City Attorney’s Office response to AHF lawsuit over proposed Castro Street project

Los Angeles-based foundation’s contention that San Francisco land use controls violate equal protection, due process and free speech rights is ‘absurd’

SAN FRANCISCO (Aug. 4, 2014)—The Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation sued the City and County of San Francisco in U.S. District Court on Aug. 1, alleging that interim zoning controls unanimously enacted by the Board of Supervisors and approved by Mayor Ed Lee violate AHF’s federal constitutional guarantees to equal protection, due process and freedom of speech. AHF is seeking approval for a project in the Castro Street Neighborhood Commercial District.

In response, City Attorney Spokesman Matt Dorsey issued the following statement:

“This was a situation in which AHF made superficial changes to its Castro Street project to avoid San Francisco’s formula retail restrictions. The Board of Supervisors then voted unanimously to impose interim zoning controls, to reapply those restrictions. The Board and Mayor are well within their authority to take these kinds of actions, and they’re not uncommon in San Francisco’s land use process. But the notion that this legislative action somehow violated AHF’s federal civil rights is absurd. Courts have long recognized the broad authority of local governments to regulate land uses in a variety of ways. AHF is now asking the court to find a constitutional right to build whatever it wants, wherever it wants, and that’s simply not what courts have done.”

The case is: AIDS Healthcare Foundation, Inc. v. City and County of San Francisco et al., U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Case No. 14-CV-03499, filed Aug. 1, 2014.

Related Documents:

PDF icon PDF of the AHF v. San Francisco federal complaint (August 4, 2014)

PDF iconSan Francisco Board of Supervisors Resolution 238-14 (July 8, 2014)