14. Equitable Estoppel. [See also Reliance]
a. "Given the circumstances of this case, we reject the notion
that the County's [mistaken] issuance of the business license and the health permit
estops it from enforcing its zoning regulations against Mad Dogs [despite significant
expenditures in reliance]. Where a public right and the protection of the public
are involved, the doctrine of estoppel is to be invoked only in rare and unusual
circumstances, and should not apply where it would defeat a policy adopted to
protect the public." (citations omitted) In this case, it would be unfair and
inequitable to apply estoppel to protect Mad Dogs, because to do so could harm
nearby residents who were powerless to prevent the County's illegal issuance of
the permits to Mad Dogs. On the other hand, Mad Dogs had the opportunity to inform
itself of the County's zoning regulations and the need to obtain a conditional
Board of Co. Comm'rs v. C.A.G. Inc., 98
Nev. 497, 500, 654 P.2d 531 (1982). No. 27.
b. Despite negligence in enforcing and interpreting zoning
and building codes: "It would be an abuse of discretion in the instant case and
contrary to principles of equitable estoppel to retroactively enforce reinterpreted
zoning laws or to assert previously waived building code infractions after funds
had been loaned and construction nearly completed. We hold that when a building
permit has been issued, vested rights against changes in zoning laws exist after
the permittee has incurred considerable expense in reliance thereupon."
City of Reno v. Nevada First Thrift, 100 Nev.
483, 487, 686 P.2d 231 (1984). No. 31.