News & Analysis as of

A Primer on Zoning Variances in North Carolina

What is a "variance" in the zoning context? Simply, it is relief from -- or a variation of -- the application of a zoning law to a particular piece of property....more

West Coast Real Estate Update: October 2016

California Coastal Act Blocks Housing Project in Venice Despite Earlier Approvals - Judge James C. Chalfant of the California Court of Appeal on Sept. 29, 2016, affirmed a lower court ruling denying a developer’s...more

Ocean, NJ ordered to allow Yeshiva boarding school

In January of this year, Yeshiva Gedola Na’os Yaakov, Inc. (the “Yeshiva”) filed a 79-page complaint in federal court against the Township of Ocean, New Jersey, and the Township’s Zoning Board of Adjustment (the “Township)...more

Department of Justice Sues Bensalem Township, PA Over Mosque Denial

On July 21, the United States Department of Justice sued Bensalem Township, Pennsylvania, in federal court alleging violations of each of RLUIPA’s provisions following the Township’s 2014 denial of a variance application...more

Appellate Court Notes

Supreme Court Advance Release Opinions: SC19480 - McCullough v. Swan Engraving, Inc. - This case determined that when a husband had already filed a claim for disability benefit in a timely fashion under the Worker’s...more

Unusual Fact Situation? Tennessee Supreme Court Upholds Imposition of Alternative Apportionment in Vodafone v. Roberts

Corporate taxpayers that benefit from cost of performance sourcing face the unwelcome prospect of filing correctly under a state’s statute, yet later learning that a state revenue department is imposing an alternative...more

Fourth Circuit: Church Never had Reasonable Expectation to Use Property as Place of Worship

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a church’s claim that denial of a setback variance substantially burdened its religious exercise under the Religious Land Use & Institutionalized...more

Appellate Court Notes

SC19309 - Staton v. Commissioner of Correction - SC19195 - Campos v. Coleman - SC19195 Dissent - Campos v. Coleman - In a 4-3 split decision the Court insured that the cost of living will be going up in...more

Update: Nomadic Church and Delanco Township Consent Order

On November 3, we reported that My Father’s House Ministry, Inc. (Church) sued Delanco Township, New Jersey after denial of the Church’s application for a use variance . (See our November 3 post). Based on the parties...more

Nomadic Church Sues New Jersey Township Over Denial of Use Variance

A predominantly African American Church of about 25 members known as My Father’s House Ministry, Inc. (Church) is suing Delanco Township, New Jersey over allegations that the Township violated both the Religious Land Use &...more

LEED Gold Rating Not Enough to Save Building’s Zoning Variance

A New Jersey court recently reversed a variance issued by a zoning board to a building designed to achieve LEED Gold certification. The owner of the planned office building sought and obtained site plan approval and a height...more

CT Law of the Land

Week of July 29 - No Hardship for Legally Nonconforming Residence - The owners of a residence in Fairfield that was legally nonconforming – that is, it failed to comply with zoning requirements in place now – wanted...more

RLUIPA Suit Looms After Controversial Connecticut Church Denial

The Danbury Zoning Board of Appeals denied a church’s application for variances to develop an 18-acre parcel with a house of worship and priest residence. Now, Danbury could join the list of Connecticut municipalities that...more

Virginia Commercial Real Estate Bills – Effective July 1, 2015

Sands Anderson’s Commercial Real Estate Team followed the 2015 Virginia legislative session for bills related to the real estate industry. Below is our selection of the top five we felt you would find most relevant to your...more

Zoning Deficiencies Not Cured by Existing Structures Exception for ANR Plans

Dividing up the “traditional New England family compound” has a host of societal implications and land use complications that were on display in the Supreme Judicial Court’s recent decision in Palitz v. Zoning Board of...more

CT Law of the Land

AC36196 - Verrillo v. Zoning Board of Appeals - Attorneys who practice in the land-use arena know that there is often a divergence between how local Zoning Board of Appeals (“ZBAs”), comprised of lay members, view...more

Appellate Court Notes

SC18928 - Rathbun v. Health Net of the Northeast, Inc. - In Connecticut, the Department of Social Services manages the federal Medicaid act and awards contracts to Medicaid managed health care providers. The defendant...more

Massachusetts Environmental and Land Use Alert

Boston Colleges Take Brownfields Tax Credit Fight to Court - Three Boston-area colleges sued the Massachusetts Department of Revenue in August claiming that “clarifying” changes made to the Massachusetts Brownfields Tax...more

Appellate Court Notes - Week ending March 24

SC18996 - Meyers v. Livingston, Adler, Pulda, Meiklejohn & Kelly, P.C. This case arrived from a divided Appellate Court where some jurist opined that the plaintiff’s attorney malpractice claims sounded solely in tort,...more

A technical variance in a "998 offer" can preclude an award of costs

In Rouland v. Pacific Specialty Insurance Co. the California Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District decided an interesting case under California’s cost shifting provision, Code of Civil Procedure Section 998....more

Hey Wait, What About Our Fancy New Quasi-Judicial Statute?

In 2009, the North Carolina General Assembly adopted Senate Bill 44, an act that codified the case law regarding quasi-judicial land use proceedings, including the proper standards and procedures for judicial review. See N.C....more

High School’s Decision To Bypass Municipal Zoning Process For Stadium Bleachers Ruled Unlawful

In Gurba v. Community H.S. Dist. 155, a McHenry County Circuit court judge ruled that a local high school district violated the law when it refused to subject itself to the local zoning process of its host municipality....more

Standard for a BZA to Grant a Variance Little Different Than Expressed In Cochran: Martin v. City of Alexandria

When the Virginia Supreme Court issued the opinion in Martin v. City of Alexandria on June 7, 2013, it gave some guidance of the current state of the legal standard for a Board of Zoning Appeals to grant a variance. This...more

Supreme Court Clarifies The Standard To Be Applied When Evaluating The Negative Criteria For A Conditional Use Variance...

In a recent decision entitled TSI East Brunswick, LLC v. Zoning Bd. of Adjustment of Twp. of East Brunswick, the Supreme Court held that the enhanced quality of proofs standard established in Medici v. BPR Co., 107 N.J. 1...more

NJ Supreme Court Settles Proof Debate For Conditional Use Variances

The New Jersey Supreme Court has finally settled the question concerning the burden of proof for an applicant to obtain approval of a conditional use variance....more

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