Land use and zoning regulations in Minnesota are complex, confusing and often controversial. Here are a few options for challenging a zoning issue.
Challenge to a land use decision
On a basic level, when challenging a zoning ordinance, you are essentially appealing to the court to revisit the matter. This appeal does not require any new evidence. The higher authority will review what was already submitted as evidence to the case on record.
The court might review new information if the court determines said evidence was wrongly not presented at the lower court. Options for challenging a land use decision have to factor in a pair of equations:
- What type of zone request did you make?
- What governmental agency reviewed and denied the request?
Challenging the municipal refusal
Before any appeal, you must exhaust all municipal appeals on an internal level. Following this, the decision will need appealing to the court in the district county where the property is located.
After you exhaust all internal administrative appeal processes, you may appeal the denial in a higher district court. In Minnesota, there are no statutes on time limits for an appeal, and no court has imposed one. However, you have to keep in mind that a municipality ordinance may present a timeline that imposes a deadline for an appeal. Failing to meet that ordinance can lead to a dismissal.
Challenging a failure to act
You can challenge the denial with the 60-day rule. Minnesota has independent time specifications for plat subdivision application. This determination lacks certainty, but even this can be appealed.
Challenging a land use and zoning issue is best tackled with experienced legal counsel. Anyone can get on the path but easily get lost in the labyrinth of legal mandates. Understanding the county or municipality and knowing how to proceed will be critical.