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Judicial Watch • Lawsuit – Phillips, et. al v. Board of Trustees Montgomery College

Lawsuit – Phillips, et. al v. Board of Trustees Montgomery College

Lawsuit – Phillips, et. al v. Board of Trustees Montgomery College

Page 1: Lawsuit – Phillips, et. al v. Board of Trustees Montgomery College

Category:Lawsuit

Number of Pages:16

Date Created:January 21, 2011

Date Uploaded to the Library:November 18, 2013

Tags:phillips v Board of trustees


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THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MARYLAND
MICHAEL LEE PHILIPS,
lO200 Crosshaven Court
Rockville, 20850,
and Case No.: 
PATRICIA FENATI,
10817 Longmeadow Drive
Damascus, 20807z,
and
DAVID DRAKE,
9705 DeLamere Court
Rockville, 20850,
Plaintiffs,
vs.
BOARD TRUSTEES
MONTGOMERY COLLEGE,
Suite 355
900 Hungerford Drive
Rockville, 20850,
Defendant.
COMLAINT FOR INJUNCTIVE AND DECLARATORY RELIEF
Plaintiffs Michael Lee Philips, Patricia Fenati, and David
Drake hereby sue Defendant Board Trustees Montgomery
College for declaratory and injunctive relief, and, for their
Complai allege follows:
RECEIVED
JAN 2011
Clerk the Circuit Court
Montgomery County, 
PARTIES
Plaintiff Michael Lee Philips 28-year res
Montgomery County and citizen the State Maryl
Plaintiff has paid and will continue pay taxes Montgomery
County and the State Maryland. Plaintiff Patricia Fenati 38-year resident
Montgomery County and citizen the State Maryland.
Plaintiff has paid and will continue pay taxes Montgomery
County and the State Maryland. Plaintiff David Drake year resident
Montgomery County and citizen the State Maryland.
Plaintiff has paid and will continue pay taxes Montgomery
County and the State Maryland. Defendant Board Trustees Montgomery College
(Defendant Board) entity organized under the laws the
State Maryland and serves the governing body Montgomery
College, public communi college located Montgomery
County, Maryland. the governing body Montgomery College,
Defendant Board empowered exercise general control over
Montgomery College and adopt reasonable and lawful rules,
regulations, and policies for the operation the college.
Defe dant Board carries out its duties and responsibilities from
its principal offices the City Rockville, Montgomery
County, Maryland. law, Defendant Board has the capac
sue and sued.
JURISDICTION AND VENUE
tion proper pursuant Sections 50l, the Courts and Judicial Proceedings Article
the Maryland Code Annotated, among other applicable provi ions. Venue proper this judicial circuit pursuant
Section 6-201 the Courts and Judi ial Proceedings Article
the Maryland Code Annotated, among other applicable provis
FACTUAL BACKGROUND public commu college, Montgomery College
relies prim ily appropriations state and county tax
dollars, well student tuition and fees, for its revenue.
Appropriation county tax dollars comprise the largest
portion Montgomery Colleges revenue. Combined,
appropriatitis state and county tax dollars account for
approximately one half the colleges revenue. contrast,
tuition and fees paid students constitute less than quarter the Colleges revenue. law, the tuition charged student who att
community college Maryland determined the students
place residence. Students who are residents the unty
counties supporting the community college they attend are
charged county rate. Students who are residents the
State Maryland, but reside outside the county counties
supporting the conmunity college they attend are charged in-
state rate. Students who reside outside the State Maryland
are charged out~of state rate. Contrary Maryland law, however, has been the
long standing policy Defendant Board provide reduced, in-
county tuition all recent graduates Montgomery County
public high schools regardless their place residence.
Students who have graduated from Montgomery County public high
school within three years enrolling Montgomery College are
not required prove residency status receive the reduced, county tuition rate. Until recently, this policy had never
been put writing.
l0. November 2010, Defendant Board adopted resolution
incorporating its long sta1 unwritten policy into College
Policy 45003. Specifically, November l5, 2010, Defendant
Board adopted Resolution No. 11-086, clarify and con:
tuition and fees practices previously authorized Board
but not contained the present public policies
11. College Policy 45003 now states, [I]t the the Board Trustees provide quality education
least cost for residents Montgomery County and recent
graduates Montgomery County public schools
(Emphasis added.)
l2. College Policy 45003 sets forth three categories
tuition rates: Rate, Rate, and Rate.
specifically provides, relevant part: Applicability Tuition Rates Students attending Montgomery
llege will pay the Rate any the
following determined applicable
the President designee, the following
order: Residence Montgomery
County; graduate from Montgomery
County Public School within
the past three year Students attending Montgomery
College that not qualify for the Rate
shall pay the Rate unless
determined the President for designee
that the student Maryland resident from
outside Montgomery County which case
the student shall pay the Rate.
Determination Residence and Domicile qualify resident
Montgomery County the State Maryland
for purposes determining the applicable
tuition rate applied, legal domicile
must have been maintained for period
not less than three months prior the
first regularly scheduled class for the
semester. For student considered resident Montgomery County the State Maryland for purposes determining the
applicable tuition rate applied, the
student must possess the legal capacity
under State and Federal law establish
Maryland domicile.
l3. 1982, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Plyler Doe
that all children, cluding children who are unlawfully present
aliens, are entitled free, primary and secondary public
school education. The ruling Plyler Doe does not apply
post secondary education, includi post secondary education
community colleges such Montgomery College.
14. Under federal law, unlawfully present aliens generally
are ineligible for state local public benefits, includ
post-secondary education benefits such reduced tuition,
unless state has enacted law affirmatively providing for
such eligibility.
The State Maryland has never enacted law
affirmatively prox that unlawfully present aliens are
ble receive reduced, county tuition public
institutions higher education, including community colleges
such Montgomery College. The Maryland General Assembly
passed bill 2003 that wou have provided for such
bility, but then Governor Robert Erlich vetoed the
IHEESLIIE.
16. Defendant Boards longsta1 policy has the effect providing local benefit reduced, county
unlawfully present aliens who graduate from Montgomery County
public high school.
17. information and belief, was and the intent
Defendant Board provide this local benefit unlawfully
present aliens who graduate from Montgomery County public high
schools.
18. Montgomery College has admitted repeatedly that
Defendant Eoard long standing policy enables unlawfully
present aliens pay county tuition rates. its audited
financial statements for Fiscal Years 2007, 2008, and 2009,
Montgomery College stated: [T]he Montgomery College policy
applicable all persons, equally, and includes all citizens
well undocumented aliens
19. Moreover, Montgomery College spokesperson Brett Eaton
was quoted the October 29, edition the Montgomery
County Gazette stating, not give state tuition
illegal immigrants, the exception recent [Montgomery
County Public Schools] graduates.
20. Defendant Boards long standing poli.y causing
substantial, pecuniary loss taxpayers Montgomery County
State Maryland. providing reduced, county
tuition all students who graduate from Montgomery County
public high schools, regardless their residence status
unlawfully present aliens, Montgomery College failing
collect revenue that, state and federal law, required collect. use taxpayers Montgomery County and the
State Maryland subsi the cost attending Montgomery
College, Montgomery County and Maryland taxpayers have been
required and are being required make the resulting lost
revenue through greater appropriations tax dollars and,
particular, greater appropriations county tax dollars.
21. During the 2006-2007 academic year, which corresponds
approximately Fiscal Year 2007, Montgomery College charged
the following rates for tuition:
.00 per course hour students
classified Montgomery County residents;
$191.00 per course hour students
classified out-of county, Maryland
residents; and
 7.00 per course hour students
classified out~of state residents.
22. During the 2006-2007 academic year, the num
course hours charged students who graduated from Montgomery
County public high school within three years enrolling
Montgomery Coll and were unable demonstrate, failed
demonstrate, that they were lawful residents Montgomery
County, totaled ll,l68. Montgomery College had charged these
stude1 the highest, out state rates instead the lowest, county rates, would have collected additional
l,83l,5 revenue Fiscal Year 2007. This add
revenue could have been used offset appropriations state
and county taxpayer dollars. During the -2008 academic year, which corresponds
approximately Fiscal Year 2008, Montgomery College charged
the following rates for tuition:
.00 per course hour students
classified Montgomery County residents;
 $197.00 per course hour students
classified out county, Maryland
resident and
$266.00 per course hour students
classified out state residents.
24. During the 2007-2008 academic year, the number
course hours charged students who graduated from Montgomery
County public high school within three years enrolling
Montgomery College and were unable demonstrate, failed
demonstrate, that they were lawful residents Montgomery
County, totaled 11,406. Montgomery College had charged these
dents the highest, out state rates instead the lowest,
county rates, would have collected additional
$1,939,020 revenue Fiscal Year 2008.
revenue could have been used offset appropriations state
and coun taxpayer dollars.
During the 2008-2009 academic year, which corresponds
approximately Fiscal Year 2009, Montgomery College charged
the following rates for tuition:
$99.00 per course hour students
classified Montgomery County residents;
 $203.00 per course hour students
classified out county, Maryland
residents; and
$275.00 per course hour students
classified out state residents.
26. During the 2008-2009 academic year, the number
course hours charged students who graduated from Montgomery
County public high school within three years enrolling
Montgomery College and were unable demonstrate, failed
demonstra that they were lawful residents Montgomery
County, totaled 11,540. Montgomery College had charged these
students the highest, out-of-state rates instead the lowest, county rates, would have collected additional
l0O,280 revenue cal Year 2009.
revenue could have been used offset appropriations state
and county taxpayer dollars.
27. During the 2009-2010 academic year, which corresponds
approximately Fiscal Year 2010, Montgomery College charged
the following rates for tuition:
$102.00 per course hour students
classified Montgomery County residents;
$209.00 per cour hour studen
classified out nty, Maryland state
Residents; and
$284.00 per course hour students
classified outeof-state residents.
28. The number course hours charged students who
graduated from Montgomery County public high school within
three years enrolling Montgomery College and were unable demonstrate, had failed demonstrate, that they were
lawful idents Montgomery County, not presently
available for the 2009-2010 academic year. Using the average
the three prior academic years, which 11,371, Montgomery
College had charged students the highest, out state rates
instead the lowest, county rates for these hours, would
have collected addi ional $2,069,522 revenue Fiscal
Year 2010. This additional revenue could have been used
offset appropriations state and county taxpayer dollars.
29. addition, Fiscal Years 2007 through 2009, state
and county appropriations taxpayer dollars Montgomery
College increased fas rate than tion increased.
30. Fiscal Year 2007, Montgomery College received
$127,421,884 state and county appropriations taxpayer
dollars, which constituted 52.93 percent the colleges total
revenue. represented increase $17,058,937, 15.46
percent, over Fiscal Year
31. contrast, students Montgomery College paid
$54,861,598 tuition and fees Year 2007, which, net scholars allowances, constituted 22.79 perc the
college total revenue. represented increase
$1,313,587, over Fiscal Year 2006. Fiscal Year 2008, Montgomery College received
$143,666,578 state and local appropriations taxpayer
dollars, which constituted 49.76 percent the college total
revenue. This represented rease $16,244,745, 12.75
percent, over Fiscal Year
33. contrast, students Montgomery College paid tuition and Fiscal Year 2008, which, net scholarship allowances, constituted 20.12 percent the
colleges total revenue. This represented increase
$-,2i1,755, 5.87 percent, over Fiscal Year 2007.
34. Fiscal Year 2009, Montgomery College received
,l53,404 state and local appropriations taxpayer
dollars, which constituted 49.33 percent the colleges total
revenue. This esented increase $8,486.15, 5.91
percent, over Fiscal Year 2008.
35. contrast, students Montgomery College paid
$60,257,629 tuition and fees Fiscal Year 2009, which, net scholarship allowances, made 19.54 percent the
colleges total revenue. represented increase
$2,174,276, 3.74 percent, over Fiscal Year 2008.
36. Fiscal Year Montgomery College received
,398 state and local appropriations taxpayer
dollars, constituted 49.45 percent the colleges
This repre ented increase $3,389,994,
ver Fiscal Year 200% contrast, st! Montgomery College paid
,947,088 tuition and cal Year 2010, which, net scholarship allowances, made 20.01 percent the
colleges total revenue. represented increase
$2,689,459, 4.46 percent, over Fiscal Year 2009.
Count
(Violation Maryland Law
Md. Code Ann. Educ. 16-310, al.) Fla tiffs reallege paragraphs through
fully stated herein.
39. Pursuant Section 16-310 the Education Article
the Maryland Code Annotated and Code Maryland Regulations
13E.O7.02.03, and subject certain exceptions not relevant
here, Montgomery College required charge out ofestate
tuition any student who attends community college the
State Maryland and not resident the State, and
required charge out county tuition any student who,
although resident the State, attends community college
not supported the county which the student resides.
40. Defendant Boards longstanding policy allowi
recent graduates Montgomery County public high schools pay
reduced, county regardless their place
-13-
dence violates Maryland law, i1-luding but not limited
Section 16-310 the Education Article the Maryland
A1iotated and Code Maryland Regulations l3B.O7.02.
41. proximate result Defendant Boards violation Maryland law, taxpayers Montgomery County and State
Maryland, iclu Plaintiffs, are suffering pecuniary injury
and will continue suffer such jury unl and until
Defendant Boards policy enjoin
42. Plaintiffs have adequate remedy law.
Count
(Violation Federal Law U.S.C. 1621)
Plaintiffs realleges paragraphs through
fully stated herei
44. Pursuant Title Section l62l(d) the United
States Code, unlawfully present aliens are not eligible for
state local public benefits, including postsecondary
education benefits, unless state enacts law affirmatively
for such eligibility.
45. Payment reduced, county tui ion rates public
institutions ligher learning, including community colleges
such Montgomery College, constitutes local public benefit that term defined Title Section l62l(c)(l)(B) the
United States Code.
46. The State Maryland has not enacted law
affirmatively providing that unlawfully present aliens are
elig r.-eive reduced, county tuition rates publ
institutions higher learning, including community colleges
such Montgomery College.
47. Defendant Boards longstanding policy allowing
recent graduates Montgomery County public high schools,
including unlawfully present aliens, pay reduced, -county
tuition violates federal law particular, violates
Title Section 1621 the United States Code.
48. proximate result Defendant Boards violation federal law, taxpayers Montgomery County and the State
Maryland, including Plaintiffs, are suffering pecuniary injury
and will continue suffer such ury unless and until
Defendant Board policy enjoined.
49. Plaintiffs have adequate remedy law.
PRAYER FOR RELIEF
WHEREFC Plaintiffs respectfully request that the Court:
(1) declare unlawful Defendant Boards long standing policy
allowing students who enroll Montgomery College within three
years graduating from Montgomery County public school pay reduced, county tuition rates regardless their
place residence status unlawfully present aliens;
enjoin Defendant Board from continuing enforce otherwise



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