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Case Name Collins v. Meyers PB-CO-0008
Docket / Court 1:21-cv-02713 ( D. Colo. )
State/Territory Colorado
Case Type(s) Public Benefits / Government Services
Special Collection COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)
Case Summary
Resort Meeting Source, a Colorado-based event planning company and its CEO filed suit in the District of Colorado on October 7, 2021 against the Executive Director of the Colorado Office of Economic and International Trade (OEIT). The plaintiff brought suit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for an alleged ... read more >
Resort Meeting Source, a Colorado-based event planning company and its CEO filed suit in the District of Colorado on October 7, 2021 against the Executive Director of the Colorado Office of Economic and International Trade (OEIT). The plaintiff brought suit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for an alleged breach of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. They asked for declaratory and injunctive relief, attorney’s fees, as well as the certification of a class of "all non-minority businesses that have applied for a grant under the Disproportionately Impacted Business Grant Program." The plaintiffs were represented by the Pacific Legal Foundation and case was assigned to Judge William J. Martinez and Magistrate Judge Nina Y. Wang.

The plaintiff alleged that a Colorado COVID-19 relief bill intended to help struggling businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic violated the Equal Protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The bill stated that to apply for relief funds from the OEIT, a business had to be a “disproportionately impacted business. To qualify as a disproportionately impacted business, a business had to either be a “minority-owned business” (defined as “businesses that are at least 51% owned by members of racial minority groups") or meet one of six other criteria (e.g., have five or few employees, be located in an economically distressed area, have an owner of low or moderate personal wealth). In addition to the eligibility criteria, the plaintiff alleged that OEIT gave preference to minority-owned businesses over other disproportionately impacted businesses. The plaintiff claimed that these provisions were unconstitutional because they discriminated against him because of his race. At the time of the complaint, the plaintiff had applied for relief funds from OEIT, but had presumably not received a decision from OEIT.

On October 8, 2021, the plaintiff filed a motion for a TRO and preliminary injunction enjoining OEIT from “from enforcing or giving any effect to the minority-owned business preference . . . in distributing COVID-19 relief grants.” On October 12, 2021, the Court granted the plaintiff’s motion for a TRO and kept the motion for a preliminary injunction under advisement.

After the TRO was granted, the defendant filed a motion to dismiss for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction. On October 28, 2021, the Court granted the defendant’s motion to dismiss, stating that there was no “injury in fact” because the plaintiff ended up receiving the funds they applied from OEIT. All pending motions were thereafter denied as moot. The case is now closed.

Richard Cantoral - 11/03/2021


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Equal Protection
Discrimination-basis
Race discrimination
General
Disparate Impact
Disparate Treatment
Government Services (specify)
Public assistance grants
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Race
White
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade,
Plaintiff Description A Colorado event-planning business owned by a white man.
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status outcome Mooted before ruling
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Defendant
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief Litigation
Filed 10/07/2021
Case Closing Year 2021
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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  Colorado company sues after being disadvantaged for COVID-19 relief because of race
Pacific Legal Foundation
Date: Oct. 7, 2021
By: Pacific Legal Foundation
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Court Docket(s)
D. Colo.
10/28/2021
1:21-cv-02713-WJM-NYW
PB-CO-0008-9000.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
D. Colo.
10/07/2021
Class-Action Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 1]
PB-CO-0008-0001.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
D. Colo.
10/12/2021
Order Granting in Part and Reserving Ruling in Part on Plaintiffs' Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction [ECF# 14]
PB-CO-0008-0002.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
D. Colo.
10/28/2021
Order on Pending Motions [ECF# 25]
PB-CO-0008-0003.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Martinez, William Joseph (D. Colo.) show/hide docs
PB-CO-0008-0002 | PB-CO-0008-0003 | PB-CO-0008-9000
Wang, Nina Y. Court not on record [Magistrate] show/hide docs
PB-CO-0008-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Fa, Wencong M (California) show/hide docs
PB-CO-0008-0001 | PB-CO-0008-9000
Roper, Glenn Evans (Colorado) show/hide docs
PB-CO-0008-0001 | PB-CO-0008-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Baumann, Peter G (Colorado) show/hide docs
PB-CO-0008-9000
Kotlarczyk, Michael (Colorado) show/hide docs
PB-CO-0008-9000

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