Chief Sponsor: James A. Dunnigan

Senate Sponsor: Curtis S. Bramble


8     Committee Note:
9          The Business and Labor Interim Committee recommended this bill.
10     General Description:
11          This bill amends provisions of the Fair Housing Act.
12     Highlighted Provisions:
13          This bill:
14          ▸     permits an aggrieved person to appeal a determination, of a director of the Division
15     of Antidiscrimination and Labor, dismissing a complaint alleging housing
16     discrimination under the Fair Housing Act; and
17          ▸     makes technical and conforming changes.
18     Money Appropriated in this Bill:
19          None
20     Other Special Clauses:
21          None
22     Utah Code Sections Affected:
23     AMENDS:
24          57-21-9, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2016, Chapter 244
25          57-21-10, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2008, Chapter 382

27     Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:

28          Section 1. Section 57-21-9 is amended to read:
29          57-21-9. Procedure for an aggrieved person to file a complaint -- Conciliation --
30     Investigation -- Determination.
31          (1) An aggrieved person may file a written verified complaint with the division within
32     180 days after the day on which an alleged discriminatory housing practice occurs.
33          (2) (a) The commission shall adopt rules consistent with [the provisions of] 24 C.F.R.
34     Sec. 115.3 (1990), relating to procedures under related federal law, to govern:
35          (i) the form of the complaint;
36          (ii) the form of any answer to the complaint;
37          (iii) procedures for filing or amending a complaint or answer; and
38          (iv) the form of notice to [parties] a party accused of the [acts] act or [omissions]
39     omission giving rise to the complaint.
40          (b) The commission may, by rule, prescribe any other procedure pertaining to the
41     division's processing of the complaint.
42          (3) During the period beginning with the filing of the complaint and ending with the
43     director's determination, the division shall, to the extent feasible, engage in conciliation with
44     respect to the complaint.
45          (4) (a) The division shall commence proceedings to investigate and conciliate a
46     complaint alleging a discriminatory housing practice within 30 days after the [filing of the
47     complaint] day on which the complainant files the complaint.
48          (b) After the commencement of an investigation, any party may request that the
49     commission review the proceedings to [insure] ensure compliance with the requirements of this
50     chapter.
51          (5) (a) The division shall complete the investigation within 100 days after the [filing of
52     the complaint] day on which the complainant files the complaint, unless it is impracticable to
53     do so.
54          (b) If the division is unable to complete the investigation within 100 days after the
55     [filing of the complaint] day on which the complainant files the complaint, the division shall
56     notify the complainant and respondent in writing of the reasons for the delay.
57          (6) [(a)] If, as a result of the division's investigation, the director determines that there
58     is no reasonable cause to support [the allegations] an allegation in the complaint, the director

59     shall issue a written determination dismissing the complaint.
60          [(b) If the director dismisses the complaint pursuant to Subsection (6)(a), the
61     complainant may request that the director reconsider the dismissal pursuant to Section
62     63G-4-302.]
63          [(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of Title 63G, Chapter 4, Administrative
64     Procedures Act, the director's determination to dismiss a complaint or, in the case of a request
65     for reconsideration, the director's order denying reconsideration is not subject to further agency
66     action or direct judicial review. However, the complainant may commence a private action
67     pursuant to Section 57-21-12.]
68          (7) If, as a result of the division's investigation of a complaint, the director determines
69     that there is reasonable cause to support [the allegations] an allegation in the complaint[, all of
70     the following apply]:
71          (a) [The] (i) the division shall informally endeavor to eliminate or correct the
72     discriminatory housing practice through a conciliation conference between the parties, presided
73     over by the division[. Nothing]; and
74          (ii) nothing said or done in the course of [the] a conciliation conference described in
75     Subsection (7)(a)(i) may be made public or admitted as evidence in a subsequent proceeding
76     under this chapter without the written consent of the parties concerned[.]; and
77          (b) [If] (i) if the conciliation conference described in Subsection (7)(a) results in
78     voluntary compliance with this chapter[,]:
79          (A) the parties shall execute a conciliation agreement, approved by the division, setting
80     forth the resolution of the issues [shall be executed by the parties. The]; and
81          (B) the parties or the division may enforce the conciliation agreement in an action filed
82     in a court of competent jurisdiction[.]; or
83          [(c) If] (ii) if the division is unable to obtain a conciliation agreement, the director
84     shall issue a written determination stating the director's findings and ordering [any] appropriate
85     relief under Section 57-21-11.
86          Section 2. Section 57-21-10 is amended to read:
87          57-21-10. Judicial election or formal adjudicative hearing.
88          (1) (a) If, pursuant to Subsection 57-21-9(6) or (7)[(c)](b)(ii), the director issues a
89     written determination [finding reasonable cause to believe that a discriminatory housing

90     practice has occurred, or is about to occur, a respondent], a party to the complaint may obtain
91     de novo review of the determination by submitting a written request for a formal adjudicative
92     hearing to be conducted by the commission's Division of Adjudication in accordance with Title
93     34A, Chapter 1, Part 3, Adjudicative Proceedings, to the director within 30 days [from the date
94     of issuance of] after the day on which the director issues the determination.
95          (b) If the director does not receive a timely request for review, the director's
96     determination becomes the final order of the commission and is not subject to further agency
97     action or direct judicial review.
98          (2) If a [respondent] party files a timely request for review pursuant to Subsection (1):
99          (a) any [respondent, complainant, or aggrieved party] party to the complaint may elect
100     to have the de novo review take place in a civil action in the district court rather than in a
101     formal adjudicative hearing with the Division of Adjudication by filing an election with the
102     commission in accordance with rules established by the commission pursuant to Title 63G,
103     Chapter 3, Utah Administrative Rulemaking Act, regarding the form and time period for the
104     election;
105          (b) the complainant shall file a complaint for review in the forum selected pursuant to
106     Subsection (2)(a) within 30 days after the completion of the forum selection process; and
107          (c) the commission shall determine whether the director's determination is supported
108     by substantial evidence.
109          (3) (a) [If, pursuant to Subsection (2)(c), the commission determines that the director's
110     determination is supported by substantial evidence, the] The commission shall provide legal
111     representation on behalf of the aggrieved person, including the filing of a complaint for review
112     as required by Subsection (2)(b), to support and enforce the director's determination in the de
113     novo review proceeding, if:
114          (i) in accordance with Subsection 57-21-9(7)(b)(ii), the director issued a written
115     determination finding reasonable cause to believe that a discriminatory housing practice had
116     occurred, or was about to occur; and
117          (ii) under Subsection (2)(c), the commission determines that the director's
118     determination under 57-21-9(7)(b)(ii) is supported by substantial evidence.
119          (b) Notwithstanding [any provisions of] Title 63G, Chapter 4, Administrative
120     Procedures Act, the commission's determination, under Subsection (2)(c), regarding the

121     existence or nonexistence of substantial evidence to support the director's determination is not
122     subject to further agency action or direct judicial review.
123          (4) Upon timely application, an aggrieved person may intervene with respect to the
124     issues to be determined in a formal adjudicative hearing or in a civil action brought under this
125     section.
126          (5) If a formal adjudicative hearing is elected[, all of the following apply]:
127          (a) [The] the presiding officer shall commence the formal adjudicative hearing within
128     150 days after the [respondent files] day on which a request for review of the director's
129     determination is filed, unless it is impracticable to do so[.];
130          (b) [The] the investigator who investigated the matter may not participate:
131          (i) in the formal adjudicative hearing, except as a witness[, nor may the investigator
132     participate]; or
133          (ii) in the deliberations of the presiding officer[.];
134          (c) [Any] any party to the complaint may file a written request to the Division of
135     Adjudication for review of the presiding officer's order in accordance with Section 63G-4-301
136     and Title 34A, Chapter 1, Part 3, Adjudicative Proceedings[.]; and
137          (d) [A] a final order of the commission under this section is subject to judicial review
138     as provided in Section 63G-4-403 and Title 34A, Chapter 1, Part 3, Adjudicative Proceedings.
139          (6) If a civil action is elected, the commission is barred from continuing or
140     commencing any adjudicative proceeding in connection with the same claims under this
141     chapter.
142          (7) (a) The commission shall make final administrative disposition of the complaint
143     alleging a discriminatory housing practice within one year after the [filing of] complainant filed
144     the complaint, unless it is impracticable to do so.
145          (b) If the commission is unable to make final administrative disposition within [one
146     year] the time period described in Subsection (7)(a), the commission shall notify the
147     complainant, respondent, and any other interested party in writing of the reasons for the delay.