The village of Moravia decided a nonconforming use clause in a zoning law was irrelevant to a historic property, in opposition to the building owner’s assertion, during a Zoning Board of Appeals meeting on Monday.
The debate began a month ago when Gary Debele requested a ZBA public hearing for an interpretation of a 1988 local law. Last summer, Debele purchased the historic Moravia High School with the understanding that the property was zoned as commercial, under an exception within a residential area. Long after the finalization of the sale, the village determined the property could not maintain it’s commercial status and would remain residential.
The 48 Church St. building was a school until the early 1960s and once sold was used for a variety of commercial and residential uses. When Debele bought the property, the code enforcement officer at the time, Fred Delaney, said it was zoned as commercial property. The current CEO, Patrick Doyle, determined the property must comply with residential zoning.