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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Saint Paul Fair Housing lawsuit Update case NO. 10-1032 / City's brief to Supreme Court

43 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

After reading the cities brief, it does seem convincing in some aspects, but it is littered with argument that merely attempts to go around every non dissenting Judge that correctly decided in favor of the respondent's.

This is the first time that a disparate impact case has ever been
litigated this far in the context of a facially neutral policy that discriminates based on an overly aggressive housing code enforcement,as compared to a FHA discriminatory claim based specifically on race, sex, color, religion etc.

The city contends that because the respondent landlords have failed to link the city's aggressive housing policies to say, race discrimination by any type of hard or extrinsic evidence, disparate impact does not exists, but the city acknowledges that a substancial number of low income housing in the city that is the type the landlords here are renting to minorities, this fact " infers " that the city knew that it's more aggressive housing enforcement against the landlords, would have a trickle down affect and drive those minorities out and the landlords out of buisness.

I see no problem of the Supreme Court looking at it this way.

The cities brief merely attempts to run circles around the cold hard argument from the non dissenters, that seems coincide with what I have said here.


Jeff Matiatos

7:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The bottom line that the City spells out is if the court allows that there is the potential charge of disparate impact from the fair enforcement of the housing code, then no city that has any low income minority members can enforce any kind of housing code.

Since a minority member may be evicted then the City would have to not inspect houses that had minority members, meaning that the City would not be protecting them from unsafe housing. If a city did that then they would be sued for violations on equal protection. So, cities would have to quit enforcing any housing code.

I think the court has to rule with the City. The language of the FHA clearly is trying to make sure that livable housing units are available to minority members, not that they be forced to live in unsafe housing.

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

8:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your wrong again Chuck. While the law presumes a facially neutral policy of code enforcement as expected by the FHA, that's not what actually happened here.

The defendant city in this case, crossed the neutral zone and went into attack mode. Nobody disputes that the landlords had violations.

But the court considered the evidence that certain housing enforcement employees of the city went beyond what was necessary in the execution of enforcing what was thought to be a facially neutral policy of enforcing that policy.

At this point Chuck, it's irrelevant to point out what the FHA's intent is, when the city clearly did not follow it.



Jeff Matiatos

11:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only remedy to this situation is for the city attorney to give these bad boys a very good spanking!

1:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No Jeff again you have missed the difference between disparate impact and disparate treatment. What EVERY court has determined to this point is that the City's policy is neutral that they did not treat minority members any differently than white residents. What the Court of Appeals has ruled is even though the City's "aggressive" enforcement of the housing code IS NEUTRAL in its treatment of minority members it MAY have had disparate impact. That is the case. There is no dispute anymore that is it. Every other charge is gone.

So, the City's argument is that code enforcement becomes impossible if that is how the FHA is going to be applied. The City admits the reality that in most large cities you are going to find a disproportionate number of minority members in the worse housing in the city. So, if the FHA "protects" those residents from losing their housing because of the enforcement of housing standards, then what the FHA has done has made it impossible for a city to require any housing standards. It has made it impossible to enforce safe housing since minority members may lose their housing.

That's why the City will win. Because the impact of them losing the case would throw hundreds of thousands of people on the mercy of the worse property owners in the country.

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

8:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'am sticking to my analysis and all I can say is that I think it will be a 5-4 decision, possibly going the cities way but only because the city got the 4 votes needed for it to be heard. But, keep in mind that their was a circuit split so it may come down to a decision based on that and nothing more.





Jeff Matiatos

11:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like the city is arguing for Judicial Immunity if we are to believe your explanation Chuck.

Judicial Immunity is a doctrine that excuses corrupt conduct on the part of Judges, prosecutors, and other Government employees acting in conjunction with a judges orders and or by reason of a Government employees status as a Judicial or Quasi Judical officer .

In Judicial Immunity, it is reasoned that if we allow Judges and the like to be prosecuted for their mis conduct and be subject to liability for monetary damages, others like them would not want to be Judges or assume roles in Government because of the threat of liability.

Their are very rare exceptions where immunity is lost, but only when those Judicial and Governmental employees acted outside their jurisdiction or violated the Constitutional rights of a person.

Here, as you say, the city believes that if the Supreme Court doesn't rule in their favor, any degree of enforcement that was subject to having a disparate impact effect on minorities, would extinguish all efforts to make landlords compliant. Thus everyone renting from landlords face the ultimate threat of being booted out.

This is hypothetical to say the least, as it has never happened before

( Waves of tenants being booted out into the street because a city had it's hands tied by a court saying that they could no longer enforce their housing code )

and it amounts to a scare tactic by these defendant's to see if they can frighten the Supreme Court into ruling in their favor.



Jeff Matiatos

12:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeff, governmental immunity is a fact of life because you and I and everyone else is the government and the people we elect and/or hire to function for us are doing our bidding not theirs. The government can be sued, because it choses to be allowed to be sued.

Governmental employees are personally liable for their actions when they on their own accord or against the policies of the government.

What the City is asking for in this case is for the supreme court to see how insane it would be to interperate the FHA as forcing cities to never inspect properties again.

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

8:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The state of MN established minimal housing code standards for health and safety.

Saint Pauls code to the max is excessive and viloates state minimal standards set forth for health and safety, it is illegal.

8:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only problem is Chuck is that the enforcement of the housing code by the city was not fair. It was downright illegal. If the city cane come over to your house and make up violations that don't exist just so they can get at the behavior issues they do not like then what's to stop the Police from just making up charges against someone that they think is doing something illegal but the cops cannot catch them at it?

2:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"That's why the City will win. Because the impact of them losing the case would throw hundreds of thousands of people on the mercy of the worse property owners in the country."

Wrong again Repke. Why is it that no other city is filing papers in support of the city with respect to the code enforcing issue? I'll tell you why.....because all the other citys in the country are not fabricating false violations to carry out an agenda dealing with tenant behaviors. No one else seems to have a problem enforcing their codes......just St Paul.

2:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To summarize this case, the city's bureaucracy has gotten out of control and become harmful. Here is a good article about fighting bureaucracy, from the Gallup Management Journal http://gmj.gallup.com/content/145085/fight-bureaucracy.aspx#2

Bob G.

7:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think the city is really expecting the Supreme Court to outlaw housing codes Chuck. But that is exactly what you just said and shows to me that you seem somewhat removed from even knowing what exactly it is the city is asking for.

And just because technically the people are the Government, it's the politicians we elect that have the task of creating laws. Sure, the average Joe can write his congressman and see if they are willing to draft and introduce certain legislation, but it would be a cold day in hell if the average citizen ever got that kind of result unless they were tied to some hi society corporate lobbyist.




Jeff Matiatos

8:33 PM  
Anonymous East Side Review News said...

Study: St. Paul's housing crisis widens racial disparities

11:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeff read at the bottom of page 32/70 (brief page 19) that is the argument.

The City is saying if landlords win this case and it is determined that doing home inspections can make a city in violation of the FHA if a higher percentage of minorities either lose their housing or have their rents go up, then cities would have to relax their inspections if there were minority residents. That would be the affect. And, the City also knows that if they didn't inspect houses because minorities lived there they would be inviolation of the equal protection act, since the point of inspections is to insure safe housing.

So, if you can't inspect houses if minorities live in them and you must inspect houses that have minority members or you are violating another law... then you can't inspect houses!

That is why the City has to win. You can't have it both ways. You can't have the law after you if you inspect minority members houses and if you don't inspect minority members houses.

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

7:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cry us a river Repke.....the city's been screwing people around for years with their with their lies and made up violations and criminal charges. It's about time the city gets it in the shorts for once. If they had run an honest inspections program from the beginning like all other cities do this problem would not even be here.

9:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Two problems Chuck. First, your side keeps calling it a "race neutral enforcement policy " when really, it's " facially - neutral ". Your side is constantly trying to make it a race issue when the issue is aggressive code enforcement having an affect on minorities in general.

The big lie that the city would have to take race into consideration before enforcing it's code is shear propaganda aimed at trying to sway the court.

The only relevant issue before the court is for them to decide if any cities " Overly aggressive housing code enforcement " in what statistics have shown, in diverse communities with poor people, would have a lesser or greater affect on them and landlords when the city could use the least restrictive amount of enforcement possible.

So the severity of enforcement is the issue, not race.





Jeff Matiatos

11:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How can anything that is overly aggressive be neutral ?

11:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

All the court has to do Chuck is affirm that the cities PP2000 inspection program was a least restrictive housing enforcement program that should have been used, as opposed to the one Dawkins and his Goon Dogs used against the landlords.

That is all that needs to be shown to prove Disparate Impact.

How hard is it to take two plans of enforcement, put them side by side, and compare to see which one would be the least restrictive ?

It should have been clear to Dawkins but he abused his authority.

He did that intentionally and this is what the landlords were saying.

This is why I'am shocked that Disparate Treatment was dismissed.





Jeff Matiatos

6:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chuck, in all our history, The United States has fashioned itself on promoting the ideas of freedom and liberty for all to come here to America and be free and happy in the least " Restrictive way possible ".

With the exception of slavery and certain types of permitted racial discrimination in the past, our country at least tries to be less restrictive than the rest of the bad world, but people like Dawkins and other former mayors in St.Paul choose to want to be like the bad guys of the world and our courts are not going to permit it.

So will say the Supreme Court !!!!



Jeff Matiatos

6:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeff what is left in the suit is about race.... it isn't about how inspections were conducted. If the court rules that disparate impact can be applied and this case is allowed to go to trial, then the landlords can argue that Pp2000 would have been an alternative way of conducting inspections that would have had less impact on minority residents. But, they would still have to prove that. All we know factually about pp2000 is that it was used in a limited fashion with selected landlords and was having such limited impact on property improvements with such a high staffing level that the Kelly administration scrapped it.

But, we don't have any evidence submitted to the court that it would have displaced or raised the rents on more or less minority residents, because the landlords presented no evidence on any data concerning pp2000. So, the court will have to just guess... I guess since evidence has not been important to the landlords just assumptions.

The City's belief is that if both methods of enforcement were used on the same number of properties and if it resulted in the exact same repairs (which it should) then those repairs would cost exactly the same amount of money and the landlords would either make the repairs and raise the rents the same way in either system or chose to let the house go the same way in either system. Since the only difference between the two systems was sweet talking and extensive case management.

As to the City's motives, the courts have already determined that their motives were to protect tenants from bad landlords who exploit minority residents.

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

8:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In a way it's about race, but it has more to do with affordable housing that landlords provide to a class of minorities .

How were landlords that provided affordable housing taking advantage of their tenants, when it was affordable for them to live there or they simply wouldn't be there ? Many of them lived like slobs.

The landlords told us how many of them had behavior issues outside the control of the landlord.

But you don't use a code to the max to solve them.

Police have the task of controlling those issues before they get into the building.

Sure, the landlords had work to do on and in their buildings, but it's always a work in progress because that's the nature of the buisness.

The code to the max by Dawkins crossed the line.


Jeff Matiatos

11:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would be curious to know if the tenants renting from the landlords in this case were the one's calling in violations or the DSI Department just went ahead and did what Dawkins and Kelly ordered them to do ?

This would help answer the question of whether or not the landlords were taking advantage of them or not.

After all, I would not rent in a building where my landlord did absolutley nothing.

2:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The city's briefs bear the brown stains of harmful bureaucracy.

Bob G.

7:35 PM  
Anonymous USSC 10-1032 Amicus4Petitioners said...

Look at all the Amicus Briefs for Petitioners who I'm assuming is the City? USSC 10-1032
http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/magner-v-gallagher/

You delete relevant Posts this is NATIONAL Lots of Money involved/

Put allo the Briefs in one Post The Issue's affect all

4:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No evidence on pp2000? Are you really that crazy Chuck or are you just in dneial?

9:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey 4:20 thanks for the link.

Did you guys notice that HUD is saying that the court of appeals was wrong in how they applied the law?

So, even HUD who would like the law to stay and like there to be disparate impact claims thinks that the court made a mistake in saying that enforcing the housing code could be a reason for a disparate impact claim.

They make that same comment that I keep saying that if disparate impact would apply here then cities would have to skip houses that had African American's living in them and then could be charge with disparate treatment for not making sure that African American's were living in safe housing.

Looks bad for the landlords.

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

11:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Even though the United States Brief makes a compelling argument on page 8, it doesn't want to recognize that " overly " aggressive enforcement ( which the city cannot deny existed because there is proof that Dawkins and the Mayors edicts far exceeded PP2000 ) indeed had an effect on African Americans, minorities, and landlords. Again, while the argument seems convincing, it's not I think, enough to overturn the Appeals Courts ruling, and the fact there is a circuit split at least supports the landlords contentions to a considerable degree. The Supreme Court will have to resolve it and so it never was clear cut from the start.



Jeff Matiatos

9:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only that HUD is saying these things now because it's before the US Supreme Court. Where were they in the past when all those dissenting Circut Court opinions went against HUD ?

11:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What HUD is saying to the Supreme Court is clearly the landlords case against the City of Saint Paul is bullshit and clearly we would never want the FHA to have the impact that ruling in favor of the landlords would do, (reward those who don't take care of their property and make living in poverty worse). So, just throw out this case and let HUD create rules dealing with disparate impact.

Its pretty clear that everyone in the country is going to agree that disparate impact in this case would be insane and that nobody would want the landlords to win. So, HUD's only hope of keeping the potential for disparate impact in FHA cases is to hope the Supreme Court only agrees that the Appeals Court made a mistake in this case and doesn't throw out the potential for disparate impact in all FHA cases.

I'm thinking that for HUD to respond as they did that they are thinking the court could rule that the FHA only concerns itself with treatment and not impact.

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

11:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did you guys also note that one of the Amicus briefs for the petitioners is from the Pacific Legal Foundation???

They are the BIG boys IN FAVOR of property rights. They are one of the links on this site!!!

So, looks like everybody on all sides of the issue agrees the landlords have no case or the FHA becomes none functional.

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

1:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think everyone in the country, who doesn't know all the fact's of this case would beg differ with you Chuck if they knew how corrupt St.Paul DSI really was.

No person in their right mind would believe that St.Paul's DSI and it's Mayor at the time, had good intentions.

All you have there Chuck, is interveners arguing on behalf of St.Paul with the same ol argument from the onset.

Right now, your side is losing and until the Supreme Court says otherwise, that's the way it will remain.



Jeff Matiatos

1:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's a surprise to see PLF connected with this case, especially speaking on the side of the city. I don't know enough about the law to clearly understand. This case obviously has repercussions in other areas besides the landlords vs the city. Possibly they are trying to influence some aspect of the case. This blog has helped promote PLF for a long time. Perhaps the legal eagles around here, of which there are many, can determine PLF's interest. It is possible they are out of touch with the hard working common folks.

Bob G.

8:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bob G,

PLF's issue is one that the City also brings up which is that if you can be charged under FHA for disparate impact then could some landlord be charged with discrimination because they wouldn't rent to someone with a bad credit score in a City where more African American's had bad credit scores than whites?

How about if they had no known source of income and you wouldn't give them a mortgage?

If the landlords win in this case, then someone could claim that most methods that someone uses to do a credit check before renting or giving a mortgage were violations of FHA if they higher impact on minorities.

That is why both the left and the right will be against the landlords in this case.

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

9:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

saint pauls code enforcement exceeds state laws

therefore it is illegal

9:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are probably right that the right and left are against the landlords. They take the same position as you Chuck.....make up violations, frame people for crimes and try to lock them up.....it's all fine as long as the group getting screwed is easy to pick on and the agenda advances to get the policiticains what they want.

10:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'am am with 10:16 p.m.

10:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry kiddies, but the exceeding state law and made up charges ideas have all been thrown out of court. So, they aren't even on the table. They are gone like the wisps of smoke that they were.

What is left is a Federal Fair Housing Act charge that though the City was acting properly and with no malice and with no prejudice its neutral actions may have had a Disparate Impact on people of color.

That is the charge... that the City did everything right and by doing everything right more people of color may have had their rents raised or lost their housing.

The debate in the supreme court is does the language of the FHA allow for a disparate impact charge? And, if it does, would housing inspections be one where you would want one to be applied....and what is the burden of proving that there was impact and alternative???

That's all folks!

JMONTOMEPPOF

Chuck Repke

9:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is nothing neutral about overly aggressive housing enforcement Chuck.


Jeff Matiatos

10:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here is feedback i submitted to an article on the PLF website about disparate impact, which is awaiting moderation. I think they risk losing grassroots support with their stand in support of the city. the feedback is awaiting moderation.

As a person forced from my house by the city of St Paul, I think PLF is out of touch on this matter. The ultra-liberal city government has adapted an agressive housing enforcement policy to use enforcement as a tool for their political policies. They have illegally exceeded the state housing code (Morris v Sax) in making expensive and perfectionistic demands. Housing codes are so numerous and ambiguous all housed are in a number of violations. In my case, they condemned for an inadequate electrical service which was installed by a licensed contractor under city inspection. Their code compliance report was so vaguely written that contractors could not bid on it. A city official threatened my mother after I posted my complaint on a popular blog. Another city official threatened my contractor in order to force their way into my house without a search warrant. By siding with the city’s oppressive bureaucracy, the PLF is helping the city threaten freedom, not protect it.

Bob G.

2:32 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

Thank you kindly for sharing your opinion with PLF Bob G..

I emailed PLF a couple of days ago asking them for an explanation. I haven't received a response. I am very disappointed they have taken a stand "against" property rights and civil rights.

Bob G., myself and others here contacted PLF years ago with our concerns over this issue. If I don't get a justifiable explanation I intend to put "Pacific Legal Foundation" in the header of a topic. Then I will post links to the truth. We can let the public decide what kind of organization PLF is.

7:04 AM  
Anonymous Sackett vs.EPA_Amicus Briefs said...

Similar Case with Similar Amicus Briefs Sackett vs. EPA http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/sackett-et-vir-v-environmental-protection-agency-et-al/

Sharon is tracking USSC 10-1032 re: Magner who lives in Stillwater does not pay Taxes in St. Paul "but for" Salary and Pensions over 100 thous etc.
Betcha a Buck the Case will be remanded before Judge Joan Ericksen who gave a 3 million settlement MGSF Cop Corruption yet Dismissed the RICO Claims.
Sackett will be heard Tues 9Jan2012
Sharons Claims of Death,Disability,Disparagment of Titles are Relevant

9:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder if both the far right and far left want to remove disparate impact (accountability) because it interferes with them achieving their extremist agendas.

8:12 PM  

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