Garden City to pay $5.3M to settle housing discrimination suit

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GARDEN CITY -

The village of Garden City have been ordered to shell out about $5.3 million to settle a 2005 lawsuit that found housing discrimination against minorities.

Members of New York Communities for Change, or NYCC, brought their message to the Garden City Village Hall Thursday, along with an invoice for nearly $5.3 million. That's the amount a federal judge ordered Garden City to pay in attorney fees and other costs to NYCC and the Mutual Housing Association of New York for a housing discrimination lawsuit dating back thirteen years.

"This is a tremendous victory for us," says Lucas Sancez, NYCC's Long Island director.

A plot of land at 11th Street and Washington Avenue in Garden City was at the center of the 2005 lawsuit. Back then, Nassau County was going to sell the property for development. Garden City rezoned it, which blocked multifamily dwellings from being built there. Housing advocates said that was meant to keep minorities from moving in. Recent U.S. census information shows that Garden City is about 93 percent white.

There have been multiple court rulings against the village, and Sanchez says she expects Garden City will once again appeal.

Village officials did not respond to News 12's requests for comment.

The county has other plans for the property that sparked the lawsuit. The new family and matrimonial court is being built there now.

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