640 Cepi Drive, Suite A

Chesterfield, MO 63005-1221

(636) 537-4645

Facsimile (636) 537-2599

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August 7, 2017

Most city officials serve because they are committed to public service and seek to improve or protect their neighborhoods and the broader community. Do city officials forfeit their right to speak out on, to participate in discussions or deliberations about, or to vote on matters in which they have a personal or economic interest? When a zoning issue comes before the city that would directly affect themselves or their immediate neighborhood, are they prohibited from acting on it?


This section only addresses a number of Missouri statutes regulating conflicts of interest, §§ 105.450 - 105.498, R.S.Mo. Many cities' codes of...

Local governments normally have many boards or commissions, for the most part comprised of appointed volunteers. For instance, a city with zoning must have a board of adjustment and a planning and zoning commission. A question local governments face, but may not give much thought to, is who can serve on these boards. Everyone should be aware that the members of certain racial, religious, or sexes cannot be forbidden from serving on government boards. But you should also be aware of another limitation: boards should not be limited to landowners.

May the members of a government board be required to be landowners? Or put the other way, can non-landowners b...

May 5, 2017

The purpose of zoning is to improve a community through land use planning and control of land development. The goal is to confine certain uses to designated areas without imposing undue burdens on individual property owners. The public interest in regulating land development for the benefit of the community is balanced against the private interest in individual freedom to use property for whatever purposes desired. Huttig v. City of Richmond Heights, 372 S.W.2d 833, 842 (Mo. 1963). Zoning adversely affects individual property rights, limiting development of even those uses that are not intrinsically offensive or harmful. Nevertheless, zoning is general...

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