Cioffoletti v. Planning & Zoning Commission

Cioffoletti v. Planning & Zoning Commission, 209 Conn. 544, 552 A.2d 796 (1989), advised litigants to pursue a claim of facial unconstitutionality by way of a declaratory judgment action rather than by an appeal from the denial of an application under that statute. Id., 563. It reasoned that the determination of the validity of a statute was a matter of interest not only to the litigant but also to other persons who might be affected by the statute. Id. The Court in Cioffoletti, did not preclude review of the plaintiffs' constitutional claim, despite the plaintiffs' failure to file a declaratory action. In that case, the plaintiffs had claimed that the commission's decision not to grant the plaintiffs' application for an excavation permit constituted a taking without just compensation in violation of the fifth amendment to the United States constitution. Cioffoletti v. Planning & Zoning Commission, supra, 209 Conn. 546. The court concluded that the legislature, in enacting General Statutes 22a-43a (a), carved out a specific exception to takings claims brought against an agency carrying out the Inland Wetlands and Watercourses Act, General Statutes 22a-36 through 22a-45. Id., 550-51.