BOSTON FIREFIGHTERS UNION LOCAL 718 v. BOSTON CHAPTER
463 U.S. 1226 (1983)

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U.S. Supreme Court

BOSTON FIREFIGHTERS UNION LOCAL 718 v. BOSTON CHAPTER , 463 U.S. 1226 (1983)

463 U.S. 1226

BOSTON FIREFIGHTERS UNION, LOCAL 718
v.
BOSTON CHAPTER, NAACP, et al
No. 82-185

BOSTON POLICE PATROLMEN'S ASSOCIATION, INC.
v.
Pedro CASTRO et al
No. 82-246

Nancy B. BEECHER et al.
v.
BOSTON CHAPTER, NAACP, et al
No. 82-259

Supreme Court of the United States

July 6, 1983

On writs of certiorari to the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.

The motion of respondents to

Page 463 U.S. 1226 , 1227

retax costs is denied.

Justice BLACKMUN, dissenting.

In 1981, the city of Boston decided to lay off hundreds of firefighters and police officers. By statute, Massachusetts requires that civil service layoffs occur in the order of reverse seniority. Mass.Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 31, 39 (West). Many minority members of Boston's police and fire departments had been hired only recently pursuant to consent decrees by which Boston agreed to increase the proportion of minorities in the departments in order to remedy its past discriminatory hiring practices. As a result, layoffs under the statutory last-hired, first- fired policy would have reduced significantly the minority representation in the two departments.

Justice MARSHALL took no part in the consideration or decision of this motion.

Respondents obtained an order from the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts enjoining Boston from laying off personnel pursuant to the statutory policy to the extent that such layoffs would reduce the percentage of minority police officers and firefighters below the level obtained before the layoffs began. The United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit affirmed. 679 F.2d 965 (1982). After the Court of Appeals' decision, Massachusetts enacted legislation providing Boston with new revenues, requiring it to reinstate all police officers and firefighters laid off during the city's fiscal crisis, and securing those persons against future layoffs for fiscal reasons. 1982 Mass.Acts, ch. 190, 25.

This Court granted certiorari to consider this important affirmative action issue. 459 U.S. ___ (1982). After hearing oral argument, however, the Court vacated the judgment and remanded for consideration of mootness in light of the new Massachusetts legislation. ___ U.S. ___, 76 L.Ed.2d ___ (1983). Costs were assessed against respondents under this Court's Rule 50.2, which provides: "In a case of reversal or vacating [463 U.S. 1226 , 1228]


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