Authorization. Any citizen may commence a civil action on his or her own behalf against any person who is alleged to have violated, or to be in violation of: (i) any requirement imposed pursuant to this Article; or (ii) any order, regulation, variance or permit issued by the General Manager pursuant to this Article. For purposes of this Section and Subsection (h) of Section 132, “citizen” shall mean either of the following:
An individual who resides in the City; or
A corporation, partnership or association that maintains its principal office in the City, and which has an interest which is, or may be, adversely affected.
Notice. No action may be commenced under Subsection (a) of this Section:
Prior to 60 days after the citizen has given notice of the alleged violation to (A) the General Manager, (B) the City Attorney, (C) the District Attorney, and (D) the alleged violator or violators of the requirement, order, regulation, variance or permit; or
If the City has commenced and is diligently prosecuting a civil, criminal, or administrative penalty action pursuant to this Article and the City’s enforcement response plan to require compliance with the requirement, order, regulation, variance or permit, provided that in any such action brought in State court, any citizen may intervene as a matter of right.
Intervention: Protection of City Interests.
In any action brought under this Section where the City is not a party, the City may intervene as a matter of right.
Whenever an action is brought under this Section, the plaintiff shall serve a copy of the complaint on the City Attorney and General Manager. No consent judgment or settlement shall be entered in an action in which the City is not a party prior to 30 days following receipt of the proposed consent judgment or settlement by the City Attorney and General Manager.
Litigation Costs. The court in issuing any final order brought pursuant to this Section shall award costs of litigation (including reasonable attorney and expert witness fees) to any prevailing or substantially prevailing party who brought the underlying action, when the court determines such an award is appropriate. The court may, if a temporary restraining order or preliminary injunction is sought by the citizen, require a filing of a bond or undertaking in accordance with State law and local court rules.
Other relief not restricted.
Nothing in this Section shall restrict any right which any person may have under any statute, ordinance, or common law to seek enforcement of any requirement prescribed by or under this Article, or to seek any other relief.
Nothing in this Section shall be construed to prohibit or restrict the City from bringing any administrative, civil or criminal action or obtaining any remedy or sanction against any person to enforce any requirement set forth in this Article. Nothing in this Section shall be construed to authorize judicial review by a citizen of any permit, role, variance or regulation issued pursuant to this Article.
(Added by Ord. 115-97, App. 3/28/97)