Friday, December 21, 2012

Feds, County, Planning & Zoning Commission Settle Fair Housing Allegations That Denial Of Land Use Approval Was Based Partly On Race, Color, National Origin

From the U.S. Department of Justice (Washington, D.C.):

  • The Justice Department announced [] that it has settled a lawsuit against Sussex County, Del., and the Planning and Zoning Commission of Sussex County for race and national origin discrimination in violation of the Fair Housing Act.

    The lawsuit, filed [] in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware, alleges that the county’s planning and zoning commission denied land use approval for a 50-lot affordable housing subdivision proposed by Diamond State Community Land Trust, a Delaware affordable housing developer, in southwestern Sussex County near the town of Laurel, Del.

    The suit alleges that the Sussex County Council later affirmed the denial of the proposed development.  The suit alleges that opposition to the proposal was based partly on the assumption that the subdivision’s residents would be Latino and African-American and on stereotypes based on race, color and national origin. The lawsuit arose from a complaint to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that was referred to the Department of Justice.(1)

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