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Posted by: Landry Butler on Dec 19, 2017

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Michael Cobble and Lora Cobble, pro se appellants.

Attorneys 2:

Roger A. Woolsey, Greeneville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Greene County Board of Zoning Appeals and Greene County, Tennessee.

Judge(s): SWINEY

This appeal arises from a dispute over the grant of a zoning variance. Earl Scott Moore and Joetta Moore (“the Moores,” collectively) applied for a variance in order to build a carport at their home. The Moores’ neighbors, Michael Cobble and Lora Cobble (“the Cobbles,” collectively) opposed the requested variance. The Greene County Board of Zoning Appeals (“the BZA”) rejected the Moores’ application. The Moores submitted a second application, this time reducing their request by seven feet so as not to protrude into a public right-of-way. The BZA granted the Moores’ application for a variance. The Cobbles filed a petition for common law writ of certiorari in the Chancery Court for Greene County (“the Trial Court”). The Trial Court concluded that material evidence supported the BZA’s decision to grant the variance and dismissed the Cobbles’ petition. The Cobbles appealed to this Court. We affirm the Trial Court in its declining to hold that res judicata barred the Moores’ second application for a variance. We hold further that, because the Moore property is not distinguishable in any meaningful way, the BZA’s decision to grant a variance was not supported by material evidence. We affirm, in part, and reverse, in part, the judgment of the Trial Court.