Justiciability – Part II (Standing) Jan. 25, 2006 - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Justiciability – Part II (Standing) Jan. 25, 2006

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  1. Justiciability – Part II (Standing) Jan. 25, 2006

  2. UnderStanding Standing • Article III courts have limited jurisdiction • SoP and Federalism reasons • Subject matter limits • 9 heads of SMJ in Art. III, §2, ¶ 1 • Case & Controversy (types of disputes) • These are the justiciability doctrines • Standing • Ripeness • Mootness • Political Question • Const. limits & rules of prudential self-restraint Con Law I - Manheim

  3. Standing • Theory • Federal courts can exercise judicial power only in cases and controversies of an "adversarial nature" • To be adversarial, litigants must be in particular relationship with one another such that they have personal stake in outcome of case • Judicial power is the power to decide cases. If a federal court is unable to give effective relief, then it is not deciding a case, but merely rendering an advisory opinion. Con Law I - Manheim

  4. Standing Elements • Discrete and Palpable Injury • Caused by Defendant's (alleged) Action • Remediable by Court • Plaintiff's personal rights at stake Con Law I - Manheim

  5. Warth v. Seldin (1975) • Claim: • Exclusionary zoning ordinance discriminates on the basis of race: violating equal protection • Low density zoning keeps out multi-family units and moderately-priced housing • Low- and moderate-income households cannot afford to live in Penfield • Penfield remains mostly affluent and • Mostly white • Plus other constitutional claims not relevant here Con Law I - Manheim

  6. Warth v. Seldin (1975) • Each plaintiff must have standing on each claim (cause of action) brought. • Examine each plaintiff group separately • Assume that all facts can be proven as alleged Con Law I - Manheim

  7. Ps who want to live in Penfield • 1. Can they show a discrete and palpable injury? • Inability to live in town; race/wealth exclusion • 2. Can they show the injury was caused by the (allegedly) illegal acts of the City? • Absent the zoning, would they be able to live in Penfield? • Court says the line of causation is broken by intervening acts of 3rd parties (contractors) Con Law I - Manheim

  8. Rochester Taxpayers • What is their discrete & palpable injury? • Higher taxes to support subsidized housing • Taxpayer standing generally disfavored • Does that injury flow from actions of Ds? • Again, intervening decisions of 3rd parties (contractors) seem to be the proximate cause of the injury Con Law I - Manheim

  9. Associational Standing • Associations have standing if: • Injured in their own capacity, as separate entity • E.g., affecting property owned by the association • Or if any of their members has standing • and the members’ injury is germane to the purposes of the association; I.e., one of the goals of the association is to advance the interests of its members in precisely the way they’ve been injured • Nature of case does not require participation of the individual members • E.g., common relief (injunction) vs separate relief Con Law I - Manheim

  10. Metro Act • Association of Penfield residents who want to live in an integrated community • Is that an injury in fact? • Is it caused by City’s actions? • Can it be remedied by judicial decree? • Are Ps asserting their own rights? • Or the rights of non-residents who are being discriminated against? Con Law I - Manheim

  11. Jus tertii standing • Compare Warth to Trafficante v. Metro Life • Examine the claim brought in respective cases • Warth: Equal Protection • Trafficante: Civil Rights Act • Zone of interest • What is it? • Who defines it? Con Law I - Manheim

  12. Home Builders (Contractors) • What is their discrete and palpable injury? • Is it caused by the unlawful exclusionary zoning practices of Penfield? • Is this a current and ongoing injury? • Does Home Builders have permits pending or current plans to build? • If not, the injury is conjectural, not concrete • Compare Arlington Heights v Metro Housing (1977) • Note: injunction (equitable relief) is prospective • Requires ongoing or imminent injury • Compare damages, retroactive relief Con Law I - Manheim

  13. Dissents • Douglas: • Technical/rigid rules of standing create a barrier to federal courts • Brennan: • Court’s standing analysis is result oriented • Nominally done without regard to merits of case • But belies a hostility to the claims/parties • Too high a burden required at this stage of case Con Law I - Manheim