Posted by: Patricia Salkin | April 13, 2017

OH Appeals Court Holds Ordinances’ Prohibition on Cooking in Accessory Living Accommodations was Unambiguous and Had Substantial Relation to Safety of Community

In 2002, Scasny obtained approval to construct a 292 square foot detached two-car garage that included a driveway. Over time, the two-car garage became a 644 square foot two level building with a bathroom that included a toilet and tub; a kitchen area with a kitchen sink and cooking area; a laundry room with a washer and dryer; a large recreation room with cable television; two air conditioned levels; and a furnace and hot water heater. The Village’s Board of Zoning Appeals (“BZA”) denied Scasny’s request to be able to cook on the premises and the Council affirmed the BZA’s decision. Appellants Tim Scasny and Lynne Hamill appealed the trial court’s decision affirming the decision of the appellee Mayfield Village Council, which denied Scasny’s request to have the ability to cook in the second building on his property.

On appeal, Scasny argued that the common pleas court incorrectly applied Mayfield Village Codified Ordinance 1113.08(f) to his property. Pursuant to Mayfield Village Codified Ordinances 1153.02(a), Class U–1 uses included: (1) single-family dwelling; (2) farming, nursery, truck gardening, or (3) any municipal use by the Municipality. Here, the property was further designated as being in the U–1 District that was within the Class A–1 District; this meant that a further restriction applied that “no building shall be used and no building shall be erected which is arranged, intended or designed to be used as a semi-detached single family dwelling or double house.” As such, Scasny was only permitted to have one single-family dwelling on his property. The court found that Scasny’s structure qualified as a “dwelling unit” since cooking was permitted within the building. This was distinguished from “Accessory living accommodations”, which were did not allow cooking equipment. Accordingly, the trial court’s application of Mayfield Village Ordinance 1113.08(f) was supported by reliable, probative, and substantial evidence.

Lastly, Scasny argued that the Village’s restriction on cooking in a structure that did not comply with fire and safety protocols was arbitrary, unreasonable and without substantial relation to the public health, safety, morals, or general welfare of the community. The court held that the prohibiting cooking in “accessory living accommodations” had a substantial relationship to safety. Accordingly, the trial court did not abuse its discretion by denying Scasny declaratory relief.

Scasny v. Mayfield, 69 N.E.3d 1219 (2016)

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