Bittinger v. Corporation of Bolivar
In Bittinger v. Corporation of Bolivar, 183 W.Va. 310, 395 S.E.2d 554 (1990), the Court noted that the Town Council's actions in issuing a moratorium on building permits while failing to repeal a valid ordinance which controlled the issuance of such permits was evidence of the Town Council's "cavalier attitude" with regard to complying with the governing laws. Id. at 314, 395 S.E.2d at 558.
The Court in Bittinger that there was no existing authority that would allow the Town Council to issue a blanket moratorium and thereby defeat the operation of a valid ordinance. 183 W.Va. at 314, 395 S.E.2d at 558.
Consequently, the Court held that the moratorium was improperly issued and reversed the lower court's decision to deny the writ of mandamus requested by the appellants in that case.
In so ruling, the Court stated that "the appellants are entitled to have their applications for building permits which were submitted within that moratorium period considered under the ordinances existing at that time and granted, if the ordinances as written would permit." 183 W.Va. at 315, 395 S.E.2d at 559.