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Chris Kohler v. Bed Bath & Beyond of

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


July 23, 2012

CHRIS KOHLER, PLAINTIFF,
v.
BED BATH & BEYOND OF CALIFORNIA, LLC, ET. AL DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable Ronald S.W. Lew Senior, U.S. District Court Judge

ORDER Re: Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment, or Partial Summary Judgment in the Alternative, Against Defendant Bed Bath & Beyond of California, LLC [48], and Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment of Defendant Bed Bath & Beyond of California Limited Liability Company [57]

On July 19, 2012, Plaintiff Chris Kohler's ("Plaintiff") Motion for Summary Judgment, or Partial Summary Judgment in the Alternative, Against Defendant Bed Bath & Beyond of California, LLC [48] and Defendant Bed Bath & Beyond of California, LLC's ("Defendant") Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment of Defendant Bed Bath & Beyond of California Limited Liability Company [57] came on for regular calendar before the Court. The Court having reviewed all papers submitted pertaining to these Motions and having considered all arguments presented to the Court, NOW FINDS AND RULES AS FOLLOWS:

As a preliminary matter, the Court OVERRULES Plaintiff's Evidentiary Objections and DENIES Defendant's Requests for Judicial Notice. The Court hereby DENIES Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment. The Court GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment as it relates to Plaintiff's federal Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") claims. Accordingly, the Court DISMISSES without prejudice Plaintiff's remaining state law claims.

I. BACKGROUND

Plaintiff is physically disabled and uses a wheelchair to get around. On May 24, 2011, Plaintiff brought suit against various retail and restaurant establishments located in the Lake Elsinore Marketplace, a shopping center located in Lake Elsinore, California. In his Complaint, Plaintiff alleges that the establishments violated the ADA as well as two California state statutes, the Unruh Civil Rights Act ("Unruh Act") and the California Disabled Persons Act ("CDPA") [1]. With the exception of Defendant Bed Bath & Beyond, all other Defendants named in the Complaint have been dismissed from this Action.

Plaintiff alleges that during three visits to Defendant's Lake Elsinore, California location he was denied full and equal access because of his disability.

Plaintiff's last visit was on May 16, 2012. The specific violations of the ADA and state law that Plaintiff alleges against Defendant are as follows:

- The slope and cross slopes of disabled parking spaces exceed the two percent requirement under ADA regulations

- The slope and cross slopes of access aisles in the parking lot exceed the two percent requirement under ADA regulations

- The bathroom stall door is not self-closing - The strike side*fn1 clearance when entering the men's restroom is insufficient - The front roll of toilet paper is more than twelve inches from the front of the toilet - The operable part of the paper towel dispenser is mounted too high - The paper towel dispenser requires pinching, twisting, or grasping to operate - The pipes beneath the sink in the men's restroom are not properly insulated - The strike side clearance when exiting the men's restroom is insufficient

II. LEGAL STANDARD

Summary judgment is appropriate when the pleadings, affidavits, and other supporting papers demonstrate that there are no genuine issues of material fact, and the moving party is entitled to prevail as a matter of law. Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(c); Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986). When making this determination, the Court must view the record in the light most favorable to the non-moving party. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 255 (1986). A "genuine" dispute is one that is supported by evidence sufficient to permit a reasonable jury to find in favor of the nonmoving party. Id. at 247-48.

III. ANALYSIS

A. Evidentiary Objections

As a preliminary matter, the Court evaluates Plaintiff's Evidentiary Objections to three Declarations submitted by Defendant.

First, the Court OVERRULES Plaintiff's objections to the Declaration of Dustin Jaggli ("Jaggli Decl.") and OVERRULES Plaintiff's objections to the Declaration of Steve Cerda ("Steve Cerda"). The Court finds that Defendant's non-disclosure of both Jaggli and Cerda prior to the filing of the instant Motions was substantially justified. Fed. R. Civ. P. 37(c)(1). Accordingly, exclusion of their Declarations in the instant Motions is unwarranted.

In addition, the Court OVERRULES Plaintiff's objections to the Declaration of Larry Wood ("Wood Decl."). Plaintiff objected to the Wood Declaration on the grounds that the Declaration is a sham and that Wood is an undisclosed witness. However, the Court finds that Defendant promptly corrected and adequately explained the error regarding the date on the signature page of the Declaration. Furthermore, Defendant was not required to disclose Wood as an expert witness prior to the filing of the instant Motions. The deadline to disclose expert witnesses had not yet passed. Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(a)(2)(D) (deadline to disclose experts is 90 days before trial).

B. Requests for Judicial Notice

As an additional preliminary matter, the Court DENIES Defendant's Requests for Judicial Notice of filings and documents related to two other Central District cases.

C. Plaintiff's Standing Under the ADA

The main issue in Plaintiff's Motion and Defendant's Cross-Motion surrounds the existence of alleged barriers that violate the ADA. However, Defendant has also argued that Plaintiff lacks standing under the ADA because he has failed to adequately allege injury-in-fact. Specifically, Defendant contends that Plaintiff has not alleged that he was actually prevented from making full use of Defendant's facility. Since adequately alleging injury-in-fact is constitutionally required, the Court will first address Plaintiff's standing in this case.

In order to have constitutional standing, Plaintiff must demonstrate that (1) he has suffered an injury-in-fact that is both concrete and particularized and actual or imminent; (2) the injury is traceable to the defendant's challenged action; and (3) it is likely that the injury will be redressed by a favorable decision. City of Sausalito v. O'Neill, 386 F.3d 1186, 1197 (9th Cir. 2004); see also Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife, 504 U.S. 555, 560 (1992). However, courts have been instructed to take a broad view of constitutional standing in civil rights cases, especially where, as under the ADA, private enforcement suits are the primary method of obtaining compliance. Chapman v. Pier 1 Imports, 631 F.3d 939, 946 (9th Cir. 2011).

Here, Plaintiff has alleged that he visited Defendant's Lake Elsinore store and made purchases three times on May 9, 2011; May 25, 2011; and May 16, 2012. Kohler Decl. ¶ 5. Plaintiff further states that during these visits he encountered nine architectural barriers that violate both state and federal law. Id.

¶ 8. Under the ADA, a disabled person suffers an injury-in-fact when discriminatory architectural barriers deter him from returning or they "otherwise interfere with his access to" the facility. Chapman, 631 F.3d at 950. In this Action, for each barrier encountered, Plaintiff has indicated how the barrier has affected or could affect his access to the facility in the future. Kohler Decl. ¶ 8. For example, Plaintiff states that when the slope and cross slope of a disabled parking space exceeds the maximum allowed under the ADA Accessibility Guidelines ("ADAAG"),*fn2 it makes it difficult for him to transfer in and out of a vehicle. Id. ¶ 8(c). This is sufficient to meet the injury-in-fact requirement for standing because it gives rise to a plausible inference that Plaintiff will be deterred from visiting Defendant's store in the future. See, e.g. Kohler v. CJP, Ltd., 818 F. Supp. 2d 1169, 1174-45 (C.D. Cal. 2011), Kohler v. Bed Bath & Beyond of Cal., LLC, No. 11--1246, 2012 WL 2449928 (C.D. Cal. June 27, 2012). Accordingly, Plaintiff has constitutional standing to raise his ADA claims.

D. Summary Judgment As To ADA Claims

i. Slope and Cross Slopes of Disabled Parking Spaces

Under the ADA, liability for non-compliance is assigned to "any person who owns, leases (or leases to), or operates a place of public accommodation." 42 U.S.C. § 12181(a). Here, the Court finds that Defendant does not own, lease, or operate the parking lot at Lake Elsinore Marketplace ("Shopping Center") and is therefore not liable under the ADA. Accordingly, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment regarding the slope and cross slopes of the disabled parking spaces in the Shopping Center.

First, Defendant is one of several establishments that lease store space at the Shopping Center from Lake Elsinore Marketplace LLC ("Landlord"). Furthermore, it is undisputed that Defendant does not own the parking lot at the Shopping Center and Plaintiff does not argue that Defendant operates the parking lot. Therefore, the only issue that needs to be addressed is whether Defendant leases the parking lot for the purposes of liability under the ADA.

Under Defendant's lease agreement with Landlord, the parking lot is deemed a "Common Area" and is "available for the joint use and benefit" of Defendant, other Shopping Center tenants, and customers. Freeman Decl., Ex. 1. Furthermore, the lease also states that "Landlord shall operate, maintain, repair and replace the Common Areas as required by the Lease . . . and Landlord shall comply with all applicable Legal Requirements." Id.

It is Plaintiff's main contention that Defendant "leases" the parking lot, and while Landlord may be jointly liable, Defendant cannot be excused from responsibility under the ADA. Plaintiff's contention is misguided. The lease explicitly states that the parking lot is a common area, which is firmly in the control of Landlord.*fn3 Plaintiff has supplied no specific evidence to controvert the contents of the lease. Accordingly, Landlord is the party responsible for ADA compliance of the parking lot. Cf. Restatement (Second) of Property: Landlord & Tenant § 17.3 (landlord liable to tenants and third parties on portions of property that remain in landlord's control).

Plaintiff relies on Botosan v. Paul McNally Realty to argue that Defendant cannot contract away its responsibilities under the ADA. 216 F.3d 827 (9th Cir. 2000). However, Plaintiff's reliance is misplaced. Plaintiff contends that, under Botosan, a lease agreement cannot excuse a party from liability under a civil rights statute. However, Botosan is distinguishable because in that case it was the landlord trying escape liability by pointing to lease provisions handing over responsibility to the tenant. Id. at 832. The Ninth Circuit held that as an owner of the public accommodation, the landlord was still explicitly liable under the ADA, despite the lease provisions. Id. at 832-34. Here, Defendant is the tenant who never owned or had any control over the parking lot in the first place. Moreover, the lease between Defendant and Landlord makes clear that Defendant never accepted any control or responsibility over the parking lot. Freeman Decl., Ex. 1. Thus, Defendant is not trying to contract away its responsibilities and is not liable under the ADA statute for the parking lot. Therefore, the Court GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment as to the disabled parking spaces.

ii. Slope and Cross Slopes of Access Aisles in the Parking Lot

For the same reasons as above, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment with regard to the access aisles in the parking lot. The parking lot, where the access aisles are located, is a common area which is under the control of Landlord and not leased by Defendant. Accordingly, the party responsible for ADA compliance is Landlord, not Defendant.

iii. Self-Closing Bathroom Stall Door The Court finds that Plaintiff's asserted barrier that the bathroom stall door is not self-closing is moot under the ADA. Regardless of whether or not the alleged barrier existed at the times that Plaintiff visited Defendant's store, there is no genuine issue regarding the fact that the barrier does not exist now.

ADAAG § 4.23.4 requires an "outward swinging, self-closing door" for at least one stall in a public accommodation restroom. Plaintiff's last visit to the store was on May 16, 2012. Kohler Decl. ¶¶ 5-7. At that time, Plaintiff states that the stall door was not self-closing, attaching photographs for support. Kohler Decl. ¶¶ 7, 8(g); Ex. B at 9-10. However, more recently, on June 5, 2012, a service technician hired by Defendant states that the stall door was equipped with self-closing hinges, attaching photographs he took that day. Cerda Decl. ¶ 3, Ex. 2. In addition, Defendant's expert, a Certified Access Specialist, states that he has seen these photographs and can attest to the fact that the bathroom stall door is self-closing and ADA compliant. Wood Decl. ¶ 8. Plaintiff has submitted no evidence to contradict the fact that on June 5, 2012, the bathroom stall door was ADA compliant. Plaintiff's only response has been to object to Defendant's Declarations on the basis of procedural defects. Therefore, the Court finds that there is no genuine issue of material fact regarding the bathroom stall door being self-closing at this time.

Since Plaintiff's asserted barrier does not exist at this time, Plaintiff cannot obtain relief from this Court. "Because a private plaintiff can sue only for injunctive relief (i.e., for removal of the barrier) under the ADA, a defendant's voluntary removal of alleged barriers prior to trial can have the effect of mooting a plaintiff's ADA claim." Oliver v. Ralphs Grocery Co., 654 F.3d 903, 905 (9th Cir. 2011). Consequently, Plaintiff's ADA claim for the bathroom stall door is moot. See, e.g. Kohler v. Bed Bath & Beyond of Cal., LLC, No. 11-01246, 2012 WL 2449928 (C.D. Cal. June 27, 2012); Rush v. Fresh and Easy Neighborhood Mkt., Inc., No. 10-09304 (C.D. Cal. Dec. 6, 2011). Therefore, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on this issue.

Furthermore, the Court rejects Plaintiff's argument that his claim is not moot because Defendant is free to return to the offending conduct at any time. There is no evidence or any reason to suggest that Defendant will revert back to non-compliance with the ADA. Friends of the Earth v. Laidlaw Envtl. Servs., 528 U.S. 167, 170 (2000) ("A case might become moot if subsequent events make it absolutely clear that allegedly wrongful behavior could not reasonably be expected to recur."). Plaintiff's argument is illogical because there is no benefit for Defendant in reverting back to non-compliance and doing so would actually cost Defendant more than maintaining compliance.

iv. Strike Side Clearance at Entrance to Men's Restroom

The Court finds as a matter of law that Plaintiff has not asserted an actionable barrier under the ADA with regard to the strike side clearance at the door entering the men's restroom. Accordingly, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on this point.

At issue here is whether or not the ADA's requirements for strike side door clearance refer to wall space or floor space. For physical structures to comply with the ADA, they must meet the requirements set forth in ADAAG. The disputed question of law here pertains to ADAAG § 4.13.6 and its accompanying illustration, Figure 25. Section 4.13.6 sets forth the following:

Maneuvering Clearances at Doors. Minimum maneuvering clearances at doors that are not automatic or power-assisted shall be as shown in Fig. 25. The floor or ground area within the required clearances shall be level and clear.

Figure 25 contains diagrams illustrating the maneuvering clearances required for the two sides of different kinds of doors and approaches. The diagram at issue here is part of Fig. 25(a), which pertains to the pull-side, front approach of swinging doors. The corresponding note to Fig. 25(a) states the following:

Front approaches to pull side of swinging doors shall have maneuvering space that extends 18 in (455mm) minimum beyond the latch side of the door and 60 in (1525 mm) minimum perpendicular to the doorway.

It is Plaintiff's contention that, based on the diagram on the left side of Fig.25(a), the ADA requires eighteen inches of clearance on the strike side wall of the restroom door. Plaintiff states that right now there is less than twelve inches of wall space on the strike side because there is a hallway directly adjacent to the restroom entrance. Kohler Decl. ¶ 8(a). However, the Court finds that the diagram on the left side of Fig. 25(a) actually requires eighteen inches of clear floor space on the strike side of the door, not wall space. Defendant's store has four feet of clear floor space on the strike side of the restroom entrance because of the adjacent hallway. Wood Decl. ¶ 5.

Just by looking at Fig. 25(a) and the accompanying notes, there are several indicators that the eighteen-inch requirement references floor space. First, the dotted line representing the boundary of clear floor area is defined by ADAAG. ADAAG § 3.1, Table 1 (Graphic Conventions). However, the solid black line that appears to represent the wall is not defined. Id. It is illogical that ADAAG would set requirements for that undefined solid black line when, in comparison, the dotted line, representing the floor space, has been clearly defined by the regulations. If the diagram referred to wall space, ADAAG would have defined the solid black line. Moreover, the notes accompanying Fig. 25(a) reference "maneuvering space," which as Defendant has noted, implies the space needed for a wheelchair to back up and move forward in order to navigate through the doorway. See Wood Decl. ¶ 6. It is unclear how the length of the wall factors into the need to back up and move forward in a wheelchair.

Also, the word "wall" is absent from Fig. 25(a) and the accompanying notes. However, the floor area is explicitly referenced in ADAAG § 4.13.6, which Fig. 25 is attached to. Thus, based on the regulation and associated diagrams, the Court finds that the eighteen-inch requirement pertains to clear floor space on the strike side of the door.

Moreover, Defendant supplies expert opinion, from a Certified Access Specialist, that further supports a finding that the strike side clearance under ADAAG § 4.13.6 and Fig. 25 is unrelated to wall length. See Wood Decl. ¶¶ 5-7. The expert's opinion is based on experience and several government publications regarding disabled access including (1)guides published by the Department of Justice, (2) two California Building Code manuals, and (3) the United States Access Board's Scoping and Technical Requirements clarifying ADAAG § 4.13.6. Id. at Ex. 1-9.

Accordingly, the Court finds as a matter of law that the strike side clearance requirements under ADAAG § 4.13.6 and Fig. 25 refers to clear floor space, not wall space. See Kohler v. Bed Bath & Beyond of Cal., LLC, No. 11-01246, 2012 WL 2449928, at *11 (C.D. Cal. June 27, 2012) (also finding that strike side clearance under ADAAG § 4.13.6 and Fig. 25 is unrelated to wall length). Since Plaintiff has made no allegations that the strike side floor space is in violation of the ADAAG requirements, the Court GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on this issue. Plaintiff has failed to allege a violation of the ADA regarding strike side clearance. v. Toilet Tissue Dispenser Location The Court also finds that Plaintiff's alleged barrier regarding the toilet paper dispenser in the men's restroom is not actionable under the ADA. Therefore, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on this issue.

Plaintiff alleges that the toilet paper dispenser violates the ADA because the second roll of toilet paper is further than twelve inches from the front of the toilet seat. Plaintiff gets this twelve-inch measurement from the California Building Code. CBC § 1115(b)(9)(3). However, California law does not govern Plaintiff's ADA claim. Moreover, under the ADAAG regulations, restroom stalls do not require a specific measurement from the front of the toilet seat to the last roll in the dispenser. The requirements for ADA compliance of toilet paper dispensers in restroom stalls can be found in ADAAG § 4.16.6.

Dispensers. Toilet paper dispensers shall be installed within reach, as shown in Fig. 29(b). Dispensers that control delivery, or that do not permit continuous paper flow, shall not be used.

Figure 29(b) only indicates that a toilet paper dispenser must be a minimum of nineteen inches from the floor. There is no reference to the distance a toilet paper dispenser must be from the front of the toilet seat. See Fig. 29(b). Plaintiff has made no allegations regarding the height of the toilet paper dispenser. Accordingly, Plaintiff has not asserted an actionable barrier under the ADA with regard to the toilet paper dispenser. See Strong v. Walgreen Co., No. 09-611, 2011 WL 5374125, at *9 (S.D. Cal. Nov. 8, 2011); cf. Kohler v. Bed Bath & Beyond of California, LLC, No. 11-01246, 2012 WL 2449928, at *12 (C.D. Cal. June 27, 2012).

vi. Mounting of Paper Towel Dispenser The Court finds that Plaintiff's alleged barrier regarding the mounting of the paper towel dispenser is not actionable under the ADA. Plaintiff only alleges that the paper towel dispenser violates state law, specifically CBC § 1115(b)(9)(2), which requires the dispenser to be mounted within forty inches of the floor. Therefore, the Court need not consider this barrier in the context of Plaintiff's ADA claims.

Furthermore, even if the paper towel dispenser mounting was actionable under the ADA, the Court cannot consider this barrier because Plaintiff did not assert it in his Complaint. The Ninth Circuit has held that in order for a defendant in an ADA action to have fair notice of a claim under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8, a plaintiff must identify all alleged barriers in the complaint itself. Oliver, 654 F.3d at 909.

Accordingly, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on this issue under the ADA.

vi. Paper Towel Dispenser Controls The Court finds that Plaintiff's alleged barrier regarding the paper towel dispenser requiring "tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist" is moot under the ADA.

ADAAG § 4.27.4 governs the instant issue and states that "controls and operating mechanisms shall be operable with one hand and shall not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist." On May 16, 2012, Plaintiff states that he encountered the paper towel dispenser at Defendant's store and that it required tight grasping, pinching or twisting of the wrist. Kohler Decl. ¶ 7, 8(j); Ex. B at 11. However, a service technician hired by Defendant states that as of June 21, 2012, there are two paper towel dispensers in the men's restroom. Jaggli Decl. ¶ 2. One of the dispensers can be operated with a closed fist, and is thus ADA compliant. Id. It is clear from the attached photographs that no tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist is required. Id. at Ex. 1.

Also, Defendant's Certified Access Specialist has seen the service technician's Declaration and the photographs, and has attested to the dispenser's compliance with the ADA. Wood Decl. ¶ 11. Plaintiff has submitted no evidence that contradicts the more recent observations regarding the paper towel dispenser. Therefore, the Court finds that there is no genuine issue of material fact regarding the paper towel dispenser controls in the men's restroom at this time.

Since Plaintiff's asserted barrier does not exist at this time, Plaintiff cannot obtain relief from this Court under the ADA. Thus, Plaintiff's claim regarding the paper towel dispenser controls is moot. See Oliver, 654 F.3d at 905. Moreover, it cannot reasonably be expected that non-compliance will recur because recurrence would cost rather than benefit Defendant. Friends of the Earth, 528 U.S. at 170. The Court therefore DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion on this issue.

vii. Insulation of Undersink Pipes

As to Plaintiff's asserted barrier that the drain pipes under the sinks in the restroom lack sufficient insulation, the Court finds that this claim is also moot.

ADAAG § 4.19.4 requires that hot water and drain pipes under lavatories be "insulated or otherwise configured to protect against contact." Plaintiff has submitted a photograph he took on May 16, 2012 of barely exposed pipes under the sinks in the men's restroom. Kohler Decl. ¶ 7, 8(i); Ex. B at 9. However, as with other asserted barriers already addressed, Defendant submits photographs and Declarations that indicate that as of a more recent date, June 5, 2012, this condition does not exist. There are no exposed pipes underneath the sinks. Cerda Decl. ¶ 2, Ex. 1.; Wood Decl. ¶ 12. Plaintiff has submitted no evidence contradicting the more recent observations regarding the pipes in the restroom. Therefore, the Court should find that there is no genuine issue of material fact that as of June 5, 2012, the insulation on the pipes underneath the sinks are ADA compliant.

Since Plaintiff's asserted barrier does not exist at this time, Plaintiff cannot obtain relief from this Court under the ADA and Plaintiff's claim is moot. See Oliver, 654 F.3d at 905. Furthermore, it cannot reasonably be expected that non-compliance will recur because, again, there is no conceivable benefit to Defendant in returning to non-compliance. Friends of the Earth, 528 U.S. at 170. Instead, recurrence would likely cost Defendant. The Court thus DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on this issue.

ix. Strike Side Clearance at Men's Restroom Exit

As to Plaintiff's final asserted barrier, regarding the strike side clearance at the door when exiting the men's restroom, the Court finds that Plaintiff has not asserted an actionable barrier under the ADA. Accordingly, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on this issue.

The previous analysis regarding the strike side clearance at the entrance of the men's restroom applies to this alleged barrier as well. Plaintiff again cites to ADAAG § 4.13.6 and Fig. 25 arguing that the requirements refer to wall space. However, as already stated, the strike side clearance requirements under ADAAG § 4.13.6 and Fig. 25 set minimum dimensions for clear floor space, not wall space. Since Plaintiff has made no allegations regarding the floor space violating the strike side clearance requirements, Plaintiff has not asserted an actionable barrier under the ADA.

In summary, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion and GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on all of Plaintiff's ADA claims.

E. Plaintiff's State Law Claims

The only basis of jurisdiction over Plaintiff's state law claims is supplemental. The Court's original jurisdiction over this Action was based on federal question jurisdiction pursuant to Plaintiff's ADA claims.*fn4 Since the Court has granted Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on all of Plaintiff's ADA claims, the only claims remaining now are the state law claims under the Unruh Act and CDPA.

Moreover, the Court has authority to decline to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over these state claims because it "has dismissed all claims over which it has original jurisdiction." 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c). The Supreme Court has held that supplemental jurisdiction is discretionary and that "needless decisions of state law should be avoided both as a matter of comity and to promote justice between the parties." United Mine Workers of America v. Gibbs, 383 U.S. 715, 726 (1966). Here, to adjudicate the remaining state claims would require knowledge of the California Building Code, the California Health & Safety Code, and other state laws and regulations. A state court would be a better venue for these issues. Therefore, the Court declines to exercise supplemental jurisdiction and DISMISSES Plaintiff's state law claims without prejudice. See, e.g. Kohler v. Bed Bath & Beyond of Cal., LLC, No. 11-01246, 2012 WL 2449928 (C.D. Cal. June 27, 2012); Rush v. Fresh and Easy Neighborhood Mkt., Inc., No. 10-09304 (C.D. Cal. Dec. 6, 2011).

IV. CONCLUSION

The Court hereby OVERRULES all of Plaintiff's Evidentiary Objections and DENIES Defendant's Requests for Judicial Notice. The Court also DENIES Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment. In addition, for the above stated reasons, the Court GRANTS Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment as to Plaintiff's ADA claims. The Court DISMISSES without prejudice Plaintiff's remaining state law claims.

IT IS SO ORDERED.


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