Le Roy's Zoning Board of Appeals will likely try to retain its own attorney in the Frost Ridge case, board Chairwoman Debbie Jackett said today.
At a hearing May 20, Town of Le Roy Attorney Reid Whiting told Judge Robert C. Noonan that the ZBA didn't have an attorney in court that day because the board chose not to be represented.
He said the ZBA had been served with notice of the lawsuit.
Jackett said the board didn't know it was named in a lawsuit until members read about the court hearing in The Batavian.
The ZBA was named by plaintiffs David and Marny Cleere and Scott and Betsy Collins because the ZBA found in July 2013 that camping and amplified music were permitted uses at Frost Ridge.
The board's position is and was, Jackett said, that camping and amplified music were both permitted uses prior to the area being zoned residential/agriculture in 1967.
The vote was unanimous, Jackett said, and the board's position hasn't changed.
The town board cannot overrule the ZBA's decision.
"Their view is contrary to our view," Jackett said.
Which is why Whiting can't represent the ZBA, she said.
The ZBA serves both the town and village governments, but the board doesn't feel the village attorney should represent the ZBA since Frost Ridge is a town issue, so the ZBA is scrambling to secure independent legal representation.
The Town of Le Roy will be obligated to pay for the ZBA's attorney.
Frost Ridge and owners David and Greg Luetticke-Archbell are defendants in two lawsuits, one filed by the town and another field by Cleere and Collins challenging their legal ability to both exist as a campground and to operate occasionally as a live music venue.
The plaintiffs maintain that the campground and amplified music violate the current zoning ordinance. Frost Ridge maintains that the property was recreational use prior to 1967 and it's recreational use today.
Noonan issued a temporary injunction May 23 barring Frost Ridge from amplified music and alcohol service on the property, citing the likelihood that the town would prevail on the merits of the case. His decision was based on the May 20 hearing that lacked ZBA representation.
Since the ZBA doesn't have an attorney yet, it's unclear whether any motion could be brought forward challenging the injunction.
A conference meeting -- where dates will be set for future proceedings in the cases -- is scheduled for tomorrow. Jackelt said she is unsure if the ZBA will be able to retain counsel in time for that court appearance.