Lawsuit alleging race discrimination in Texas housing tax credit program clears (another) hurdle

The Federal District Court for the Northern District of Texas has ruled that the Inclusive Communities Project has legal standing to continue its lawsuit alleging the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA) is guilty of racial discrimination in the operation of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program.  Back in 2008, we discussed the lawsuit’s clearance of a motion to dismiss.[1]

From the ruling:

In this action alleging that defendant Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (“TDHCA”) perpetuates racial segregation and discrimination through the allocation of Low Income Housing Tax Credits (“LIHTC”), the court must decide whether plaintiff The Inclusive Communities Project, Inc. (“ICP”) has standing and whether it has established prima facie cases under the Fair Housing Act (“FHA”), 42 U.S.C. §§ 3604(a) and 3605(a), the Fourteenth Amendment (actionable under 42 U.S.C. § 1983), and 42 U.S.C. § 1982. Concluding that ICP has demonstrated its standing beyond peradventure, has established a prima facie case for each of its claims, and has adduced evidence that would enable a reasonable jury to find in its favor on each of its claims, the court grants ICP’s motion for partial summary judgment and denies defendants’ motions for judgment on the pleadings and for summary judgment.

10/1 update: Eric Dexheimer at the Statesman covers the ruling, The article contains a quote from John Henneberger, co-director of the Texas Low Income Housing Information Service, who states “[the ruling] is sweeping in finding merit in the argument that the State of Texas has engaged in civil rights violations.”



[1] Seems just like yesterday, doesn’t it?