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Daniel Faccio et al v. Robert J. Landry et al

August 22, 2012


The opinion of the court was delivered by: Gary L. Sharpe Chief Judge


I. Introduction

Plaintiffs pro se Daniel Faccio, C.F., A.F., and D.F. commenced this action alleging, among other things, statutory and constitutional violations against defendants Robert J. Landry, City of Glens Falls Housing Authority (GFHA), and Mary St. Denis*fn1 related to GFHA's administration of the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program (HCVP). (See Compl., Dkt. No. 1.) Pending is defendants' motion for summary judgment seeking dismissal of the Complaint. (See Dkt. No. 32.) For the reasons that follow, the motion is granted.

II. Background

A. Facts*fn2

In 2008, GFHA, a local entity that administers the HCVP, issued a Section 8 housing voucher to Faccio, which he used to subsidize the rental of an apartment in the City of Hudson Falls. (See Defs.' Statement of Material Facts (SMF) ¶ 13, Dkt. No. 32, Attach. 2; Dkt. No. 32, Attach. 6 at 42, 44, 46-47.) Approximately one year later, the roof of that dwelling collapsed due to a leak. (See Dkt. No. 32, Attach. 6 at 48-50.) In light of these facts, Faccio filed a housing discrimination complaint with the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) alleging that GFHA and Landry, executive director of GFHA, "refused to make the necessary repairs to his apartment . . . [and] renew his voucher." (Dkt. No. 32, Attach. 11 at 3; see Defs.' SMF ¶ 10.) The complaint was referred to the New York State Division of Human Rights, which found no unlawful discriminatory practice and dismissed it. (See Dkt. No. 32, Attach. 12.)

Thereafter, Faccio, his wife C.F., and children A.F. and D.F. moved into an apartment located at 32 Cooper Street in the City of Glens Falls; part of the rent was subsidized by the HCVP. (See Defs.' SMF ¶ 27; Dkt. No. 32, Attach. 6 at 59-61.) Black mold was eventually discovered in that apartment, which forced plaintiffs to move to another HCVP subsidized apartment located at 9 Traver Street in the City of Glens Falls. (See Defs.' SMF ¶¶ 26, 28-29.) Plaintiffs were again rousted from their apartment-this time "the landlord terminated the lease to correct a shared electric meter problem," and plaintiffs were ultimately evicted. (Id. ¶ 30.) Related to the foregoing, Faccio also claims that GFHA, Landry, and St. Denis, an employee of GFHA, made complaints to the police that led to him being falsely arrested. (See Dkt. No. 32, Attach. 7 at 50; Defs.' SMF ¶¶ 34-35.)

B. Procedural History

Plaintiffs filed their largely incomprehensible Complaint in July 2010, alleging a host of claims against defendants. (See Compl. at 3.) Following joinder of issue, (see Dkt. No. 15), and discovery, which included depositions of Faccio and C.F., (see Dkt. No. 32, Attachs. 6-8), defendants moved for summary judgment, (see Dkt. No. 32). Despite being provided with notice that explained the consequences of failing to respond to the pending motion by both defendants and the court, (see Dkt. No. 32, Attach. 13; Dkt Nos. 34-35), and being granted an extension of time to do so, (see Dkt. No. 36), plaintiffs have filed no response to the motion.

III. Standard of Review

The standard of review pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 56 is well established and will not be repeated here. For a full discussion of the standard, the court refers the parties to its decision in Wagner v. Swarts, 827 F. Supp. 2d 85, 92 (N.D.N.Y. 2011).*fn3

IV. Discussion

Defendants argue that they are entitled to summary judgment and, accordingly, plaintiffs' Complaint should be dismissed. (See generally Dkt. No. 32, Attach. 1 at 3-9.) Specifically, defendants contend that: (1) any state law claims must be dismissed for failure to file a notice of claim pursuant to N.Y. Pub. Hous. Law § 157(1) (McKinney 1989); (2) plaintiffs have failed to allege or prove that GFHA promulgated an unconstitutional custom or policy; (3) plaintiffs failed to plead facts demonstrating that they were treated differently than other similarly situated individuals; (3) defendants had no personal involvement in any arrest of Faccio; and (4) Landry and St. Denis are entitled to qualified immunity. (See id.) The court generally agrees with defendants.

First, liberally construing the Complaint, as the court must, see Triestman v. Fed. Bureau of Prisons, 470 F.3d 471, 474 (2d Cir. 2006), plaintiffs allege facts suggestive of a host of federal and state causes of action. (See Compl. at 3.) In particular, plaintiffs explain that they bring their claims "under the Federal Constitution, federal law, the New York State Constitution, New York State Law, and the common law." (Id.) The court surmises the following federal causes of action under 42 U.S.C. § 1983: (1) a Monell claim; (2) an equal protection violation; and (3) a claim of retaliation.*fn4 (See id.) The Complaint also appears to assert a claim of race-based discrimination pursuant to 42 U.S.C. ยง 1981, violations of the New York ...

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