ROCKVILLE -- A Stearns County judge has reversed an earlier court ruling and won't force the owners of a new lake home on Grand Lake to be torn down.

The ruling comes after Kathleen and Matt Mimbach were sued by neighbors Thomas and Holly Ruether. The Ruethers filed suit against the Mimbachs claiming they violated the city of Rockville's building laws.

According to court documents, building permits filed with the city called it "a remodel with a new addition." However, the Ruethers say what actually happened was a teardown of the entire structure and building a brand new, much larger home. They argued the size and the scope of the Mimbach's project far exceeded what they applied for with the city, and what the zoning ordinances allow.

Stearns County Judge Vicki Landwehr found the Mimbach's knew they were encroaching early on, they were advised of the violations early on, yet proceeded with the project. She ruled in September that the Mimbach's must tear down the structure.

The city of Rockville then amended its zoning ordinance.

The Mimbach's filed a court motion for relief from the judgment.

Stearns County Judge Shan Wang ruled this week the Ruethers had suffered great and irreparable harm, however, they are unable to show it's caused by the expansion project. Wang ruled the Rockville amendment to the ordinance applies retroactively and allows for the expansion.

In Wang's order, he stated if the structure would be torn down, the Mimbach's could rebuild the home to the exact specifications and be in compliance. He ordered them, however, to fix a lakeshore setback violation which effectively forces the Mimbach's to move their deck back two feet.

It's currently unknown if the Ruether's will appeal.

The view from Tom and Holly Ruether's living room. (PHOTO: Tom and Holly Ruether)
The view from Tom and Holly Ruether's living room. (PHOTO: Tom and Holly Ruether)