The Second Department, reversing Supreme Court, determined the zoning board of appeals (ZBA) did not act arbitrarily and capriciously when it denied petitioner’s application to renew a variance previously granted by the board. The Second Department held the board had adequately explained the reasons for the denial:
Where “a zoning board is [considering] an application that is substantially similar to a prior application that had been previously determined, the zoning board is required to provide a rational explanation for reaching a different result” … . “Where, however, a zoning board provides a rational explanation for reaching a different result on similar facts, the determination will not be viewed as either arbitrary or capricious” … . The zoning board “may refuse to duplicate previous error; it may change its views as to what is for the best interests of the [Town]; [or] it may give weight to slight differences which are not easily discernable” … .
The ZBA’s determination denying the petitioner’s applications to renew the use variance previously issued in 2007, and for a new use variance, was not illegal, arbitrary, or an abuse of discretion. With respect to renewal of the 2007 variance, contrary to the Supreme Court’s determination, the ZBA’s findings of fact dated December 4, 2013, provided a rational basis for denying the petitioner’s application. The ZBA found, among other things, that the petitioner failed to demonstrate “unnecessary hardship” in accordance with Town Law § 267-b(2)(b). The fact that the ZBA previously temporarily approved the same application in 2007 did not relieve the petitioner of its evidentiary burdens in demonstrating “unnecessary hardship” for purposes of renewal of the use variance, or for purposes of seeking an additional use variance. As the ZBA determined, the petitioner failed to show, based on competent financial evidence, i.e., by dollars and cents proof, that it cannot yield a reasonable rate of return absent the requested use variances … . Matter of Monte Carlo 1, LLC v Weiss, 2016 NY Slip Op 06217, 2nd Dept 9-28-16
ZONING (ZONING BOARD’S DENIAL OF APPLICATION TO RENEW A VARIANCE PREVIOUSLY ALLOWED WAS NOT ARBITRARY AND CAPRICIOUS)/VARIANCE (ZONING BOARD’S DENIAL OF APPLICATION TO RENEW A VARIANCE PREVIOUSLY ALLOWED WAS NOT ARBITRARY AND CAPRICIOUS)