1997

1997 issues of The Advocate

Denver developers will pay several hundred thousand dollars to make complex more accessible

The designers, builders, and owners of an upscale Denver apartment complex known as TheBreakers have agreed to spend several hundred thousand dollars to modify ground floorunits so that persons with physical disabilities can live there. The October agreementcame into response to complaints filed with the Colorado Civil Rights Division.

Accordingto Judy Fester of the Division, this was the first accessibility case pursued by the stateof Colorado against a developer.

According to complaints, a person using a standard wheelchair could not fit through thebathroom doors in the units.

Time-shares are covered under Fair Housing Act; injunction upheld in New York religion case

In an important ruling in a federal fair housing lawsuit filed in Louisiana, District Court Judge Edith Brown Clement held that time-share condominiums were covered under the Fair Housing Act. Judge Brown pointed to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) regulations regarding Section 802 of the Fair Housing Act. According to the regulations, Section 802 was "broad enough to cover time-sharing properties." Judge Brown also noted that time-share owners had certain property rights in their condominiums.

HUD publishes proposed rule which would allow lenders to self-test and keep results secret

In April, the Kentucky Fair Housing Council settled a family status advertising case against the publisher of a telephone directory in southern Indiana. Ameritech, the company that published the New Albany-Jeffersonville telephone directory, agreed to pay $25,000 to the Fair Housing Council to settle claims that they had run an ad in the yellow pages that discriminated against families with children.

Justice Department wins $125,000 settlement from two Florida complexes in race/family complaints

The owners and managers of two southern Florida apartment complexes that allegedlyrefused to rent to African Americans and families with children agreed in April to pay$125,000 under an agreement reached with the Justice Department.

Theagreement, filed in U.S. District Court in West Palm Beach, resolves a Justice Departmenthousing discrimination suit filed in 1995. The suit alleged that the owners and operatorsof Boca Manor Apartments in Boca Raton and The Meadows Apartments in Kendall engaged in apattern of discrimination on the basis of race and familial status.

Southern Indiana phone book publisher pays $25,000 foe "All Adult" ad in yellow pages

Earlier this year, the Community Health Law Project of South Orange, New Jerseysettled an accessibility complaint against K. Hovnanian Enterprises, one of the largestresidential developers in the United States. The settlement agreement required Hovnanianto construct 73 accessible paths to condominiums which were built on a hilly site and pay$30,000 to cover the attorneys' fees of the Law Project.

The settlementcame in response to a case filed after Hovnanian failed to live up to the an agreementwhich settled a previous accessibility claim.

Community Health Law project gets accessibility settlement, wins zoning lawsuit against New Jersey

The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has published aproposed rule that would implement changes to the Fair Housing Act passed by Congressunder the Economic Growth and Regulatory Paperwork Act of 1996. The new rule would allowlenders to conduct "self-tests" and perform corrective action based on theresults of the tests. The results of the tests and all materials involved in the testswould be privileged so long as the lender took action to correct any possiblediscrimination.

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