1115 – Bill No. 96 Fair Housing

Bill No.96                                         Ordinance 1115

AN ORDINANCE PROVIDING “FAIR HOUSING” FOR THE CITY OF RICH HILL, MISSOURI. DEFINES DISCRIMINATORY HOUSING PRACTICES, AND CREATES A FAIR HOUSING COMMITTEE.

Be it ordained by the City Council of the City of Rich Hill, Missouri, as follows:

Section 1Declaration of Policy

The City Council of the City of Rich Hill herby declares it to be the public policy of the City to eliminate discrimination and safeguard the right of any person to sell, purchase, lease, rent, or obtain real property without regard to race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or nation origin. This ordinance shall be deemed an exercise of the police powers of the City of Rich Hill for the protection of the public welfare, prosperity, health, and peace of the people of the Rich Hill, Missouri.

Section 2.  Definitions

For the purpose of this ordinance the following terms, phrases, words, and their derivations shall have the meaning given herein unless the context otherwise indicates.

  1. Person shall include any individual, firm, partnership, or corporation.
  2. Aggrieved Person shall include any person who is attempting to provide housing for himself and/or his family in the City of Rich Hill, Missouri.
  3. Discriminate shall mean distinctions in treatment because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin of any person.

Section 3. Discriminatory Practices

It shall be a discriminatory practice and a violation of the ordinance for any person to:

A.  Refuse to sell or rent after the making of a bona fide offer, or to refuse to negotiate for the sale or rental of, or otherwise make unavailable or deny, a dwelling to any person because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin of any person.

B.  Discriminate against any person in the terms, conditions, or privileges of sale or rental of a dwelling, or in the provision of services or facilities in connection therewith, because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.

C.  Make, print, or publish, or cause to be made, printed, or published any notice, statement, or advertisement, with respect to the sale or rental of a dwelling that indicates any preference, limitation, or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or nation origin, or an intention to make any such preference, limitation, or discrimination.

D.  Represent to any person because of race, color, religion,sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin, that any dwelling is not available for inspections, sale, or rental when such dwelling is in fact so available.

E.  For profit, to induce or attempt to induce any person to sell or rent any dwelling by representations regarding the entry or prospective entry into the neighborhood or a person or persons of a particular race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.

F.  Discrimination in the sale of rental of housing on the basis of a handicap of that buyer or renter; a person residing in or intending to reside in that dwelling after it is so sold, rented, or made available; or any person associated with that buyer or rent.  The design and construction of new multi-family dwellings containing four (4) or more units is required to meet certain adaptability and accessibility requirements in accordance with section 804 of the 1988 Fair Housing Amendments Act.

G.  Discrimination in the sale or rental of housing on the basis of familial status of because a family has children, exempting certain types of buildings that house older persons (e.g. Section 202 housing) in accordance with Section 807 of the 1988 Fair Housing Amendments Act.

Section 4. – Discrimination in the Financing of a House

It shall be unlawful for any bank, building and loan association, insurance company, or other corporation, association, firm, or enterprise whose business consists in whole or in part in the making of commercial real estate loans, to deny a loan to a person applying therefore for the purpose of purchasing, constructing, repairing, or maintaining a dwelling, or to discriminate against any person in the fixing of the amount or conditions of such loan, because of the race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin of such a person, or of any person therein associated in connection with such financing.

Section 5. -Administration  

  1. There is hereby created a Fair Housing Committee whose membership shall consist of five members, who shall be appointed by the Mayor.
  2.  Every complaint of a violation of this ordinance shall be referred to a Fair Housing Committee. The Fair Housing Committee shall forth with notify the person against whom the complaint is made. The identity of the aggrieved person shall be made known to the person against whom the complaint is made at that time. If the Fair Housing Committee, after investigation, finds there is no merit to the complaint, the same shall be dismissed. If the Fair Housing committee finds that there is merit in the complaint, in their opinion, then and in that event, the Fair housing Committee will endeavor to eliminate the alleged discriminatory practice by conference and conciliation.
  3. If the Fair Housing committee is unable to eliminate the alleged discriminatory practice by conference and conciliation, then and in that event, the Fair Housing committee shall forward said complaint to the City Attorney for handling. The final determination of whether to prosecute in Municipal Court on said complaint shall be left to the city Attorney.
  4. Nothing in this ordinance shall be construed in such manner as to limit administrative enforcement mechanisms an recourse against alleged discriminatory housing practices through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, as specified under Section 810 of the Fair Housing Act as amended effective March 12, 1989, or through the Missouri Commission on Human Rights, as specified in applicable state statutes.

Section 6. – Enforcement

  1. Any person convicted in Municipal Court of a violation of this ordinance shall be punished by a fine of (not more than) $500.00, or by confinement in the City jail for (not more than) 5 days, or both such fine and imprisonment.
  2. The City Attorney, instead of filing a complaint in Municipal Court of said City, may, as an alternative remedy, seek to have the alleged discriminatory practices abated by an action for an injunction to be maintained in the appropriate Circuit Court of the State of Missouri.

Section 7. – Severability

If any section, subsection, paragraph, sentence, clause, or phrase of these standards shall be declared invalid for any reason whatsoever, such decision shall not affect the remaining portions of this ordinance which shall continue in full force and effect. To this end, the provisions of this ordinance are hereby declared to be severable.

Section 8. – Savings Clause

This ordinance shall not affect violation of any other ordinance, code, or regulation of the City of Rich Hill existing prior to the effective date hereof. Any such violations shall be governed and shall continue to be punishable to the full extent of the law under the provisions of those ordinances, codes, or regulations in effect at the time the violation was committed.

Read two times and passed by the City Council of the City of Rich Hill, Missouri, on the 12th day of September 2000.

_________________________________

Alvin Briscoe, Mayor

ATTEST:

_________________________________

Rose Entrikin, City Clerk

Ayes: Wills, Stephens, Humble

Nays: None

Rich was absent.

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