HUMAN RELATIONS COMMISSION
Revision Date: 10-01-00
(Corrections and re-numbering 11-21-00)
49.03 PROHIBITED DISCRIMINATORY PRACTICES.
49.05 CITIZEN PROTECTION.
49.06 MEMBERSHIP AND OFFICERS.
49.09 DUTIES AND AUTHORITY.
49.10 JURISDICTIONAL AUTHORITY.
49.11 COMPLAINT PROCESS.
49.13 JUDICIAL RELIEF.
There is hereby established a Human Relations Commission for the City of DeKalb. (00-32)
a) Policy. It is the expressed intent of this Chapter to further the policy of the United States and the State of Illinois as expressed in their Constitutions and Law; to further understanding among people; and to protect and insure peace, health, safety and general welfare of all inhabitants of the City, it is hereby declared to be the policy of the City of DeKalb that discrimination based on race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation is hereby prohibited. (85-01, 00-32)
For the purpose of this Chapter 49, the following words shall have the meanings hereinafter assigned to them.
a) "Age" as used in this Chapter shall be defined as eighteen (18) years of age, or older. (87-74)
b) "Commission" means the City of DeKalb Human Relations Commission.
c) "Credit Transactions" means any application for credit, invitation to apply for credit, extension of credit or credit sale. (85-01, 87-74)
d) "Disability" means any physical or mental impairment resulting from, or manifested from an anatomical, physiological, neurological or psychological condition, demonstrable by medically accepted clinical or laboratory diagnostic techniques and which constitutes or is regarded as a substantial limitation to one or more of a person's major life activities. An individual with a disability is one who has a physical or mental disability as defined above, has a record of such disability, or is regarded as having such disability. For purposes of employment, a qualified person with a disability is a person who can perform the essential functions of the job, with or without a reasonable accommodation. (00-32)
e) "Discriminate" and "Discrimination" mean any differences in treatment based on race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation. (85-01, 00-32)
f) "Employee" includes any and all persons who perform services under the direction and control of, and for any employer for compensation, whether in the form of wages, salary, commission or otherwise, excluding the parents, spouses or children of the employer and excluding independent contractors, although they may be subject to this Chapter as employers or in any other capacity covered hereunder.
g) "Employer" includes any person within the City of DeKalb, including but not limited to owners, managers, supervisors or others who serve a supervisory function, who hires or employs any employee whose services are to be partially or wholly performed in the City of DeKalb. (00-32)
h) "Employment Agency" means any person regularly undertaking with, or without compensation, to procure employees for an employer, or to procure for employees opportunities to work for an employer, to recruit, refer, or place employees.
i) "Gender" means a person's actual or perceived sex, and includes a person's gender identity, appearance or behavior, whether or not that gender identity, appearance or behavior is different from that traditionally associated with the person's sex at birth. (00-73)
j) "Housing Accommodations" include all buildings, structures or any portions thereof, within the City of DeKalb, which are used or occupied, or are maintained, arranged or designed to be used or occupied as a home, residence or sleeping place for one or more human beings.
k) "Marital Status" means the legal status of being married, single, separated, divorced or widowed, and/or parental status with or without children and regardless of the age of the children. (85-01)
l) "Matriculation" means the condition of being enrolled in a college, university, professional, proprietary, vocational, technical school or adult education program. (85-01)
m) "Person" includes one or more individuals, partnerships, associations, organizations, corporations, legal representatives, joint stock companies, mutual companies, trustee, trustees in bankruptcy, receivers and any other incorporated or unincorporated organized group. The term includes, but is not limited to, any real estate owner, lessor, assignor, builder, manager, broker, salesman or agent, or any lending institution. (00-32)
n) "Probable Cause" means that on the basis of all available information provided during the investigation, there exists evidence in the form of testimony and/or documents which leads an objective person to reasonably believe that a violation of this Chapter may have occurred. (00-32)
o) "Public Accommodation" means any business, enterprise or activity consisting of or involving furnishing, providing or making available to the public any goods, services, accommodations, entertainment, amusements, facilities, advantages or privileges, including but not limited to inns, cafes, restaurants, taverns, hotels, barber shops, salons, retail stores, restrooms, theaters, skating rinks, swimming pools, public golf driving ranges, concerts, crematories, cemeteries, airplanes, buses, boats and any other public conveyances on land, water or air, and other places of public accommodation and/or amusement. This paragraph shall not apply to any public school system. (00-32)
p) "Sex" means a person's identity as male or female as indicated by the designation of male or female on any official identification form recognized within the State of Illinois, including a driver's license or state identification card. (00-73)
q) "Sexual Harassment" is a form of sex discrimination and is defined as any unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature or a discriminatory nature. In the context of employment, sexual harassment includes such conduct when: (00-32)
1. Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual's employment; or
2. Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for employment or decisions affecting an employee; or
3. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual's employment or performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive employment environment. (00-32)
r) "Sexual Orientation" means heterosexuality, homosexuality or bisexuality, actual or perceived. Sexual orientation shall not be construed to protect conduct otherwise proscribed by law. (00-32)
49.03 PROHIBITED DISCRIMINATORY PRACTICES.
It shall be unlawful for any person to commit any of the following acts of discrimination:
a) To make any distinction, discrimination or restriction against any person in the price, terms, conditions or privileges of any kind relating to the sale, rental, lease or occupancy of any real estate used for residential purposes in the City of DeKalb or in the furnishing of any facilities or services in connection therewith, predicated upon the race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation of any prospective buyer, lessee or renter of such property. (85-01, 00-32)
b) To publish, circulate, issue, or display, or to permit or cause to be published, circulated, issued or displayed, any communication, notice, advertisement, sign or other writing of any kind relating to the sale, rental or leasing of any residential real estate, predicated upon the race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation of any prospective buyer, lessee or renter of such property. (85-01, 87-74, 00-32)
c) To refuse to sell, lease or rent, any real estate for residential purposes within the City of DeKalb because of the race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation of the proposed buyer, or renter. (85-01, 00-32)
d) To discriminate or to participate directly or indirectly in the discrimination in connection with the terms of loans, guaranteeing loans, accepting mortgages or otherwise making available funds for loans within the City of DeKalb because of race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation, provided that lending money is one of the principal aspects of the person's business or is incidental to the person's principal business. (85-01, 00-32)
e) To exploit or overcharge any person for residential housing accommodations in the City of DeKalb because of race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation. (85-01, 00-32)
f) To solicit for sale, lease or listing for sale or lease, residential real estate within the City of DeKalb on the grounds of loss of value due to the present or prospective entry into any neighborhood of a person or persons of any particular race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation. (85-01, 00-32)
g) To distribute or cause to be distributed, written material or statements designed to induce any owner of residential real estate in the City of DeKalb to sell or lease his property because of any present or prospective change in the race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation of persons in the neighborhood. (85-01, 00-32)
h) To refuse any listing of residential real estate within the City of DeKalb to any person because of race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation. (85-01, 00-32)
i) To make any misrepresentation concerning the listing for sale or the anticipated listing for sale or the sale of any housing accommodation for the purpose of inducing or attempting to induce the sale or listing for sale of any housing accommodation by representation that the presence or anticipated presence of persons of any particular race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation in the area will or may result in the lowering of property values in the block, neighborhood or area in which the property is located. (85-01, 00-32)
j) To permit or take any action which discriminately affects a person's selection, status, or eligibility for employment, promotion or transfer, or for apprenticeship, membership or conditions and privileges or benefits directly or indirectly related to one's employment.
k) To cause or permit to be published, posted or circulated any notice, advertisement, job order, requisition or request for applicants for employment or apprenticeship or for the referral thereof which makes or has the effect of making race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation as a condition of applying for employment or of referral thereof or indicates the existence of such a condition except for a bona fide occupational qualification. (85-01, 00-32)
l) For an employer, employment agency or labor organization to inquire on a written application whether a job applicant has ever been arrested or to use such knowledge of an arrest as a reason for denial or termination of employment. This section shall not be construed to prohibit any employer, employment agency, or labor organization from requesting or using information or records concerning the conviction of any individual.
m) To discriminate against any person in the full enjoyment of goods, services, facilities, advantages or privileges of any public accommodation because of race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation. (85-01, 00-32)
a) Nothing in Section 49.03 of this Chapter shall apply to rooms or units in dwellings containing living quarters occupied or intended to be occupied by no more than four families, living independently of each other, if the owner actually maintains and occupies one of such living quarters as his residence.
b) The following facilities are exempt from the age provisions in Section 49.03, (a), (b) and (c) of this Chapter: (83-51)
1. Nursing homes licensed under the Nursing Home Care Reform Act of 1979 (210 ILCS 45/1-101 et seq.) and facilities licensed under the Life Care Facilities Act (210 ILCS 40/1 et seq.). (00-32)
2. Facilities receiving Federal or State funds, which funds have as a condition thereof that the facility rent or lease only to persons over sixty-two (62) years of age with stipulated levels of income.
3. Barb City Manor
4. DeKalb Area Retirement Center
c) Nothing contained in Section 49.03 shall prohibit restricting the rental of rooms in a housing accommodation to persons of one sex. (00-32)
d) Nothing contained in this Chapter shall be construed to bar any religious organization from giving preference to persons of the same religious persuasion in the conduct of the organization's activities.
49.05 CITIZEN PROTECTION.
It shall be unlawful for any person to aid, incite, compel, coerce or participate directly or indirectly in the doing of any act or practice declared in this Chapter to be prohibited, or to discriminate or take retaliatory action against any other person because such person had opposed any practice forbidden by this chapter or made a change, filed a complaint, testified or assisted in the investigation, proceeding or hearing under this Chapter.
49.06 MEMBERSHIP AND OFFICERS.
a) Commissioners. Nine (9) Commissioners, who shall be referred to and known as the Human Relations Commissioners, shall be appointed by the Mayor with the advice and consent of the City Council for terms of three (3) years. Commission members may be reappointed at the discretion of the Mayor with the advice and consent of the City Council. Commissioners shall receive no salary, but may be compensated for expenses incurred in the performance of Commission's duties. The Mayor shall make appointments to the Human Relations Commission which reflect a broad diversity of background within the community in the areas of race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation. (00-32)
b) Chairperson. The chairperson shall be appointed by the Mayor with the advice and consent of the City Council for a term of two (2) years. Reappointment shall be at the discretion of the Mayor with the advice and consent of the City Council. The Chairperson shall receive no salary, but may be compensated for expenses incurred in the performance of commission duties. The Chairperson shall supervise the activities and duties of the Human Relations Commission and shall preside over all of its meetings in addition to the powers enumerated below. The Chairperson shall participate in all matters and shall vote on all issues before the commission.
The Chairperson shall also have the authority to appoint commissioners to and remove commissioners from all committees which shall from time to time be established by the commission.
c) Residency. All persons appointed to the Human Relations Commission shall reside within one and one-half miles of the city limits of the City of DeKalb, Illinois.
d) Coordinator. The Human Relations Coordinator shall be a member of the City staff who shall be assigned by the City Manager to work with the Human Relations Commission and shall advise the Commission, serve as a resource person to the Commission, receive and docket all complaints, coordinate and develop Human Relations projects, and act as a liaison with the City administration.
The Chairperson and the Commissioners appointed herein may be removed for cause by the City Council.
The Human Relations Commission Chairperson shall call meetings for the Commission on a regular basis, not less than once per month on a schedule to be established and published by the Chairperson as required by law. The Chairperson or any four (4) Commissioners may call additional meetings as may be deemed necessary by giving notice of the time and place of such meetings to all of the Commissioners, to the Chairperson, to others as required by law, and to the Coordinator, not less than twenty-four (24) hours prior to such meetings. The Commission may discuss pending adjudicatory matters in executive session. (00-32)
49.09 DUTIES AND AUTHORITY.
It shall be the duty and authority of the Human Relations Commission to:
a) Develop and implement programs to educate the community, equalize opportunities, eliminate discrimination and promote good will among all persons. (00-32)
b) Receive, record and investigate any written complaint whether initiated by the Human Relations Commission or by the filing of a complaint with the Commission, alleging discrimination against any person because of race, creed, color, gender, religion, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, matriculation, or sexual orientation in violation to this Chapter. (85-01, 87-74, 94-161, 00-32)
c) Recommend to the appropriate agency or local, state or federal regulatory or legislative body, administrative, legal or other ameliorative action to be taken to eliminate discrimination and foster good will. (00-32)
d) Invite and enlist the cooperation of any citizen, organization or committee which can be of benefit in fulfilling the responsibilities of the Human Relations Commission in carrying out specific programs designed to lessen conflicts and improve understanding in the community. (00-32)
e) Adopt such bylaws, rules of procedure and regulations as
may be deemed necessary to conduct its meetings, conciliatory
conferences, public hearings, and general operations and to carry
out the purpose and provisions of this Chapter. (00-32)
f) The Commission may also cooperate and assist any person who requests such cooperation or assistance for the purpose of developing and maintaining programs to promote a non-discriminatory atmosphere. (00-32)
49.10 JURISDICTIONAL AUTHORITY.
The Human Relations Commission shall have jurisdiction to take the action authorized herein if the alleged act of unlawful discrimination or practice prohibited herein occurred within the corporate limits of the City of DeKalb, Illinois. (94-161)
49.11 COMPLAINT PROCESS.
a) Jurisdiction. Any person may file a complaint alleging an Ordinance violation with the Commission if the alleged violation occurred within the City of DeKalb.
b) Filing of Complaint.
1. Time of Filing. A complaint under this Chapter must be filed with the Commission within 180 days from the date of the alleged occurrence of the Chapter violation. If the alleged violation is of a continuing nature, the date of occurrence may be any date subsequent to the commencement of the violation, up to and including the date on which it may have ceased. (00-32)
2. Filing. A complaint will be deemed filed with the Commission when it has been filed with the chairperson of the Commission or the Coordinator; in person, in writing and signed by the Complainant. The Commission may waive any of these requirements upon a showing of extraordinary circumstances. Each complaint, once filed, shall be docketed and assigned a case number by the Coordinator. (00-32)
3. Content of Complaint. A complaint shall be in such detail
as to substantially apprise any party of the date, place and facts
with respect to the alleged Chapter violation. It must contain
A. the name and address of the Complainant;
B. the name, address and telephone number (if known) of the Respondent; and
C. a statement of the facts alleged to constitute the Chapter violation, including the date(s), locations thereof, and basis of discrimination.
4. Effect of Filing a Complaint. The filing of a complaint or the failure to file a complaint with the Commission does not bar any person from seeking any other remedy that may be provided by law.
c) Commission Initiated Complaints. Whenever the Commission has information that any person has allegedly violated the Chapter, the Commission itself may initiate a complaint. A complaint initiated by the Commission shall be signed by the Chair and shall be in the same form and shall follow the same content requirements as specified in paragraph (C) above. (00-32)
d). Service of Complaint. The Commission shall serve upon Respondent a copy of any complaint (original or amended) filed against said Respondent and a copy of the Chapter within ten (10) days of filing thereof . (00-32)
e) Maintenance of Records. Notwithstanding any other provision of these Rules and Regulations, once a complaint has been served on a Respondent, the Respondent shall preserve all records and other material which may be relevant to the case until the matter has been closed.
f) Amendment of Complaint.
1. Technical Defects or Omissions. A complaint, or any part thereof, may be amended as a matter of right to cure technical defects or omissions at any time.
2. Amendment Prior to Public Hearing. A complaint, or any part thereof, may be amended by the Complainant as a matter of right to clarify or amplify allegations made therein, due to a change of circumstances, or to set forth additional facts or allegations related to the matter of the original charge, at any time before a hearing and such amendment shall relate back to the original filing date. The amended complaint shall be in writing, shall be the same form and shall follow the same content requirements as specified in paragraph (C) with respect to the original complaint, unless impracticable. (00-32)
3. Amendment During or at the Close of Public Hearing. When
facts not raised by the pleadings are heard at a conference or
hearing by express or implied consent of the parties, they shall
be treated in all respects as if they had been raised in the pleadings.
Such amendment of the pleadings as may be necessary to cause them
to conform to the evidence and to raise these issues may be made
upon motion of any party at any time, but in any event before
a final decision is reached; failure to so amend shall not affect
the result of the hearing of these issues. If evidence or an amendment
is objected to at a hearing on the grounds that it is not within
the issues made by the pleadings, the sitting panel may allow
the pleadings to be amended and shall do so freely when the presentation
of the merits of the action will be served thereby and the objecting
party fails to satisfy the sitting panel that the admission of
such evidence would prejudice the party in maintaining the party's
action or defense upon the merits. The Chairperson of the Human
Relations Commission may grant a continuance to enable the objecting
party to respond to such evidence. (00-32)
g) Withdrawal of Complaint. A complaint or any part thereof may be unilaterally withdrawn by the Complainant at any time prior to a determination of probable cause by the Commission, or prior to the Commission's dismissal of the complaint. A Complainant's request to withdraw a complaint shall be in writing and shall be signed by the Complainant. The Commission shall approve the request if it is knowingly and voluntarily made, and shall promptly notify all parties in writing of the withdrawal. (00-32)
h) Answer. Each Respondent shall file a short written answer and any defenses within fourteen (14) days of receipt of the complaint. The Respondent shall file the answer with the commission and shall serve it upon the Complainant. The answer shall not exceed five typewritten pages unless the Commission expressly grants permission otherwise. (00-32)
The response shall contain the full name, address, and telephone number of Respondent and the name, address and telephone number of Respondent's attorney if Respondent is represented by counsel. The response should contain specific information that directly addresses the allegations contained in the complaint.
If no response is filed within the fourteen (14) days, it is presumed that the complaint is not denied and such failure to respond will not delay processing of the complaint.
i) Failure to Cooperate. Every party has the responsibility to promptly provide the Commission with notice of any change in address or any prolonged absence from that current address so that he or she can be located when necessary at any time while the case is pending before the Commission. In addition, each party is responsible for providing the Commission with necessary information and to be available for interviews and conferences upon reasonable notice or request by the Commission. If a complainant cannot be located or does not adequately respond to reasonable requests by the Commission, the Commission may dismiss the complaint. The Commission shall promptly serve upon the parties written notice of the dismissal. The notice shall be addressed to the complainant at the last known address, and shall advise that the complainant may obtain review of the matter by the Commission by filing a Motion to Reconsider as set forth in these rules. If a respondent does not adequately respond to reasonable requests by the Commission, the Commission may consider the lack of response as an admission by the respondent. (94-161, 00-32)
49.12. PROCEDURE. (00-32)
It shall be the duty and within the authority of the Human Relations Commission to conduct investigations regarding all Complaints filed with the Commission and to hold any hearings necessary to facilitate said investigations and to aid the Commission members in determining whether or not there has been a violation of this Chapter.
a) Mediation. Before an investigation is conducted, the parties shall have the opportunity to meet for a mediation meeting. The purpose of a mediation meeting is to determine whether the conflict can be resolved by the parties without the necessity of investigation. Mediation will be offered to the parties as soon as possible after the complaint is filed. If the complainant fails to appear at a mediation meeting without just cause, the mediator may recommend that the Commission dismiss the complaint. (00-32)
b) Investigations. One to three Commissioners shall investigate particular complaints to determine if there is probable cause to believe a violation of this Chapter has occurred. The Chairperson shall assign the Commissioners by choosing every other name from the official list of the HRC; the Chairperson may deviate from this selection process for cause, at his or her discretion. The investigators shall be selected as soon as practicable after the complaint is filed, but no later than the first regular meeting thereafter. No Commissioner shall be assigned more than one investigation at a time, unless multiple complaints have been filed requiring a Commissioner to be involved in more than one investigation at the same time. (00-32)
The purpose of an investigation is to identify the issues in the dispute and ascertain the positions of the parties in order to explore the possibility of and facilitate a negotiated settlement, obtain evidence, make findings, reach conclusions, and determine if there is probable cause to believe that there has been a violation of this Chapter. If necessary, the investigators may order the parties to attend a Fact-Finding Conference during the course of the investigation. The investigators may also order the parties to provide written submissions, including affidavits and other documents, which will further the investigation. A party may be represented by one or more persons who do not need to be attorneys. (00-32)
All investigations should begin as soon as possible after the appointment by the chairperson of the Commissioners. The investigatory phase should be completed within six (6) months after receipt of the appointment by the chairperson. Upon a timely request by the investigators, and a showing of good cause, the Commission may extend the investigatory phase for a specified period of time upon a majority vote. (00-32)
c) Fact-Finding Conference. Should the investigators determine that a fact finding conference is needed, the parties shall be given notice at least ten (10) days prior to such a conference being held. Said notice shall identify the individuals requested to attend on behalf of each party. In said notice, the investigators may also identify documents and other tangible items that the parties shall bring to the Fact-Finding Conference. The Fact-Finding Conference may help clarify a disputed issue of fact, identify the issues in the dispute, obtain additional evidence or ascertain the positions of the parties in order to facilitate settlement.
The parties' attendance at the Fact-Finding Conference is mandatory. If the Complainant fails to attend without just cause the Complaint may be dismissed. (00-32)
d) Report of Investigations. The Commissioners who are assigned to investigate the complaint shall submit a written report to the whole Commission. This report may be considered by the Commission in closed session. The content of the written report shall, at a minimum, contain the following information: (00-32)
1. a restatement of the facts and allegations;
2. names of individuals contacted, their positions, a brief summary of their statements; and
3. any finding or conclusions of the investigator(s) as to whether there is probable cause that a violation of this Chapter has occurred. (00-32)
e) Determination of Probable Cause. At the close of the investigation the Commission shall determine, on the basis of all available information, if there is probable cause to believe that the allegations made in the complaint state a violation of this Chapter. (00-32)
f) Finding of Probable Cause. If the Commission determines from the investigation of a complaint that there is probable cause to believe a violation has occurred, the Commission shall notify the parties of its determination and may state its reasoning in writing. The Commission shall notify the parties that a closed conciliation conference will be set up in an attempt to reconcile the parties based upon the allegations contained in the complaint. This notice shall be mailed to all parties within fourteen (14) days of the Commission's decision or within such other time period as may be approved by the Commission. (00-32)
g) Finding of No Probable Cause.
h) Dismissal. If the Commission determines that there is no probable cause to believe that the Respondent has engaged in any practice or act in violation of this Chapter, the Commission shall state its findings in writing within fourteen (14) days after making said determination, mailing the decision to all interested parties and dismissing the complaint. (00-32)
i) Closed Conciliation Conference. The parties are required to attend the Closed Conciliation Conference. The number of other persons who attend the Closed Conciliation Conference is at the discretion of the Chair. At the Closed Conciliation Conference an attempt shall be made to resolve the conflict between the parties by formulating a written agreement to eliminate any discriminatory situation which may be found to exist and such agreement may include, but is not limited to: (00-32)
1. a determination of actual damages to be paid by Respondent to the Complainant; and
2. the hiring, reinstatement and/or job upgrading of Complainant with or without back pay and/or provision for fringe benefits that the Complainant may have been denied.
Any statement made during the course of the Closed Conciliation
Conference to facilitate settlement shall not be used against
the party making the statement during a Public Hearing. (00-73)
j) Settlement. If, during the investigation, fact-finding or conciliation conference, the Respondent agrees to cease the alleged discriminatory practice with assurances against any recurrence or that the matter can be properly disposed of without further proceedings, or the parties have reached a settlement satisfactory to both parties, such facts shall be reported to the Commission.
The Commission may thereupon either dismiss the complaint immediately or do so conditionally upon such terms as it considers appropriate to fully justify the dismissal of the complaint, and such terms may be placed in writing and be signed by the respondent and by a majority of the Commission or by the Chair of the Commission as a binding and enforceable agreement between the Respondent and the Commission. (00-32)
k) Public Hearing. If the closed conciliation conference does not resolve the conflict, the Commission may order a public hearing to be held to determine by a preponderance of the evidence if the violation alleged in the complaint occurred. The determination of whether to hold a public hearing shall be made by a simple majority vote and within sixty (60) days of the Closed Conciliation Conference. The public hearing shall be held before a panel of at least three (3) Commission members, which shall make findings of fact, determine if the alleged violation occurred, make recommendations to resolve or alleviate the conflict or similar conflicts which may occur in the future. Commissioners involved in the investigation shall not be a member of the panel. (00-32)
All testimony presented at the public hearing shall be under oath. The Commission shall provide a certified court reporter to take a transcript of the proceeding. (00-32)
The Chair of the Commission, or his/her designee, shall have
authority to direct the public hearing. At a public hearing, the
parties are responsible for presenting witnesses, testimony and
documents that support their contentions. For purposes of testimony,
the process will entail direct examination, cross examination
and re-direct examination. Commission members are entitled to
ask questions of witnesses throughout the public hearing. (00-32)
If the Commission conducts said public hearing, its findings, determinations and recommendations regarding damages, benefits and/or backpay shall be stated in writing which upon being signed by presiding commissioner shall constitute a final order of the Commission. The Chairperson shall arrange for the service of a copy of the final order of the Commission, either personally or by certified mail, on each person directly affected thereby within thirty (30) days of the date of public hearing. (00-32)
All parties are entitled to be represented by legal counsel.
Representation by legal counsel is optional and should not be
construed by any party to this matter as a necessary prerequisite
to a fair and impartial consideration of the matters before this
Commission. The role of any attorney in this type of proceeding
will be advisory. Attorney(s) shall be allowed to address the
Commission directly at the Commission's sole discretion. (00-32)
l) Motions to Reconsider.
1. Each party shall have an opportunity to ask the Commission to reconsider its decisions by filing a Motion to Reconsider with the Commission within fourteen (14) days of the subject decision of the Commission. The motion must be in writing and specifically state the basis of the motion to reconsider. A copy of the motion to reconsider will be sent to the non-moving party by mail within fourteen (14) days after it is received by the Commission. (00-32)
2. The non-moving party shall have fourteen (14) days from the date of mailing said motion in which to file a written objection to the motion to reconsider. (00-32)
3. The Commission shall review the motion to reconsider and
any objections filed and shall rule on the motion at its next
meeting. A decision by the Commission on the motion shall be mailed
to the Complainant and Respondent within fourteen (14) days after
the meeting in which the motion was discussed and decided upon.
m) Prosecution. After receiving the final order from the Commission that a violation of any provision of this Chapter has occurred, the City Attorney for the City of DeKalb will review the final order along with any evidence, including documents, that were gathered during the investigatory and hearing phases of this complaint. After review of all the relevant materials the City Attorney will decide whether or not to file a complaint in the Circuit Court for the County of DeKalb to enforce the Commission's ruling after the public hearing. The City Attorney shall notify the Commission of his or her decision within thirty (30) days after receipt of the final order of the Commission. (00-32)
1. In conducting a public hearing provided for herein, any party may compel, through the issuance of a subpoena, the attendance of any person believed to have knowledge of any facts relevant to such hearing. (00-32)
2. Any party to such hearing may also compel the presentation of any tangible evidence relevant to such hearing, by the issuance of a subpoena, to the person believed to have such knowledge, or to the person having custody or control of any relevant books, papers, records or any other tangible evidence, directing such person to appear personally to testify and/or to produce such tangible items to be copied and/or for examination. Said items to be produced at a location convenient to both parties or at the DeKalb Municipal Building prior to the hearing for which they have been subpoenaed. The items may be required to be produced directly to the person or persons who would be conducting said hearing at a designated time and place either prior to or during the hearing. (00-32)
3. All such subpoenas shall be personally served by the DeKalb Police Department upon the person to whom they are issued and will contain specific information regarding the individual or items subpoenaed.
4. Any witness so summoned may petition the Commission through the Chairperson to vacate or modify a subpoena. The Chairperson shall set a hearing on each such petition, shall give prompt notice of each petition and of the hearing date, time and place thereon to the party that requested the issuance of the subpoena. The Chairperson, with the advice of the City Attorney, or his or her representative, shall conduct each hearing. The Chairperson may grant the petition in whole or in part, upon finding that the testimony, or the evidence whose production is required, does not relate to any matters in question, or that a subpoena for the production of evidence is unreasonable and oppressive. (00-32)
5. Upon failure of any person to comply with the subpoenas issued as herein provided, the Chairperson may petition any court of competent jurisdiction to compel the attendance of the persons subpoenaed and/or the production of the subpoenaed evidence or at the election of the Commission, such person may be assessed a fine by the Commission not in excess of $1,000.00 for each offense, provided the person to whom the subpoena is issued is so notified on said subpoena that such fine may be assessed. Each such person shall be immediately notified of the amount of each such fine and each fine shall be paid within thirty (30) days after it is assessed. In the event any such fines are not so paid, they shall be considered to be debts to the City of DeKalb and shall be collectible in the same manner provided by law for the collection of all other debts.
o) Rules of Evidence. The rules of evidence prevailing in courts of law in this State shall not be applicable to nor bind any party, the representative of any party, nor any administrative person or body in any proceeding hereunder, but such parties, persons and bodies shall consider any and all reliable, probative and substantial evidence, statistical or otherwise, produced by anyone by and proceeding hereunder, which may tend to prove or disprove any act or acts of discrimination alleged in the complaint under consideration. All testimony in any proceeding hereunder shall be given under oath. (94-161)
49.13 JUDICIAL RELIEF.
Whenever deemed necessary in order to protect the rights of a complainant or to preserve the power of the Commission to resolve a complaint, the City of DeKalb, through its attorney, may apply to a court of competent jurisdiction for an injunction or other judicial relief to accomplish such purpose. (94-161)
A complaint under this Chapter and any other action under Section 49.09(b), should be filed in writing with the Commission within one hundred eighty (180) days after the cause of action has occurred or the discovery thereof. If the alleged violation is of a continuing nature, the date of occurrence may be any date subsequent to the commencement of the violation, up to and including the date on which it may have ceased. (94-161, 00-32)
Any person found guilty of violating any portion of this Chapter may be ordered to pay damages, benefits and/or back pay; and, if a complaint is filed in the Circuit Court for the County of DeKalb by the City Attorney for enforcement of the Commission's ruling at the public hearing, the persons found in violation of this Chapter can be fined up to $1,000.00 for each offense. (94-161, 00-32)
If any section, paragraph, sentence or clause of this Chapter is, for any reason, held to be invalid, unconstitutional or in conflict with any part of the DeKalb Municipal Code, such decisions shall not affect the validity of any other part of this Chapter. (94-161)