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DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA FIN. v. CONCERNED SR CITIZENS

December 19, 2000

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY AND MANAGEMENT AUTHORITY, AND P & G, L.L.C., AND SUMMIT PROPERTIES PARTNERSHIP, PLAINTIFFS,
V.
CONCERNED SENIOR CITIZENS OF THE ROOSEVELT TENANT ASSOC., INC., DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Lamberth, District Judge.

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

BACKGROUND

The Roosevelt apartment building is currently owned by the District of Columbia Financial Responsibility and Management Assistance Authority (commonly referred to as the "Control Board"). The Control Board obtained title to the property in July 1999, when the District of Columbia transferred its ownership via a quitclaim deed in exchange for $3.1 million.*fn1

On May 19, 2000, the Control Board contracted with P & G, L.L.C. (a co-plaintiff in this case) to sell the building for $10.1 million. The contract provided that the Roosevelt Tenant Association (the "Association") would first be given the option of purchasing the building under identical terms. If the Association was unable to match the terms, or declined to do so, P & G would have the right to purchase the building.

On May 22, 2000, the Association received the terms under which they could purchase the building. Just over two weeks later, on June 6, 2000, the Association informed the Control Board that it could pledge, as of that day, "$503,750.00 in loan commitments of immediately available funds." Plaintiff's Brief at 5. Needless to say, the Control Board did not consider this to be an offer on "identical terms."

The Control Board then sought to consummate the sale to P. & G. At the same time, the Association asserted that the Control Board was violating the D.C. Housing Act by not permitting it a greater opportunity to purchase the building.*fn2 As the Control Board proceeded to settlement, it became clear that the Association's claim was preventing P & G from obtaining title insurance necessary for settlement.

Finding its sale to P & G stalled, the Control Board filed suit in this Court. The Control Board asserts that it has complied with all laws and regulations applicable to it, and asks the Court to declare that the D.C. Housing Act presents no legal impediment to the conveyance of the Roosevelt apartment building. The Association disagrees, and argues in its motion for summary judgment that the D.C. Housing Act justifies its position.

The Court will now consider this dispute.

ANALYSIS

As a preliminary note, the Court notes jurisdiction under D.C.Code § 47-391.5(a) because the instant matter arises, "in whole or part," out of the D.C. Housing Act.

I. Standard of Review

Both sides in this case move for summary judgment. Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56(c) provides that a district court shall grant summary judgment "if the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that there is (1) no genuine issue as to any material fact and that (2) the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law." See Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c); Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248, 106 S.Ct. 2505, 91 L.Ed.2d 202 (1986); Diamond v. Atwood, 43 F.3d 1538, 1540 (D.C.Cir. 1995). There is no dispute of any material fact in this case. Thus, the Court must now determine which party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.

II. The Applicability of the D.C. Housing Act to the Control Board

An examination of the statute creating the Control Board reveals that the Control Board is not ...


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