Re: Can a Neighbor's Fence Put a Pre-Existing Fence Out of Compliance
This seems to me to be a classic "spite fence" situation.
Although New York really has no statute except to prevent fences taller than ten feet, most states have no spite fence statutes at all.
Yet spite fence cases continue to prodeed under the common law, which generally defines the spite fence:
A. The fence builder's motive is malicious. This is frequently the most difficult requirement to prove, but the idiot neighbor has already admitted this in public, to public official(s).
B. The fence serves no reasonable purpose. See "A". Malicious purpose is not a reasonable purpose.
C. Use and enjoyment of property are harmed by the fence. Intent to put the swimming pool into non-compliance and make it unusable.
The OP is probably seeing dollar signs and an unwanted court case at this point. I would guess that if the fence is built, and the OP is cited for non-compliance, he is likely headed to court anyway. It sounds to me as if the zoning guy is intimidated by the neighbor. I think the OP's idea of getting something in writing to zoning is a great idea. I would just urge a visit with a lawyer who would be doing the writing. The lawyer can discuss and advise the best approach, which might be an attempt to stop the thing cold, to let the fence be built without any effect on the pool, or some other solution.
Such a letter will be a hot potato to zoning, who will pass it on asap to the city or county attorney, where hopefully clearer vision will previal. This could prove to be your least expensive solution overall.
I would also say to the OP that you have not brought a problem to the forum, but more of a symptom. The problem is something else, and a nutcase neighbor will continue, in my expereince, to try to intimidate, irritate, annoy, and inconvenience you, which will eventually result in a need for a lawyer anyway.
Resistance is not futile; it is voltage divided by current.