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Krummenacher v. Minnetonka

Minnesota Supreme Court
783 N.W.2d 721 (Minn. 2010)


Facts

JoAnne Liebeler owned property in the City of Minnetonka (defendant). The property contained a garage that was not in compliance with a Minnetonka zoning ordinance, but was allowed to be there because it was built before the ordinance went into effect. Liebeler wished to repair and expand the garage and applied for a variance. Beat Krummenacher (plaintiff) was Liebeler’s neighbor and opposed the variance because the expansion of the garage would block his view. The City Planning Commission granted the variance. Krummenacher appealed and the City Council affirmed the decision based on four factors, including undue hardship. The City Council, relying on a standard for undue hardship laid out in Rowell v. Board of Adjustment of Moorhead, 446 N.W.2d 917 (Minn. Ct. App. 1989), found that Liebeler sought to use the property in a “reasonable manner” that was nevertheless prohibited by the ordinance. Krummenacher brought suit challenging the City’s finding of undue hardship, among other things. The district court found in favor of the City and the court of appeals affirmed. Krummenacher appealed.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Gildea, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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