Five Bozeman, Montana residents have
asked a judge to invalidate an ordinance prohibiting discrimination
based on sexual orientation and gender identity in the areas of
employment, housing and public accommodations.
Bozeman became the fourth Montana city
to outlaw such discrimination when city leaders adopted the ordinance
in June, the Bozeman
Daily Chronicle reported.
Plaintiffs claim in their lawsuit that
the city does not have the authority to enact such a law because it
is preempted by state law. Montana's non-discrimination laws do not
cover sexual orientation and gender identity.
The lawsuits describes plaintiffs as
“members of a larger class of similarly concerned and aggrieved
citizen-taxpayers” who may be affected by the ordinance.
Opponents of the ordinance hinted at a
lawsuit while the law was being debated.
“This issue before the city council
right now is ripe for a lawsuit,” Jeff Laszloffy, president of the
Christian conservative Montana Family Foundation, said during a rally