Statement Regarding Settlement in Kincaid Case

With regard to the suit filed against the City of Fresno by Kincaid, et al. representing the homeless class, a preliminary settlement agreement has been reached. The City of Fresno Attorney James Sanchez is releasing the following statement:

“The City of Fresno has reached a settlement in the Kincaid v. City of Fresno class action lawsuit. The Court preliminarily approved the settlement which provides $400,000 in damages to be disbursed to the homeless class and $1 million dollars to be devoted to social programs, including housing for the homeless. While the City admits no liability in this case, the primary focus of the settlement is to attempt to provide more permanent housing opportunities for the homeless. The settlement includes payment of fees and costs to the attorneys for the homeless class in the amount of $750,000 and $100,000, respectively. The hearing to finalize the settlement, after notice to the homeless class, has been set for July 25, 2008. ”

Mayor Autry added, “The City of Fresno will comply with the court order and look forward to continuing our 10 year plan to end chronic homelessness. However, this white collar exploitation of the homeless by the Court and the lawyers is unconscionable. I am calling upon the ACLU and Judge Wanger to require half of the exorbitant lawyer fees of $750,000 to be donated to homeless programs.”

No additional comments will be made with regard to this case.