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Warth v. Seldin

United States Supreme Court
422 U.S. 490 (1975)



Several plaintiffs filed suit against the town of Penfield, New York and members of the town’s zoning, planning, and municipal boards (defendants) to challenge the constitutionality of certain zoning ordinances. The plaintiffs included civic and business associations, taxpayers from a neighboring municipality, and individuals claiming to have been disenfranchised of the opportunity to live in Penfield as a result of the zoning ordinances. The plaintiffs claimed that the zoning ordinances precluded the construction of affordable housing and had the effect of increasing the cost of housing in Penfield beyond the reach of low and middle income individuals. The plaintiffs filed suit in federal district court seeking a declaratory judgment finding the zoning ordinances unconstitutional, an injunction against enforcement, an injunction ordering the enactment of remedial ordinances and exemplary damages. The plaintiffs petitioned the United States Supreme Court for review of an appellate court decision holding that they lacked standing to pursue their claims.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Powell, J.)

Dissent (Douglas, J.)

Dissent (Brennan, J.)

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