Fair Housing Board
The Fair Housing Board consists of five members who shall be qualified electors of the City and shall not hold any elected public office at the Municipal, County, State or Federal level at any time while a member of the Board.
The Board members shall be appointed by the Mayor subject to the ratification of Council. Of the members first appointed, one shall hold office for a term of one year; one for a term of two years; one for a term of three years; one for a term of four years; and the other for a term of five years. All subsequent appointments shall be for a term of five years (c) The Secretary of the Board shall be appointed by the Mayor and may be an employee of the City.
The Board is charged with the following duties to implement the stated policy of this chapter:
(1) To investigate all complaints of unlawful housing practices which are filed with it.
(2) To endeavor by conciliation to resolve such complaints.
(3) To hold hearings relating to any matter under investigation or in question before the Board.
(4) To render at a full written report of all its activities and recommendations.
(5) To recommend to the Mayor, when it deems necessary, educational and other programs designed to promote the purpose stated in this chapter.
(6) To adopt rules and procedures for the conduct of its business.
(7) To do such other acts that are necessary and proper in order to perform those duties with which it is charged under the terms of this chapter.
(Ord. 43(78-79). Passed 6-15-78.)
PROCEDURES AND ENFORCEMENT
Any person subjected to an unlawful housing practice may file within 360 days of the alleged violation with the Fair Housing Board a complaint in writing, sworn to or affirmed, which shall state: the name and address of the person aggrieved; the name and address of the person against whom the complaint is filed; a description and the address of the dwelling, which involves the alleged discriminatory housing practice; a concise statement of the facts, including pertinent dates, constituting the alleged discriminatory housing practice, and such other information as may be required by the Board. The complaint may be reasonably and fairly amended.
Upon the filing of a complaint the Board shall make such investigations as it deems appropriate to ascertain facts and issues. Such investigation shall be conducted fourteen business days after the filing of the complaint. The investigation may be extended when deemed necessary by the Chairman of the Board. If the Board determines that there are reasonable grounds to believe a violation has occurred, it shall attempt to conciliate the matter by methods of initial conference and persuasion with all parties and such representatives as the parties may choose to assist them. Conciliation conferences shall be informal and nothing said or done during such initial conferences shall be made public by any member of the Board unless the parties agree thereto in writing.
The terms of conciliation agreed to by the parties shall be reduced to writing and incorporated into a consent agreement to be signed by the parties, which agreement is for conciliation purposes only and does not constitute an admission by any party that the law has been violated. Consent agreements shall be signed on behalf of the Board by its Chairman.
The Board is authorized to seek the cooperation and aid of the Ohio Real Estate Commission, Ohio Civil Rights Commission or the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development or any other person or group regarding any matter before the Board.
If the Board determines that the complaint lacks reasonable grounds upon which to base a violation of this chapter, it may in its discretion dismiss such complaint or order such further investigation as may be necessary; provided, that the Board shall not dismiss such complaint without first affording either party an opportunity to appear before the Board.
If the Board, with respect to a matter which involves a violation of this chapter, fails to conciliate a complaint after the parties have in good faith attempted such conciliation, fails to effect an informal conciliation agreement or a formal consent agreement or determines that a complaint is not susceptible of conciliation, the Board shall thereafter schedule a public hearing to determine whether a violation of this chapter has been committed. The Board shall serve upon the respondent a written statement of charges and shall serve upon all interested parties a notice of the time and place of the hearing. Respondent or his authorized counsel may file and amend such statements with the Board prior to the hearing date as it deems necessary in support of its position. The hearing shall be opened to the public. The hearing shall be held not less than fifteen calendar days nor more than thirty calendar days after service of the statement of charges. The interested parties may, at their option, appear before the Board in person or by a duly authorized representative and may have the assistance of an attorney. The parties may present testimony and evidence. The Secretary shall keep a full record of the hearing, which record shall be public and open to inspection by any person, and upon request by any principal party to the proceeding, the Board shall furnish such party a copy of the hearing record, at such cost as the Board deems appropriate.
If at the conclusion of the hearing the Board shall determine upon the preponderance of the evidence that the person complained against has violated this chapter, the Board shall, after consultation with the Law Director in executive session cause the complaint to be sent to Council as a committee of the whole for appropriate action.
Not more than forty-five calendar days after Council has received written notification at a regular Council meeting of the pendancy of a complaint from the Board, Council shall hold such hearings into the matter as it deems necessary upon the giving of appropriate notice to the parties and in conformity with the law of the State of Ohio, and cause action to be taken thereon.
If at the conclusion of the hearing Council determines upon the preponderance of the evidence in the record that the person complained against has violated this chapter then Council shall request the Law Director to seek compliance by appropriate civil action brought in the name of the City before a court of competent jurisdiction.
If at the conclusion of the hearing Council determines upon the preponderance of the evidence in the record that the person complained against has not violated this chapter, Council shall so state and publish its findings and issue its orders dismissing the complaint.
(Ord. 43(78-79). Passed 6-15-78.)
FAIR HOUSING BOARD MEMBERS