Housing And Civil Enforcement Cases Documents

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF NORTH CAROLINA



UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,

          Plaintiff,

Case No. 4:00-CV-194-BO(3)

v.

QUALITY BUILT CONSTRUCTION,
INC.; f/k/a DAWN CONSTRUCTION,
INC.; and WILLIAM E. DANSEY, JR.,

           Defendants.

_____________________________________

CONSENT ORDER

I.    INTRODUCTION

A. Background

  1. Plaintiff United States and Defendants Quality Built Construction, Inc., f/k/a Dawn Construction, Inc. ("Quality Built") and William E. Dansey, Jr. ("Dansey") (collectively referred to as "Defendants") agree to the terms of this Consent Order resolving the United States' complaint against Defendants. (1)
  2. This action is brought by the United States to enforce the provisions of Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 ("the Fair Housing Act"), as amended by the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3619. Specifically, the United States' Complaint alleges that the Defendants discriminated against persons with disabilities by failing to design and construct covered multifamily dwellings at Breezewood Condominiums ("Breezewood"), a multifamily residential condominium development in Greenville, North Carolina, (2) and Hyde Park Apartments ("Hyde Park"), a multifamily residential rental development in Greenville, North Carolina, in accordance with the features of accessible and adaptable design and construction required by subsection 804(f)(3)(C) of the Fair Housing Act ("the Act"), 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C).
B. Defendants
  1. Defendant Quality Built Construction, Inc., f/k/a Dawn Construction, Inc., of Greenville, North Carolina, constructed Breezewood and Hyde Park.
  2. Defendant William E. Dansey, Jr., of Greenville, North Carolina, is president of Quality Built Construction, Inc., and its predecessors in interest.
  3. The District Court has determined, and Defendant Dansey has admitted, that at the time the properties were constructed, Defendant Dansey owned the land upon which Hyde Park was built and owned the majority of the property upon which Breezewood was constructed.
C. Relevant Requirements of the Fair Housing Act
  1. The Act provides that for residential buildings with four or more units, all ground-floor units in non-elevator buildings are "covered multifamily dwellings." (3)See 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(7)(B). Covered units that were designed and constructed for first occupancy after March 13, 1991, must include certain basic features of accessible and adaptive design to make the housing usable by a person with a disability. See 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C).
  2. The accessible and adaptive design provisions of the Fair Housing Act require that for covered multifamily dwellings: (i) the public use and common use portions of such dwellings are readily accessible to and usable by persons with a disability; (ii) all the doors designed to allow passage into and within all premises within such dwellings are sufficiently wide to allow passage by persons with a disability using wheelchairs; and (iii) all premises within such dwellings contain the following features of adaptive design: (I) an accessible route into and through the dwelling; (II) light switches, electrical outlets, thermostats, and other environmental controls in accessible locations; (III) reinforcements in bathroom walls to allow later installation of grab bars; and (IV) usable kitchens and bathrooms such that an individual using a wheelchair can maneuver about the space. 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C). These features are referred to herein as the "Accessible Design Requirements."
D. Breezewood Condominiums
  1. Breezewood consists of twelve (12) multi-story, non-elevator buildings, each of which contains four or more condominium units, that were designed and constructed for first occupancy after March 13, 1991. There are ninety-six (96) ground-floor residential units at Breezewood that are "covered multifamily dwellings" within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(7)(B). The residential units and the public and common use areas of Breezewood are subject to the requirements of 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C). Breezewood has been fully constructed and is currently owned by individual condominium unit owners, Breezewood Condominium Association of Greenville, Incorporated ("Breezewood Condominium Association"), and Breezewood 2 Condominium Homeowners' Association, Incorporated ("Breezewood 2 Condominium Association").
E. Hyde Park Apartments
  1. Hyde Park consists of twelve (12) multi-story, non-elevator buildings, each having four or more apartment dwellings, that were designed and constructed for first occupancy after March 13, 1991. There are ninety-six (96) ground-floor apartment units that are "covered multifamily dwellings" in Hyde Park. The apartments and the public and common use areas at Hyde Park are subject to the requirements of 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C).
F. Procedural History
  1. In Orders dated January 7, 2003, and November 10, 2003, this Court found Defendants liable for violations of 42 U.S.C. §§ 3604(f)(3)(C)(i), 3604(f)(3)(C)(ii), and 3604(f)(3)(C)(iii)(I-IV) at Breezewood, including 96 covered ground-floor units and their associated public and common use areas, and at Hyde Park Apartments, including 96 covered ground-floor units and their associated public and common use areas. Specifically, in granting summary judgment, the court found that Defendants were liable for the following violations of the Fair Housing Act's Accessible Design Requirements: (a) the public use and common use areas at both Breezewood and Hyde Park are not readily accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities, in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 4603(f)(3)(C)(i); (b) at both Breezewood and Hyde Park, all the doors designed to allow passage into and within all premises are not sufficiently wide to allow passage by persons using wheelchairs, in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 4603(f)(3)(C)(ii); (c) at both Breezewood and Hyde Park, there is no route that is accessible into and through the dwelling, in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 4603(f)(3)(C)(iii)(I); (d) at both Breezewood and Hyde Park, the light switches, electrical outlets, thermostats, and environmental controls are not in accessible locations, in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 4603(f)(3)(C)(iii)(II); (e) reinforcements in the bathroom walls of both Breezewood and Hyde Park units do not allow for later installation of grab bars, in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 4603(f)(3)(C)(iii)(III); and (f) neither Breezewood nor Hyde Park units contain usable kitchens and bathrooms such that an individual using a wheelchair can maneuver about the space, in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 4603(f)(3)(C)(iii)(IV).
  2. Defendants have agreed to pay the sum of EIGHT HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS ($800,000.00) within sixty (60) days, as described herein, to resolve the United States' Complaint against the Defendants. Part of that sum shall be used to establish a retrofitting fund that will be used by an Administrative Entity agreed to by the parties to bring Breezewood and Hyde Park into compliance with the Fair Housing Act. The sums paid will also be used to compensate certain aggrieved persons for damages suffered and to pay to the United States a civil penalty. At all other covered multifamily dwellings to be designed and/or built by any of the Defendants, for first occupancy after March 13, 1991, Defendants agree to take the additional steps that are also set forth in Section IV herein.
G. Consent of the Parties to Entry of this Order
  1. The parties (4) agree that this Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter of this case pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331 and 1345, and 42 U.S.C. § 3614(a). The United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina has already determined that Defendants failed to design and construct Breezewood and Hyde Park in compliance with the Fair Housing Act. The liability of Defendants is expressly denied by the Defendants, and the payment of the amounts set forth herein are being made solely for the purpose of compromising a disputed claim and terminating all controversy between the parties. The parties further agree that the controversy should be resolved without further proceedings.
  2. Therefore, the parties agree to the entry of this Consent Order as indicated by the signatures appearing below.

It is hereby ORDERED, ADJUDGED and DECREED:

II.    GENERAL INJUNCTION
  1. Defendants, and each of their officers, employees, agents, successors and assigns, and all other persons in active concert or participation with them are enjoined from discriminating on the basis of disability as prohibited by the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(1)-(3).
III.   CORRECTIVE ACTIONS
  1. The parties recognize that the public and common use areas and the covered units at Breezewood and Hyde Park do not meet the standards of the Fair Housing Act and the Guidelines. To address these violations, within sixty (60) days of the entry of this Order, Defendants shall pay SEVEN HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS ($700,000.00) into an interest-bearing escrow fund ("Retrofit Fund") that will be used to remedy the violations at Hyde Park and Breezewood as set out below. This fund will be used by an Administrative Entity, agreed upon by the parties, to bring the public and common use areas and the individual units at both Breezewood and Hyde Park into compliance with the Act and the Guidelines, as described in this Section and in Appendix A ("Breezewood Condominiums Summary of Remedies"), Appendix B1 ("Hyde Park Apartments Summary of Remedies: Buildings 1988, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998 - 1BR + Den and 2BR"), and Appendix B2 ("Hyde Park Apartments Summary of Remedies: Buildings 2010/2040, 2050/2080, 2100/2130, 2135/2165, 2167/2197, 2201/2203, 2205/2207, 2209/2211, 2213/2215 - Super 2BR"). (5)
  2. Administration of Funds. Within thirty (30) days of the date of entry of this Consent Order, the United States and Defendants shall in good faith agree on an Administrative Entity ("Entity") to administer the Retrofit Fund. All costs associated with administering the funds shall come from the Fund. The Entity shall develop procedures to be followed for administering the funds in a manner consistent with this Consent Order. Such procedures shall be submitted to the United States for approval within thirty (30) days of selection of the Administrative Entity. If the Retrofit Fund is insufficient to perform all of the retrofits specified in Appendices A, B1, and B2, the Entity shall notify the United States and the United States shall prioritize and determine which of the specified retrofits shall be performed by the Entity.
  3. Distribution of Residue of Fund. If, after eight years, a balance remains in the Retrofit Fund, the Administrative Entity shall return any balance remaining in the fund to the Defendants.

A. Breezewood Retrofits

  1. A portion of the Retrofit Fund shall be used to retrofit the interior units and the public and common use areas of Breezewood as set forth in Appendix A. The Retrofit Fund amount includes the monies to be set aside for incentive payments as described in paragraph 20 below.
  2. Public and Common Use Area Retrofits. All retrofits in the public and common use areas shall comply with the specifications contained in Appendix A. The Administrative Entity shall use the money in the Retrofit Fund to ensure that all of the retrofits of the public and common use areas described in Appendix A are completed. In order to accomplish this task, and in their desire to cooperate and allow access to the property so that the retrofits can be performed, the Breezewood Condominium Association and Breezewood 2 Condominium Association have agreed, as described in Appendices I and J, to allow the Administrative Entity (or another licensed contractor hired by the Administrative Entity) to make the modifications and accessibility enhancements at Breezewood, in order to ensure that the retrofits in the public and common use areas are performed as described at Appendix A. Such retrofits shall be completed within six (6) months of the date of entry of this Order.
  3. Unit Interior Retrofits. The Administrative Entity will make the money in the Retrofit Fund available to unit owners desiring to modify the interiors of their units at Breezewood to make them more accessible as provided in this Order. The Administrative Entity shall determine whether the desired modification(s) fall within the scope of the Order, and the amount to be used for such modification(s). Requests to modify interior units shall be written and shall be assessed by the Administrative Entity on a first-come, first-serve basis. The Administrative Entity shall make determinations on payments from the Retrofit Fund based upon the following procedure: (a) the money placed into the Fund, along with all interest accumulated, is to be made available, for a period of eight (8) years from the date of entry of this Consent Order, on terms specified in this Order, to all owners of the condominium units at Breezewood seeking to modify their units to retrofit all or some of the violations listed in the Breezewood Condominiums Summary of Remedies which is attached hereto as Appendix A, and/or to install grab bars in any bathrooms in the units; (b) a qualifying unit owner shall receive ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS ($1,000.00) as payment for inconvenience (to be paid from the Retrofit Fund), beyond the monies expended on the retrofits, if he or she agrees to have his or her unit modified to retrofit substantially all of the violations listed in Appendix A; and (c) all retrofits made to the interior of the units at Breezewood shall comply with the recommendations set forth in Appendix A.

B. Hyde Park Retrofits

  1. Retrofit Fund. A portion of the Retrofit Fund shall be used to retrofit all of the violations of the Act in the interior units and in the public and common use areas of Hyde Park identified in Appendices B1 and B2.
  2. The Entity described in paragraph 16 above will administer the Retrofit Fund and, as appropriate, contract with licensed contractors to take the corrective actions described in this Section and in Appendices B1 and B2 with respect to the public and common use areas and the covered ground-floor dwellings. If the funds are insufficient to perform all of the retrofits specified in Appendices B1 and B2, the Entity shall notify the United States and the United States shall prioritize and determine which of the specified retrofits shall be performed by the Entity. Defendants will not perform the retrofits for Hyde Park, but will accommodate the retrofitting that will be done by contractors under contract with the Administering Entity.
  3. The actual contracts with licensed contractors to perform the work provided for herein shall be contracts which give standard contracting protections to Defendants on forms reasonably acceptable to Defendants. The Entity will be required to obtain appropriate lien releases before making any payments from the Hyde Park Fund for services, labor, and/or materials. The parties agree that the items described in this Section and Appendices B1 and B2 are the only actions necessary in order to bring the common areas and covered units into substantial compliance with the requirements of the Act and the Guidelines. The parties agree that the actions by Defendants to pay the sum listed in paragraph 15 and to cooperate with the Entity with regard to the repairs will satisfy the retrofit requirements for Hyde Park set forth herein. The parties also agree that Defendants will not be required to pay more than the listed amount even if ultimately the cost to complete all scheduled work should be greater than such amount. Defendants shall cooperate with the Entity in coordinating the availability of units for retrofitting and in allowing the Entity and licensed contractors to retrofit the units.
  4. Public and Common Use Areas. Within sixty (60) days of the entry of this Decree, the Entity shall provide written notice to all residents of Hyde Park that the modifications specified at Appendices B1 and B2 will be performed to the public and common use areas at Hyde Park. Such notice shall conform to Appendix C.
  5. Within one hundred and twenty (120) days from the date of entry of this Decree, modifications to the public and common use areas of Hyde Park shall commence as specified in Appendices B1 and B2. These modifications shall be completed within six months thereafter.
  6. Dwelling units. Within thirty (30) days prior to commencing work on any occupied covered ground-floor unit, the Entity shall provide written notice to the affected ground-floor unit residents at Hyde Park that the modifications specified at Appendices B1 and B2 will be performed to their units. Such notice shall substantially conform to Appendix D and shall be sent with a self-addressed postage prepaid envelope and a list specifying what alterations will be made in their specific unit. A copy of the notice shall be simultaneously provided to the United States. Retrofits of all ground-floor units shall be completed expeditiously but no later than one (1) year from the date of entry of the Consent Decree. It is the intent of the parties that the repairs be completed in a methodical fashion and that retrofits in a particular unit be retrofitted within sixty (60) days of starting work and, to the extent possible, that repairs in vacant units be performed between tenancies. In this regard, the Entity will be required to perform all repairs in a given unit within fifteen (15) days of receiving written notification of an available unit by Defendants. Once the Retrofit Fund has been established, the Entity shall arrange that the first interior retrofits to be completed shall be the twenty units at Hyde Park that are currently vacant.

  7. In addition, if, pursuant to Appendix D, the Administrative Entity receives a request from a tenant of a ground floor dwelling to perform the modifications specified at Appendices B1 and B2, the Administrative Entity shall arrange for the modifications to be completed within twenty-one (21) days from the date on which the modifications were requested.
  8. In the event a resident of a unit scheduled to undergo a modification incurs undue inconvenience or hardship (defined as a dislocation from the unit for more than 24 hours consecutively), the Entity will pay such resident, from the Retrofit Fund, the applicable government per diem rate for food and lodging for the local area for each day of undue inconvenience or hardship. Such payment shall be made from the Retrofit Fund and shall be made prior to the commencement of any retrofit work on the resident's unit, so that the resident can use the money to obtain alternative living accommodations while dislocated.
  9. Sale or Transfer of an Ownership Interest in the Subject Property. The sale or transfer of ownership, in whole or in part, of Hyde Park shall not affect Defendants' obligations under the Consent Decree. Should Defendants decide to sell or transfer ownership, in whole or in part, of any of Hyde Park prior to the completion of the retrofits specified in Appendices B1 and B2, it will, at least thirty (30) days prior to completion of the sale or transfer, (a) provide to each prospective buyer written notice that the complexes are subject to this Consent Decree, including specifically the Entity's obligations to complete required retrofit work, along with a copy of this Consent Decree; and (b) provide to the United States, by facsimile and first class mail, written notice of its intent to sell or transfer ownership, along with a copy of the notice sent to each buyer, and each buyer's name, address and telephone number.

C. Inspections and Reporting by Administrative Entity

  1. The Administrative Entity shall enter into a contract with a neutral inspector approved by the United States (hereinafter "Inspector") to conduct on-site inspections of the modifications that have been performed under this Order to determine if they have been completed in accord with the specifications set out in Appendices A, B1, and B2. As a part of that contract, the neutral inspector will take digital photographs of the measurements that he/she has taken to determine compliance with this Order and will make those photos available as part of his/her report. The Entity shall give the United States and Defendants at least three weeks notice of the inspection and shall give the United States and Defendants an opportunity to have their representatives present for the inspection. The Inspector shall set out the results of each inspection, including deficits if any, in writing and shall send that report to Counsel for the United States and the Defendants.
  2. The Inspector's costs associated with these inspections shall be paid by the Administrative Entity out of the Retrofit Fund, and such payments shall be made without regard to the Inspector's findings. Upon reasonable notice to the Defendants, and to Breezewood Condominium Association and Breezewood 2 Condominium Association where necessary, representatives of the United States shall be permitted to inspect the modifications in accordance with this Consent Order or the third-party inspection reports provided for in this Order to ensure compliance; provided, however, that the United States shall endeavor to minimize any inconvenience caused by such inspections.

IV.    NON-DISCRIMINATION IN FUTURE DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION

  1. For the duration of this Consent Order, Defendants shall maintain and provide to the United States the following information and statements regarding any covered, multifamily dwellings intended to be purchased, developed, built, designed, and/or engineered in whole or in part, by any of them or by any entities in which they or their successors in interest have a position of control as an officer, director, member, or manager, or have a ten percent (10%) or larger ownership share. The Defendants shall provide such information to the United States thirty (30) days after entry of this Order, six (6) months after entry of this order, and then semiannually for the remainder of the term of this Order:

    (a) the name and address of the project;

    (b) a description of the project and the individual units;

    (c) the name, address and telephone number of any site engineer(s) and/or civil engineer(s) involved with the project;

    (d) a statement from all site engineer(s) and/or civil engineer(s) involved with the project acknowledging and describing his/her knowledge of and training in the requirements of Section 804(f)(3)(C) of the Fair Housing Act and in the field of accessible site design and certifying that he/she has reviewed the engineering documents for the project and that the design specifications therein fully comply with the requirements of the Fair Housing Act and the Guidelines;

    (e) the name, address and telephone number of the architect(s) involved with the project; and

    (f) a statement from all architects involved with the project acknowledging and describing his/her knowledge of and training in the requirements of Section 804(f)(3)(C) of the Fair Housing Act and in the field of accessible site design and certifying that he/she has reviewed the architectural plans for the project and that the design specifications therein fully comply with the requirements of the Act and Guidelines.

    If the engineering documents or architectural plans are revised, and the revisions could have any impact on the accessibility of the dwellings or complex, Defendants shall obtain and maintain, and provide to the United States upon request, a statement from the site engineer(s) or architect(s), as applicable, that all specifications in the revised engineering documents or architectural plans, as pertinent, comply with the requirements of the Fair Housing Act and the Guidelines.

V.    MONETARY DAMAGES FOR AGGRIEVED PERSONS

  1. Within sixty (60) days after entry of this Order, Defendants shall deposit a payment of SEVENTY THOUSAND DOLLARS ($70,000.00) in an escrow account administered by the law firm Young Moore and Henderson P.A. This amount is included within the $800,000.00 the Defendants are paying to resolve this case. This amount is for the purpose of compensating the aggrieved persons and shall be distributed in the following manner: within seven (7) business days of receipt of the funds, the law firm Young Moore and Henderson P.A. shall send to counsel for the United States, (6) via express mail, checks made payable to the named aggrieved persons listed at Appendix E (or their heirs) in amounts as listed in Appendix E, except that no person shall be paid until he or she has executed a Release of Claims substantially similar to that in Appendix F. (7)

    VI.     CIVIL PENALTY

  2. Defendants shall pay the total sum of THIRTY THOUSAND DOLLARS ($30,000.00) to the United States as a civil penalty pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(C). This amount is included within the $800,000.00 the Defendants are paying to resolve this case. Said sum shall be paid within sixty (60) days of the date of entry of this Consent Order by submitting a check made payable to the United States of America to counsel for the United States.
    VII.   EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM
  3. Within thirty (30) days of the date of entry of this Consent Order, Defendants shall provide a copy of this Consent Order to all their agents and employees involved in the design, construction, rental, or sale of covered multi-family dwellings, and shall secure a signed statement from each such agent or employee acknowledging that he or she has received and read the Order, and has had an opportunity to have questions about the Order answered. This statement shall be substantially in the form of Appendix G.
  4. During the term of this Order, within thirty (30) days after the date he or she commences an employment, agency, or contractual relationship with Defendants, each new agent or employee involved in the design, construction, sale, or rental of covered multi-family dwellings shall be given a copy of this Order and be required to sign a statement acknowledging that he or she has received and read the Order, and has had an opportunity to have questions about the Order answered. This statement shall be substantially in the form of Appendix G.
  5. Defendants shall also ensure that they and any other employees and agents who have supervisory authority over the design and/or construction of covered multifamily dwellings have a copy of, are familiar with, and personally review the Fair Housing Accessibility Guidelines, 56 Fed. Reg. 9472-9515 (1991) and the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development's Fair Housing Act Design Manual, A Manual to Assist Builders in Meeting the Accessibility Requirements of the Fair Housing Act (August 1996, Rev. April 1998).
  6. Within ninety (90) days of the date of entry of this Consent Order, Defendants and all employees and agents whose duties, in whole or in part, involve showing units in, renting, or managing Hyde Park shall undergo training in person, given by a live instructor, on the Fair Housing Act. This educational training program shall be videotaped. The training shall be conducted by an independent, qualified third party, approved by the United States, and any expenses associated with this training shall be borne by Defendants. The training shall include instruction on the Fair Housing Act, with specific emphasis on discrimination on the basis of disability. The Defendants shall provide to the United States, within 30 days after the training, the name(s), address(es) and telephone number(s) of the trainer(s); copies of the training outlines and any materials distributed by the trainers; and certifications executed by all covered employees and agents confirming their attendance, in a form substantially similar to Appendix H. During the term of this Order, within thirty (30) days after the date he or she commences an employment, agency, or contractual relationship with Defendants, each new agent or employee whose duties, in whole or in part, involve showing units in, renting, or managing Hyde Park shall view a copy of the videotape of the entire training session referenced above and shall sign a form substantially similar to Appendix H acknowledging that they have viewed the videotaped training.
  7. Within ninety (90) days of the date of entry of this Consent Order, Defendants and all employees and agents whose duties, in whole or in part, involve supervisory authority over the development, design and/or construction of any covered multifamily dwellings shall undergo training in person, given by a live instructor, on the design and construction requirements of the Fair Housing Act. This educational training program shall be videotaped. The training shall be conducted by an independent, qualified third party, approved by the United States, and any expenses associated with this training shall be borne by Defendants. Defendants shall provide to the United States, within thirty (30) days after the training, the name(s), address(es) and telephone number(s) of the trainer(s); copies of the training outlines and any materials distributed by the trainers; a copy of the videotaped training session; and certifications executed by all Defendants and covered employees and agents confirming their attendance, in a form substantially equivalent to Appendix H. During the term of this Order, within thirty (30) days after the date he or she commences an employment, agency, or contractual relationship with Defendants, each new agent or employee whose duties, in whole or in part, involve supervisory authority over the development, design and/or construction of any covered multifamily dwellings, shall view a copy of the videotape of the entire training session referenced above and shall sign a form substantially similar to Appendix H acknowledging that they have viewed the videotaped training.

    VIII.   NOTICE TO THE PUBLIC OF DEFENDANTS'

    NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY

  8. Within ten (10) days of the entry of this Order, Defendants shall post and prominently display in the sales and rental offices of all properties owned and/or managed by Defendants a sign no smaller than ten (10) by fourteen (14) inches indicating that all dwellings are available for sale or rent on a nondiscriminatory basis. A poster that comports with 24 C.F.R. Part 110 will satisfy this requirement.
  9. For the duration of this Consent Order, in all future advertising in newspapers, and on pamphlets, brochures and other promotional literature regarding Breezewood and/or Hyde Park, or any new complexes that any Defendants may develop or construct, Defendant Dansey shall include, in a conspicuous location, a statement that the dwelling units include features for persons with disabilities required by the federal Fair Housing Act.
    IX.     REPORTING AND DOCUMENT RETENTION REQUIREMENTS
  10. Within one-hundred and ten (110) days after the date of entry of this Consent Order, Defendants shall submit to counsel for the United States an initial report regarding the signed statements of current supervisory employees, rental or sales agents, and site managers who have completed the educational program outlined in Section VII above. Thereafter during the term of this Order, Defendants shall, on the anniversary of the entry of this Order, submit to the United States a report containing the signed statements of new employees and agents that, in accordance with Section VII of this Consent Order, they have received and read the Order, and had an opportunity to have questions about the Order answered.
  11. Annually after the entry of this Consent Order, Defendants, as applicable, shall submit to counsel for the United States signed statements of new employees, sales or rental agents, and property or site managers who have completed the educational program during the most recent reporting period as required by Section VII above.
  12. Defendants shall advise counsel for the United States in writing within fifteen (15) days of receipt of any written administrative or legal complaint against any property owned or managed by Defendants, or against Defendants or any employees or agents of Defendants working at or for such property, regarding discrimination on the basis of disability in housing. Defendants shall also promptly provide the United States all information it may request concerning any such complaint.
  13. For the term of this Consent Order, Defendants are required to preserve all records related to this Consent Order for Breezewood, Hyde Park, and all other properties designed, constructed, owned, operated, or acquired by them. Upon reasonable notice to Defendants, representatives of the United States shall be permitted to inspect and copy any records of Defendants bearing on compliance with this Consent Order at any and all reasonable times, provided, however, that the United States shall endeavor to minimize any inconvenience to Defendants from such inspections.

    X.     DURATION OF ORDER AND TERMINATION OF LEGAL ACTION

  14. This Consent Order shall remain in effect for five (5) years and six (6) months after the date of its entry, except that the individual unit owners at Breezewood will have access to the fund for interior retrofits for eight (8) years and six (6) months. By consenting to entry of this Order, the United States and the Defendants agree that in the event that any Defendant engages in any future violation(s) of the Fair Housing Act, such violation(s) shall constitute a "subsequent violation" pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(C)(ii).
  15. The Court shall retain jurisdiction for the duration of this Consent Order to enforce the terms of the Order, at which time the case shall be dismissed with prejudice. Plaintiffs may move the Court to extend the duration of the Order in the interests of justice.
  16. The United States and the Defendants shall endeavor, in good faith, to resolve informally any differences regarding interpretation of and compliance with this Order prior to bringing such matters to the Court for resolution. However, in the event of a failure by Defendants to perform, in a timely manner, any act required by this Order or any other failure by Defendants to act in conformance with any provision thereof, the United States may move this Court to impose any remedy authorized by law or equity.

    XI.   TIME FOR PERFORMANCE

  17. Any time limits for performance imposed by this Consent Order may be extended by the mutual written agreement of the parties.

    XII.     COSTS OF LITIGATION

  18. Each party to this litigation will bear its own costs and attorney's fees associated with this litigation, other than as provided in paragraph 48.

Agreed to by the parties as indicated by the signatures of counsel below.

FOR PLAINTIFF UNITED STATES:



FRANK D. WHITNEY
United States Attorney

____________________________________
RUDY RENFER
Assistant U.S. Attorney
Civil Division
310 New Bern Avenue
Suite 800
Raleigh, NC 27601-1461
Telephone: (919) 856-4530
Fax: (919) 856-4821

Date: _____________

R. ALEXANDER ACOSTA
Assistant Attorney General STEVEN H. ROSENBAUM
Chief
TIMOTHY J. MORAN
Deputy Chief
ELISE S. SHORE
KEVIN K. KIJEWSKI
RACHEL B. LEVINSON
Trial Attorneys
Housing and Civil Enforcement Section
Civil Rights Division
United States Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, D.C. 20530
(202) 514-4701

Date:_____________



FOR DEFENDANTS QUALITY BUILT
CONSTRUCTION, INC. AND WILLIAM
E. DANSEY, JR.:

____________________________________
WILLIAM E. DANSEY, JR.



____________________________________
CHRISTOPHER A. PAGE
YOUNG MOORE & HENDERSON, P.A.
3101 Glenwood Avenue
Raleigh, North Carolina 27612
(919) 782-6860


APPENDIX A

BREEZEWOOD CONDOMINIUMS SUMMARY OF REMEDIES




APPENDIX B1

HYDE PARK APARTMENTS SUMMARY OF REMEDIES:

BUILDINGS 1988, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998

1BR + DEN and 2BR


APPENDIX B2

HYDE PARK APARTMENTS SUMMARY OF REMEDIES:

BUILDINGS 2010/2040, 2050/2080, 2100/2130, 2135/2165, 2167/2197,

2201/2203, 2205/2207, 2209/2211, 2213/2215

SUPER 2BR


APPENDIX C

NOTICE OF RETROFITS TO PUBLIC AND COMMON USE AREAS
AT HYDE PARK APARTMENTS



Hyde Park Apartments is dedicated to the principle of equal housing opportunity. The federal Fair Housing Act requires that the public and common areas at Hyde Park Apartments have certain features of physical accessibility for people with disabilities.

As a result of recent events, including a settlement with the United States Department of Justice, inaccessible features of the common areas of the complex have been brought to our attention. We welcome people with disabilities as residents and guests at Hyde Park Apartments and would like to make them as comfortable as possible. We are writing this notice to let you know that beginning on ______, contractors will be coming onto the property to begin the process of modifying certain aspects of the public and common areas. We expect the process to last approximately ______ weeks.

Generally, the contractors will modify or "retrofit" certain sidewalks, install curb cuts and ramps, and eliminate some of the steps along certain pathways to certain ground-floor units. They will also be making some modifications to the clubhouse/leasing office, pool area, public restrooms, mailboxes, and/or picnic areas in order to make them more accessible to people with disabilities.

If you have any questions regarding these modifications, please contact us at ______________.


APPENDIX D

NOTICE OF RETROFITS TO INTERIOR GROUND-FLOOR UNITS
AT HYDE PARK APARTMENTS

Hyde Park Apartments is dedicated to the principle of equal housing opportunity. The federal Fair Housing Act requires that certain ground-floor apartments in newer apartment communities have certain features of physical accessibility for people with disabilities.

We have identified your unit as one that is covered by the Fair Housing Act's accessibility requirements.

Due to recent events, including a settlement with the United States Department of Justice, certain inaccessible features of the interiors of some of the ground-floor units at Hyde Park have been brought to our attention. We welcome people with disabilities as residents and guests at Hyde Park and would like to make them as comfortable as possible. Therefore, we have agreed to make certain modifications to all of the ground-floor units covered by the Fair Housing Act's accessibility requirements here at Hyde Park so that they are more accessible to people with disabilities.

We are giving you notice that we are in the process of scheduling a retrofit of your unit. A representative will be contacting you soon to review these modifications and to discuss a time frame within which these modifications will be made. These modifications will be made at no cost to you. Should any of the modifications require your temporary relocation, your reasonable food and housing expenses will be paid while the modifications are being made. In addition, you may request these modifications; it is not necessary that you or any member of your household be disabled in order to request these modifications.

If you have any questions, or would like to request these modifications, please contact us at ______________.


APPENDIX E

LIST OF AGGRIEVED PERSONS

Christine Bland - $5,000

Carolyn Craig - $12,000

Phillip Craig - $5,000

Nancy Craig - $5,000

Shirley Inglis - $10,000

Shirley Rogers - $10,000

Lebern Rouse - $5,000

Christine Rouse - $5,000

Ralph Williams - $6,000

Estate of Ruth Williams - $5,000

Breezewood Condominium Association - $2,000


APPENDIX F



RELEASE OF CLAIMS



In consideration of the payment of the sum of _____________ dollars ($_______), pursuant to the Consent Order entered in United States v. Quality Built Construction, Inc., f/k/a Dawn Construction, Inc., et al., Case Number 4:00-CV-194-BO(3) (E.D.N.C.), I hereby release the Defendants named in this action from any and all liability for any claims, legal or equitable, I may have against them arising out of the issues alleged in the above-styled action.



I fully acknowledge and agree that this release of the defendants shall be binding on my heirs, representatives, executors, successors, administrators, and assigns.



I hereby acknowledge that I have read and understand this release and have executed it voluntarily and with full knowledge of its legal consequences.



_________________________________
(Signature)



_________________________________
(Print Name)



_________________________________
(Date)


APPENDIX G

ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF RECEIPT OF CONSENT ORDER



On _______________________ , I received copies of and have read the Consent Order entered by the federal district court in United States of America v. Quality Built Construction, Inc., f.k.a. Dawn Construction, Inc., et al., Case No. 4:00-CV-194-BO(3) (E.D.N.C.), and the federal Fair Housing Act. I have had all of my questions concerning the Consent Order and the Fair Housing Act answered to my satisfaction.



______________________________________
(Signature)



______________________________________
(Print name)



______________________________________
(Date)


APPENDIX H



CERTIFICATION OF FAIR HOUSING TRAINING



On ____________________ , I attended training on the federal Fair Housing Act, including its requirements concerning physical accessibility for people with disabilities. I have had all of my questions concerning the Fair Housing Act answered to my satisfaction.

_________________________________
(Signature)



_________________________________
(Print name)



_________________________________
(Date)


APPENDIX I

AGREEMENT BETWEEN UNITED STATES
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
AND BREEZEWOOD CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION OF GREENVILLE, INC.

This Agreement is entered between the United States of America and Breezewood Condominium Association of Greenville, Inc. ("Breezewood Condominium Association") located at ______ Greenville, North Carolina, 27858.

This action was filed in the Eastern District of North Carolina by the United States to enforce the provisions of Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 ("the Fair Housing Act"), as amended by Fair Housing Act Amendments Act of 1988, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3619. The United States' Complaint specifically alleges that the Defendants discriminated against persons with disabilities by failing to design and construct covered multifamily dwelling at Breezewood Condominiums ("Breezewood"), a multifamily residential condominium development in Greenville, North Carolina and Hyde Park Apartments ("Hyde Park"), a multifamily residential rental development in Greenville, North Carolina, in accordance with the features of accessible and adaptable design and construction required by subsection 804(f)(3)(C) of the Fair Housing Act ("the Act"), 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C). Plaintiff United States and Defendants Quality Built Construction Inc. and William E. Dansey, Jr. ("Defendants") have entered into a Consent Order to resolve the United States' claims against them. Breezewood is currently owned by individual condominium unit owners, the Breezewood Condominium and Breezewood 2 Condominium Homeowners' Association, Inc.

The United States asserts that the Breezewood Condominium Association is a necessary and/or indispensable party to this lawsuit in whose absence complete relief cannot be afforded to the United States under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 19 and 20. Therefore, the parties agree to the terms of this Agreement as indicated by the signatures appearing below.

The parties hereby agree to the following:

1. The parties agree that the ground floor apartments and the common areas of Breezewood are subject to the requirements of § 3604(f)(3)(C).

2. The United States and the Defendants Quality Built and William E. Dansey, Jr. have entered into a Consent Order to resolve the United States' claims in this matter under which an Administrative Entity ("Entity") and/or a licensed contractor will perform retrofits to the public and common use areas at Breezewood Condominiums which are specified in Appendix A of the Consent Order and to provide accessibility enhancements in ground floor units. The parties agree that this Agreement is contingent upon the entry of this Consent Order by the Court.

3. Breezewood Condominium Association agrees that it will allow the Entity (or another licensed contractor hired by the Entity) to make the modifications and accessibility enhancements at Breezewood specified in paragraph 2 and, as may otherwise be necessary, to cooperate with the parties to facilitate implementation of the consent order. This includes, inter alia, allowing access to the complex for purposes of planning, evaluating and performing these modifications and accessibility enhancements and for purposes of interviewing and/or meeting with Breezewood unit owners. Defendants have entered into a Consent Order with the United States under which Defendants have deposited money into an interest-bearing escrow account (the "Retrofit Fund"). The funds from this account, which will administered by the Entity, will be used to pay for all expenses associated with these modifications and accessibility enhancements and will attempt in good faith to minimize any inconvenience to the Breezewood unit owners. The Consent Order also provides that the Entity will commence and finish the modifications to the public and common use at Breezewood areas within six (6) months of the date of entry of the Consent Order. Owners of Breezewood units will have eight years in which to obtain interior retrofits for their units.

4. Breezewood Condominium Association agrees to abide by the final decision of inspectors approved by Defendants and the United States pursuant to paragraph 30 of the Consent Order as to whether the retrofit work has been done in accordance with the requirements of the Consent Order. Breezewood Condominium Association agrees, upon reasonable notice, to allow the inspector and representatives of the United States access to Breezewood for the purpose of inspecting the work that has been performed. Defendants have entered into a Consent Order with the United States, which provides that the Retrofit Fund, through the Administrative Entity, will pay all costs associated with these inspections and will pay the inspector without regard to his findings.

5. Paragraph 20 of the Consent Order provides that a Breezewood unit owner will receive ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS ($1,000.00) as payment for inconvenience, beyond the expended retrofits, if the unit owner agrees to have the unit retrofitted.

6. The United States and Breezewood Condominium Association shall endeavor in good faith to resolve informally any differences regarding interpretation of and compliance with this Agreement prior to bringing such matters to this Court for resolution. However, in the event of a failure by Breezewood Condominium Association to perform in a timely manner any act required by this Order or otherwise to act in conformance with any provision thereof, the United States may move this Court to impose any remedy authorized by law or equity.



FOR THE UNITED STATES:



____________________________



Date: ______________________



FOR BREEZEWOOD CONDOMINIUM
ASSOCIATION OF GREENVILLE, INC
.



____________________________



Date: ______________________


APPENDIX J



AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE AND
BREEZEWOOD 2 CONDOMINIUM HOMEOWNERS' ASSOCIATION, INC.



This action was filed in the Eastern District of North Carolina by the United States to enforce the provisions of Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 ("the Fair Housing Act"), as amended by Fair Housing Act Amendments Act of 1988, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3619. The United States' Complaint specifically alleges that the Defendants discriminated against persons with disabilities by failing to design and construct covered multifamily dwelling at Breezewood Condominiums ("Breezewood"), a multifamily residential condominium development in Greenville, North Carolina and Hyde Park Apartments ("Hyde Park"), a multifamily residential rental development in Greenville, North Carolina, in accordance with the features of accessible and adaptable design and construction required by subsection 804(f)(3)(C) of the Fair Housing Act ("the Act"), 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C). Plaintiff United States and Defendants Quality Built Construction Inc. and William E. Dansey, Jr. ("Defendants") have entered into a Consent Order to resolve the United States' claims against them. Breezewood is currently owned by individual condominium unit owners, the Breezewood Condominium and Breezewood 2 Condominium Homeowners' Association, Inc.

The United States asserts that the Breezewood 2 Condominium Association is a necessary and/or indispensable party to this lawsuit in whose absence complete relief cannot be afforded to the United States under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 19 and 20. Therefore, the parties agree to the terms of this Agreement as indicated by the signatures appearing below.

The parties hereby agree to the following:

1. The parties agree that the ground floor apartments and the common areas of Breezewood are subject to the requirements of § 3604(f)(3)(C).

2. The United States and the Defendants Quality Built and William E. Dansey, Jr. have entered into a Consent Order to resolve the United States' claims in this matter under which an Administrative Entity ("the Entity") and/or a licensed contractor will perform retrofits to the public and common use areas at Breezewood Condominiums which are specified in Appendix A of the Consent Order and to provide accessibility enhancements in ground floor units. The parties agree that this Agreement is contingent upon the entry of this Consent Order by the Court.

3. Breezewood 2 Condominium Association agrees that it will allow the Entity (or another licensed contractor hired by the Entity) to make the modifications and accessibility enhancements at Breezewood specified in paragraph 2 and, as may otherwise be necessary, to cooperate with the parties to facilitate implementation of the consent order. This includes, inter alia, allowing access to the complex for purposes of planning, evaluating and performing these modifications and accessibility enhancements and for purposes of interviewing and/or meeting with Breezewood unit owners. Defendants have entered into a Consent Order with the United States under which Defendants have deposited money into an interest-bearing escrow account (the "Retrofit Fund"). The funds from this account, which will administered by the Entity, will be used to pay for all expenses associated with these modifications and accessibility enhancements and will attempt in good faith to minimize any inconvenience to the Breezewood unit owners. The Consent Order also provides that the Entity will commence and finish the modifications to the public and common use at Breezewood areas within six (6) months of the date of entry of the Consent Order. Owners of Breezewood units will have eight years in which to obtain interior retrofits for their units.

4. Breezewood 2 Condominium Association agrees to abide by the final decision of inspectors approved by Defendants and the United States pursuant to paragraph 30 of the Consent Order as to whether the retrofit work has been done in accordance with the requirements of the Consent Order. Breezewood 2 Condominium Association agrees, upon reasonable notice, to allow the inspector and representatives of the United States access to Breezewood for the purpose of inspecting the work that has been performed. Defendants have entered into a Consent Order with the United States, which provides that the Retrofit Fund, through the Entity, will pay all costs associated with these inspections and will pay the inspector without regard to his findings.

5. Paragraph 20 of the Consent Order, provides that a Breezewood unit owner will receive ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS ($1,000.00) as payment for inconvenience, beyond the expended retrofits, if the unit owner agrees to have the unit retrofitted.

6. The United States and Breezewood Condominium Association shall endeavor in good faith to resolve informally any differences regarding interpretation of and compliance with this Agreement prior to bringing such matters to this Court for resolution. However, in the event of a failure by Breezewood Condominium Association to perform in a timely manner any act required by this Order or otherwise to act in conformance with any provision thereof, the United States may move this Court to impose any remedy authorized by law or equity.



FOR THE UNITED STATES:



____________________________



Date: ______________________



FOR BREEZEWOOD 2 CONDOMINIUM
HOMEOWNERS' ASSOCIATION, INC.



____________________________



Date: ______________________




1. The allegations contained in the United States' complaint against Hite/MSM, P.C. in the above-captioned case were resolved in a separate Consent Order filed with the Court on February 24, 2003.

2. Breezewood was built in three phases. The United States' Complaint covers phases I and II, which comprise 12 non-elevator buildings, each of which contains 8 ground-floor units, plus those buildings' associated public and common use areas. All references to "Breezewood" in this Consent Order therefore refer to Breezewood phases I and II.

3. 3 All units in elevator buildings with four or more units are "covered multifamily dwellings" under the Act. See 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(7)(A).

4. "Parties" as that term is used herein refers to the signatories to this Consent Order. See infra at 23.

5. HUD regulations provide that "[a] public or common use area that complies with the appropriate requirements of ANSI A117.1-1986 or a comparable standard is accessible." See 24 C.F.R. § 100.201 (2002). HUD interprets "comparable standard" to mean a "standard that affords [persons with disabilities] access essentially equivalent to or greater than that required by ANSI A117.1." See 54 Fed. Reg. 3243 (Jan 23, 1989). Should the Administrative Entity elect to follow or approve a standard other than ANSI for making the public and common-use areas accessible, the Entity will inform the United States in writing of the standard. Such standard must provide access that is "essentially equivalent" to or "greater" than ANSI A117.1 (1986).

6. For purposes of this Order, counsel for the United States is Chief, Housing and Civil Enforcement Section, Civil Rights Division, United States Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20530, Attn: DJ# 175-54-131, fax number 202-514-1116.

7. If any of the payments required under this Consent Order are made after the prescribed time for any reason other than the aggrieved person's failure to timely provide the release, such payments shall include interest calculated by the formula set forth in 28 U.S.C. § 1961. Payment of such interest shall be in addition to any other remedies available to the United States for delays in payment.


Document Filed: February 8, 2005 > >
Updated August 6, 2015

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