We've been offline for a few days, but wanted to pick up this decision in an important case we've been following about the valuation of protective dunes on the Jersey Shore, and general and special benefits.
In Borough of Harvey Cedars v. Karan, No. 070512 (July 8, 2013), the New Jersey Supreme Court held that a jury is entitled to determine whether the diminution in value caused by construction of barrier dunes on private property, which block the view of the owners and thus must be compensated, can be offset by claimed special benefits by the dunes to the property. The Borough asserted that the dunes resulted in special protection to the property, and enhanced its value. The intermediate appellate court held that the Borough's evidence was not admissible, but the Supreme Court reversed.
As reported by the New York Times:
They are “waiting for the good old lottery to come in,” Mr. [Mayor] Mancini said. “This ruling means that the lottery is past due. Their ticket has expired. They probably owe us money.”
Gov. Chris Christie, who has urged towns to publicly shame residents who refuse to sign easements, hailed the decision, as did the League of Municipalities.
More to follow on this important decision.