Zoning ordinances restrict the use of property in order to achieve and promote the goals of a city or county in protecting the public health, safety and welfare. These ordinances include various use, density, bulk, and other restrictions. As contemporary society controls development in this manner, conflicts inevitably arise between private property interests and the broad societal goals reflected in zoning legislation. Zoning restrictions are of particular concern to landowners and those involved with the acquisition of real estate. If an acquiring entity meets the requisite standing requirements, like the private property owner it has judicial or administrative recourse in those situations where it may be unjustifiably harmed by application of a zoning ordinance. Avenues of relief typically include: (1) a challenge to the constitutionality of the regulation; (2) a petition to the local legislative body requesting rezoning or an amendment to the respective ordinance; or (3) administrative relief by a petition for a special exception, a special permit, or a variance. This Comment discusses avenues of relief from a Nebraska perspective, focusing primarily on the specific requirements and considerations under Nebraska law with respect to variances and parcel rezoning.
Variances and Parcel Rezoning: Relief from Restrictive Zoning in Nebraska,
60 Neb. L. Rev.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/nlr/vol60/iss1/5