496 F.Supp.2d 477 (M.D.Pa. 2007), 3 06cv1586, Lozano v. City of Hazleton

Docket Nº:3 06cv1586
Citation:496 F.Supp.2d 477
Party Name:Lozano v. City of Hazleton
Case Date:July 26, 2007
Court:United States District Courts, 3th Circuit, Middle District of Pennsylvania
 
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496 F.Supp.2d 477 (M.D.Pa. 2007)

Pedro LOZANO, Humberto Hernandez, Rosa Lechuga, Jose Luis Lechuga, John Doe 1, John Doe 3, John Doe 7, Jane Doe 5, Casa Dominica of Hazleton, Inc., Hazleton Hispanic Business Association, and Pennsylvania Statewide Latino Coalition, Plaintiffs

v.

CITY OF HAZLETON, Defendant

No. 3:06cv1586.

United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania.

July 26, 2007

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David Vaida, Law Office of David Vaida, Allentown, PA, Denise Alvarez, Foster Maer, Ghita Schwarz, Jackson Chin, Richard

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Bellman, Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund, New York, NY, Doreen Y. Trujillo, Ilan Rosenberg, Linda S. Kaiser, Thomas B. Fiddler, Thomas G. Wilkinson, Jr., William J. Taylor, Cozen O'Connor, Philadelphia, PA, Douglas W. Frankenthaler, Cozen O'Connor, Cherry Hill, NJ, Elena Park, Cozen O'Connor, West Conshohocken, PA, George R. Barron, Wilkes-Barre, PA, Jennifer C. Chang, American Civil Liberties Union Foundation, Lucas Guttentag, San Francisco, CA, Lee Gelernt, Omar C. Jadwat, American Civil Liberties Union Foundation, New York, NY, Mary Catherine Roper, American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, Witold J. Walczak, American Civil Liberties Union of PA, Pittsburgh, PA, Laurence E. Norton, II, Peter Zurflieh, Shamaine A. Daniels, Community Justice Project, Harrisburg, PA, for Plaintiffs.

Carla P. Maresca, Harry G. Mahoney, Andrew B. Adair, Deasey, Mahoney & Bender, Ltd., Philadelphia, PA, Kris W. Kobach, Kansas City, MI, Michael M. Hethmon, Immigration Reform Law Institute, Washington, DC, William Perry Pendley, Elizabeth Gallaway, Mountain States Legal Foundation, Lakewood, CO, for Defendant.

DECISION

MUNLEY, District Judge.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

I. Preliminary Issues .............................................. 487

A. Standing ................................................. 487

1. Constitutional standing ............................... 487

a. Individual named plaintiffs ........................ 488

b. Organizations ...................................... 491

c. Tenant plaintiffs .................................. 496

2. Prudential standing ................................... 499

B. Anonymous Does ........................................... 504

1. Factors favoring anonymity ............................ 507

2. Factors favoring disclosure ........................... 513

C. Amendments to the ordinances ............................. 515

II. Federal Constitutional Issues ................................... 517

A. Federal pre-emption ...................................... 517

1. Employment provisions ................................. 518

a. Express pre-emption ................................ 518

b. Implied pre-emption ................................ 521

i. Field .......................................... 521

ii. Conflict ....................................... 525

2. Tenancy provisions .................................... 529

a. Housing illegal aliens ............................. 529

b. Tenant registration ordinance ...................... 530

B. Procedural due process ................................... 533

1. Employment provisions ................................. 533

2. Landlord/tenant ....................................... 537

C. Equal Protection ......................................... 538

D. Privacy rights ........................................... 542

III. Federal Statutory Causes of Action .............................. 545

A. Fair Housing Act ......................................... 545

B. Section 1981 ............................................. 546

IV. State Law Causes of Action ...................................... 548

A. Pennsylvania municipality law ............................ 548

B. Landlord/Tenant Law ...................................... 552

C. Police powers ............................................ 553

Conclusion ............................................................. 554

Verdict ................................................................ 555

Appendix ............................................................... 556

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This case addresses Defendant City of Hazleton's authority to enact ordinances that regulate the presence and employment of illegal aliens. 1 Before the court for disposition is plaintiffs' complaint challenging the validity of those ordinances. Trial has been held on this matter, and the parties have filed briefs setting forth their respective positions. The matter is thus ripe for disposition.

Background including findings of fact

Defendant City of Hazleton is located in Luzerne County in northeastern Pennsylvania. The city's executive is a mayor and the city's legislature is a city council. Under Pennsylvania law, Hazleton is a City of the Third Class and operates under an Optional Plan B form of government. (Notes of trial testimony (hereinafter "N.T") 3/15/07 at 204-05).

At the time of the 2000 census, Hazleton's population was 23,000. (N.T. 3/16/07 at 145-46). Since 2000, Hazleton's population has increased sharply, and now has an estimated 30,000 to 33,000 residents. (P-148, 2007 Budget Proposal, at 1-2; N.T. 3/19/07 at 163-64).

The increase in Hazleton's population can be explained largely by a recent influx of immigrants, most of whom are Latino. (N.T. 3/16/07 at 146). After the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, many Latino families moved from New York and New Jersey to Hazleton seeking a better life, employment and affordable housing. (N.T. 3/12/07 at 66-67; N.T. 3/14/07 at 29-30). Those moving to Hazleton included United States citizens, lawful permanent residents and undocumented immigrants. (N.T. 3/13/07 at 161; N.T. 3/14/07 at 29-30).

The number of undocumented immigrants in Hazleton is unknown. (N.T. 3/16/07 at 146). Immigrants, both legal and undocumented, support the local economy through consumer spending, paying rent and paying sales taxes. (N.T. 3/14/07 at 67-70).

Beginning on July 13, 2006, the City of Hazleton enacted numerous ordinances aimed at combating what the city viewed as the problems created by the presence of "illegal aliens." On July 13, 2006, Ordinance 2006-10, the city's first version of its "Illegal Immigration Relief Act Ordinance" was passed. This ordinance prohibits the employment and harboring of undocumented aliens in the City of Hazleton. On August 15, 2006, the city passed the "Tenant Registration Ordinance," Ordinance 2006-13 ("RO"). This ordinance requires apartment dwellers to obtain an occupancy permit. To receive such a permit, they must prove they are citizens or lawful residents.

On September 21, 2006, Hazleton enacted Ordinance 2006-18, entitled the "Illegal Immigration Relief Act Ordinance" ("IIRA") and Ordinance 2006-19, the "Official English Ordinance." These two ordinances replaced the original Illegal Immigration Relief Act. On December 28, 2006, Hazleton enacted Ordinance 2006-40, which amended IIRA by adding an "implementation and process" section. During

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the trial of the above matter, the city enacted the final ordinance at issue in this case, Ordinance 2007-6, which made minor, but important, changes to the language of portions of IIRA. 2

At issue in the instant case are IIRA 3 and RO. 4 IIRA defines "illegal alien" as an "alien who is not lawfully present in the United States, according to the terms of United States Code Title 8, section 1101 et seq." (IIRA § 3.D.). Title 8, section 1101, et seq. is commonly referred to as the Immigration and Nationality Act or "INA". The INA provides no definition for the term "illegal alien" or the term "lawfully present." (N.T. 3/19/07 at 130).

Generally, under federal law, aliens can be present in the country as: 1) lawfully admitted non-immigrants, i.e., visitors, those in the country temporarily; and 2) lawful immigrants, lawful permanent residents, referred to sometimes as "green card holders." (N.T. 3/19/07 at 112-13). Lawfully admitted for permanent residence status can be attained in various ways, including family or employment characteristics, the "green card lottery" or relief such as asylum. (Id. at 112-13).

A third category of aliens present in the country are "undocumented aliens" who lack lawful immigration status. These aliens may have overstayed their time in the United States or entered the country illegally. (Id. at 113). The number of these individuals is approximately twelve million. (Id.). Hazleton's use of the term "illegal alien" evidently is aimed at these individuals.

On August 15, 2006, plaintiffs filed the instant action to challenge the validity of the Hazleton ordinances. On October 30, 2006, an amended complaint was filed along with a motion for a preliminary injunction and temporary restraining order seeking to enjoin the defendant from enforcing the ordinances.

On October 31, 2006, the court granted the plaintiffs' request for a Temporary Restraining Order. (Doc. 35). The court ordered that the Temporary Restraining Order remain in effect until November 14, 2006 and scheduled a hearing on the preliminary injunction motion for November 13, 2006. (Doc. 36). In order to conduct discovery and fully brief the issues raised in the amended complaint, the parties entered into a stipulation to extend the Temporary...

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