic and architectural features involved and the proposed change thereto, and the relationship thereof, to the exterior architectural style, and pertinent features of other structures in the immediate neighborhood.
(b) In its review of applications for certificate of appropriateness, the commission shall not consider interior changes or use having no effect on the exterior of a building or structure.
(c) In the event the commission rejects an application, it shall state its reasons for doing so and shall transmit a record of such action and reasons therefor, in writing, to the applicant. The applicant may make modifications to its plans and resubmit the application for reconsideration at any time after doing so.
(d) In cases where the application is for a change in the exterior of the building or structure which would require the issuance of a building permit, the rejection of an application for a certificate of appropriateness by the commission shall be binding upon the building inspector or other administrative officer charged with issuing building permits and, in such case, no building permit shall be issued.