By Jennifer O’Connor
The decision made by Supreme Court Justice Elaine Slobod in August 2018 dismissing a lawsuit filed against the Village of Warwick Planning Board and John Christison of 16 Elm Street Realty, LLC, was upheld on Wed., Dec. 16 by the Appellate Division: Second Judicial Department of the NYS Supreme Court.
The court battle began shortly after February of 2018, when the Village of Warwick Planning Board granted final approval to John Christison to construct a 3,600 sq. ft. building at 16 Elm St. in Warwick, for his restaurant Yesterdays that is currently located at 29 Main St. in the Village of Warwick.
In March of 2018, residents opposed to the project filed an Article 78, which is a proceeding that is used to appeal the decision of a local agency. The chief complaint by the petitioners is the potential noise the restaurant would create in the neighborhood as well as how its close proximity to their homes would impact them.
Judge Slobod dismissed the lawsuit in August of 2018 because it was not properly filed against the property owners – Frank Petrucci, Lynn Crane and Glenn Petrucci. Christison does not yet own the property. His purchase of the property is contingent upon him receiving approval for the project and the outcome of the lawsuit.
When the residents’ lawyer, David Gordon, an attorney from Poughkeepsie, NY, realized that the property owners were not named in the Article 78, he resubmitted the document but it was too late and after the thirty-day statute of limitations.
The Decision and Order by Hon. Slobod stated: “When the proceeding/action was initially commenced, the owners of the project site were not named as the parties. Although the petitioner-plaintiffs subsequently amended their pleadings and served a supplemental summons and supplemental notice of petition upon the site owners, the statute of limitations had run.”
After Judge Slobod’s decision, the residents’ attorney filed an appeal that sat in the Appellate Court for over two years until the decision was made last week in Christison’s favor.
Christison said he’s grateful for the support he’s received from his wife, Peggy, his staff and from all of his loyal customers. He’s looking forward to continuing with his plans for his new establishment.
“I have been a good neighbor on Main Street and I will continue to be a good neighbor on Elm Street,” said Christison.
John Christison, owner of Yesterdays restaurant, stands on the site of where he is building his restaurant on Elm St. in Warwick.