United States District Court, D. Nevada
MARK J. SCHWARTZ, Plaintiffs,
CLARK COUNTY, NEVADA, et al., Defendants.
before the court is defendants Clark County's
(“County”) and Jacquelin R. Holloway's
“defendants”) second motion for summary judgment.
(ECF No. 71). Plaintiff Mark J. Schwartz
(“plaintiff”) filed a response (ECF No. 72), to
which defendants replied (ECF No. 73).
instant actions involve allegations of wrongful termination
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983, the Americans with
Disabilities Act (“ADA”), and the Age
Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”). (ECF
began working for County as an auditor on August 17, 1992.
(ECF No. 71-1 at 12). In 2000, plaintiff was promoted to
senior management analyst in the Clark Country Business
License Department (“BL”). (ECF No. 71-1 at 13).
In either 2007 or 2008, plaintiff received an ADA workplace
accommodation to adjust the size of his workplace. (ECF No.
71-1 at 19). From 2005-09, plaintiff received regular,
positive employment evaluations noting his
“meritorious” and “exemplary”
performance. (ECF No. 71-1 at 16-18).
2008, Clark County Human Resources (“HR”) began
to review whether the job title, management analyst, was an
appropriate classification and conducted a county-wide
“management analyst study” in which plaintiff
participated and completed a “job description
questionnaire.” (ECF No. 71-1 at 20, 45). Subsequently,
in August 2009, HR recommended seventeen (17) possible job
title changes for forty-four (44) employees recognized as
management analysts. (ECF No. 71-1 at 45-46). Pursuant to the
management analyst study, three of the five management
analysts at BL, excluding plaintiff, received new job titles.
(ECF No. 71-1 at 38-39).
February 2010, the county manager sent Holloway, director of
business licensing for Clark County, a “mandate”
that instructed her “to do a reduction in force”
by dismissing employees to decrease BL's budget by 8
percent. (ECF No. 71-1 at 40). To comply with the budget
reduction, Holloway determined that “between 8 to
12” employees would be dismissed, including
a manager of finance, a senior management analyst, a
management analyst, a business license agent, an office
supervisor, [an] office assistant and an IT . . . support
person . . . . [b]ased on [BL's] needs and functions in
the department and also functions and duties that could be
absorbed by others.
(ECF No. 71-1 at 41-42).
his job title had not been changed subsequent to the
management analyst study, plaintiff was notified on June 18,
2010, that he would be dismissed as senior management analyst
on July 6, 2010. (ECF No. 71-1 at 20). As a member of a
union, SEIU Local 1107, which had made a collective
bargaining agreement with County, plaintiff appealed his
dismissal pursuant to the process provided under the terms of
the agreement. (ECF No. 71-1 at 15, 23). Upon reviewing
plaintiff's “statements and documents and other
information, ” the layoff review committee affirmed
plaintiff's layoff. (ECF No. 71-1 at 24).
plaintiff filed the underlying complaint alleging three
causes of action: (1) violation of the ADEA; (2) violation of
the ADA; and (3) violation of civil rights under § 1983.
(ECF No. 2-2). The court granted defendants' motion for
summary judgment (ECF No. 22), finding, inter alia,
that plaintiff failed to raise a genuine dispute of material
fact as to whether his termination was motivated by his
disability or his age, rather than by legitimate budgetary
concerns. (ECF No. 43).
appealed (ECF No. 46), and the Ninth Circuit reversed and
remanded on May 27, 2016 (ECF No. 58). The Ninth Circuit
determined that plaintiff raised a genuine dispute of
material fact as to whether his selection for layoff was
pretext for unlawful discrimination and that the evidence
supporting plaintiff's ADA and ADEA claims raised a
triable issue as to his § 1983 claim against defendant
Holloway. (ECF No. 58).
instant motion, defendants move for summary judgment as to
plaintiff's § 1983 claim against Holloway based on
qualified immunity, arguing that she was “reasonably
following the directive of her [m]anager to reduce her labor
force in the BL department.” (ECF No. 71 at 16).
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure allow summary judgment when
the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and
admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any,
show that “there is no genuine dispute as to any
material fact and the movant is entitled to a judgment as a
matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A principal purpose
of summary judgment is “to ...