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Chelsea Neighborhood Association v. The Zoning Board of Adjustment of the City of Atlantic City

2005 WL 2896981 (N.J. Super. App. Div. 2005) (Unpublished)

ZONING; STANDING—In order for a party to be an “interested party” who can appeal a land use board decision, that party must have a greater stake in the outcome than the general public.

An outdoor advertising company received site plan approval, a conditional use permit, and three variances to build a freestanding double-sided billboard. A neighborhood association challenged the approvals. The zoning board and the advertising company argued that the neighborhood association did not have standing to challenge the decision, and that, in any event the zoning board’s decision was correct. The lower court agreed and found in favor of the zoning board and advertising company. The Appellate Division affirmed. The Court noted that only an “interested party” may appeal a zoning board decision. It agreed with lower court’s determination that, in order to be an “interested party,” the neighborhood association had to have a greater stake in the outcome of the proceedings than the general public. The Court found that, since the neighborhood association’s members lived in sections of the city that were unaffected by the billboard, they had no stake in the proceedings. Therefore, they had no right to challenge the zoning board’s decision.

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