Home CHARLOTTE LACEY v. JAMES P. MOVALLI, ROBERT G. STEWART, FRANCIS S. WRIGHT, STEPHEN REYNOLDS and DAVID GARDNER, as they are members of the Board of Appeals of the City of Gloucester

MISC 323072

July 11, 2008

ESSEX, ss.

Trombly, J.


Plaintiff Charlotte Lacey (the “Plaintiff”) [Note 1] initiated this case when she filed a complaint on May 10, 2006 appealing a decision of the Board of Appeals of the City of Gloucester (the “Board”) which upheld a decision of the City’s Building Inspector refusing to issue a building permit for Plaintiff’s property known as 10 Ferry Hill Road, Gloucester, Massachusetts (the “locus”). In its decision, the Board upheld the Building Inspector’s denial of Plaintiff’s application for a building permit, determining that the locus was not entitled to the protections of G.L. c. 40A, § 6 because it had an existing structure on it when a zoning change made the lot nonconforming. The Plaintiff timely appealed the Board’s decision by commencing the instant action.

On May 29, 2007, Plaintiff filed a Motion for Summary Judgment and on June 28, 2007, the Board filed an opposition to this motion and also requested that summary judgment be entered in its favor. The parties argued the motion before the court (Trombly, J.) on June 28, 2007, at which time the matter was taken under advisement.

In a Decision entered today, the court, finding the matter to be ripe for summary judgment, granted summary judgment in favor of the Board. In its Decision, the court found and ruled that the locus was not “vacant” at the time a zoning change rendered it nonconforming, and thus could not benefit from the protections provided by the fourth paragraph of G.L. c. 40A, § 6. The court, therefore, ruled that the Board acted within its authority in upholding the Building Inspector’s denial of Plaintiff’s request to build a single family residence on the locus.

In accordance with that Decision, it is

ORDERED, ADJUDGED, and DECLARED that Plaintiff’s Motion for Summary Judgment is DENIED and Judgment is entered for the Defendant; it is further

ORDERED, ADJUDGED, and DECLARED that the complaint be, and is hereby dismissed with prejudice.

By the Court. (Trombly, J.)


[Note 1] Unless defined herein, each term carries the same definition as employed in the Decision.