The opinion of the court was delivered by: Austin, District Judge.
It is particularly appropriate and fortuitous that this
opinion is being handed down today, during the period that the
Mayor has proclaimed as Model Cities Week. It is appropriate
because it pinpoints who will be responsible for either the
continuance or the discontinuance of the Model Cities Program
in the City of Chicago.
In order to put in proper focus and perspective the problem
confronting the court, the petition for an injunction, the
hearing of last week, and the order to be entered today, the
court feels it necessary to outline the historical background
of this matter.
In 1966 the plaintiffs filed two different suits, one
against Chicago Housing Authority and the other against the
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. Preparation for
trial, by means of discovery, commenced first in the suit
against Chicago Housing Authority. Documents from the files of
Chicago Housing Authority and sworn testimony from the lips of
present and former Chicago Housing Authority supervisory
personnel revealed overwhelming and irrefutable evidence of
twenty years of deliberate housing segregation on the part of
Chicago Housing Authority. That was found to be the fact by
this court in its decree of July, 1969, twenty-six months ago.
After frantically consulting all the legal talent available to
it, Chicago Housing Authority apparently determined that an
appeal of this decree would be hopeless and abandoned it. The
net effect of this was to permit the decree to stand
unchallenged and thus become the law of the Northern District
At this point the court wishes to interpolate a new facet.
Twenty-one days ago, it was judicially determined by the 7th
Circuit Court of Appeals, 448 F.2d 731, that the Department of
Housing and Urban Development was equally guilty and
responsible with Chicago Housing Authority for deliberately
perpetuating segregated housing. Relevant excerpts from that
"HUD's approval and funding of segregated CHA
housing sites cannot be excused as an attempted
accommodation of an admittedly urgent need for
housing with the reality of community and City
"The fact that a governmental agency might have
made `numerous and consistent efforts' toward
desegregation has not yet been held to negate
liability for an otherwise segregated result.
"It also is not seriously disputed on appeal that
the Secretary exercised the above described
powers in a manner which perpetuated a racially
discriminatory housing system in Chicago, and
that the Secretary and other HUD officials were
aware of that fact.
"On such facts, and given the inapplicability of
HUD's `good faith' arguments, we are unable to
avoid the conclusion that the Secretary's past
actions constituted racially discriminatory
conduct in their own right.
"We hold that HUD, through its Secretary,
violated the Due Process Clause of the Fifth
Amendment * * and also has violated Section 601
of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 * * *"
Getting back to the July, 1969 decree, the next problem was
the manner in which the illegal conduct that the court found
could be remedied and ameliorated. Chicago Housing Authority
was ordered to use its "best efforts" to supply and submit as
rapidly as possible to the City Council for approval sites for
seventeen hundred and forty-six units of public housing. The
first seven hundred of these were to be in the general or
white areas, and of the balance of one thousand and forty-six,
seven hundred and fifty were also to be in the general or
white areas of the City. The court and the plaintiffs waited
patiently to determine what the "best efforts" of Chicago
Housing Authority would produce. Ten months later these "best
efforts" had not resulted in any sites being presented to the
City Council for approval.
Conferences were held from time to time between attorneys
for the plaintiffs and Chicago Housing Authority and its
counsel, and at one of these in the spring of 1970, the
Chairman of Chicago Housing Authority advised the plaintiffs
that they would submit no sites to the City Council until
after the municipal elections, one year later in the spring of
1971. The court was informed of this statement and also that
the "best efforts" of Chicago Housing Authority had resulted
in no submissions to the City Council. It thus became apparent
that the court could no longer rely on the "best efforts" of
Chicago Housing Authority and a new decree was signed on July
1, 1970, which established a timetable as to when these sites
were to be submitted. This decree Chicago Housing Authority
decided to appeal, hoping that the appellate procedure would
delay the performance of the timetable until after the
municipal elections in the spring of 1971.
They went screaming and protesting, as they had a legal
right to do, first to the Court of Appeals, and that Court
sustained the July, 1970 decree, Guatreaux v. Chicago Housing
Authority, 7 Cir., 436 F.2d 306. Next, they went to the United
States Supreme Court seeking to reverse the Court of Appeals,
7 Cir., 448 F.2d 731 and the highest Court in the land denied
them the relief sought. 402 U.S. 922, 91 S.Ct. 1378, 28
L.Ed.2d 661. One final effort was made to the United States
Supreme Court for a rehearing, seeking to have that Court
reverse itself, which was denied. Having run the gamut, they
returned to the District Court where prompt disclosure and
submission was ordered. Only then did Chicago Housing
Authority, with a gun to its head, comply, twenty months after
the first decree and eight months after the second decree.
Sites for seventeen hundred odd units were finally disgorged
and submitted to the City Council for its approval.
After the municipal elections, the City sought from the
Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development
26 million dollars to finance its Model Cities Program for the
period from June 15 to December 31, 1971. It is obvious from
the evidence that the Regional Administrator for the
Department of Housing and Urban Development was concerned with
the City's failure to perform many of its ...