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JONES v. UNITED STATES

May 17, 1974

Elaine L. Jones, Plaintiff
v.
United States of America et al., Defendants


Corcoran, District Judge.


The opinion of the court was delivered by: CORCORAN

CORCORAN, District Judge.

 This matter is before the Court on defendants' motion for summary judgment and plaintiff's opposition thereto.

 Plaintiff's amended complaint alleges that she was denied promotional opportunities because of her race and seeks back pay, retirement benefits and injunctive relief against further discrimination at the Agency for International Development (AID). *fn1" To confer jurisdiction on the Court, plaintiff relies in her amended complaint exclusively upon the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-16 (Supp. II, 1972), amending Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq. (1970). Named as defendants are the United States, AID and AID's Administrator, Daniel Parker.

 I

 On May 18, 1972, plaintiff filed a complaint alleging racially inspired discriminatory acts against her at AID. It is uncontroverted that the alleged discriminatory acts occurred prior to March 24, 1972, the effective date of the Equal Employment Opportunity Act of 1972 (the 1972 Act).

 On May 26, 1972, AID requested the Civil Service Commission (CSC) to provide an investigator to evaluate plaintiff's complaint. The investigator filed his report with AID's Equal Employment Officer on August 22, 1972. That officer found no evidence of racial discrimination against plaintiff and on September 11, 1972, plaintiff was informed that the decision of the Equal Employment Officer was adopted as the final AID decision. Plaintiff was also informed by AID that she had further alternative rights to a full administrative hearing to AID, or to an appeal to the CSC Board of Appeals and Review, or to institute a civil action in Federal Court. *fn2"

 II

 The threshold issue is whether the 1972 Act is retroactive, i.e., whether the Act is applicable to acts of alleged discrimination in Federal Government employment which occurred prior to March 24, 1972, the effective date of the Act.

 The key section is Section 717 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-16 which was added by the 1972 Act. The 1972 Act is silent as to whether § 717 is to be given retroactive effect. For reasons set out hereinafter, the Court holds that the 1972 Act, insofar as it creates in Federal employees a new right to file a civil action against heads of Federal agencies *fn3" is not to be given retroactive effect.

 Accordingly, the instant action must be dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.

 III

 The Supreme Court has stated that "a law is presumed, in the absence of clear expression to the contrary, to operate prospectively." Hassett v. Welch, 303 U.S. 303, 314, 82 L. Ed. 858, 58 S. Ct. 559 (1938). See also United States v. ...


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