KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Goodwill of Western Missouri and Japanese Kansas filed a federal lawsuit Monday in opposition to the town of Olathe.
The go well with, in keeping with a information launch, questions the constitutionality of a 2016 metropolis ordinance that prohibits some companies, “particularly calling out thrift shops that search to lift funds for charitable function that assist Olathe residents, from working inside 200 toes of a residential neighborhood or inside a mile of one other thrift retailer.”
Ordinance No. 16-24 put bail bond companies, pawnbrokers, small-box low cost retailers and thrift shops in the identical distance-restricted companies (DRB) class as payday and title mortgage companies, in keeping with metropolis paperwork.
Edward Lada Jr., Goodwill MoKan president and CEO, stated within the launch that his group defined to Olathe leaders that the ordinance was discriminatory, however to no avail.
“Our mission is to empower folks by way of the ability of labor; to assist folks attain financial self-sustainability,” Lada stated. “For greater than a century, our enterprise mannequin of accepting donated items and reselling gadgets has funded this mission, the place proceeds assist our quite a few workforce improvement and coaching applications for folks with limitations to employment and other people with disabilities. It’s not possible for me to reconcile or rationalize why any group or metropolis authorities would deem the work we do as undesirable, pointless, or undesirable, particularly after serving the group of Olathe for 19 years.”
Metropolis paperwork state that the ordinance is meant to “cut back the proliferation” of such companies close to downtown Olathe and extra retail areas, the place the companies may negatively have an effect on business property values.
Nevertheless, court docket paperwork state that Goodwill has introduced in roughly $1 million in income yearly for the town and that Olathe leaders have supplied “no proof or motive to imagine that two thrift shops inside a mile of one another would have any detrimental affect on surrounding property values.”
Olathe just lately denied the nonprofit a license to function so it may open a brand new location inside the metropolis at West one hundred and thirty fifth Road and Brougham Drive, which sits throughout the road from its present location. Goodwill additionally leases the property, which beforehand contained an Aldi grocery retailer.
Courtroom paperwork state that the close by Briarwood Houses Affiliation supported the transfer.
“Denying Goodwill the flexibility to open a retailer within the metropolis serves no reliable public function… the one conclusion one can attain is that the town has decided that it needs to drawback companies that serve low-income clients,” court docket paperwork state. “In doing so, the town has violated Goodwill’s rights beneath the USA Structure and Kansas Structure.”
When 41 Motion Information contacted the town for remark, a spokesperson stated through electronic mail that “given the truth that there may be present litigation, please perceive our place that it could be irresponsible for us to supply remark right now.”
This can be a creating story. Test again for updates.