Sunday, June 05, 2011

Church's RLUIPA Challenge To Zoning Denial Is Rejected

In Wesleyan Methodist Church of Canisteo v. Village of Canisteo, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 58586 (WD NY, June 1, 2011), a New York federal district court held that a church had failed to plausibly plead that denial of its zoning request by the Village of Canisteo, NY imposed a substantial burden on the church's free exercise rights under RLUIPA.  The city refused to permit building of a church in a light industrial zone. However, several other alternatives were available to the church, including building new structures on its existing property.