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(A) Charge filing. Any person aggrieved by a violation of this chapter may file a verified charge with the Director of the Housing and Redevelopment Authority, hereinafter referred to as Director, stating the name and address of the person alleged to have committed an unfair discriminatory practice setting out the details of the practice complained of and any other information required by the Director. The Director, within five days of the filing, shall serve a copy of the charge upon the respondent personally or by registered or certified mail return receipt requested.
(B) Charge; issuance by Director. Whenever the Director has reason to believe that a person is engaging in any unfair discriminatory practice, the Director may issue a charge stating the specific section of this chapter that is alleged to be violated.
(C) Time for filing charge. No action may be brought for civil enforcement or criminal prosecution under this chapter unless the charge alleging discriminatory practice was filed with the Director within 180 days from the occurrence of the alleged discriminatory practice.
(D) Inquiry into charge. When a charge has been filed, the Director shall promptly inquire into the truth of the allegations of the charge. The Director shall make an immediate inquiry when necessary to prevent a charging party from suffering irreparable loss in the absence of immediate action. On each charge, the Director shall make a determination as to whether or not there is probable cause to credit the allegation of unfair discriminatory practice.
(1) If the Director shall determine after investigation that no probable cause exists to credit the allegations of the unfair discriminatory practice, the Director shall, within ten days of the determination,
serve upon the charging party and respondent written notice of the determination. Within ten days after receipt of this notice, the charging party may request in writing that the Director reconsider his or her determination. The request shall contain a brief statement of the reasons for and any new evidence in support of the request for reconsideration. At the time of submission of the request to the Director, the charging party shall deliver or mail to the respondent a copy of the request for reconsideration. The Director shall either reaffirm or reverse his or her determination of no probable cause within 20 days after receipt of the request for reconsideration and he or she shall within ten days thereafter notify in writing the charging party and the respondent of his or her decision to reaffirm or reverse.
(2) If the Director shall determine after investigation that probable cause exists to credit the allegations of unfair discriminatory practice, the Director shall issue a complaint and serve on the respondent by registered or certified mail a written notice of hearing together with a copy of the complaint requiring the respondent to answer the allegations of the complaint at a hearing before the authority at a time and place specified in the notice not less than ten days after service of the complaint. A copy of the notice shall be furnished to the charging party, the City Attorney and the chairperson of the Housing and Redevelopment Authority.
(3) At any time after the Director has determined that there is probable cause to believe that the respondent has engaged in an unfair discriminatory practice, the Director may file a petition in the County District Court seeking appropriate temporary relief against the respondent pending final determination of proceedings under this chapter including an order or decree restraining him or her from doing or procuring any act tending to render ineffectual any order the Director may enter with respect to the complaint. The court shall have power to grant the temporary relief or restraining order as it deems just and proper but no relief or order extending beyond ten days shall be granted except by consent of the respondent or after hearing upon notice to the respondent and a finding by the court that there is reasonable cause to believe that the respondent has engaged in a discriminatory practice. The Minnesota Rules of Civil Procedure shall apply to the application and the District Court shall have the authority to grant or deny the relief sought on the conditions as it deems just and equitable.
(4) If any lessor, after he or she has engaged in a discriminatory practice defined in this chapter, shall lease or rent the dwelling unit to a person who has no knowledge of the practice or of the existence of any charge with respect thereto, the lessor shall be liable for actual damages sustained by the person by reason of any final order requiring the person to be evicted from the dwelling unit.
(Ord. 350, passed 5-29-1979)