Search Site
Menu

Appellate Division Affirms Franklin Township Ban on Digital Billboards

The New Jersey Appellate Division recently upheld a decision by Franklin Township, New Jersey to ban digital billboards along a stretch of Interstate 287, while allowing static billboards to be implemented. The Appellate Division determined that no violation of the First Amendment took place as part of the ban, with Judge Marianne Espinosa stating that “on its face, the ordinance does not restrict any speech based on its content.”

In E&J Equities v. Township of Franklin, plaintiff E&J Equities had requested a permit in 2009 for a digital billboard on I-287 which would change the image displayed every eight seconds. The proposed billboard would not include any animation, flashing, or scrolling text. The permit was approved by the New Jersey Department of Transportation, with the caveat that E&J would still need to get approval from Franklin Township for the billboard.

The lawsuit came about as the ordinance in Franklin banning digital billboards was adopted while E&J’s application to erect such a billboard was still pending. In the first trial court, it was determined By Judge Peter Buchsbaum that while the township’s decision was not “arbitrary, capricious, or unreasonable,” it did violate the First Amendment. The Appellate Division, however found that “The trial court’s interpretation imposed a burden on the township that is not required for content-neutral restrictions on time, place and manner expression.”

The attorneys of Lieberman Blecher & Sinkevich are well versed in municipal zoning and ordinance laws and regulations, and will be following the progress of this matter. Our attorneys have assisted clients in matters of zoning and land use ranging from opposition to cell tower construction, to development of protected wetlands areas, and have represented community organizations opposed to electronic billboards such as this. If you are concerned about the development or zoning laws of your area, you can contact our office to discuss your concerns with a member of our staff.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Our Attorneys

Recent Twitter Posts

  • Trenton Water Works has removed 25 percent of lead pipes throughout its service area. https://t.co/KUvhMsJlvU
    5 days ago
  • Opposition grows to big warehouses in small NJ towns. https://t.co/CMjgYaPMRP
    5 days ago
  • Groups plead with Governor Murphy to stop plans for new gas-fired power plant along the Passaic River in Newark. https://t.co/0yODyXEI3C
    5 days ago
  • Murphy Administration releases mapping tool to help NJ residents identify lead exposure risks in housing. https://t.co/oRL7gPVoeq
    2 months ago

Recent Blog Posts

Environmental Insurance Dispute to be Heard in New Jersey courts

On December 30, 2021 the Appellate Division of the Superior Court decided Getty Prop. Corp. v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co. Getty Properties Corp. (“Getty”) filed an appeal
Read More
Environmental Insurance Dispute to be Heard in New Jersey courts

Governor Murphy’s NJDEP Proposes New Rule to Limit Carbon Dioxide Emissions

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy’s administration proposed a new rule to combat greenhouse gas emissions, just before the start of his second term in office. The New Jersey Department of
Read More
Governor Murphy’s NJDEP Proposes New Rule to Limit Carbon Dioxide Emissions

Municipal Clerk can Accept Electronic Signatures

On November 30, 2021, the Appellate Division further enforced and upheld a new staple of the Covid-19 world: electronic signatures. In Township Of Montclair Committee of Petitioners et al. v.
Read More
Municipal Clerk can Accept Electronic Signatures

Appellate Division Declines to Allow Developer’s Four-Month-Late DOT Permit Appeal, Citing No Change in Circumstances

A Maple Shade Township developer’s appeal of permit conditions was untimely when they appealed four months past the deadline and without any change in circumstances justifying deadline relaxation, the Appellate
Read More
Appellate Division Declines to Allow Developer’s Four-Month-Late DOT Permit Appeal, Citing No Change in Circumstances

In the media

  • Gulf Coast Town Center facing foreclosure

    Naples Daily News, September 16, 2015

    Wells Fargo filed a lawsuit Sept. 8 against an affiliate of CBL & Associates, the owners of the decadeold, 1.2 million-square-foot mall in south Fort Myers for a $190.9 million unpaid loan. The center has 94 stores on 204 acres, with such anchors as Super Target, Belk, Best Buy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Marshalls and Costco...

    Read More
  • Town liable for private company's leaking underground tanks, court rules

    NJ.com Jul 26, 2017

    CRANFORD -- A couple that owned a businesses in town and became sick from leaking underground tanks owned by an adjacent business can sue the township for damages because the tanks were partially ...

    Read More
  • Dark Waters: How a Class Action Catapulted NJ to Forefront of 'Forever Chemicals' Battle

    NJ Law Journal Jan 09, 2020

    As property owners become increasingly aware of PFAS contamination, and as individuals exposed to PFAS learn of the health risks associated with exposure, liability will likely affect entire supply chains.

    Read More
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
Contact Our Firm

Quick Contact Form