CHAPTER VIII. HEALTH AND WELFARECHAPTER VIII. HEALTH AND WELFARE\ARTICLE 8. FAIR HOUSING

It is the policy of the city to provide, within constitutional limitations, for fair housing throughout the city.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 1; 7-401)

(a)   Dwelling means any building, structure, or portion thereof which is occupied as, or designed or intended for occupancy as, a residence by one or more families, and any vacant land which is offered for sale or lease for the construction or location thereon of any such building, structure, or portion thereof.

(b)   Family includes a single individual.

(c)   Person includes one or more individuals, corporations, partnerships, associations, labor organizations, legal representatives, mutual companies, joint stock companies, trusts, unincorporated organizations, trustees, trustees in bankruptcy, receivers, and fiduciaries.

(d)   To Rent includes to lease, to sublease, to let and otherwise to grant for a consideration the right to occupy premises owned by the occupant.

(e)   Discriminatory Housing Practice means an act that is unlawful under sections 8-804:806.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 2; 1-402)

Subject to the provisions of subsection (b) and section 8-807, the prohibitions against discrimination in the sale or rental of housing set forth in this section shall apply to:

(a)   All dwellings except as exempted by subsection (b).

(b)   Nothing in section 8-804 shall apply to:

(1)   Any single-family house sold or rented by an owner; provided, that such private individual owner does not own more than three such single-family houses at any one time; provided further, that in the case of the sale of any such single family house by a private individual owner not residing in such house at the time of such sale or who was not the most recent resident of such house prior to such sale, the exemption granted by this subsection shall apply only with respect to one such sale within any 24 month period; provided further, that such bona fide private individual owner does not own any interest in, nor is there owned or reserved on his or her behalf, under any express or voluntary agreement, title to or any right to all or a portion of the proceeds from the sale or rental of, more than three such single family houses at any one time; provided further, that the sale or rental of any such single-family house shall be excepted from the application of this title only if such house is sold or rented (A) without the use in any manner of the sales or rental facilities or the sales or rental services of any real estate broker, agent, or salesman, or of such facilities or services of any person in the business of selling or renting dwellings, or of any employee or agent of any such broker, agent, salesman, or person and (B) without the publication, posting or mailing, after notice of any advertisement or written notice in violation of section 8-804(c) of this article, but nothing in this proviso shall prohibit the use of attorneys, escrow agents, abstractors, title companies, and other such professional assistance as necessary to perfect or transfer the title, or

(2)   Rooms or units in dwellings containing living quarters occupied or intended to be occupied by no more than four families living independently of each other, if the owner actually maintains and occupies one of such living quarters as his or her residence.

(c)   For the purposes of subsection (b), a person shall be deemed to be in the business of selling or renting dwellings if:

(1)   He or she has, within the preceding 12 months, participated as principal in three or more transactions involving the sale or rental of any dwelling or any interest therein, or

(2)   He or she has, within the preceding 12 months, participated as agent, other than in the sale of his or her own personal residence in providing sales or rental facilities or sales or rental services in two or more transactions involving the sale or rental of any dwelling or any interest therein, or

(3)   He or she is the owner of any dwelling designed or intended for occupancy by, or occupied by, five or more families.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 3; 7-403)

As made applicable by section 8-803 and except as exempted by sections 8-803(b) and 8-807, it shall be unlawful:

(a)   To refuse to sell or rent after the making of a bona fide offer, or to refuse to negotiate for the sale or rental of, or otherwise, make unavailable or deny, a dwelling to any person because of race, color, religion, or national origin.

(b)   To discriminate against any person in the terms, conditions, or privileges of sale or rental of a dwelling, or in the provision of services or facilities in connection therewith, because of race, color, religion, or national origin.

(c)   To make, print, or publish, or cause to be made, printed, or published any notice, statement, or advertisement, with respect to the sale or rental of a dwelling that indicates any preference, limitation, or discrimination based on race, color, religion, or national origin, or an intention to make any such preference, limitation, or discrimination.

(d)   To represent to any person because of race, color, religion, or national origin that any dwelling is not available for inspection, sale, or rental when such dwelling is in fact so available.

(e)   For profit, to induce or attempt to induce any person to sell or rent any dwelling by representations regarding the entry or prospective entry into the neighborhood of a person or persons of a particular race, color, religion, or national origin.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 4; 7-404)

It shall be unlawful for any bank, building and loan association, insurance company or other corporation, association, firm or enterprise whose business consists in whole or in part in the making of commercial real estate loans, to deny a loan or other financial assistance to a person applying therefor for the purpose of purchasing, constructing, improving, repairing or maintaining a dwelling, or to discriminate against him or her in the fixing of the amount, interest rate, duration, or other terms or conditions of such loan or other financial assistance, because of the race, color, religion, or national origin of such person or of any person associated with him or her in connection with such loan or other financial assistance or the purposes of such loan or other financial assistance, or of the present or prospective owners, lessees, tenants, or occupants of the dwelling or dwellings in relation to which such loan or other financial assistance is to be made or given; provided, that nothing contained in this article shall impair the scope or effectiveness of the exception contained in section 8-803(b).

(Ord. 922, Sec. 5; 7-405)

It shall be unlawful to deny any person access to or membership or participation in any multiple-listing service, real estate brokers organization or other service, organization, or facility relating to the business of selling or renting dwellings, or to discriminate against him or her n the terms or conditions of such access, membership, or participation, on account of race, color, religion, or national origin.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 6; 7-406)

Nothing in this article shall prohibit a religious organization, association, or society, or any nonprofit institution or organization operated, supervised or controlled by or in conjunction with a religious organization, association, or society, from limiting the sale, rental or occupancy of dwellings which it owns or operates for other than a commercial purpose to persons of the same religion, or from giving preference to such persons, unless membership in such religion is restricted on account of race, color, or national origin. Nor shall anything in this article prohibit a private club not in fact open to the public, which as an incident to its primary purpose or purposes provides lodgings which it owns or operates for other than a commercial purpose, from limiting the rental or occupancy of such lodgings to its members or from giving preference to its members.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 7; 7-407)

(a)   The authority and responsibility for administering this act shall be in the mayor of the city, hereafter called chief executive officer.

(b)   The chief executive officer may delegate any of these functions, duties, and powers to employees of the city or to boards of such employees, including functions, duties, and powers with respect to investigating, conciliating, hearing, determining, ordering, certifying, reporting or otherwise acting as to any work, business, or matter under this article. The chief executive officer shall by rule prescribe such rights of appeal from the decisions of his or her hearing examiners to other hearing examiners or to other officers in the city, to boards of officers or to himself or herself, as shall be appropriate and in accordance with law.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 8; 7-408)

(a)   Any person who claims to have been injured by a discriminatory housing practice or who believes that he or she will be irrevocably injured by a discriminatory housing practice that is about to occur (hereinafter person aggrieved) may file a complaint with the chief executive officer. Complaints shall be in writing and shall contain such information and be in such form as the chief executive officer requires. Upon receipt of such a complaint, the chief executive officer shall furnish a copy of the same to the person or persons who allegedly committed or about to commit the alleged discriminatory housing practice. Within 30 days after receiving a complaint, or within 30 days after the expiration of any period of reference under subsection (d), the chief executive officer shall investigate the complaint and give notice in writing to the person aggrieved whether he or she intends to resolve it. If the chief executive officer decides to resolve the complaints, he or she shall proceed to try to eliminate or correct the alleged discriminatory housing practice by informal methods of conference, conciliation, and persuasion. Nothing said or done in the course or such informal endeavors may be made public or used as evidence in a subsequent proceeding under this article without the written consent of the persons concerned.

(b)   A complaint under subsection (a) shall be fined within 180 days after the alleged discriminatory housing practice occurred. Complaints shall be in writing and shall state the facts upon which the allegations of a discriminatory housing practice are based. Complaints may be reasonably and fairly amended at any time. A respondent may file an answer to the complaint against him or her and with the leave of the chief executive officer, which shall be granted whenever it would be reasonable and fair to do so, may amend his or her answer at any time.

(c)   If within 30 days after a complaint is filed with the chief executive officer, the chief executive officer has been unable to obtain voluntary compliance with this article, the person aggrieved may, within 30 days thereafter, file a complaint with the secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. The chief executive officer will assist in this filing.

(d)   If the chief executive officer has been unable to obtain voluntary compliance within 30 days of the complaint, the person aggrieved may, within 30 days hereafter commence a civil action in any appropriate court, against the respondent named in the complaint, to enforce the rights granted or protected by this article, insofar as such rights relate to the subject to the complaint. If the court finds that a discriminatory housing practice has occurred or is about to occur, the court may enjoin the respondent from engaging in such practice or order such affirmative action as may be appropriate.

(e)   In any proceeding brought pursuant to this section, the burden of proof shall be on the complainant.

(f)   Whenever an action filed by an individual shall come to trial, the chief executive officer shall immediately terminate all efforts to obtain voluntary compliance.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 9; 7-409)

In conducting an investigation the chief executive officer shall have access to all reasonable times to premises, records, documents, individuals, and other evidence or possible sources of evidence and may examine, record, and copy such materials and take and record the testimony or statements of such persons as are reasonably necessary for the furtherance of the investigation.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 11; 7-410)

(a)   The rights granted by sections 8-803:806 may be enforced by civil actions in state or local courts of general jurisdiction. A civil action shall be commenced within 180 days after the alleged discriminatory housing practice occurred; provided however, that the court shall continue such civil case brought pursuant to this section or section 8-810(d) from time to time before bringing it to trial if the court believes that the conciliation efforts of the chief executive officer are likely to result in satisfactory settlement of the discriminatory housing practice complained of in the complaint made to the chief executive officer and which practice forms the basis for the action in court. And provided however, that any sale, encumbrance, or rental consummated prior to the issuance of any court order issued under the authority of this article, and involving a bona fide purchaser, encumbrance, or tenant without actual notice of the existence of the filing of a complaint or civil action under the provisions of this article shall not be affected.

(b)   The court may grant as relief, as it deems appropriate, any permanent or temporary injunction, temporary restraining order, or other order, and may award to the plaintiff actual damages and not more than $1,000 punitive damages, together with court costs and reasonable attorney fees in the case of a prevailing plaintiff; provided, that the plaintiff in the opinion of the court is not financially able to assume the attorney’s fees.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 11; 7-411)

It shall be unlawful to coerce, intimidate, threaten, or interfere with any person in the exercise or enjoyment of, or on account of his or her having exercised or enjoyed, or on account of his or her having aided or encouraged any other person in the exercise or enjoyment of, any right granted or protected by sections 8-803:806. This section may be enforced by appropriate civil action.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 12; 7-412)

If any provisions of this article or the application thereof to any person or circumstances is held invalid, the remainder of the article and the application of the provision to other persons not similarly situated or to other circumstances shall not be affected thereby.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 13; 7-413)

Whoever, whether or not acting under color of law, by force or threat of force willfully injures, intimidates or interferes with, or attempts to injure, intimidate or interfere with:

(a)   Any person because of his or her race, color, religion or national original and because he or she is or has been selling, purchasing, renting, financing, occupying, or contracting or negotiating for the sale, purchase, rental, financing or occupation of any dwelling, or applying for or participating in any service, organization, or facility relating to the business of selling or renting dwellings; or

(b)   Any person because he or she is or has been, or in order to intimidate such person or any other person or any class of person from:

(1)   Participating, without discrimination on account of race, color, religion or national origin, in any of the activities, services, organizations or facilities described in subsection 8-814(a); or

(2)   Affording another person or class of persons opportunity or protection so to participate.

(c)   Any citizen because he or she is or has been, or in order to discourage such citizen or any other citizen from lawfully aiding or encouraging other person to participate, without discrimination on account of race, color, religion or national origin, in any of the activities, services, organizations or facilities described in subsection 8-815(a), or participating lawfully in speech or peaceful assembly opposing any denial of the opportunity to so participate shall be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

(Ord. 922, Sec. 14; 7-414)