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Board of Education of Harmony School Dist. No. 175 v. County of St. Clair, Illinois

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

October 25, 2012

BOARD OF EDUCATION OF HARMONY SCHOOL DISTRICT NO. 175, Plaintiff,
v.
COUNTY OF ST. CLAIR, ILLINOIS, et. al., Defendants.

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[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

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David L. Mannix, Guin, Martin, et al., Collinsville, IL, for Plaintiff.

Alvin C. Paulson, Becker, Paulson et al., David B. Schneidewind, Boyle Brasher LLC, Belleville, IL, for Defendants.

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

HERNDON, Chief Judge.

I. Introduction and Background

Now before the Court is defendants' motion to dismiss the complaint pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(1) (Doc. 19) and their memorandum in support of that motion (Doc. 20), arguing that plaintiff does not have standing to bring its complaint. Plaintiff opposes the motion by contending that it does have Article III standing under the Constitution and that prudential standing limitations do not bar its complaint. For the following reasons, the Court grants defendants' motion to dismiss.

Plaintiff school district operates a public school system for kindergarten through eighth grades and is located in St. Clair County, Illinois. It no longer had sufficient enrollment to use its Harmony School building and planned to lease it to an entity that is not a party to this litigation (Abraxas) which intended to provide special education services to disabled students. The St. Clair County Zoning Department and its Board of Zoning Appeals denied plaintiff's requests to use Harmony School to provide special education services. Plaintiff alleges that due to this denial, students with disabilities are harmed and plaintiff itself has been denied reasonable use of its Harmony School property.

In its complaint, plaintiff alleges that defendants have discriminated against students with disabilities through defendants' denial of plaintiff's requests for a Certificate of Zoning Compliance from the Zoning Department of St. Clair County, Illinois for the intended use to lease space in Harmony School to a provider of special education services for students in grades 6-12 (Doc. 2). Further, plaintiff alleges that because of this denial, it was denied the opportunity to enter the proposed lease agreement with Abraxas for Harmony School, which would have provided one million three hundred thousands in funds to the School District. Count I alleges intentional discrimination under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (" ADA" ) by the Board of Zoning Appeals. Count II alleges disparate impact discrimination under Title II of the ADA on the face of the St. Clair County Zoning Code. Count III alleges disparate impact discrimination under Title II of the ADA in applying the St. Clair County Zoning Code. Count IV alleges failure to make reasonable accommodations under Title II of the ADA in applying the St. Clair County Zoning Code. Count V alleges intentional discrimination violating Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. Count VI alleges disparate impact discrimination violating Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act in provisions of the St. Clair County Zoning Code. Count VII alleges disparate impact discrimination violating Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act in applying the St. Clair County Zoning Code. Count VIII alleges failure to make reasonable modifications violating Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act in applying the St. Clair County Zoning Code. Count IX alleges denial of equal protection under the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Count X seeks judicial review of the administrative decisions pursuant to the Illinois Administrative Review law (735 ILCS 5/3-101 et seq. ).

Plaintiff filed its complaint on April 16, 2012 (Doc. 2). Defendants filed their motion to dismiss (Doc. 19) and memorandum in support (Doc. 20) on May 21, 2012, arguing that plaintiff's claims should be dismissed since plaintiff lacks standing

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both under Article III of the Constitution and due to judicially-imposed prudential limitations. Plaintiff filed a response to defendants' motion to dismiss (Doc. 22) on June 25, 2012, rebutting defendants' arguments, ...


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