Housing And Civil Enforcement Cases Documents

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT DISTRICT OF KANSAS

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,

Plaintiff,

v.                                                                 Civil Action No.:

TODD E. BLEAKLEY, et al.,                     01-2226-JWL

Defendants.

CONSENT DECREE

Plaintiff United States and defendants, Todd E. Bleakley, Charles Bleakley, Bleakley Investment Company, Bleakley Development Co., Inc., Bleakley Development Company, LLC, Bleakley Development, L.P. (collectively referred to herein as "Bleakley"), LNL Associates/Architects, P.A. ("LNL"), Allenbrand-Drews and Associates, Inc., ("A-D/I"), Allenbrand-Drews and Associates ("A-D") and Loren Drews and Gary Allenbrand ("LD/GA") agree to the terms of this Consent Decree resolving this action filed by Plaintiff United States.

I. INTRODUCTION

On June 18, 2002, the United States filed its Second Amended Complaint ("Complaint") alleging violations of Section 804 (f) (1)-(3) of the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. § 3604 (f) (1)-(3), as amended by the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3619 (the "Act"), and Sections 302 and 303 of the Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 12182 and 12183 ("ADA"). Specifically, the United States' Complaint alleges that the defendants have engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination by failing to design and construct the Wyncroft Hill Apartments ("Wyncroft"), at 12235 S. Blackbob Rd., and the Homestead Apartment Homes ("Homestead"), at 11800 South Shannon Street, in Olathe, Kansas, with the features of accessible and adaptive design set forth in 42 U.S.C. §  3604(f)(3)(C). The United States also alleges that the defendants engaged in a pattern or practice of violating the ADA at the two apartment complexes because the rental offices at those complexes are not readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities, as required by section 303(a)(1) of the ADA, 42 U.S.C. § 12183(a)(1). The Complaint alleges that these areas fail in numerous respects to comply with the Department of Justice's regulation implementing Title III of the ADA, 28 C.F.R. Part 36, including the Standards for Accessible Design, 28 C.F.R. Part 36, Appendix A (the "ADA Standards").

Defendant Bleakley is the developer and current owner of Wyncroft and Homestead and directed the design and construction of the properties. Defendant LNL is the architect that designed the buildings and AD/I, A-D and LD/GA, the civil engineers, performed the exterior design and landscaping of one or more of the properties.

The Fair Housing Act provides that, for non-elevator (1) residential buildings with four or more dwelling units, all ground-floor units that are designed and constructed for first occupancy after March 13, 1991, are "covered units" and must include certain basic features of accessible and adaptive design to make such units usable by persons with disabilities. 42 U.S.C.   §§  3604(f)(3)(C) and (f)(7)(B). All of the ground-floor units at Wyncroft and Homestead were designed and constructed for first occupancy after March 13, 1991, and are located in non-elevator buildings containing four or more units. Thus, these ground floor units are "covered multi-family dwellings" within the meaning of the Act and must include the features of accessible and adaptive design.

The features of accessible and adaptive design required by the Act include: (a) public use and common use areas that are readily accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities; (b) doors designed to allow passage into and within all premises that are sufficiently wide to allow passage by persons who use wheelchairs; (c) an accessible route into and through the dwelling; (d) light switches, electrical outlets, thermostats, and environmental controls in accessible locations; (e) reinforcements in bathroom walls to allow later installation of grab bars; and (f) usable kitchens and bathrooms which will permit an individual who uses a wheelchair to maneuver about the space. 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C). As originally designed and constructed, the "covered units" as well as the public and common use areas at Wyncroft and at Homestead do not include all of the features of accessible and adaptive design required by the Act.

The ADA prohibits discrimination "on the basis of disability in the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, or accommodations of any place of public accommodation." 42 U.S.C. § 12182(a). Section 303(a)(1) of the ADA prohibits the "failure to design and construct facilities for first occupancy [after January 26, 1993]...that are readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities," 42 U.S.C. § 12183(a)(1). Apartment rental offices are public accommodations pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 12181(7)(E) and, thus, subject to the accessibility requirements of Section 303(a)(1), 42 U.S.C. § 12183(a)(1). The rental offices at Wyncroft and at Homestead are required to comply with the ADA's accessibility requirements because they were designed and constructed for first occupancy after January 26, 1993.

Rental offices and other places of public accommodation are not readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities unless they are designed and constructed "in accordance with standards set forth or incorporated by reference in regulations issued under this title." 42 U.S.C. § 12183(a)(1). The regulations implementing Title III of the ADA are set out at 28 C.F.R. pt. 36 and include the ADA Standards, 28 C.F.R. pt. 36, Appendix A.. The rental offices at Wyncroft and at Homestead were not originally designed and constructed in full accordance with the regulations implementing Title III of the ADA, 28 C.F.R. pt. 36, including the ADA Standards set out at 28 C.F.R. pt. 36, Appendix A.

The defendants deny the allegations of the complaint and otherwise deny that they have violated the Fair Housing Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Nevertheless, the parties agree that this Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter of this case and that the controversy should be resolved without further proceedings, without an evidentiary hearing, and without further adjudication as to the merits of the claims of the United States. Therefore, the parties have consented to the entry of this Consent Decree as indicated by the signatures appearing below. The entry of this Consent Decree does not constitute a finding by the Court that the defendants have violated the law.

It is hereby ORDERED, ADJUDGED, AND DECREED:

II. GENERAL INJUNCTION

Defendants, their officers, employees, agents, successors and assigns and all other persons in active concert or participation with them are permanently enjoined from discriminating on the basis of disability as prohibited by the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(1) - (3), and as set forth in the Fair Housing Accessibility Guidelines, 56 Fed. Reg. 9472 (1991) (the "Guidelines") and as prohibited by the Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 12182 and 12183, and its implementing regulations, 28 C.F.R. Part 36, including the ADA Standards, 28 C.F.R. Part 36, Appendix A.

III. CORRECTIVE ACTIONS

The ground-floor units and the public and common use areas at Wyncroft and Homestead do not meet the requirements of the Act and the Guidelines, and the rental offices at Wyncroft and Homestead do not meet the requirements of the ADA and its regulations. The Bleakley defendants have agreed to take the actions set forth below (2) to resolve this matter.

IV. ESTABLISHMENT OF COMPENSATION FUND AND PAYMENTS TO AGGRIEVED PERSONS

Within 60 days of the entry of this Consent Decree, defendant Bleakley (3) shall pay the total sum of One Hundred and Thirty Thousand Dollars ($130,000) into an interest bearing escrow account (4) to establish a compensation fund which shall be distributed to "aggrieved persons" in the following manner:

  1. For purposes of this Consent Decree, an "aggrieved person" includes:
    1. Any person who was discouraged or precluded from living at Wyncroft or at Homestead or was otherwise harmed because the covered units or the public and common use areas of the developments did not comply with the Act and the Guidelines and/or the rental office did not comply with the ADA and its implementing regulations; or
    2. Any current or former tenant of a covered unit at Wyncroft or at Homestead who paid to modify his or her unit so that it would comply with the Act and Guidelines or was otherwise harmed by the failure of any defendant to meet the requirements of the Act and the Guidelines in the design, construction, or rental operations of Wyncroft of Homestead and/or the ADA and its implementing regulations.
    3. Defendant Bleakley shall allow representatives of the United States to conduct door-to-door interviews of current tenants at Homestead and Wyncroft to identify anyone who may have been an aggrieved person because of the lack of features of accessibility and adaptability at Wyncroft or Homestead. These interviews may be conducted at any reasonable time and must be completed within ninety (90) days from the date of entry of this Consent Decree. The United States shall provide defendant Bleakley with at least ten days' notice prior to conducting such interviews.
  2. Defendant Bleakley shall produce or permit representatives of the United States to review any records of Wyncroft and Homestead in the possession or control of any of the defendants, their employees, agents, or representatives which the United States believes to be useful in identifying persons who may be aggrieved persons, such as records relating to former tenants or applicants, including tenant applications. Upon reasonable notice of at least ten days, Defendant Bleakley shall provide such records or shall permit representatives of the United States to make such an inspection on any business day.
  3. No later than 180 days after the entry of the Consent Decree, the United States shall determine, in its sole discretion, which persons qualify as aggrieved persons as defined by Section IV.A. above, shall determine an appropriate amount of damages for each such person, and shall notify the defendants, in writing, of this determination. The United States shall, at the time it notifies the Defendants of its determination, and provide Defendants with a statement summarizing why each person identified is aggrieved. Defendants shall issue checks to each aggrieved person in the amounts designated by the United States and shall forward such checks to counsel for the United States within 10 days of any such designation, provided that the United States shall not issue any such check to an aggrieved person pursuant to this subsection before the aggrieved person has executed a written release of all claims, legal or equitable, in the form of Appendix A that he or she might have against the defendants relating to the claims asserted in this lawsuit.
  4. If the United States has not distributed all of the money in the compensation fund to aggrieved persons pursuant to subsections A through C above within 240 days after the date of entry of the Consent Decree, any money remaining in the fund shall be transferred to the "Retrofit Fund" as described in Section V.D.
V. RETROFITS

Defendant Bleakley shall make retrofits at Wyncroft and Homestead as described below.

A. RETROFITS OF PUBLIC AND COMMON USE AREAS

  1. Within eight months of the date of the entry of this Consent Decree, defendant Bleakley shall retrofit the public and common use areas of Homestead and at Wyncroft to correct each of the violations identified in Appendix B to bring them into compliance with the Act, ANSI (5) and the Guidelines and, where specified, the ADA and its implementing regulations, including the ADA Standards. (6) The anticipated total cost of these retrofits at Wyncroft is $202,515 and at Homestead, $26,013.
  2. Defendant Bleakley shall formally publish to their tenants, and enforce, their policy that precludes tenants and the general public from using the kitchen facilities located in the rental offices of Wyncroft and Homestead.
  3. Defendant Bleakley shall adopt, publish and implement a permanent, formal policy under which tenants who have disabilities may have individualized trash pickup at their units if they so request and without cost to them. Such trash pickup shall be performed no less than twice per week. All new tenants shall be provided written notice of this policy at or about the time they execute a lease and all tenants shall be provided written notice of the policy at least once per year, with current tenants receiving their first notification of this policy within thirty (30) days of the date of entry of the Consent Decree.
  4. Defendant Bleakley shall adopt, publish and implement a permanent, formal policy under which tenants who have disabilities may have individualized mail delivery at their units if they so request and without cost to them. All new tenants shall be provided written notice of this policy at or about the time they execute a lease and all tenants shall be provided written notice of the policy at least once per year, with current tenants receiving their first notification of this policy within thirty (30) days of the date of entry of the Consent Decree.

B. RETROFITS TO GROUND-FLOOR UNITS

Bleakley agrees to perform retrofits to the ground-floor units at Wyncroft and Homestead as provided in Appendix B to bring these units into full compliance with the Act, ANSI and the technical specifications of the Guidelines, and, as applicable, the ADA Standards. The retrofits shall be completed pursuant to the following terms:

  1. Units Retrofitted Upon Tenant Request
    1. Within 45 days of the date of the entry of this Consent Decree, defendant Bleakley shall provide to each and every tenant whose unit will be retrofitted pursuant to this Consent Decree with the notice attached hereto as Appendix C, which will inform the tenant that: (1) the unit does not meet the accessible and adaptive design requirements of the Act; (2) the features of accessible and adaptive design can be retrofitted in the unit upon request; (3) the retrofits offered will be at no cost to the tenant and will take no more than ten (10) days; and (4) defendants will provide comparable alternative living arrangements during the retrofit period for any tenant who requests retrofits.
    2. If defendant Bleakley receives a request to perform the retrofits from a current tenant of a ground-floor unit, defendant Bleakley shall: (1) inform the tenant that the retrofits will be performed within forty-five (45) days of the date of the request; (2) provide comparable alternative living arrangements at no cost to the tenant while the retrofitting is being performed; and (3) complete the retrofits within ten (10) days from the date on which the retrofit construction begins. Defendant Bleakley shall not charge any additional rent, deposit or other fee for the units in which retrofits are implemented. The rent for these units shall remain the same as for equivalent units that have not been retrofitted.
  2. Other Retrofitting of Units: If retrofitting of a covered, ground floor unit is not required to be performed pursuant to V.B.1. above, retrofits for that unit shall be completed after it is vacated by the tenant who is residing in the unit as of the date of this Consent Decree and before it is occupied by any other tenant. All required retrofits shall be completed within five years of the date this Consent Decree is entered whether or not each unit is ever vacated by its current tenants. If defendant Bleakley learns that a current tenant intends to continue to occupy an apartment for more than five years from the date the Consent Decree is entered, it shall advise that tenant that the required retrofit must be completed prior to the five year deadline. Such retrofits shall be completed within ten (10) days and the tenants shall be given comparable alternative living arrangements as provided in V.B.1.a. above.
  3. Notice of Available Grab Bar Installation: Bleakley shall adopt a permanent formal policy of installing grab bars in bathrooms at Wyncroft and Homestead upon request and without cost to any tenant who requests them. Bleakley shall distribute a notice describing this policy to all current tenants within thirty (30) days after the date of entry of the Consent Decree, to all new tenants at or about the time they execute a lease, and to all tenants at least once annually.
  4. Cost of the Retrofits: The anticipated total cost of these retrofits at Wyncroft is $40,200 and at Homestead, $82,350.

C. ONGOING AND FUTURE CONSTRUCTION AT HOMESTEAD

As of the date of entry of this Consent Decree, portions of Homestead are either under construction or planned for construction. Defendant Bleakley shall ensure that its designs, construction, and site development for all (1) public and common use areas at Homestead are in full compliance with the standards set out in ANSI; (2) ground-floor units at Homestead are in full compliance with the standards set out in the Guidelines; and (3) rental offices and other places of public accommodation as defined in 42 U.S.C. § 12181(7) are in full compliance with the standards set out in the ADA Standards.

D. RETROFIT FUND

The defendant Bleakley shall establish a "Retrofit Fund" for the purpose of providing a means for individuals with disabilities within the greater Kansas City area to make modifications to their residential dwellings so as to increase their accessibility to persons with disabilities. This fund is to be utilized to increase the accessibility of dwelling units beyond the minimum requirements of the law or to provide accessibility in dwellings units that are not presently required to meet the accessibility requirements of the law. Defendant Bleakley shall deposit the total amount of $214,443 in an interest bearing escrow account (7) for this purpose. This amount shall be increased by any amount remaining after the distribution of the Compensation Fund as provided in Section IV.D. Within 45 days of the date of entry of this Consent Decree, the United States shall select an entity to administer the Retrofit Fund. The administration of the fund shall include the following: (1) advertising the availability of the money for retrofits; (2) taking applications for retrofits; (3) selecting from among the applicants for retrofits; (4) taking bids from contractors to complete the retrofits; (5) reviewing plans for the retrofits; (6) reviewing the completed retrofits; and (7) dispersing the funds for the completed work.

The Retrofit Fund may be used by any individual who owns or rents a dwelling unit, or is about to purchase or rent such a unit, within the Kansas City Metropolitan area, to make retrofits to his or her dwelling unit to provide greater accessibility to individuals with disabilities subject to the following limitations:

  1. The dwelling must be located within Kansas City, Kansas, and Kansas City, Missouri, metropolitan areas;
  2. The dwelling must be considered by the applicant as his or her primary personal residence;
  3. No more than Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000) may be awarded to an applicant to make retrofits to his or her residence; and
  4. No more than Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000) may be awarded to make retrofits at a single dwelling.

E. REVIEW BY THE UNITED STATES

Before proceeding with the exterior retrofits for Wyncroft as described in Section V.A. above, as set forth in the attached appendices and with further new construction at Homestead, Phase II, as described in Section V.C. above, Bleakley shall provide counsel for the United States with detailed construction documents indicating the retrofits that it will perform to implement the terms of this Consent Decree. The United States shall advise Bleakley within thirty days whether the plans appear to be in compliance with the terms of the Consent Decree. The United States shall make a final determination of compliance of all retrofits performed pursuant to Section V.A-C. That determination shall be subject to a physical inspection by the United States after completion of the retrofits as described in Section XIII. All retrofits shall be reviewed for strict compliance with ANSI, the Guidelines and, as applicable, the ADA Standards, 28 CFR pt. 36, App. A.

VI. NEW APPLICANTS AND TRANSFERS

Applicants and tenants with disabilities, or who are associated with persons with disabilities, shall permanently be given priority in moving to an accessible apartment at Wyncroft or Homestead. All future applicants and all tenants shall be advised in writing of this policy.

If there is no available, accessible apartment at Wyncroft at the time a current, or prospective tenant who does not already occupy an accessible apartment, seeks to rent or transfer to an accessible apartment at Wyncroft because of a disability-related need of the applicant or tenant (or the disability-related need of an individual associated with the applicant or tenant), then that person shall be offered the first available accessible apartment at Homestead at no higher rent than would be charged for the type (e.g., 1 bedroom, 2 bedroom) of apartment sought at Wyncroft and with no other additional fee.

VII. CIVIL PENALTIES

Defendant Bleakley shall pay the sum of Twenty Thousand Dollars ($20,000) to the United States as a civil penalty pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(C) and 42 U.S.C. § 12188(b)(2)(C). Said sum shall be paid within thirty (30) days of the date of entry of this Consent Decree by submitting to counsel for the United States a check made payable to the order of the United States of America. (8)

VIII. NON-DISCRIMINATION IN FUTURE DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION
  1. For a period of five (5) years from the date of entry of this Consent Decree, Defendant Bleakley shall, regarding any covered, multi-family dwellings and any places of public accommodation intended to be developed, designed, and/or constructed by it or them, alone or together, in whole or in part, as evidenced by the completion of site plans and construction documents for the project, but prior to the application for the initial building permits for the project, submit to counsel for the United States the following information: (1) the name and address of the project; (2) a description of the project and, for multi-family housing, a description of the individual units; (3) the name and address of each site engineer involved with the project; and (4) the name and address of each architect involved with the project. Each architect and site engineer involved with the project shall also sign and submit a statement as provided in Appendix E indicating that, to the best of their knowledge and belief, their plans are consistent with the requirements of the Fair Housing Act, the ADA and their technical requirements and guidelines.
  2. For a period of five (5) years from the date of entry of this Consent Decree, for all contracts (9)relating to the design, the construction and/or the development of covered multifamily dwellings and/or places of public accommodation entered into by Defendant LNL, Defendant LNL shall submit to counsel for the United States the following information before the developer applies for the initial building permits: (1) the name(s) and address(es) of the builders and developers; (2) the name and address of the project; (3) the type of project that will be constructed, including a description of the type of multi-family dwelling (e.g., condominiums or apartments) and the total number of dwelling units planned; and (4) a signed, written statement as provided in Appendix E. (10)
  3. For a period of five (5) years following the date of entry of this Consent Decree, for all contracts relating to the design, the construction, and/or the development of covered multifamily dwellings or places of public accommodation entered into by Defendant A-D/I, Defendant A-D/I shall submit to counsel for the United States the following information before the developer applies for the initial building permits: (1) the names and addresses of the builders and developers; (2) the name and address of the project; (3) a description of the project and, for multi-family housing, a description of the type of multi-family dwelling that will be constructed (e.g., condominiums or apartments) and the total number of dwelling units planned; and (4) a signed, written statement as provided in Appendix E.
IX. ADDITIONAL REMEDIES REGARDING
DEFENDANTS LNL AND A-D/I
  1. Within five (5) years from the date of entry of this Consent Decree, Defendant LNL shall donate 100 hours of technical assistance to non-profit groups that promote fair housing, disability rights, or affordable housing, approved by the United States. The technical assistance may include providing training on the design requirements of the Act and the Guidelines and/or providing design services. The services shall be provided at no cost to the recipients. Defendant LNL shall certify that it has met the 100 hour requirement by submitting to the United States statements signed by the recipients of the technical assistance confirming the donation. The signed statements must be submitted to the United States no later than 30 days after each donation of assistance.
  2. Within five (5) years from the date of entry of this Consent Decree, Defendant A-D/I shall donate 100 hours of technical assistance to non-profit groups that promote fair housing, disability rights or affordable housing, approved by the United States. The technical assistance may include providing training on the design requirements of the Act and the Guidelines and/or providing design services. The services shall be provided at no cost to the recipients. Defendant A-D/I shall certify that it has met the 100 hour requirement by submitting to the United States statements signed by the recipients of the technical assistance confirming the donation. The signed statements must be submitted to the United States no later than 30 days after each donation of assistance.

X. EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM

Within thirty (60) days of the date of entry of this Consent Decree, defendants shall provide to all their supervisory employees, sales or rental agents, and site managers involved in the design, construction, sale or rental of multi-family dwellings covered by the Act:  (1) a copy of this Consent Decree; and (2) instruction on (i) the terms of this Consent Decree, (ii) the requirements of the Act with a particular emphasis on the Act's design and construction requirements, (iii) the requirements of the ADA with a particular emphasis on the ADA's design and construction requirements; and (iv) their responsibilities and obligations under the Consent Decree, the Act, and the ADA. The instruction on the Act's design and construction requirements and the ADA's design and construction requirements shall be conducted by a qualified person or organization approved by the United States. (11) This program may be conducted in-house, subject to the pre-approval of the United States as to curriculum and duration. Any expenses associated with this training shall be borne by defendants. Each new supervisory employee, sales or rental agent, or site manager retained by any Defendant during the term of this Decree must comply with the above requirements within thirty (30) days after the date he or she commences an employment, agency, or contractual relationship with any Defendant. Every employee, agent, and contractor required to participate in the educational program required by this Section shall execute a statement confirming attendance at the program on the form provided at Appendix D.

  1. Defendant Bleakley shall post and prominently display in the rental offices of Wyncroft, Homestead, and every other multi-family housing complex that it owns operates, manages, or staffs, a sign 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.
  2. For the duration of this Consent Decree, in all future advertising and promotional materials in print or other media regarding Wyncroft and/or Homestead, Defendant Bleakley shall place, in a conspicuous location, a statement that the apartments include features for persons with disabilities required by the federal Fair Housing Act.

  1. Sixty (60) days after the date of entry of this Consent Decree, defendants shall submit to counsel for the United States an initial report including copies of the signed statements of current supervisory employees, rental or sales agents, and site managers who have completed the educational program (see Section X above).
  2. Semi-annually after the date of entry of this Consent Decree for a period of two years and annually afterwards, defendants shall submit to counsel for the United States a report containing the following:
    1. All steps taken during that six month reporting period to comply with the terms of the Consent Decree;
    2. Each instance of noncompliance with the terms of the Consent Decree that occurred during that six month reporting period; and
    3. Signed statements of new supervisory employees, sales agents, and site managers who have completed the educational program during that six month reporting period . (See Section X above).
    4. The name, address, and telephone number of any tenant or prospective tenant who requested retrofits pursuant to Section V.B.1 above, the date on which the retrofits were requested, and the date on which the retrofits were completed;
    5. The name, address, and telephone number of any tenant or prospective tenant who requested rental of, or transfer to, an accessible unit at Wyncroft, the date of the request, and a description and the date of actions taken in response to such request pursuant to Section VI.
    6. A report detailing the cost of implementing any retrofits performed to the common use or public use areas and any unit at Homestead and Wyncroft during that reporting period.
  3. Defendants shall advise counsel for the United States in writing within fifteen (15) days after receipt of any written administrative or legal complaint against them or against any employees or agents of defendants, regarding equal opportunity in housing. Defendants shall also promptly provide the United States all information it may request concerning any such complaint.
  4. For the term of this Consent Decree, defendants are required to preserve all records related to this Consent Decree, for all properties designed, constructed, owned, operated, managed, staffed, 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 or inspect any developments, residential units covered by the Act and places of public accommodation under defendants' control bearing on compliance with this Consent Decree at any and all reasonable times; provided, however, that the United States shall endeavor to minimize any inconvenience to defendants from such inspections.
XIII. INSPECTION OF RETROFITS

Upon reasonable notice to Defendant Bleakley, representatives of the United States shall be permitted to inspect the retrofits performed by defendants to ensure compliance with this Consent Decree. The United States shall provide counsel for the Bleakley defendants with at least ten days' notice before conducting any such inspection.

XIV. DURATION OF DECREE AND TERMINATION OF LEGAL ACTION
  1. Duration of Consent Decree.     This Consent Decree shall remain in effect for a period of five (5) years and nine (9) months after the date of its entry.

  2. Dismissal of Amended Complaint.     The United States' Complaint shall be dismissed as to all defendants without prejudice to the right of the United States to petition the Court, at any time during the duration of this Consent Decree, to reopen the case for the purposes of enforcing the Consent Decree. The parties to this Consent Decree shall endeavor in good faith to resolve informally any differences regarding interpretation of and compliance with this Consent Decree prior to bringing such matters to the Court for resolution.
XV. MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS
  1. Time for Performance.      Any time limits for performance imposed by this Consent Decree may be extended by the mutual written agreement of the parties.
  2. Litigation Costs.      Each party to this litigation will bear its own costs and attorney's fees associated with this litigation.
  3. Consent Decree Binding on Defendants and Successors in Interest.     This Consent Decree shall be binding on defendants and the successors in interest of any of the defendants who are defined by this Consent Decree as any entity or person in name or in fact that continues or conducts the business of the defendants or who are acting in concert or participation with them in the design and/or construction of multifamily dwellings or public accommodations. Defendants have a duty to so notify all such successors in interest of the existence and terms of this Consent Decree.
  4. No Waiver or Limitation of Liability.      The parties agree that this Consent Decree resolves claims of the United States only with respect to the facts alleged in the Complaint relating to Wyncroft and Homestead and does not in any way affect or relieve any of the defendants from liability for violations of the Act or the ADA at any other multifamily apartment complexes, places of public accommodation or commercial facilities, including liability for engaging in a pattern or practice of discrimination on the basis of disability, retrofitting of the complexes or facilities, compensatory and punitive damages, civil penalties, and other legal or equitable relief.
  5. The parties agree that this decree is a compromise settlement within the meaning of Rule 408 of the Federal Rules of Evidence, and that the entry of this decree or its language or requirements shall not be used as an admission by any of the parties to this decree, or to establish or defend against liability or damages in United States of America v. LNL Associates/Architects, P.A., et al., Civil Action 02-2167-JWL, filed in the United States District Court for the District of Kansas.

So ORDERED this ___ day of ____________, 2003.

___________________________
United States District Judge

FOR THE UNITED STATES:

_____________________________
Jeanine M. Worden
Deputy Chief
Michael L. Barrett
Scott P. Moore &
Allen W. Levy
Attorneys
Housing and Civil Enforcement Section
Civil Rights Division
Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. (G Street)
Washington, D.C. 20530
(202) 514-2447

FOR DEFENDANTS TODD E. BLEAKLEY, CHARLES BLEAKLEY, BLEAKLEY INVESTMENT COMPANY, BLEAKLEY DEVELOPMENT CO., INC., BLEAKLEY DEVELOPMENT COMPANY, LLC, BLEAKLEY DEVELOPMENT, L.P.:



__________________________
Leonard Frischer
Frischer & Russell, Chartered
Southcreek Building XIV
13220 Metcalf, Suite 100
Overland Park, KS 66213
(913) 345-0100

FOR DEFENDANTS
LNL ASSOCIATES/ARCHITECTS, P.A.
ALLENBRAND DREWS AND
ASSOCIATES, INC.

_________________________
Michael G. Norris
Melissa D. Allemann
Norris, Keplinger & Herman, LLC
Financial Plaza II
6800 College Boulevard, Suite 630
Overland Park, KS 66211
(913) 663-2000

___________________________
Theresa L. Kitay
Coughlin & Kitay, P.C.
3091 Holcomb Bridge Road
Suite A-1
Norcross, GA 30071
(770) 840-8483

FOR DEFENDANT ALLENBRAND
DREWS AND ASSOCIATES


________________________
Jerome V. Bales
Lathrop & Gage
2345 Grand Blvd.
Suite 2800
Kansas City, MO 64108
(816) 460-5747


RELEASE OF CLAIMS

In consideration of the payment of the sum of _____________ dollars ($_______), pursuant to the Consent Decree entered in United States v. Todd Bleakley, et al., Civil Action No. 01-2226-JWL (D. Kan.), I hereby release the defendants named in this action from liability for any and all claims that I may have, legal, equitable or otherwise, whether currently known or unknown, arising out of the facts alleged in the complaint, including but not limited to any claims that I, my heirs, assigns and those taking under or through me, have sustained damages of any kind whatsoever, due to the failure of the Wyncroft Hills Apartments and the Homestead Manor Apartments to meet the design and construction requirements of the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. 3604(f)(1)-(3) as amended by the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, 42 U.S.C. 3601-3619 and/or the Americans With Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. 12182 and 12183.

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.

NAME (printed): _________________________________

SIGNATURE: _________________________________

DATE: _________________________________


Notice to Tenants

Dear Tenant,

This is to advise you that, as a result of a settlement in a case brought by the United States against the owners of this apartment complex, we have agreed to modify some of the apartments at Wyncroft to provide greater accessibility for people with disabilities. Your unit is one of those that does not meet the accessible and adaptive design requirements of the Fair Housing Act. Although your apartment unit will be retrofitted automatically after your tenancy ends, we want you to know that you may request to have your apartment modified now at no cost to you. The actual work will take no longer than five days and we will provide you with comparable alternative living arrangements during that time. You should be aware, however, that this work must be completed within five years, regardless of your intention to stay in your apartment for a longer duration. Please let us know if you are interested in having the work done now and we will provide you with additional information.

The Management


APPENDIX D Employee Statement

I _________________, am an employee of [Name of Defendant]
______________________ at [Where duties are performed]
_________________and my duties include [supervisory employee, sales or rental agent, and site manager involved in the design, construction, sale or rental of covered dwellings]
_____________________________________. I have received and read a copy of the Consent Decree in United States v. Bleakley and have been given instruction on (1) the terms of this Consent Decree, (2) the requirements of the Fair Housing Act, particularly related to the Act's design and construction requirements, (3) the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) particular related to the ADA's design and construction requirements; and (4) my responsibilities and obligations under the Consent Decree, the Fair Housing Act, and the ADA.

_______________[DATE]

_________________________________
[Employee Signature]



ARCHITECT'S/ENGINEER'S CERTIFICATE

I hereby certify that I have read and am familiar with the accessibility requirements and provisions of the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. § 3604 (f) (1)-(3), as amended by the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3619 (the "Act"), the Fair Housing Accessibility Guidelines, 24 CFR Chapter I, Subchapter A, Appendix II and III, ANSI A117.1-1986, and Sections 302 and 303 of the Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 12182 and 12183 ("ADA"), implemented by 28 C.F.R. pt. 36, including the ADA Standards, 28 C.F.R. pt. 36, Appendix A, and that the plans that I am submitting are, to the best of my knowledge and belief, consistent with these requirements and provisions.

_______________________________
[Principal Engineer/Architect's Signature]



1. All units in buildings with elevators containing four or more dwelling units are "covered" units.

2. The parties understand that defendants LNL, AD/I and GA/LD have no control over the properties in question and cannot have direct responsibility for the completion of the designated interior or exterior retrofits as described in Section V of the Consent Decree. Their lack of control over the properties does not otherwise mitigate their other obligations under the Consent Decree.

3. For purposes of settlement, defendant LNL, shall make a payment to defendant Bleakley for Homestead ($82,350) and for Wyncroft (approximately $190,000). A-D/I shall make a payment to defendant Bleakley for Homestead and Wyncroft combined ($228,528). Defendant Bleakley shall allocate this amount to the compensation fund, as provided in this section, to retrofits and to the retrofit fund as provided in Section V and to the civil penalty. provided in Section of this Consent Decree.

4. Interest shall be retained in the account and become part of the fund.

5. References to "ANSI" standards are to the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for Buildings and Facilities -- Providing Accessibility and Usability for Physically Handicapped People, ("ANSI A117.1"), 1986 edition.

6. The ADA Standards are found at 28 C.F.R. pt. 36, Appendix A.

7. Interest shall be retained in the account and become part of the Fund.

8. All items sent to counsel for the United States under the terms of the Consent Decree shall be sent via overnight delivery service to Joan A. Magagna, Chief, Housing and Civil Enforcement Section, G Street, 950 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20530, ATT: 175-29-80, or to such other address as the United States may designate in the future.

9. Residential projects involving fewer than four units are not subject to this reporting requirement.

10. It is not necessary for the defendants to include drawings with the reports required by this subjection and by C. below. Drawings shall be provided to the United States prior to construction upon request by the United States.

11. The education program provided to employees not engaged in design, construction, or maintenance, such as sales and rental employees, may focus on the portions of the law that relate generally to accessibility requirements as opposed to technical design and construction requirements.


Document Entered: January 28, 2003 > >
Updated August 6, 2015

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