STATE GOVERNMENT AND STATE AFFAIRS
LOCAL LAND USE PLANNING
67-6538. Use for designed purpose protected — When vacancy occurs. (1) No rights or authority granted pursuant to this chapter shall be construed to empower a city or county to enact any ordinance or resolution which deprives an owner of the right to use improvements on private property for their designed purpose based solely on the nonuse of the improvements for their designed purpose for a period of ten (10) years or less. Where an owner or his authorized agent permits or allows an approved or unlawful intervening use of the owner’s property, the provisions of this section are not applicable.
(2) If the nonuse continues for a period of one (1) year or longer, the city or county may, by written request, require that the owner declare his intention with respect to the continued nonuse of the improvements in writing within twenty-eight (28) days of receipt of the request. If the owner elects to continue the nonuse, he shall notify the city or county in writing of his intention and shall post the property with notice of his intent to continue the nonuse of the improvements. He shall also publish notice of his intent to continue the nonuse in a newspaper of general circulation in the county where the property is located. If the property owner complies with the requirements of this subsection, his right to use such improvements in the future for their designed purpose shall continue, notwithstanding any change in the zoning of the property.
(3) The property owner may voluntarily elect to withdraw the use by filing with the clerk of the city or the county, as the case may be, an affidavit of withdrawn use. If the property is redesigned for a different use, the property owner shall be deemed to have abandoned any grandfather right to the prior use of the property.
(4) For purposes of this section "designed purpose" means the use for which the improvements were originally intended, designed and approved pursuant to any applicable planning and zoning ordinances.
(5) The provisions of this section shall not be construed to prohibit a city or a county from passing or enforcing any other law or ordinance for the protection of the public health, safety and welfare.
[67-6538, added 1999, ch. 292, sec. 1, p. 731.]