The Latest Supreme Court Grants of Review: A Tort Claims Act Notice Case, and the Effect of Zoning Board Conflict of Interests

The Supreme Court announced that it has granted review in two more cases.  The first is O’Donnell v. New Jersey Turnpike Authority.  The question presented in that appeal, as phrased by the Supreme Court Clerk’s office, is “Was the failure of plaintiffs’ first attorney to serve a timely tort claim notice against defendant an extraordinary circumstance justifying plaintiffs’ late tort claim notice under N.J.S.A. 59:8-9?”  The Law Division found extraordinary circumstances and denied defendant’s motion to dismiss, but a two-judge Appellate Division panel reversed in an unpublished opinion.

The second new appeal is Piscitelli v. City of Garfield Zoning Bd. of Adjustment.  That case presents this question: “Did alleged conflicts of interests of some members of the Zoning Board of Adjustment render the Board’s grant of a land use application invalid?”  Both the Law Division and a three-judge panel of the Appellate Division, which in an unpublished opinion affirmed the Law Division substantially for the reasons that court gave, found the Board’s action to be valid.  Now the Supreme Court will be heard on the matter.

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