§ 2-103. Processing complaints. [Repealed]

Effective on Tuesday, February 7, 2017
  • (a) Upon filing a complaint as set forth in this division, the board shall make such investigation as seems appropriate to ascertain facts and issues and present them to the full board. If the board shall determine that there are reasonable grounds to believe a violation has occurred and is susceptible of conciliation, it shall attempt to conciliate the matter by methods of initial conference and persuasion with all interested parties and such representatives as the parties may choose to assist them. Conciliation conferences shall be informal.

    (b) The terms of conciliation agreed to by the parties may 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 the mayor.

    (c) If the board determines that the complaint lacks reasonable grounds upon which to base a violation of this article, the board may in its discretion recommend that the matter be closed or order such further investigation as may be necessary.

    (d) If the board, with respect to a matter which involves a contravention of this Code:

    (1) Fails to conciliate a complaint after the parties have, in good faith, attempted such conciliation; or

    (2) Fails to effect an informal conciliation agreement or a formal consent agreement; or

    (3) Determines that a complaint is not susceptible of conciliation;

    the board shall thereafter schedule a public hearing to determine the facts. The board shall serve upon all interested parties a notice of the time and place of the hearing. The respondent or his authorized counsel may file such statements with the board prior to the hearing date as it deems necessary in support of its position. The hearing shall be held not less than fifteen (15) days after service of the statement of charges and notice to the respondent signed by two (2) members of the board. The interested parties may, at their option, appear before the board in person or by duly authorized representative and may have the assistance of an attorney. The parties may present testimony and evidence, and the right to cross-examine witnesses shall be preserved. All testimony and evidence shall be given under oath or by affirmation. The board shall not be bound by strict rules of evidence prevailing in courts of law or equity. The board shall keep a full record of the hearing, which records shall be public and open to inspection by any person, and upon request by any principal party to the proceedings, the board shall furnish such party a copy of the hearing record, if any, at such cost as the board deems appropriate. The board shall make a finding of fact.

    (e) The purpose and effect of the procedure before the board and of its findings is to obtain:

    (1) The resolution of differences and postures which are not consistent with the law; and

    (2) Where conciliation has failed to resolve the discriminatory postures, to clarify the issues and to assist an aggrieved person to formulate his case, if he elects to seek remedies afforded by the law, particularly, but not limited to the United States Civil Rights Act of 1968. However, if in the opinion of the open housing board, such action is warranted, the matter shall be turned over to the city prosecutor or state attorney for further investigation with a view towards filing charges against the offending party in the appropriate court. Nothing herein shall prevent any person from exercising any right or seeking any remedy to which he might otherwise be entitled or from filing of any complaint with any other agency or any court having jurisdiction.

(Code 1962, § 9½-21; Ord. No. 2017-02, § 1, 02-07-2017)