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07-21-08 William E. Meyer, Esq. v. MW Red Bank, LLC and Red Bank Zoning Board of Adjustment

07-21-08 A-1984-06T3

In this appeal, Michael DuPont, Esq., Chairman of the Red Bank Zoning Board of Adjustment, disqualified himself from participating in the variance application of developer MW Red Bank, LLC (MW) because his law firm had previously represented Christopher Cole, an owner of one of the entities that comprises MW. We found that DuPont's decision to disqualify himself did not automatically create a corresponding obligation on the part of Lauren Nicosia, who replaced DuPont as the Acting Chair in
the variance application, to do likewise because of her father's "of counsel" status in DuPont's law firm. We distinguished our decision in Haggerty v. Red Bank Borough Zoning Bd. of Adjustment, 385 N.J. Super. 501 (App. Div. 2006), noting that DuPont's law firm had never represented MW and that the firm's last representation of Cole took place nearly two years before MW submitted its variance application to the zoning board.