Protecting Due Process in Your Pajamas: Administering Land Use Hearings in a Virtual World
The COVID-19 pandemic forced local governments to shift to virtual hearings if they wanted to continue conducting business. Questions as to what impact such hearings may or may not have on the constitutional rights afforded parties in land use cases were generally set aside for the time being as Americans faced up to a significant health crisis. Heading into 2023, are virtual hearings the “new normal” and, if so, are the legislators and courts on board? Do existing state statutes and case law provide adequate protection for local government leaders to continue approving variances, conditional uses, special exceptions, site plans, subdivisions, and other land use applications from the comfort of their living room? What should local government attorneys consider when advising clients on whether virtual processes satisfy constitutional muster? This presentation will look at how different states are currently handling virtual hearings in the land use context and identify issues that attorneys should explore when advising local governments on best practices.
Speaker: David Warner