The case of City of Boerne v. Flores marked an important day in the history of the Constitution. The decision of the United States Supreme Court invalidated the Religious Freedom Restoration Act as applied to a local Texas zoning ordinance. The ordinance created a historical preservation area in an attempt to curb a church from expanding its buildings. The Supreme Court held that the Freedom Restoration Act went beyond Congress’s power because of the Act’s broad coverage and potential to intrude on laws regardless of context. This holding parallels the general application of the New York case law, which, generally allows religious organizations great freedom to expand their land use because these organizations generally promote public health, safety, morals, and welfare in their surrounding communities.
John R. Nolon & Helen Maher, RFRA Is Not Needed: New York Land Use Regulations Accommodate Religious Use, N.Y. L.J., July 23, 1997, at 5, available at http://digitalcommons.pace.edu/lawfaculty/730/.