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Muraveva v. City of Wildwood

United States District Court, D. New Jersey

August 14, 2019

LIUDMILA M. MURAVEVA, Plaintiff,
v.
CITY OF WILDWOOD, et al., Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          ROBERT B. KUGLER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         This matter comes before the Court on the motion of Plaintiff Liudmila Muraveva (“Plaintiff”) for reconsideration [Docket Item 40] of certain portions of the December 18, 2018 Opinion and Order. [Docket Items 38 & 39.] Defendants City of Wildwood, Ronald Harwood, and Steven Booy oppose the present motion. [Docket Item 43.] For the reasons discussed below, the Court will deny Plaintiff's motion in its entirety. The Court finds as follows:

         1. Factual Background and Procedural History.

         In this matter, Plaintiff initially alleged various claims against Defendants mostly based on actions purportedly taken by them involving a property Plaintiff owns in Wildwood, New Jersey. [See generally Docket Item 1.] After convening oral argument on December 4, 2018 [Docket Item 37], the late Honorable Jerome B. Simandle, U.S.D.J., granted summary judgment in favor of Defendants and dismissed the entire Complaint. Muraveva v. City of Wildwood, 2018 WL 6617266 (D.N.J. Dec. 18, 2018).[1]Thereafter, Plaintiff filed the pending motion, seeking reconsideration of Sections C, F, G, and H of that Opinion [Docket Item 40], and Defendants filed opposition. [Docket Item 43.] The motion is now fully briefed and ripe for disposition. The Court decides the motion without oral argument pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 78.

         2. Standard of Review.

         The Local Civil Rules of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey allow a party to seek reconsideration or re-argument of “matter[s] or controlling decisions which the party believes the Judge or Magistrate Judge has overlooked.” L. Civ. R. 7.1(i). To prevail on such a motion for reconsideration, the movant must show: “(1) an intervening change in the controlling law; (2) the availability of new evidence that was not available when the court [rendered the judgment in question]; or (3) the need to correct a clear error of law or fact or to prevent manifest injustice.” U.S. ex rel. Shumann v. Astrazeneca Pharm. L.P., 769 F.3d 837, 848-49 (3d Cir. 2014) (citing Max's Seafood Café ex rel. Lou-Ann, Inc. v. Quinteros, 176 F.3d 669, 677 (3d Cir. 1999)). The standard of review for reconsideration is high and to be granted sparingly. United States v. Jones, 158 F.R.D. 309, 314 (D.N.J. 1994).

         3. Discussion.

         In the pending motion, Plaintiff seeks reconsideration of Sections C, F, G, and H of the December 18, 2018 Opinion. The Court addresses Plaintiff's arguments with respect to each Section in turn.

         4. Section C.

         Plaintiff first asks the Court to reconsider the dismissal of Count Nine, addressed in Section C of the December 18, 2018 Opinion. (Pl.'s Br. at 3-4.) In Count Nine, Plaintiff brought a New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (“NJLAD”) claim against Defendant City of Wildwood as applied to Paragraphs 61-65 of the Complaint, wherein Plaintiff alleged: on June 10, 2016, Plaintiff appeared in Wildwood City Municipal Court to answer charges for a traffic violation; that she requested of the Municipal Court Judge a translator from English to Russian; that Plaintiff was not provided a translator from English to Russian; that other similarly situated persons are granted a request for a translator in the Wildwood City Municipal Court; and that Plaintiff was treated differently from other similarly situated persons based on national origin based animus. (Compl. at ¶¶ 61-65, 82.)

         5. During the December 4, 2018 oral argument, the following exchange took place between Judge Simandle and Mr. Peter M. Kober, Esq., counsel for Plaintiff:

The Court: If my Opinion says nothing about the denial of a Russian interpreter, is that acceptable to both sides? I just don't see how it even relates here. . . . If it's a traffic case, it has nothing to do with her summons from her rental property. The only nexus is that it happened in Wildwood. So do I need to get into it[, ] Mr. Kober?
Mr. Kober: Not as far as I'm concerned, your Honor.
The Court: Okay, well I want to thank both sides for helping me clarify the ...

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