MONICA MALONE VS. CITY OF BRIGANTINE (L-6601-14, L-2493-17 AND L-0953-18, ATLANTIC COUNTY AND STATEWIDE)

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NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION This opinion shall not "constitute precedent or be binding upon any court ." Although it is posted on the internet, this opinion is binding only on the parties in the case and its use in other cases is limited. R. 1:36-3. SUPERIOR COURT OF NEW JERSEY APPELLATE DIVISION DOCKET NO. A-0365-19 MONICA MALONE, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. CITY OF BRIGANTINE, and PLANNING BOARD OF THE CITY OF BRIGANTINE, Defendants-Respondents. _______________________________ Argued January 25, 2021 – Decided July 16, 2021 Before Judges Messano, Hoffman and Suter. On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Atlantic County, Docket Nos. L-6601-14, L- 2493-17, and L-0953-18. Janine G. Bauer argued the cause for appellant (Szaferman Lakind Blumstein & Blader, PC, attorneys; Janine G. Bauer, on the briefs). Hance C. Jaquett argued the cause for respondent Brigantine Planning Board. Alfred R. Scerni, Jr. argued the cause for respondent City of Brigantine (Parker McCay, PA, attorneys; Michael J. Coskey and Alfred R. Scerni, on the brief). PER CURIAM In 2008, plaintiff Monica Malone purchased via quitclaim deed three parcels of undeveloped land in the City of Brigantine (the City) for one dollar. One parcel — Lot 25 — was 3.76 acres, partially submerged and adjacent to a navigable waterway (the Property). In 1985, the Brigantine Planning Board (the Board) granted subdivision approval to King's Cove Limited Partnership (the Developer). The Board's resolution required the Property be designated on the "final plat" as a "reserved area," and that it "remain open space in accordance with CAFRA1 requirements." The resolution further provided that all "open space" in the development "be maintained by a [h]omeowner's [a]ssociation or some other responsible entity." The filed plat map designated the Property as a "reserved area," but it did not contain the remaining language from the Board's resolution. The general notes on the map indicated the lot was "to be deeded to the City . . . with the stipulation that it shall remain dedicated to open space public recreational use." The Board's resolution was not publicly recorded. 1 The Coastal Area Facility Review Act (CAFRA), N.J.S.A. 13:19-1 to -51. A-0365-19 2 Plaintiff purchased the lots from the Developer's successor in interest without conducting a title search. In 2012, Super Storm Sandy washed a sailboat ashore on the Property. Plaintiff negotiated with its owner, acquired the boat, and stored it on a trailer on the Property. In 2014, the City engineer and Zoning Officer issued plaintiff summonses for violations of two sections of the City's Land Use Ordinance, specifically alleging that storage of the boat was not a permitted use, nor was its storage permitted in the front yard of a lot. Plaintiff filed a complaint against the City in the Law Division seeking: 1) declaratory relief, specifically that she could lawfully use the Property to store her boat; 2) enjoining the City from enforcing the summonses; and 3) alleging the City violated her Due Process rights by effecting a "regulatory taking" …

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