December 1, 2020
We respond to your inquiry (20-134) about serving on the review planning board for the same municipality in which you preside as town justice. The planning board “oversees subdivisions of large parcels” in the town. It provides an initial review to “make sure applicants are following the legal procedure standards set by the local government,” and then “refer[s] the information to the members of the Town Board” for approval.
A town justice may not serve on a zoning or planning board, where cases involving violations of such zoning regulations are handled in the town court (see e.g. Opinion 89-82). Here, too, the positions are incompatible.
For your review, we enclose Opinions 99-162/99-180/00-63, 96-35, 93-34, 93-01, 90-03, 89-92, and 88-109.
Very truly yours,
Hon. Margaret Walsh
Justice of the Supreme Court
Hon. Lillian Wan
Acting Justice of the Supreme Court