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Powell v. Gray

United States District Court, District Circuit

September 26, 2013

THEODORE E. POWELL, Plaintiff,
v.
MAYOR VINCENT GRAY, et al., Defendants.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

This matter is before the Court on the plaintiffs application to proceed in forma pauperis and his pro se complaint.

The plaintiff, a former teacher with the District of Columbia Public Schools, again brings a lawsuit against the Washington Teachers Union, among others, arising from its alleged failure to represent him in pursuing a grievance. As the plaintiff well knows, his exclusive remedy for such employment-related claims comes by way of the District of Columbia's Comprehensive Merit Personnel Act ("CMPA"). See D.C. Code §§ 1-601.01 et seq.; McManus v. District of Columbia, 530 F.Supp.2d 46, 77-78 (D.D.C. 2007); see also Powell v. Am. Fed. of Teachers, No. 12-1384, 2012 WL 3757731, at *1 (D.D.C. Aug. 22, 2012); Powell v. Am. Fed. of Teachers, 883 F.Supp.2d 183, 187 (D.D.C. 2012). "Under the CMP A, an employee must first bring a grievance to the District of Columbia Public Employee Relations Board ('PERB'), " and "[o]nly after a final order of the PERB has been issued can the plaintiff seek judicial review, which must commence in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia." Powell, 883 F.Supp.2d at 187 (citations omitted). Even though both the Superior Court and the District of Columbia Court Appeals have denied his request for relief, see Compl., Ex. (Memorandum Opinion and Judgment, Powell v. Washington Teachers' Union, No. 12-CV-1715 (D.C. Ct. App. Aug. 28, 2013) (per curiam)), plaintiff still has no recourse in this Court. "[F]ederal district courts lack jurisdiction to review judicial decisions by state and District of Columbia courts." Richardson v. District of Columbia Court of Appeals, 83 F.3d 1513, 1514 (D.C. Cir. 1996) (citing District of Columbia v. Feldman, 460 U.S. 462, 476 (1983) and Rooker v. Fidelity Trust Co., 263 U.S. 413 (1923)).

An Order accompanies this Memorandum Opinion.


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