St Paul Judge Rules In Favor Of Housing Providers

Early this week a U.S. District Court Judge Paul Magnuson made news when he issued a temporary injunction halting the enforcement of St Paul’s new S.A.F.E. ordinance, which had been passed unanimously by the city council last year.

The ordinance restricted a landlord’s ability to use background checks and prior evictions and credit scores to screen tenants. It also severely limited a housing providers ability to evict tenants, even when their lease had expired.

A group of 18 landlords sued the city in February in order to halt the ordinance, which was to be in effect March 1. They argued to policy violated their 14th Amendment right to keep others from their property. Magnuson wrote the policy came at a heavy cost to owners, and indicated it was unclear how the measures would help the city of St Paul achieve its affordable housing goals.

The Minneapolis city council has passed similar restrictions and proposed more. Time will tell whether the St Paul ruling inspires like challenges in Minneapolis.

To read the ruling, CLICK HERE.