Opponents of the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance won a small victory in a district court yesterday evening when a district judge granted them a temporary restraining order delaying implementation of the ordinance.
“[U.S. District Judge Gray Miller's] ruling was evidence of the abject lack of any credible legal basis for City Attorney David Feldman’s motion, leaving it clear that it was indeed just a delay tactic that did not work,” said the opposition group No UNEqual Rights Houston in a statement.
Mayor Annise Parker previously announced that the city would delay the ordinance’s implementation.
Woodfill v. Parker was filed in the 152nd District Court shortly after the city rejected the opponents petitions calling for a November ballot referendum. Attorneys with the city of Houston must appear before the court on August 15 and make their case for why the order should be vacated.
The Equal Rights Houston campaign in a statement denounced the ruling. “It is unfortunate that the opponents of equal rights have taken this issue to the courts after first losing at City Council … [we are] confident the court will uphold the city of Houston’s decision that the repeal signatures were not collected in the clearly defined process. The bottom line is that this state court decision is still just a TRO, and not a final ruling on the merits.”