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Furniture store lawsuit alleges ‘size’ discrimination

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Like many small towns, the City of Hanford wanted to retain its prosperous downtown commercial area without discouraging "big box" stores such as Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Sears and Target from opening in planned commercial (PC) zones. Hanford's downtown has 12 furniture stores. To discourage these stores from moving out to the PC area near the big stores, the city council enacted an ordinance allowing PC zone furniture sales only in stores with at least 50,000 square feet and furniture sales areas not exceeding 2,500 square feet. Purchase Bob Bruss reports online. Adrian and Tracy Hernandez owned a downtown furniture store, but they decided to open a Country Hutch Home Furnishings and Mattress Gallery store in the PC zone. Their store was far less than 50,000 square feet. When the City of Hanford issued their occupancy permit, they were warned they could not sell furniture at their modest-size new store in the PC zone. They brought this lawsuit to challenge the constituti...