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Lawsuit alleges city violated Fair Housing Act

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The United States has filed a lawsuit against the city of Columbus accusing it of violating the Fair Housing Act because it refused to grant a permit to a nonprofit group that wanted to operate a group home for men recovering from drug and alcohol addiction.

The Department of Justice on Wednesday filed the suit, United States of America v. The City of Columbus, Ind., No. 1:09-CV-1225, in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division.

In the civil complaint, the federal government says the Columbus Board of Zoning Appeals refused to grant a special use application to Bethesda House in 2007 because of discriminatory attitudes toward recovering addicts among neighboring property owners. The house would hold up to 11 men at a time who are considered "handicapped" within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. Section 3602(h).

Bethesda House filed timely complaints with the Department of Housing and Urban Development, alleging discrimination on the basis of disability. HUD referred the cases to the Department of Justice after conducting an investigation.

The United States is asking the court to enjoin Columbus from violating the Fair Housing Act and refusing to allow the operation of Bethesda House. It also asks for monetary damages against each person aggrieved by the city's discriminatory housing practices and a civil penalty.

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  1. Hail to our Constitutional Law Expert in the Executive Office! “What you’re not paying attention to is the fact that I just took an action to change the law,” Obama said.

  2. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  3. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  4. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  5. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

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