VOLUNTARY COMPLIANCE AGREEMENT
THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
IMPERIAL PLAZA CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION
WHEREAS, this agreement is entered into between the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Idaho, acting on behalf of the United States of America (the “United States”) and the Imperial Plaza Condominium Association (“the Association”);
WHEREAS, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended (“ADA”), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12181-12189, provides, among other things, that “[n]o individual shall be discriminated against on the basis of disability in the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, privileges, advantages, or accommodations of any place of public accommodation by any person who owns, leases (or leases to), or operates a place of public accommodation,” 42 U.S.C. § 12182(a); 28 C.F.R. § 36.201(a);
WHEREAS, the term “public accommodation” under the ADA includes a “beauty shop”
and “office of an accountant or lawyer,” 42 U.S.C. § 12181(7)(F);
WHEREAS, the ADA authorizes the United States, to investigate alleged violations of Title III, 42 U.S.C. § 12188(b)(1)(A), 28 C.F.R. § 36.502;
WHEREAS, pursuant to its authority under 42 U.S.C. § 12188(b)(1)(A)(i), the United States requested information from the Association, which operates the common elements of the Imperial Plaza, located at 200 N. 3rd Street in Boise, ID, and houses a beauty shop and lawyer’s offices;
WHEREAS, the United States conducted a limited accessibility site inspection of certain features and facilities within the Imperial Plaza;
WHEREAS, the United States and the Association share the goal of ensuring that the Imperial Plaza operates in compliance with Title III of the ADA and its implementing regulations, 28 C.F.R. part 36; and
WHEREAS, in light of the actions taken by the Association to date to comply with the ADA, the actions that Imperial Plaza has agreed to take as set forth in this Agreement (the “Agreement”), and in order to avoid the burden and expense of further investigation and possible litigation, the United States has decided to take no further enforcement action at this time with respect to the Association;
NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY AGREED, BY AND BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND THE ASSOCIATION, AS FOLLOWS:
APPLICATION AND PARTIES BOUND
- Imperial Plaza is a place of public accommodation within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. § 12181(7) because, among other things, it contains a “beauty shop” and an “office of an accountant or lawyer,” 42 U.S.C. § 12181(7)(F); 28 C.F.R. § 36.104.
- Imperial Plaza was designed and constructed for first occupancy prior to January 26, 1993, and is an existing facility pursuant to Title III of the ADA. The Association does not have any records of alterations since January 26, 1992, however, upon discovering a structural problem at the Imperial Plaza in December 2013, the Association restricted the weight of vehicles that were permitted to drive over a portion of the facilities’ parking area. The weight restriction prevented Valley Regional Transit from dropping ACCESS customers off at the Imperial Plaza’s accessible entrance, and generally restricted access to the Imperial Plaza. The Association has contracted for extensive work to be completed upon its underground parking structure to remedy the structural problem.
- This Agreement shall apply to all common areas within the Imperial Plaza that are open for public use. This includes, but is not limited to: parking lots, sidewalks and walkways leading to individual offices.
- This Agreement shall bind the Association, and each of their agents and employees. If the Association seeks to transfer or assign all or part of its interest in the Imperial Plaza, and the successor or assign intends on carrying on the same or similar use of the facility, as a condition of sale the Association shall obtain the written agreement of the successor or assign to any obligations remaining under this Agreement for the remaining term of this Agreement.
- For purposes of this Agreement, the term “2010 Standards” means the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, see 28 C.F.R. § 36.104 (defining the 2010 ADA Standards as the requirements set forth in appendices B and D to 36 C.F.R. Part 1191 and the requirements contained in 28 C.F.R., part 36, subpart D).
- For purposes of this Agreement, the term “accessible” means in compliance with the 2010 Standards.
- For purposes of this Agreement, the term “1991 Standards” means the 1991 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, 28 C.F.R. Part 36, App. D (2011).
- The term “alterations” means a change to the Imperial Plaza that affects or could affect the usability of the building or facility or any part thereof and includes, but is not limited to, remodeling, renovation, rehabilitation, historic restoration, changes or rearrangement in structural parts or elements, and changes or rearrangement in the plan configuration of walls and full height partitions. Normal maintenance, re-roofing, painting or wallpapering, asbestos removal, or changes to mechanical or electrical systems are not alterations unless they affect the usability of the building or facility. See 28 C.F.R. § 36.402(b)(1).
PARKING AND ENTRANCES
- The Association shall ensure that both the exterior parking facility and underground parking facility contain the required minimum number of accessible parking spaces based on the total number of parking spaces in each facility. See the 2010 Standards § 208.2. The spaces must meet slope requirements and shall be located on the shortest accessible route to accessible entrances. See the 2010 Standards §§ 208.3 and 502. The Association shall ensure that at least one of the accessible parking spaces is a van space. Car parking spaces shall be a minimum of 96 inches wide and van parking spaces shall be a minimum of 132 inches wide, shall be marked to define the width, and shall have an adjacent access aisle complying with 2010 Standards § 502.3. However, van parking spaces shall be permitted to be a minimum of 96 inches wide where the access aisle is a minimum of 96 inches wide. See the 2010 Standards §§ 208.2 and 502.2.
- All entrances from the exterior of the building into the Imperial Plaza shall comply with the 2010 Standards § 404 and shall be on an accessible route complying with the 2010 Standards § 402. Accessible routes shall consist of one or more of the following components: walking surfaces with a running slope not steeper than 1:20, doorways, ramps, curb ramps excluding the flared sides, elevators, and platform lifts. All components of an accessible route shall comply with the applicable requirements of Chapter 4. See the 2010 Standards §§ 206.4.5, 402, 404, Chapter 4. The Association will take the following steps: install a ramp to the entrance on the west side of the building and provide an accessible route (new sidewalk) to the east entrance.
POLICIES, PRACTICES, AND PROCEDURES
- Within thirty days of the effective date of this agreement, the Association shall provide a diagram to the United States Attorney’s Office for its approval. The diagram shall identify the remedial steps that the Association will take.
- The Association agrees that any alteration to the Imperial Plaza shall comply with the 2010 Standards to the maximum extent feasible. The Association agrees to notify the United States, in writing, of any alterations to the common elements of the Imperial Plaza commenced during the term of this Agreement and shall, in that notification, specify the steps taken to ensure that the alterations comply with the Standards to the maximum extent feasible.
MONITORING AND COMPLIANCE
- The Association agrees to commence the remedial work no later than August 1, 2016. Further, the remedial work will be completed no later than August 1, 2017. Within thirty days of the effective date of this Agreement, the Association shall provide a narrative report of the remedial work that it intends to undertake along with the approximate dates that it will undertake such work. Once all of the remedial steps specified by this Agreement are completed, the Association will provide to the United States a narrative report with photographs of the actions it has taken. In addition, if the proposed alterations are to an area of primary function, the Association agrees that the path of travel to the altered areas of primary function is also brought into compliance with the requirements of the ADA. 28 C.F.R. § 36.403-404.
- Every year during the term of this Agreement on the anniversary date of the effective date of the Agreement, the Association shall provide to the United States a narrative report of the actions taken during the reporting period to remove any barriers to access and otherwise enhance accessibility for individuals with disabilities at the Association and any plans for action concerning ADA compliance in the coming year. The report shall include as an exhibit copies of any complaint (or a description of the complaint if it was not submitted in writing), whether formal or informal, received during the reporting period alleging that the Association was not being operated in compliance with the ADA or otherwise discriminated against any person on account of disability.
- The Association shall cooperate in good faith with any and all reasonable requests by the United States for access to the Imperial Plaza and for information and documents concerning the Imperial Plaza’s compliance with this Agreement and the ADA.
- The United States shall have the right to verify compliance with this Agreement and the ADA, both as set forth in this Agreement and through any means available to the general public, including visits to the public areas of the Imperial Plaza. The United States shall have the right to inspect the Imperial Plaza at any time.
- In consideration for the Association’s timely performance of all of its obligations under this Agreement, the United States agrees to discontinue its investigation of Imperial Plaza, except as provided in the Enforcement portion of this Agreement. The United States reserves the right to investigate any complaint it receives concerning Imperial Plaza, to initiate future compliance reviews concerning Imperial Plaza with respect to any aspect of Imperial Plaza or its operation not expressly addressed in this Agreement, and to investigate and commence a civil action with respect to any violation of the ADA. In the event the United States receives and investigates an ADA complaint concerning the Imperial Plaza, or commences any future compliance review concerning the Imperial Plaza, nothing in this Agreement shall limit the scope of any investigation or compliance review of the Imperial Plaza or preclude the United States from seeking relief beyond that required under this Agreement.
- A copy of this Agreement shall be made available to any person upon request.
- The effective date of this Agreement is the date of the last signature on the Agreement. The term of this Agreement is three years from the effective date.
- This Agreement memorializes the commitments made by the Association to increase accessibility of the Imperial Plaza and the terms under which the United States has agreed to conclude this particular investigation of the Imperial Plaza without further review or enforcement action. This Agreement is not intended to certify or signify, however, that the Imperial Plaza is now (or, with the actions taken pursuant to this Agreement, will be) in full compliance with the ADA, or to constitute a finding by the United States of such compliance, and it may not be used in any proceeding to signify such compliance. This Agreement does not affect the Association’s continuing responsibility and obligation to comply with all aspects of the ADA. This Agreement is not intended to reflect any legal interpretation of any provisions of the ADA by the United States, and it may not be used in any proceeding to demonstrate such legal interpretations.
- The individuals signing this Agreement represent that they are authorized to bind the parties to this Agreement.
- Failure by the United States to enforce the entire Agreement with regard to any deadline or any other provision of the Agreement, shall not be construed as a waiver of its right to enforce other deadlines or provisions of the Agreement.
- This Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between the parties relating to the complaint, and no other statement, promise, or agreement, either written or oral, made by either party or agents of either party, that is not contained in this Agreement, shall be enforceable.
- This Agreement may be executed in counterparts, each of which constitutes an original and all of which constitute one and the same Agreement. Electronically transmitted signatures shall constitute acceptable, binding signatures for purposes of this Agreement.
ON BEHALF OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA