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Suffolk Asphalt Supply, Inc. v. Board of Trustees of the Village of Westhampton Beach

Suffolk County Supreme Court
51 Misc. 3d 303 (2016)


Facts

In 1985, the Board of Trustees of the Village of Westhampton Beach (defendant) amended its zoning laws such that the only asphalt plant in town no longer conformed with its zoning. In 1994, Suffolk Asphalt Supply, Inc. (plaintiff) purchased and continued to operate the plant. In 2000, the board adopted a local phase-out law terminating the nonconforming use unless the plant applied for an extension, which was not to exceed five years. The plant obtained the maximum extension and kept operating another five years. When the zoning board of appeals directed the plant to cease operations, the plant sued, asking the court to declare the local law terminating its nonconforming use invalid and unconstitutional. Before trial, the parties agreed that the court should resolve three threshold issues: (1) which time period would apply to determine the constitutional adequacy of the time the plant had to amortize and recover its investment, (2) which measure would apply to determine the value of the investment amortized, and (3) whether the plant could include the costs of litigation necessary to continue operations in the investment amortized.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Emerson, J.)

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