Posted by: Patricia Salkin | November 4, 2020

IL Appeals Court Finds Challenge Arising from 31 Year Old Rezoning Ordinance was Not Time-Barred

 This post was authored by Matthew Loescher, Esq.

Plaintiffs, homeowners in the Village of Glenview, Illinois, filed this action for declaratory judgment to invalidate a 1988 municipal ordinance that allowed for the rezoning of property adjacent to their homes from residential to commercial. Plaintiffs filed suit in 2019, after a commercial developer applied for permits to rezone and construct commercial buildings on that property, per that 1988 ordinance. The trial court dismissed the complaint as time-barred, based on a 90-day limitations provision in the Municipal Code that governs challenges to municipal zoning decisions.

Pursuant to the Ordinance, the rezoning of the Hart property – one of the properties owned by Plaintiffs – would only take effect after the landowner’s notice and application for rezoning was accepted by the Board of Trustees.  Consequently, the rezoning language in Ordinance 2856 reserved the Village’s right to reconsider the idea of rezoning the Hart property at whatever time in the future that the landowner decided to seek a change in the zoning classification. The court found that an ordinance that required a new application for rezoning before it can take effect, and which first required the approval of that new application by the board of trustees, was not a “decision” to rezone under section 11-13-25 of the Municipal Code. Accordingly. The court held this matter was not time-barred, and the judgment of the circuit court was reversed and remanded to the trial court with instruction to impose injunctive relief temporarily invalidating and suspending the permits for demolition, tree removal, and construction on the Hart property until the court entered its final judgment.

Sullivan v Village of Glenview, 2020 IL App. (1st) 200142 (11/4/2020)

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