Supreme Court Will Review Digital Billboard Ban

The Supreme Court announced today that it has granted certification to review E&J Equities, LLC v. Franklin Tp. Bd. of Adj., 437 N.J. Super. 490 (App. Div. 2014).  The question presented, as phrased by the Supreme Court Clerk’s Office, is “Was this municipal ordinance banning digital billboards constitutional and was the municipality’s denial of plaintiff’s application for a variance for such a billboard valid?”

The opinion of the Appellate Division that will be reviewed cited, in several places, Interstate Outdoor Advertising, L.P. v. Mt. Laurel Tp. Bd. of Adj., 706 F.3d 527 (3d Cir. 2013).  That case, which held that a broader ban on billboards of all types was not unconstitutional under federal law, was discussed here, and addressed many of the same issues that the Supreme Court will face in this appeal.  The Appellate Division likewise concluded that the digital billboard ban was constitutional.  The Supreme Court is of course not bound by the Third Circuit’s opinion, but it may (or may not) be persuasive.