Posted by: Patricia Salkin | March 14, 2021

FL Appeals Court Denies Certiorari Review of Village’s Decision to Amend a Zoning Designation

This post was authored by Matthew Loescher, Esq.

In this case, Petitioner Yacht Club by Luxcom, LLC, sought second-tier certiorari review of the circuit court appellate division’s order denying the petition for certiorari brought against the Village of Palmetto Bay Council and the Village of Palmetto Bay. The underlying petition alleged the Village Council’s approval of Ordinance No. 2019-18, which amended the zoning designation of the property at issue, resulted in a violation of due process.

In reaching its decision, circuit court found substantial competent evidence to support the zoning determination of the Village Council. Specifically, the circuit court noted that “the record shows that Luxcom’s own undeveloped 10 acres located immediately west of the Property had the same E-1 zoning designation as the Property at issue.” Thus, the mere fact that there was competing evidence in the record, did not change the court’s analysis under a substantial competent evidence standard.

Petitioner next contended that the circuit court violated clearly established law as provided by the court in Palmer Trinity Private School, Inc. v. Village of Palmetto Bay, 31 So. 3d 260 (Fla. 3d DCA 2010). Unlike Palmer Trinity, however, no evidence in the record indicated that the Village sought to treat the Petitioner differently because of the proposed use of the property. Moreover, as the determination of the proper zoning designation was at least “fairly debatable” and there was no disparate treatment, the substantial competent evidence supported the zoning determination made by the Village Council.

Yacht Club by Luxcom, LLC v Palmetto Bay Council, 2021 WL 899315 (FL App. 3/10/2021)

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