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Civil Rights Zoning, Planning & Land Use

Read Civil Rights updates, alerts, news, and legal commentary from leading lawyers and law firms:

RLUIPA Round Up

The recent confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch has brought renewed attention to the often blurry line between the courts, government and individual religious liberty. Gorsuch wrote a concurring opinion in the...more

West Coast Real Estate Update - April 2017 #2

by Holland & Knight LLP on

California Assembly Member Proposes Bill to Limit Abuse of Service Animal Accommodations - As dogs have transitioned from children's backyard playmates to must-have accessories while their owners are shopping or dining,...more

Departments of Justice and Housing and Urban Development Release Updated Fair Housing Act Guidance on State and Local Land Use...

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

Jointly responsible for enforcing the federal Fair Housing Act (“FHA”), the U.S. Departments of Justice and Housing and Urban Development (“the Departments”) have issued numerous guidance documents and policy statements to...more

HUD and DOJ Release Updated Joint Statement on “State and Local Land Use Laws and Practices and the Application of the Fair...

by Miller Starr Regalia on

On November 10, 2016, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Department of Justice released a “Joint Statement” providing updated guidance on the application of the federal Fair Housing Act to state...more

High Court Inclusive Communities Ruling: 1 Year Later

by WilmerHale on

Last summer the U.S. Supreme Court issued its much-anticipated decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project,[1] holding that disparate impact discrimination claims are...more

Landmark Discrimination Case: Fair Housing Act Thwarts NIMBYs - Avenue 6E Investments, LLC v. City of Yuma (March 25, 2016)

Why It Matters: The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a decision in favor of the City of Yuma, Arizona, and concluded instead that there was sufficient evidence to present to a jury that the City had rejected the...more

Beyond the Bathroom: North Carolina’s H.B. 2 Also Flushes Local Employee Protections

by K&L Gates LLP on

The recent enactment of North Carolina’s H.B. 2, known as the “Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act” (the “Act”) has received widespread attention for its controversial restrictions on the use of certain...more

Rezoning Denial May Give Rise to Liability for Discriminatory Zoning Practices

by Miller Starr Regalia on

The federal Fair Housing Act is one of the most important pieces of Congressional legislation in the last half-century or more. It was enacted in the 1960s after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., at a time of...more

EPA Investigates Alabama State Environmental Agency for Alleged Violation of Civil Rights Act

by Miles & Stockbridge P.C. on

In an unprecedented action, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is investigating the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM), one of its state counterparts, for alleged civil rights violations under Title...more

Update on the U.S. Supreme Court’s Inclusive Communities Decision

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

As previously reported on this blog, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., 135 S. Ct. 2507 (2015) adopted a burden-shifting approach to...more

Points & Authorities - Winter 2016

by Buchalter on

Attention California Employers: New Employment Laws Affecting Your Business Take Effect on January 1, 2016 - In past years the Governor of California has enacted new laws related to employment that place additional...more

Alaska Presses D.C. Court of Appeals to Reject Trust Acquisitions in Alaska

by Dickinson Wright on

The question of whether Alaska Natives may place land in the same federal trust status as Indian tribes in the lower 48 states was widely thought to have been resolved but is now before the Court of Appeals for the District...more

U.S. Supreme Court Allows Disparate-Impact Claims Under Fair Housing Act

by Carlton Fields on

In a recent holding, the U.S. Supreme Court determined that discrimination claims under the Fair Housing Act (FHA) may be premised on "disparate impact," meaning that a plaintiff may challenge a practice even if it was not...more

Supreme Court Decision May Make It Easier for Borrowers to Sue for Discrimination

A recent decision of the Supreme Court of the United States may make it easier for borrowers to claim discrimination when denied a loan. In late June 2015, the Court addressed whether lawsuits brought under the Fair Housing...more

Religious Institutions: September 2015

by Holland & Knight LLP on

Respondeat superior (literally, "let the master answer" in Latin) is a doctrine that applies when an employer or principal has the ability and authority to direct and control the pertinent acts of the employee. Put otherwise,...more

Five Surprising Facts About the Inclusive Communities Case

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

In the Supreme Court’s recent, landmark decision in Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs v. Inclusive Communities Project, Inc., 576 U.S. ___, 2015 WL 2473449 (Jun. 25, 2015), the Court held that, while disparate...more

RLUIPA Round-UP

We’ve been monitoring news items involving local government, religion, and land use that may be of interest to our readers. Below is what has caught our attention. Livingston Daily reports that Genoa Charter Township...more

Gov. Brown Assembles Fracking Review Panel

by Stoel Rives LLP on

According to several news organizations, Governor Brown has announced plans to form a new panel to review the recent well stimulation study conducted by the California Council on Science and Technology (“CCST”)....more

Supreme Court Affirms FHA Disparate Impact Claims

Late last month, the Supreme Court handed down a significant decision affecting rights and obligations under the Fair Housing Act. The Court’s 5-4 decision in Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs v. Inclusive...more

RLUIPA Round-Up

Religion Clause Blog reports that Indiana’s First Church of Cannabis is using the state’s recently enacted religious freedom law to protect its founder and two members from prosecution for possession of marijuana. The Church...more

Religious Institutions: June 2015

by Holland & Knight LLP on

Religious institutions commonly make payments to or receive payments directly or indirectly from governmental agencies for services rendered; e.g., day cares that benefit from public scholarships, hospitals that participate...more

Kosher Meals for Prisoners: U.S. Department of Justice Wins Claim of Religious Discrimination against the Florida Department of...

by Robinson & Cole LLP on

A federal court has ruled that the Florida Department of Corrections’ (Department) refusal to provide kosher meals to inmates violates the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA). The court’s decision in...more

Ninth Circuit Issues Decision in Civil Rights Case in Review of California SIP

by Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. on

On May 8, 2015, in El Comite Para El Bienestar De Earlimart v. EPA, a Panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit denied a petition for review filed by several groups that the court describes as “community...more

City of Marysville, Washington Defeats RLUIPA, RFRA, and Fair Housing Claims

by Robinson & Cole LLP on

In Holy Ghost Revival Ministries v. City of Marysville (W.D. Washington), the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington considered claims of religious discrimination brought by Holy Ghost Revival Ministries...more

Suit by “Interested,” Neighboring Municipalities to Enforce SEQRA Requirements Does Not “Impose or Implement” a Land Use...

by Robinson & Cole LLP on

On March 27, 2015, the Southern District of New York granted summary judgment in favor of all defendants in the consolidated action Bernstein v. Wesley Hills, 08-CV-156; 12-CV-8856 (KMK), (the “Wesley Hills” Action). The...more

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