Housing And Civil Enforcement Cases Documents

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,

Plaintiff

v.

VILLAGE OF ADDISON, ILLINOIS,

Defendant

______________________________

COMPLAINT

1. This action is brought by the United States of America to enforce the provisions of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq.

2. This Court has jurisdiction over this action under 28 U.S.C. § 1345 and 42 U.S.C. § 3614.

3. Defendant Village of Addison is a governmental subdivision incorporated in the State of Illinois, located in DuPage County, within the Northern District of Illinois.

4. The Village of Addison is governed by a Village President and the Addison Village Board of Trustees.

5. The Village exercises authority over land within its boundaries. The Village Board of Trustees has enacted resolutions and ordinances to create redevelopment districts called "TIFs" (Tax Increment Financing Districts) pursuant to the State of Illinois Tax Increment Allocation Redevelopment Act, Section 65 ILCS 5/11-74.4-3. A "TIF" is a tax incentive financing district that is established pursuant to procedures set forth in the State of Illinois Tax Increment Allocation Redevelopment Act, supra, that provides tax incentives to enable local governments to redevelop or renovate areas that are "blighted".

6. The Village of Addison approved an ordinance creating the Army Trail/Mill Road TIF District on March 21, 1994, and it has enacted numerous ordinances authorizing the Village to purchase private property located within this TIF District. The Village has purchased numerous parcels of private residential property in this TIF District and has begun a program of demolishing these residential properties.

7. The geographic area defining the Army Trail/Mill Road TIF District includes Green Oaks Court Apartments, a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood within the Village of Addison.

8. On October 3, 1994, the Village of Addison adopted an ordinance establishing the Michael Lane TIF District. The geographic area defining this TIF District includes a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood within the Village of Addison.

9. Much of the property located in these two TIF Districts is moderately priced, decent, and affordable housing which is occupied by persons of Hispanic origin.

10. At the time of the 1980 Census, the Village of Addison had a total population of 29,759. The Village's population in 1980 included 1,732 persons of Hispanic origin, comprising 5.8% of the total population.

11. The 1990 Census revealed a substantial increase in the Hispanic population of the Village of Addison. In 1990 the Village had a total population of 32,058, of whom 4,287 or 13.4% were Hispanic.

12. Based on 1990 Census data, the two TIF districts created by the Village of Addison, Army Trail/Mill Road and Michael Lane, include, at a minimum, 36% of the Hispanic population, but only 2.8% of the non-Hispanic population, of the Village of Addison.

13. There are eight census blocks in the Village of Addison in which the Hispanic population makes up over 50% of the population and which include a minimum of fifty persons. Six of these eight Hispanic majority census blocks are located either wholly or partially in the TIF Districts. Included in these census blocks is the block with the highest number of Hispanic persons (738 Hispanic persons) of any census block in Addison.

14. According to 1990 Census data, the number of persons within all census blocks that are located exclusively within the two TIFs, or which have residential areas that fall entirely within the two TIFs, is approximately 2,008 persons, of which approximately 1,322 or 66% are Hispanic and 686 or 34% are non-Hispanic.

15. The defendant was aware of the large concentration of Hispanic families residing in the Army Trail/Mill Road and Michael Lane areas before it formally created these TIF Districts.

16. On or about April 1994, the Village began purchasing four-unit apartment buildings within the Green Oaks Court Apartments, located in the Army Trail/Mill Road TIF District, for purposes of demolishing them. Since that time, the Village has demolished at least eight residential buildings in the Green Oaks Court Apartments.

17. The housing units that the Village of Addison has purchased or sought to purchase, and targeted for demolition at the Green Oaks Court Apartments, located in the Army Trail/Mill Road TIF District, are decent, affordable housing for citizens with low to moderate income.

18. The housing units that the Village of Addison has purchased or sought to purchase, and targeted for demolition at the Green Oaks Court Apartments, located in the Army Trail/Mill Road TIF District, are housing that the Village aggressively and regularly inspects, and has required to be maintained in accordance with the standards of the Village of Addison Housing Code. The housing units the Village of Addison has targeted for demolition and redevelopment in the Green Oaks Apartments are not slums, and can not be considered uninhabitable housing.

19. In August 1994, the Village entered into contracts to purchase four four-unit residential apartment buildings in the Michael Lane TIF with the intent to acquire and demolish such buildings.

20. The housing units in the Michael Lane TIF District are decent, affordable housing for citizens with low to moderate income. This housing is not a slum, and can not be considered uninhabitable housing.

21. The Village of Addison has not taken steps sufficient to assist the displaced residents of the buildings that it has demolished or intends to demolish at Green Oaks Court Apartments or Michael Lane in finding alternative affordable housing.

22. The Village of Addison has an extremely low vacancy rate of affordable housing. Accordingly, many of the displaced families of Green Oaks Court Apartments, and those affected in the Michael Lane TIF District, will not be able to find comparable alternative housing in Addison. According to the 1990 Census, there were 136 vacant rental units in the Village of Addison at a rental amount of $599 or less per month, the range affordable to the residents of Green Oaks Court Apartments and the Michael Lane TIF District. Included in the 136 units are efficiencies and one-bedroom units, units too small for the average size family.

23. A significant number of residents who are displaced by the Village of Addison's TIF plans will be forced to move outside of the Village of Addison due to the unavailability of alternative affordable housing in Addison.

24. The purpose and effect of the Village's actions are to limit or reduce the number of Hispanic families residing within the Village of Addison.

25. By establishing the Army Trail/Mill Road TIF District, and taking steps to acquire and demolish housing located at Green Oaks Court Apartments, and by establishing the Michael Lane TIF District with the intent of acquiring and demolishing housing, the defendant has made unavailable and denied dwellings to persons because of national origin in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 3604(a).

26. The conduct of the defendant described above constitutes:

(a) A pattern or practice of resistance to the full enjoyment of rights secured by 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 et seq; and

(b) A denial to a group of persons of rights granted by 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 et seq., which denial raises an issue of general public importance.

27. The defendant's discriminatory actions have caused injury to persons seeking to occupy residential dwellings within the Village of Addison and to landlords involved with those transactions. Those persons are entitled to be compensated by the defendant for the injuries caused by the discriminatory conduct.

28. The defendant's actions were intentional, willful, and taken in disregard of the rights of others.

WHEREFORE, the United States prays that the Court enter an ORDER that:

1. Declares that the Village of Addison's redevelopment scheme for the Mill Road/Army Trail TIF District and the Michael Lane TIF District violates the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq;

2. Enjoins the defendant, its officials, agents, employees, successors, and all other persons in active concert or participation with it from continuing to demolish any further housing located in either TIF, and from further purchasing housing in those districts, and from continuing to discriminate on account of national origin in violation of 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq;

3. Requires such actions by the defendant as may be necessary to restore all persons aggrieved by the defendant's discriminatory housing actions to the position they would have occupied but for the defendant's discriminatory housing actions;

4. Awards such damages as would fully compensate each person aggrieved by the defendant's discriminatory housing actions for the injury caused by the defendant's discriminatory housing actions, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614 (d)(1)(B);

5. Awards each person aggrieved by the defendant's discriminatory housing actions punitive damages because of the intentional and willful nature of the defendant's conduct pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(B); and

6. Assesses a civil penalty against the defendant in an amount of money authorized by 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(C), in order to vindicate the public interest.

The United States further prays for such additional relief as the interests of justice may require.

JANET RENO,
ATTORNEY GENERAL

DEVAL L. PATRICK,
Assistant Attorney General

JAMES B. BURNS,
United States Attorney

PAUL F. HANCOCK,
Chief, Housing and Civil Enforcement Section
ISABELLE M. THABAULT
JEFFREY M. SENGER
ELIZABETH A. SINGER
Attorneys, Housing and Civil Enforcement Section
Civil Rights Division
U.S. Department of Justice
P.O. Box 65998
Washington D.C. 20035-5988
(202) 514-4749

JOAN LASER
Assistant United States
United States Attorney's Office
Dirksen Federal Building
Fifth Floor
219 S. Dearborn Street
Chicago, IL 60604
(312) 353-1857

Filed: 1995-07-07 > >
Updated August 6, 2015

Was this page helpful?

Was this page helpful?
Yes No