Housing And Civil Enforcement Cases Documents

RALPH F. BOYD, JR.
Assistant Attorney General
STEVEN H. ROSENBAUM
Chief, Housing and Civil
   Enforcement Section
TIMOTHY J. MORAN
ERIC I. HALPERIN
MICHAEL S. MAURER
Attorneys, Housing and Civil
   Enforcement Section - G St.
Civil Rights Division
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20530
Tel:    (202) 353-9706
Fax:    (202) 514-1116

JAMES A. MCDEVITT
United States Attorney
WILLIAM BEATTY
Assistant United States Attorney
P.O. Box 1494
Spokane, WA 99210-1494
Tel: (509) 353-2767
Fax: (509) 353-2766

Attorneys for Plaintiff
United States of America


UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,

            Plaintiff,

BOWEN PROPERTY MANAGEMENT,
SPOKANE HOUSING AUTHORITY,
WESTFALL VILLAGE
APARTMENTS, L.P., JOHN
BALLAS, GLENN LEMONS,
AND KERREY LEMONS,

           Defendants.

_____________________________

Civil No.:

CONSENT ORDER BETWEEN
PLANTIFF UNITED STATES AND
DEFENDANTS SPOKANE HOUSING
AUTHORITY AND WESTFALL
VILLAGE APARTMENTS, L.P.

The United States files this Consent Order simultaneously with its Complaint against Bowen Property Management, Spokane Housing Authority, Westfall Village Apartments, L.P., John Ballas, and Kerrey Lemons(collectively referred to as "Defendants") alleging violations of the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C.§§ 3601-3619 (the Act). This Consent Order resolves the claims against the Spokane Housing Authority and Westfall Village Apartments, L.P. only. The claims of the United States against the other Defendants have not been resolved.

I.   ALLEGATIONS OF THE UNITED STATES
  1. Defendant Spokane Housing Authority ("SHA") is a public housing authority established in 1971 and provides housing for low-income, disabled, and elderly individuals in Spokane, Pend Oreille, Stevens, and Whitman counties.
  2. Defendant Westfall Village Apartments, L.P. ("Westfall") is a for-profit limited partnership registered with the State of Washington. Westfall is the owner of Westfall Village Apartments. Defendant SHA is the general partner of Westfall Village Apartments, L.P.
  3. Defendant Bowen Property Management ("Bowen") is an Oregon corporation that does business in the state of Washington. At all times relevant to the United States' allegations, Bowen managed Westfall Village Apartments located at 3724 N. Cook Street in Spokane, Washington pursuant to a management agreement between Westfall and Bowen. In that agreement, Bowen agreed to handle all aspects of rental at Westfall Village Apartments in accordance with applicable laws and regulations, including the Fair Housing Act.
  4. Defendant John Ballas was, at all times relevant to this action, the vice president and general manager of operations for Bowen Property Management. Mr. Ballas is a defendant only for the claim brought on behalf of Natalya Prach.
  5. Defendant Kerrey Lemons was, at all times relevant to this action, an area manager for Bowen Property Management. Ms. Lemons was responsible for the management of Westfall Village Apartments, including the selection of new tenants and the approval of transfers by existing tenants to new apartments.
  6. The United States' complaint alleges that SHA and Westfall, as a result of conduct by its property management company Bowen and Bowen's employees, discriminated on the basis of national origin in the selection of tenants at Westfall Village Apartments. Westfall Village Apartments is a 110-unit affordable housing development that is partially funded by federal low-income housing tax credits.
  7. In December 1999, Natalya Prach, a tenant at Westfall Village Apartments, began working for Bowen Property Management as an assistant resident manager. Ms. Prach was supervised by Kerrey Lemons, an employee of Bowen who was the on-site manager at Westfall Village. Ms. Prach speaks Russian and is of Russian national origin. One of her responsibilities was to serve as translator for conversations between Russian tenants and applicants, who could not speak English, and Ms. Lemons, who could not speak Russian.
  8. The United States alleges that Kerrey Lemons charged applicants for initial tenancy or transfer who were of Russian national origin an additional fee that was not charged to applicants who were not of Russian national origin. The applicants who paid the fee were given apartments at Westfall Village Apartments even though non-Russian applicants, who had inquired about apartments earlier, were on the waiting list.
  9. On or about May 30, 2000, Natalya Prach informed John Ballas of Bowen that Kerrey Lemons was accepting and soliciting additional fees from Russian tenants and applicants in return for renting them apartments.
  10. Bowen fired Natalya Prach and served a three-day notice to vacate the premises on Natalya Prach in retaliation for her complaining that Kerrey Lemons was soliciting and accepting additional payments from Russian applicants.
  11. The United States alleges that the conduct of Bowen and its employees violated the Fair Housing Act in at least four different ways. The first three claims are brought by the United States pursuant to Section 3610(o) of the Act after a finding by the Department of Housing and Urban Development of reasonable cause to believe the Defendants engaged in a discriminatory housing practice. The fourth claim is bought by the United States pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(a), which authorizes the Department of Justice to file a complaint where there is reasonable cause to believe that defendants have engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination in violation of the Fair Housing Act.
  12. The first claim in the complaint alleges that Defendants Bowen, SHA, Westfall, and Kerrey Lemons discriminated against Vera Filipenko, Irina Greben, Vladimir Greben, Mikhail Azarov, and Nadry Azarov (hereinafter "Tenant Complaints") on the basis of national origin. The Tenant Complainants filed complaints with the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) alleging that they paid additional fees to receive apartments, for relatives to receive apartments, and/or to transfer to another apartment at Westfall Village. The Tenant Complainants were required to pay the fee because they are Russian. After an investigation, HUD issued a charge of discrimination finding reasonable cause to believe thateach of the above-named Defendants violated 42 U.S.C. § 3604(b).
  13. The second claim in the complaint alleges that Bowen, SHA, Westfall, John Ballas, and Kerrey Lemons discriminated against Natalya Prach, a former employee of Bowen, by retaliating against her for complaining about Bowen's discriminatory conduct. Ms. Prach filed a complaint with HUD alleging that while she worked for Bowen she was required to help Kerrey Lemons collect fees from Russian applicants that were not charged to non-Russian applicants. When she reported this activity to her superiors at Bowen, she was fired from her job by Bowen and threatened with eviction from her apartment. After an investigation, HUD issued a charge of discrimination finding reasonable cause to believe that each of the above-named Defendants violated 42 U.S.C. § 3617.
  14. The third claim concerns the Northwest Fair Housing Alliance, a non-profit fair housing organization based in Spokane whose mission is to ensure equal housing opportunity for the people of eastern Washington through education, counseling, and advocacy. In June 2000, Ms. Prach and the Tenant Complainants contacted NWFHA to complain about discrimination on the basis of national origin at Westfall Village. NWFHA was forced to divert resources to counsel the complainants, investigate their allegations, and assist the complainants in filing their HUD complaints. NWFHA filed a HUD complaint alleging that it was injured by the Defendants' discriminatory housing practices. After an investigation, HUD issued a charge of discrimination finding reasonable cause to believe that Defendants Bowen Property Management, Spokane Housing Authority, Westfall Village Apartments, L.P., and Kerrey Lemons violated 42 U.S.C. §§ 3604(b)and 3617.
  15. The fourth claim in the complaint alleges that the Bowen, SHA, Westfall, and Kerrey Lemons engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination on the basis of national origin by denying housing to individuals who were not of Russian national origin, and/or discriminating in the terms and conditions of rental to individuals who were not of Russian nation origin, in violation of Sections 3604(a) & (b) of the Fair Housing Act.
  16. In addition to the Fair Housing Act violations, HUD found that the SHA violated Title VI of the Civil Rights Act by discriminating with respect to a program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance (HUD Complaint No. 10-00-0026-6). It is the intent of the parties to resolve that finding as part of this Consent Order as well.
  17. III.    CONTENTIONS OF DEFENDANTS THE SPOKANE HOUSING AUTHORITY AND WESTFALL VILLAGE LIMITED PARTNERSHIP
  18. Spokane Housing Authority is a not-for-profit entity that was created in 1971 by resolution of the Spokane City Council to provide safe, affordable housing and provide opportunities for those experiencing barriers to housing.
  19. SHA is the general partner in a partnership that owns the Westfall Village Apartments in Spokane, Washington. The partnership opened the Westfall Village Apartments in July of 1997 to provide 110 units of housing for low-income tenants.
  20. Both SHA and Westfall deny the United States' allegations in the Complaint that they discriminated in housing in violation of the Fair Housing Act and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Both SHA and Westfall deny that any of their employees or agents engaged in any discriminatory conduct.
  21. Without admitting any liability, and specifically denying the liability asserted by the United States, the SHA and Westfall are agreeing to resolve the United States' complaint because of the inherent costs and risks associated with protracted litigation.
  22. III.   JURISDICTION
  23. The parties agree that the Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter of this case. The parties have agreed that in order to avoid protracted and costly litigation, this controversy should be resolved without a trial or adjudication of any of the facts alleged by the United States. Therefore, the parties consent to the entry of this Decree.
  24. IV.   INJUNCTION
  25. It is hereby ORDERED, ADJUDGED AND AGREED that the SHA and Westfall, their agents, employees, successors, and all persons in active concert or participation with any of them, are hereby enjoined from the following:
    1. Refusing to sell or rent after the making of a bonafide offer, or refusing to negotiate for the sale or rental of, or otherwise making unavailable or denying a dwelling to any person because of national origin;
    2. Discriminating against any person in the terms, conditions, privileges of sale or rental of a dwelling because of national origin; and
    3. Retaliating against any person in any way due to their assertion of their own rights and/or any actions they may have taken to aid others in the exercise of their rights under the Fair Housing Act, in violation of Section 818 of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S. C. §3617.
    V.    NON-DISCRIMINATORY POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
  26. Within thirty (30) days, SHA shall propose policies and procedures to ensure that dwellings are rented at Westfall Village Apartments on a non-discriminatory basis. If the United States does not object within thirty (30) days of receipt of the proposed policy and procedures, the SHA shall implement the policies immediately. If the United States does object, the United States shall provide the SHA with the basis of its objections and the parties shall endeavor in good faith to resolve informally any differences prior to bringing such matters to the Court for resolution.
  27. VI.    NOTICE TO EMPLOYEES AND THE PUBLIC OF DEFENDANTS'
    NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY
  28. Within 30 days of the date of this Order, the SHA shall post and prominently display in the management office of Westfall Village Apartments and at least one central common area, such as a lobby or laundry room, two signs (one in English and one in Russian) no smaller than ten (10) by fourteen (14) inches indicating that all dwellings are available for rent on a nondiscriminatory basis. A poster that comports with 24 C.F.R. Part 110 will satisfy this requirement.
  29. VII.   FAIR HOUSING TRAINING
  30. Within thirty (30) days of the entry of this Order, SHA and Westfall shall provide a summary of this Order to all with responsibility for showing, renting or managing dwelling units in the form attached as Attachment A. Each of these agents or employees shall sign Attachment A, acknowledging that he or she has received and read the summary and had an opportunity to have questions about the Order answered. In addition to Attachment A, these employees must also be given the option of reviewing the entire consent order.
  31. During the term of this Order, within thirty (30) days after the date he or she commences an agency or employment with SHA and Westfall, each new agent or employee with responsibility for showing, renting or managing dwelling units shall be given the summary Attached as Attachment A. Each of these agents or employees shall be required to sign Attachment A, acknowledging that he or she has received and read the summary and had an opportunity to have questions about the Order answered. In addition to Attachment A, these employees must also be given the option of reviewing the entire consent order.
  32. VIII.   RECORD KEEPING AND MONITORING
  33. The SHA shall maintain all records that are the source of, or contain, any of the information pertinent to its obligations under this Order.
  34. The United States shall have the right to inspect and copy any documents relevant to the SHA's compliance with this Consent Order during the time period that the Order is in effect. The United States shall provide reasonable notice to the SHA of a request to inspect and/or copy records and shall endeavor to minimize any inconvenience to the SHA during the inspection and copying of such records. This right to inspection shall not extend to documents or information protected by the attorney-client privilege or any other privilege recognized by law.
  35. Six (6) months after the entry of this Order, and thereafter every six (6) months for a period of three (3) years after entry of this Order, the SHA shall deliver to counsel for the United States (1) a report containing the following information:
    1. Copies of all policies and procedures established, published and/or circulated in accordance with the terms of this Order;
    2. The identification, including the name, address and number of units, or any residential rental property in which the SHA commenced any ownership or management interest during the reporting period;
    3. Any change in ownership or management of Westfall Village Apartments; and
    4. All acknowledgments of review of Attachment A.
    IX.   COMPENSATION FOR AGGRIEVED PERSONS
  36. The SHA and Westfall shall pay a total of $90,000 in damages (the "Settlement Amount") to resolve the United States' complaint (including the alleged violation of Title VI) and the complaints against the SHA and Westfall (but not the other Defendants) of Natalya Prach; Vera Filipenko; Irina Greben; Vladimir Greben; Mikhail Azarov; Nadry Azarov; and the Northwest Fair Housing Alliance. In consideration for such payment and in consideration for the SHA's and Westfall's consent to the entry of this Order, the United States shall procure and deliver to the SHA and Westfall executed releases from the foregoing individuals and entities in a form similar to that attached as Attachment B.
  37. Within five (5) days after the date of this Order or after the delivery of an executed release whichever is later, SHA and Westfall shall deliver checks drawn from the Settlement Amount to the following Aggrieved Persons in the amount listed below:
  38. Natalya Prach
    Vera Filipenko
    Irina Greben & Vladimir Greben
    Mikhail Azarov
    Nadry Azarov
    the Northwest Fair Housing Alliance
    $36,000.00
    $2,000.00
    $9,000.00
    $2,000.00
    $2,000.00
    $14,000.00
  39. Within five (5) days after the date of this Order, the SHA and Westfall shall deposit in an interest-bearing escrow account the total sum of $25,000.00 drawn from the Settlement Amount for the purpose of paying damages to any Aggrieved Persons. For purposes of this Order, Aggrieved Persons shall constitute those individuals who were denied housing or otherwise discriminated against at Westfall Village Apartments in violation of the Fair Housing Act. 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-17. This portion of the Settlement Amount shall be referred to as "the Settlement Fund."
  40. Any interest accruing to the fund shall become a part of the fund and be utilized as set forth herein.
  41. Upon the resolution of the United States' claims against the remaining Defendants, or at such time that the United States determines that it is appropriate to disburse the Settlement Fund, the United States shall inform the SHA and Westfall, through a written dated letter: that the process of disbursing the Settlement Fund should begin (hereinafter "Notice of Fund Disbursement"); whether there is a need for notice to be given by SHA and Westfall to potential Aggrieved Persons; and if notice is necessary, the type of notice that must be given by SHA and Westfall. The SHA and Westfall's obligation to give notice may be altered by the final resolution of the United States' claims against the other Defendants. The SHA and Westfall's obligations, however, will in no circumstances exceed the following:
    1. Within 15 days of the United States providing SHA and Westfall with Notice of Fund Disbursement, the SHA and Westfall shall publish the Notice to Potential Victims of Housing Discrimination ("Notice") at Attachment C informing readers of the availability of compensatory funds. The Notice shall be no smaller than three columns by six inches and shall be published on two occasions in the Spokesman-Review newspaper. The publication dates shall be separated from one another by at least 21 days, and at least one of the publication dates shall be a Sunday. Within 10 days of each publication date, the SHA and Westfall shall provide the newspaper containing the Notice to counsel for the United States.
    2. Within 30 days of the United States providing SHA and Westfall with Notice of Fund Disbursement, the SHA and Westfall shall hand-deliver or send by first-class mail, postage prepaid, a copy of the Notice to each current resident of Westfall Village Apartments and to the last known address of all other persons who lived at Westfall Village Apartments at any time during the period between December 1999 and the date of delivery/mailing of the Notices. Within 45 days of entry of this Order, the SHA and Westfall shall provide to counsel for the United States proof that the Notice has been sent/delivered. Nothing in this section shall preclude the United States from making its own efforts to locate and provide notice to potential Aggrieved Persons.
    3. Within 30 days of the United States providing SHA and Westfall with Notice of Fund Disbursement, the SHA and Westfall shall hand-deliver or send by first-class mail, postage prepaid, a copy of the Notice to each person who inquired about an apartment at Westfall Village Apartments, but never moved into an apartment at Westfall Village. The Notice shall be sent to each individual's last known address. Within 45 days of entry of this Order, the SHA and Westfall shall provide to counsel for the United States proof that the Notice has been sent/delivered. Nothing in this section shall preclude the United States from making its own efforts to locate and provide notice to potential Aggrieved Persons.
  42. Allegedly Aggrieved Persons shall have 120 days from the date of the Notice of Fund Disbursement to contact the United States. The United States shall investigate the claims of allegedly Aggrieved Persons and, within 180 days from the date of Notice of Fund Disbursement, shall make a preliminary determination of which persons are aggrieved and an appropriate amount of damages that should be paid to each such person (provided that the aggregate of all such payments shall not exceed the sum of the Settlement Fund, including accrued interest). The United States will inform SHA and Westfall in writing of its preliminary determinations, together with a copy of a sworn declaration from each aggrieved person setting forth the factual basis of the claim. SHA and Westfall shall have thirty (30) days to review the declaration and provide to the United States any documents or information that they believe may refute the claim.
  43. After receiving SHA and Westfall's comments, the United States shall submit its final recommendations to the Court for approval, together with a copy of the declarations and any additional information submitted by SHA and Westfall. When the Court issues an order approving or changing the United States's proposed distribution of funds for Aggrieved Persons, SHA and Westfall shall, within ten (10) days of the Court's order, deliver to the United States checks payable to the Aggrieved Persons in the amounts approved by the Court. In no event shall the aggregate of all such checks exceed the sum of the Settlement Fund, including accrued interest. No aggrieved person shall be paid until he/she has executed and delivered to counsel for the United States the release at Attachment B.
  44. In the event that less than the total amount in the fund including accrued interest is distributed to Aggrieved Persons, the court shall distribute the remainder in a manner consistent with the purpose of this Decree. SHA and Westfall shall make a proposal to the United States regarding distribution of the remainder of the fund. When the Court issues an order approving or changing the proposed distribution of funds, SHA and Westfall shall distribute the funds in the manner directed by the Court within ten (10) days of the Court's determination.
  45. The SHA and Westfall shall permit the United States, upon reasonable notice, to review any records it believes may facilitate its determinations regarding the claims of alleged Aggrieved Persons, except that SHA and Westfall may withhold documents that are covered by the attorney-client privilege provided that a privilege log is provided describing these documents.
  46. In the event that any of the Defendants or their agents or employees engage in any future violation(s) of the Fair Housing Act during the term of this Order, such violation(s) shall constitute a "subsequent violation" pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d).
  47. X.    LOW-INCOME HOUSING TAX CREDIT PROGRAM COMPLIANCE
  48. The SHA and Westfall is hereby notified that, in the event that it fails to comply with any of the terms of this Consent Order as it relates to any tax-credit property owned or operated by SHA or Westfall, and the United States obtains a Court Order establishing such noncompliance, the United States may take any appropriate action, including but not limited to notifying the appropriate state housing finance agency of the violation. See 26 U.S.C. Section 42 (m)(1)(B)(iii). The United States agrees that before bringing the alleged non-compliance to the Court for resolution, it will notify the SHA and Westfall and the parties will endeavor in good faith to resolve the non-compliance issues.
  49. XI.   DURATION OF DECREE AND TERMINATION OF LEGAL ACTION
  50. This Consent Order shall remain in effect for three (3) years after the date of its entry.
  51. The United States' Complaint against the SHA and Westfall shall be dismissed with prejudice, except that the United States may petition the Court, at any time during the duration of this Order, to reopen the case for the purpose of enforcing the Order, and this Court shall retain jurisdiction to enforce this Order. The parties to this Order 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.
  52. XII.  TIME FOR PERFORMANCE
  53. Any time limits for performance imposed by this Consent Order may be extended by the mutual written agreement of the parties.
  54. XIII.   COSTS OF LITIGATION
  55. Each party to this litigation will bear its own costs and attorney's fees associated with this litigation.

So ORDERED this ________ day of __________________________, 2003.

___________________________
United States District Judge

For the Plaintiff United States

JAMES A. MCDEVITT
United States Attorney
WILLIAM BEATTY
Assistant United States
Attorney
P.O. Box 1494
Spokane, WA 99210-1494
Tel: (509)353-2767
Fax: (509)353-2766

RALPH F. BOYD, JR.
Assistant Attorney General

_________________________
STEVEN H. ROSENBAUM
Chief
TIMOTHY J. MORAN
ERIC I. HALPERIN
MICHAEL S. MAURER
Attorneys
Housing and Civil
   Enforcement Section - G
St.
Civil Rights Division
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue,
N.W.
Washington, DC 20530
Tel: (202) 353-9706
Fax: (202) 514-1116

For Defendant Spokane Housing Authority

and Westfall Village, LP:

____________________________
Stephen Farnell
Winston & Cashatt
1900 Seafirst Financial Center
601 W. Riverside, Suite 1900
Spokane, WA 99201

Frederick B. Rivera
Perkins Coie LLP
1201 Third Avenue, Ste 4800
Seattle, WA 98101


NOTICE TO EMPLOYEES/AGENTS

The United States commenced an action in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Washington against the Spokane Housing Authority (the "SHA"), and the Westfall Village Apartments Limited Partnership ("Westfall") the owner of the WestfallVillage Apartments. The United States alleged that the SHA and Westfall as a result of conduct by their property management company Bowen Property Management Companyand Bowen's employees, discriminated on the basis of national originin the selection of tenants at Westfall Village Apartments.

The United States and the SHA and Westfall entered into a Consent Order resolving the claims against the SHA and Westfall. The Consent Order includes the following provisions:

INJUNCTION

Pursuant to the terms of the Consent Order, the SHA and Westfall, their agents, employees, successors, and all persons in active concert or participation with any of them, were enjoined from the following:

  • Refusing to sell or rent after the making of a bonafide offer, or refusing to negotiate for the sale or rental of, or otherwise making unavailable or denying a dwelling to any person because of national origin;
  • Discriminating against any person in the terms, conditions, privileges of sale or rental of a dwelling because of national origin; and
  • Retaliating against any person in any way due to their assertion of their own rights and/or any actions they may have taken to aid others in the exercise of their rights under the Fair Housing Act, in violation of Section 818 of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S. C. §3617.

ADOPTION OF NON-DISCRIMINATORY POLICIES

The SHA and Westfall must adopt policies and procedures to ensure that dwellings are rented at Westfall Village Apartments on a non-discriminatory basis. SHA and Westfall must also provide notice to Westfall Village residents and employees of these policies and procedures.

FAIR HOUSING TRAINING

Within thirty (30) days of the entry of the Order SHA and Westfall must provide this summary of the Consent Order to all current employees with responsibility for showing,renting or managing dwelling units. In addition to this summary, these employees must also be given the option of reviewing the entire consent order.

During the term of the Order, within thirty (30) days after the date he or she commences an agency or employment with SHA and Westfall, each new agent or employee with responsibility for showing, renting or managing dwelling units shall be given this summary and be given the option of reviewing the entire consent order, if they so choose.

RECORD KEEPING AND MONITORING

SHA and Westfall must submit regular reports to the United States to enable the United States to monitor their compliance with the Consent Order.

COMPENSATION FOR AGGRIEVED PERSONS

The SHA and Westfall agree to pay $90,000 to seven complainants and to establish a Settlement Fund to compensate other individuals harmed by the alleged discrimination at Westfall Village.

DURATION

The Order will be in effect for three years from the date that it is entered.

I acknowledge that I have read the foregoing summary of the Consent Order, understand and agree to abide by the terms set forth herein. I understand that the complete Consent Order is available for my review should I choose to do so. I have also been supplied with a copy of the Fair Housing Handbook, have read and understand its terms. I agree to abide by the terms of the Fair Housing Handbook.

______________________________
Agent/Employee


RELEASE

In consideration for the parties' agreement to the terms of the Consent Order entered in United States v. Bowen Property Management, et al. (E.D. Wash.), and the payment to me of $_____________, I hereby release and forever discharge all claims, including claims for attorney's fees and costs, against the Spokane Housing Authority and Westfall Village Apartments, L.P. related to the facts at issue in the litigation referenced above, or in any way related to that litigation, and any other claims arising from the housing discrimination alleged in that litigation up to and including the date of execution of this release, that I may have against the Spokane Housing Authority and Westfall Village Apartments L.P., all related entities, parents, predecessors, successors, subsidiaries and affiliates, and all of their past and present directors, officers, agents, managers, supervisors, shareholders and employees and their heirs, executors, administrators, successors or assigns, except that I do not release Bowen Property Management, John Ballas, Kerrey Lemons, or their entities, parents, predecessors, successors, subsidiaries and affiliates, or any of their past and present directors, officers, agents, managers, supervisors, shareholders and employees or their heirs, executors, administrators, successors or assigns. I declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct.

Executed this _____ day of __________________, 2003.

__________________________________
      [Print Name]

__________________________________
      [Signature]


NOTICE TO POTENTIAL VICTIMS OF HOUSING DISCRIMINATION

In _______________________________ , 2003, the United States District for the Eastern District of Washington entered a consent order resolving a lawsuit brought by the United States against the Spokane Housing Authority and Westfall Village Apartments. The United States alleges that as a result of conduct by their property management company, Bowen Property Management Company, and Bowen's employees, Spokane Housing Authority and Westfall Village Apartments discriminated against non-Russians in violation of the Fair Housing Act. The complaint alleges that the defendants violated the Fair Housing Act by skipping over applicants on the waiting list for vacant apartments because of their national origin.

Under this Consent Order, you may be entitled to receive monetary relief if you:

  • if you were made to wait longer for an apartment at Westfall Village Apartments because of your national origin; or
  • were not offered a vacant apartment at Westfall Village because of your national origin.

If you wish to make a claim for discrimination on the basis of national origin, or if you have any information about persons who may have such claims, please contact the United States Department of Justice at 1-800-896-7743. You may also write to:






1. All correspondence to the United States related to this Order should be sent to United States Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Housing and Civil Enforcement Section - G Street, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20530, Attn: 175-81-25


Document Entered: August 22, 2003 > >
Updated August 6, 2015

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