Monday, November 20, 2017

Shop owner suing airport files appeal

The owner of a Minot airport hobby shop is appealing the ruling of a federal judge in a case alleging racial discrimination by the City of Minot.

On Nov. 2, Judge Daniel Hovland ruled against Eva Lucke, who had sued in March 2016, alleging discriminatory commercial lease terms by the city for airport property rented to Minot Aviation, a family-owned experimental aircraft and hobby business. Lucke is a naturalized American citizen, born in Chile.

The court determined Lucke presented no direct evidence of racial discrimination and failed to meet the burden of proof. Lucke filed an appeal Nov. 29 to the Eighth District Court of Appeals. Defendants in the case are the City of Minot, Minot Municipal Airport and former airport director Andrew Solsvig.

http://www.minotdailynews.com



A federal court has ruled against the owner of an airport-based business who sued the City of Minot and its then airport manager last year for racial discrimination.

Eva Lucke sued in March 2016, alleging discriminatory commercial lease terms by the city for airport property rented to Minot Aviation, a family-owned experimental aircraft and hobby business.

Lucke is a naturalized American citizen, born in Chile. She obtained a lease for airport land in 2003. In 2006, the city tried to remove the business by way of a forcible detainer action, which was dismissed. From Sept. 30, 2013, to Dec. 25, 2015, Lucke operated without a lease, which was common as the city was redrafting its lease agreements during that time. In 2015, the city presented a new lease to Lucke that she alleged was less favorable than leases offered to other tenants. Instead of a five-year lease with five-year extensions, the lease was for 18 months, with year-to-year extensions upon mutual consent of the parties.

The court ruled Nov. 2 for summary judgment as requested by the city. Lucke has 30 days to appeal.

The court determined Lucke presented no direct evidence of racial discrimination and failed to meet the burden of proof. It also determined the city presented legitimate, non-discriminatory reasons for offering Lucke the lease they did, such as the need to have flexibility regarding potential future changes as it currently updates the airport’s master plan. 

Original article can be found here ➤ http://www.minotdailynews.com

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