Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Northern California magistrate allows civil rights claim against Lake County to go into discovery

10865 Pine Point Road, Cobb, CA is the property involved.
Photo courtesy of Google maps.
Federal Magistrate Nandor J. Vardas issued an order on Monday dismissing some of civil rights charges from Floridalma Alvarez and Youri Bezdenejnykh but allowing others to go into discovery.

According to court documents, the plaintiffs wanted to build a house on the property shown to the left.  The Lake County Board of Supervisors denied the permit and, instead gave the plaintiffs a nuisance order requiring them to remove a temporary shed and their construction materials from the premises.  Given the short time needed to comply, the plaintiffs gave away approximately $40,000 worth of construction materials and $42,000 in personal belongings.  The plaintiffs allege that the Board did this because the plaintiffs were disabled in violation of the Fair Housing Act.  Further they argue that the Board violated their Due Process rights by wrongfully requiring, then denying a building permit causing the loss of property which violated 42 U.S.C. Section 1983. The plaintiffs further allege that the California Building Code as adopted in Lake County is void for vagueness to which they raise a facial constitutional complaint.

Judge Vardas dismissed the Fair Housing Act claim stating that the plaintiffs failed to allege against which disability the defendants discriminated.  However, the 1983 claim and the facial challenge were adequately plead and those claims are now going to discovery.  One interesting thing about this case is that the plaintiffs are currently proceeding pro se, since the Fair Housing Act allows for an award of attorney's fees, it is strange that no one has taken this case.

The case is Alvarez v. Lake County Board of Supervisors No. C 10-1071 and the opinion is below the jump.

Here is the opinion:

Alvarez v. Lake County Board of Supervisors

No comments:

Post a Comment