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Robbins v. United States Department of Housing and Urban Development

United States District Court, D. Columbia.

October 27, 2014

IVA ROBBINS, et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT, et al., Defendants

Page 2

IVA ROBBINS, Plaintiff, Pro se, Washington, DC.

IVAN ROBBINS, Plaintiff, Pro se, Washington, DC.

For JULIAN CASTRO, Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, HUD FIELD OPERATIONS PUBLIC HOUSING REVITALIZATION, Defendants: Benton Gregory Peterson, LEAD ATTORNEY, U.S. ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, Civil Division, Washington, DC.

Page 3

MEMORANDUM OPINION

RUDOLPH CONTRERAS, United States District Judge.

Granting Defendants' Motion to Dismiss And Denying Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction

I. INTRODUCTION

Iva Robbins and her adult son, Ivan Robbins, are recipients of housing vouchers issued under the Housing Choice Voucher (" Section 8 Program" ), which provides qualifying applicants with vouchers to aid with rent payments. Ms. Robbins utilized her housing vouchers to rent an apartment unit in Alexandria, Virginia. Upon a dispute with the Alexandria landlord over utilities, Ms. Robbins requested that her local public housing authority (" LPHA" ) " port out" Ms. Robbins and her son to another unit in Fairfax, Virginia. The LPHA denied Ms. Robbins's request because she was not in good standing with her current landlord in Alexandria. Ms. Robbins submitted additional " port out" and hearing requests but again was denied.

Ms. Robbins contacted the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (" HUD" ) about alleged non-compliance by her LPHA with requirements of the Section 8 Program, but she did not find the relief she sought, so she filed the instant action with this Court. In her complaint and accompanying request for a preliminary injunctive order, Ms. Robbins requests that the Court remedy her " living condition of homelessness." Compl., ECF No. 1, ¶ 68; Mot. Injunction Order, Sept. 5, 2014, ECF No. 2. She also asserts that HUD is responsible for her " adverse living condition" because she " participates in [its] federal program" and HUD failed to require the Alexandria Redevelopment and Housing Authority (" ARHA" ) to afford her a hearing and vouchers to port out of Alexandria. Compl., ¶ ¶ 4-6, 47-59.

In response, HUD filed a motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction under Rule 12(b)(1), and failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, under Rule 12(b)(6). HUD argues that Ms. Robbins's claims should be dismissed because HUD is not the appropriate party to bring these claims against. Def's Mot. Dismiss, Sept. 15, 2014, ECF No. 4, 2. For the reasons explained below, the Court grants HUD's motion to dismiss and denies Ms. Robbins's motion for preliminary injunction on the basis of standing, not subject matter jurisdiction.[1]

II. FACTUAL BACKGROUND

A. The Section 8 Housing Program

Although HUD funds the Section 8 federal housing subsidy program, see 42 U.S.C. § 1437(f); 24 C.F.R. § 982.151, the Section 8 Program is ultimately administered by state and local housing ...


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