Copyright (c) 2006 The University of Toledo
The University of Toledo Law Review
ARTICLE: THE APPLICATION OF PRIOR RESTRAINT: AN ALTERNATIVE DOCTRINE FOR RELIGIOUS LAND USE CASES
37 U. Tol. L. Rev. 747
Jennifer L. Monk* and Robert H. Tyler**
PRAISE Christian Center ("Church"), a church located in Huntington Beach California, entered into a rental agreement for a building to use as a place of worship. 1 The building originally housed a landscape supply company, and had a certificate of occupancy for 81 people. 2 The Church's services typically had 60 to 70 people in attendance. 3 Because its occupancy was well below 81 people, the Church believed it could occupy the building as a matter of right. 4 Nevertheless, the Church received a notice of violation of the City's conditional use permit and the City issued a cease and desist order. 5 At this point, the Church vacated the premises. 6 In addition, the City filed a criminal complaint against the Pastor for occupying the building without a conditional use permit and for not adhering to the City's sign ordinances. 7 Thereafter, the Pastor submitted an application for a conditional use permit to the City in February, 2002. 8 It was not until July, 2002, that the City finally deemed the application complete, processed it, and conducted a hearing before the City Council. 9
As is true with most churches, the desire and intent of Praise Christian Center was to grow as a church and, in doing so, to spread the message of Jesus Christ. 10 This would appear to be a benevolent desire and, at the very least, one that would cause no harm to the City's residents. A conditional use permit ...
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