Nebraska Revised Statute 20-337
Hearing officer; powers and duties; civil penalties; order; effect.
(1) The hearing officer shall commence the hearing no later than one hundred twenty days following the issuance of the charge unless it is impracticable to do so. If the hearing officer is unable to commence the hearing within one hundred twenty days, he or she shall notify the commission, the aggrieved person on whose behalf the charge was issued, and the respondent in writing of the reasons for not doing so.
(2) The hearing officer shall make findings of fact and conclusions of law within sixty days after the end of the hearing unless it is impracticable to do so. If the hearing officer is unable to make findings of fact and conclusions of law within such period or any succeeding sixty-day period thereafter, he or she shall notify the commission, the aggrieved person on whose behalf the charge was issued, and the respondent in writing of the reasons for not doing so.
(3)(a) If the hearing officer finds that a respondent has engaged or is about to engage in a discriminatory housing practice, he or she shall promptly issue an order for such relief as may be appropriate which may include actual damages suffered by the aggrieved person and injunctive or other equitable relief.
(b) Subject to subdivision (c) of this subsection, the order may, to vindicate the public interest, assess a civil penalty against the respondent:
(i) In an amount not exceeding ten thousand dollars if the respondent has not been adjudged to have committed any prior discriminatory housing practice or if subdivision (ii) or (iii) of this subdivision does not apply;
(ii) In an amount not exceeding twenty-five thousand dollars if the respondent has been adjudged to have committed one other discriminatory housing practice during the five-year period ending on the date of the issuance of the current charge; or
(iii) In an amount not exceeding fifty thousand dollars if the respondent has been adjudged to have committed two or more discriminatory housing practices during the seven-year period ending on the date of the issuance of the current charge.
(c) If the acts constituting the discriminatory housing practice that is the object of the charge are committed by the same individual who has been previously adjudged to have committed acts constituting a discriminatory housing practice, the civil penalties set forth in subdivisions (b)(ii) and (iii) of this subsection may be imposed without regard to the period of time within which any subsequent discriminatory housing practice occurred.
(4) No such order shall affect any contract, sale, encumbrance, or lease consummated before the issuance of such order and involving a bona fide purchaser, encumbrancer, or tenant without actual notice of the charge.
(5) In the case of an order with respect to a discriminatory housing practice that occurred in the course of a business subject to licensing or regulation by a governmental agency, the commission shall, not later than thirty days after the date of the issuance of the order or, if the order is judicially reviewed, thirty days after the order is in substance affirmed upon such review:
(a) Send copies of the findings of fact, conclusions of law, and the order to that governmental agency; and
(b) Recommend to that governmental agency appropriate disciplinary action, including, when appropriate, the suspension or revocation of the license of the respondent.
(6) In the case of an order against a respondent against whom another order was issued under this section within the preceding five years, the commission shall send a copy of each such order to the Attorney General.
(7) If the hearing officer finds that the respondent has not engaged or is not about to engage in a discriminatory housing practice, as the case may be, he or she shall enter an order dismissing the charge. The commission shall make public disclosure of each such dismissal.
- Laws 1991, LB 825, § 38.