Oradell Zoning Board Addresses Variances, Litigation, and Driveway Discrepancy in Latest Meeting

In the recent Oradell Zoning Board of Adjustment meeting, significant discussions revolved around ongoing litigations including a lawsuit with RK Holdings, LLC, a property owner’s non-adherence to an approved plan concerning driveway pavement, and various property variance requests. The most notable segment of the meeting focused on a variance request by homeowners Kimberly Lamb and Dorian Mucha for modifications to their home on Wanamaker Avenue.

Lamb and Mucha, planning to start a family, found their home’s existing layout, which dates back 50 to 60 years, inadequate for modern living. Represented by architect Joseph Salvatore Solfaro, a well-versed expert in such cases in New Jersey, the proposed changes were elaborated. The renovation plans aim to extend the kitchen and dining area without increasing the non-conformity on the lot, even improving it on one side. The key argument for granting a C1 hardship variance was the existing non-conformity due to deficient lot width. The board leaned towards approval, emphasizing that the modifications did not exacerbate existing issues and recognized the homeowners’ need for a “modern home.”

Despite procedural delays and a forthcoming 45-day objection period followed by council resolution preparation adding a potential 30-day delay, the board encouraged the homeowners Lamb and Mucha to initiate permit discussions, hinting at favorable approval due to the hardship variance attributed to the lot’s narrowness. The proposed extensions were appreciated for focusing on the family’s needs while harmonizing with the neighborhood’s visual aspects, receiving a preliminary approval “as submitted.”

A contentious point during the meeting arose when the Chair brought up a case of a property owner paving a part of their driveway beyond what had been approved, an act undertaken despite the withdrawal of their application previously due to an inability to satisfy the necessary requirements. The non-compliance resulted in a court-issued summons and a substantial fine, with further legal action threatened if the individual fails to meet the standards by next month.

In between discussions, the board also acknowledged an ongoing lawsuit involving RK Holdings, LLC and confirmed they had convened in a closed session to discuss this alongside issues concerning properties at 240 and 66 Kindicomack Road.

Towards the conclusion of the meeting, the floor was opened for public commentary excluding discussion on open court cases. Despite this, a resident sought clarification on the specifics of an ongoing court case and the availability of live streaming for the trial. The chairman restricted the discussion to the board’s legal purview, directing individuals to refer to public records for information, asserting the necessity to maintain boundaries on freedom of speech, especially concerning ongoing litigations. This left the resident feeling stifled in his attempt to inform the public, with the meeting concluding with no resolution to his concerns.

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