Eadie v. Town Board of the Town of North Greenbush
New York Court of Appeals
854 N.E.2d 464 (2006)
Zoning regulations in the Town of North Greenbush could be amended by a simple majority vote of the town board except in certain circumstances in which approval of three-fourths, or a supermajority, of the town board was required. Under Town Law § 265(1), one circumstance that required a supermajority vote was a proposed rezoning subject to a written protest petition signed by the owners of 20 percent or more of the land area immediately adjacent to the rezoned area, extending 100 feet from the rezoned area. John and Thomas Gallogly owned property in the town and requested that their property be rezoned to permit retail development. The Town Board of the Town of North Greenbush (board) (defendant) held a public hearing on the proposed rezoning. At the hearing, John Eadie and a group of opponents to the rezoning (opponents) (plaintiffs) presented a written protest petition to the board. The opponents asserted that the protest was effective because the petition was signed by the owners of more than 20 percent of the land located within 100 feet of the parcels owned by the Galloglys on which rezoning was to occur. However, not all the land owned by the Galloglys was to be rezoned. The Galloglys left a 200- to 400-foot-wide buffer zone between the portion of the property to be rezoned and the property line. Consequently, the board determined that the opponents did not own 20 percent of the land within 100 feet of the rezoned area. The board approved the rezoning with a three to two vote, a simple majority. The opponents appealed to the trial court. The trial court found that the opponents had satisfied the requirements of Section 265(1) and voided the rezoning. The appellate court reversed the trial court’s decision. The opponents appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Smith, J.)
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