[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Brighton 3-14-2018. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The Town Board of the Town of Brighton (the "Town") reaffirms that the Town has the responsibility to act to ensure that every individual within the Town is afforded an equal opportunity to enjoy a full and productive life, and that the failure to provide such equal opportunity, whether because of discrimination, prejudice, intolerance or inadequate housing, not only threatens the rights and proper privileges of its inhabitants, but menaces the institutions and foundations of a free democratic state and threatens the peace, order, health, safety and general welfare of the state and its inhabitants. The Town Board of the Town of Brighton wishes to provide a method of redress for discrimination based on source of income with remedies and damages to be awarded commensurate with relief awarded to other protected groups.
The authority of this chapter shall be in the exercise of the municipal home rule powers under § 10 of the Municipal Home Rule Law of the State of New York and for the protection of the public health, welfare, and well-being of the people of this Town and at property located therein.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- COMMERCIAL SPACE
- Any space in a building, structure, or portion thereof which is used or occupied or is intended, arranged or designed to be used or occupied for the manufacture, sale, resale, processing, reprocessing, displaying, storing, handling, garaging or distribution of personal property; and any space which is used or occupied, or is intended, arranged or designed to be used or occupied, as a separate business or professional unit or office in any building, structure or portion thereof.
- Any direct or indirect act, policy or practice of exclusion, distinction, restriction, segregation, separation, limitation, refusal, denial or any other act or practice of differentiation or preference; or the aiding, abetting, inciting, coercing or compelling thereof.
- HOUSING ACCOMMODATION
- Includes any building, structure, or portion thereof located in the Town which is used or occupied or is intended, arranged or designed to be used or occupied as the home, residence or sleeping place of one or more human beings.
- Includes one or more individuals, partnerships, associations, corporations, legal representatives, trustees, trustees in bankruptcy, or receivers.
- REAL ESTATE BROKER
- Any person, firm or corporation who, for another and for a fee, commission or other valuable consideration, lists for sale, sells, at auction or otherwise, exchanges, buys or rents, or offers or attempts to negotiate a sale, at auction or otherwise, exchange, purchase or rental of an estate or interest in real estate, or collects or offers or attempts to collect rent for the use of real estate, or negotiates, or offers or attempts to negotiate, a loan secured or to be secured by a mortgage or other encumbrance upon or transfer of real estate. In the sale of lots pursuant to the provisions of Article 9-A of the Real Property Law, the term "real estate broker" shall also include any person, partnership, association or corporation employed by or on behalf of the owner or owners of lots or other parcels of real estate, at a stated salary, or upon a commission, or upon a salary and commission, or otherwise, to sell such real estate, or any parts thereof, in lots or other parcels, and who shall sell or exchange, or offer or attempt or agree to negotiate the sale or exchange, of any such lot or parcel of real estate.
- REAL ESTATE SALESPERSON
- A person employed by a licensed real estate broker to list for sale, sell or offer for sale, at auction or otherwise, to buy or offer to buy or negotiate the purchase or sale or exchange of real estate, or to negotiate a loan on real estate, or to lease or rent or offer to lease, rent or place for rent any real estate, or who collects or offers or attempts to collect rent for the use of real estate for or on behalf of such real estate broker.
- SOURCE OF INCOME
- Payments from any lawful occupation or employment, as well as other payments, including, but not limited to, public assistance, public assistance security agreements, supplemental security income, pensions, annuities, unemployment benefits, government subsidies such as Section 8 and other housing subsidies and domestic support.
- The Town of Brighton in the County of Monroe and State of New York.
- UNLAWFUL DISCRIMINATORY PRACTICE
- Includes those practices specified in this chapter.
The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to:
The rental of a housing accommodation in a building which contains housing accommodations for not more than two families living independently of each other, if the owner or members of the owner's family reside in one of such housing accommodations.
The rental of rooms in a housing accommodation, if such rental is by the occupant of the housing accommodation or by the owner of the housing accommodation and said owner or members of the owner's family reside in such housing accommodations.
The opportunity to obtain the use and occupancy of housing accommodations without discrimination because of source of income is hereby recognized and declared to be a civil right.
It shall be unlawful:
To refuse to rent or lease or otherwise to deny to or withhold from any person or group of persons such housing accommodations because of the source of income of such person or persons.
To cause to be made any written or oral inquiry or record concerning the source of income of a person seeking to rent or lease any housing accommodation.
It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for the owner, lessee, sublessee, assignee, or managing agent of, or other person having the right to sell, rent, or lease a housing accommodation, commercial space, constructed or to be constructed, or land, or any agent or employee thereof:
To refuse to sell, rent, lease or otherwise to deny to or withhold from any person or group of persons because of the source of income of such person or persons.
To discriminate against any person because of his or her source of income in the terms, conditions or privileges of the sale, rental or lease or in the furnishing of facilities or services in connection therewith.
To print or circulate or cause to be printed or circulated any statement, advertisement or publication, or to use any form of application for the purchase, rental or lease or to make any record or inquiry in connection with the prospective purchase, rental or lease which expresses, directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification or discrimination as to source of income, or any intent to make any such limitation, specification or discrimination.
It shall be an unlawful discriminatory practice for any real estate broker, real estate salesman or employee or agent thereof:
To refuse to sell, rent or lease any housing accommodation to any person or group of persons or to refuse to negotiate for the sale, rental or lease, of any housing accommodation, to any person because of the source of income of such person or persons, or to represent that any housing accommodation is not available for inspection, sale, rental or lease when in fact it is so available, or otherwise to deny or withhold any housing accommodation, land or commercial space or any facilities of any housing accommodation from any person or group of persons because of the source of income of such person or persons.
To print or circulate or cause to be printed or circulated any statement, advertisement or publication, or to use any form of application for the purchase, rental or lease of any housing accommodation, or to make any record of inquiry in connection with the prospective purchase, rental or lease of any housing accommodation, which expresses, directly or indirectly, any limitation, specification, or discrimination as to source of income or any intent to make any such limitation, specification or discrimination.
To represent that a change has occurred or will or may occur in the composition with respect to source of income of the owners or occupants in the block, neighborhood or area in which the real property is located, and to represent, directly or indirectly, that this change will or may result in undesirable consequences in the block, neighborhood or area in which the real property is located, including but not limited to the lowering of property values, an increase in criminal or antisocial behavior, or a decline in the quality of schools or other facilities.
Civil rights. No person because of source of income shall be subjected to any discrimination in his or her civil rights, or to any harassment in the exercise thereof, by any person or by any firm, corporation, institution located in the Town, or by the Town or any agency of the Town.
Enforcement. Any person claiming to be aggrieved by an unlawful discriminatory practice shall have a civil cause of action in any court of appropriate jurisdiction for damages and such remedies as may be appropriate.
Any action brought for violation of this chapter must be commenced within one year after the alleged unlawful discriminatory practice.