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Escondido Sued Over Landlord Ordinance

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

A coalition of civil rights organizations sued the City of Escondido today charging a new housing ordinance there is unconstitutional and illegal under state and federal law. KPBS Reporter Amy Isackson has the story.

The coalition brought the suit on behalf of five plaintiffs, including two landlords. The suit contends the ordinance violates federal law, since only the federal government can enforce immigration laws. The suit says landlords are forced to act as immigration agents, and to violate state law by evicting undocumented tenants in 10 days instead of 60.

Plaintiff Roy Garret owns more than a dozen rental properties in Escondido. He says he simply will not comply.

Garret: It is reprehensible to try to throw people in the street in such conditions. You have to give more notice to throw a couch in the street? It takes 14 days.

The coalition wants the city to wait to enforce the ordinance until there’s an injunction hearing. Amy Isackson, KPBS news.

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