BROWN v. COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD OF FREDERICK COUNTY, VA.
234 F.Supp. 808 (1964)
United States District Court W. D. Virginia, Harrisonburg Division.
June 15, 1964.
"Of course if you have any ground for feeling that there would be a real controversy the situation might be altered. But so far none has been suggested. And the legal situation seems to me so clear that I do not apprehend that any real controversy exists.
"Under the circumstances I am not disposed to set a date for trial and have witnesses come to Harrisonburg on a matter which should be settled in a few minutes of discussion between you and Mr. Massie.
"I suggest once more that, either by correspondence or by a personal interview, you endeavor to settle this matter."
On May 8 I wrote to Mr. Massie that I had had no reply from Mr. Tucker but I did feel very strongly that the two of them should get together to discuss the matter.
On May 27 Mr. Tucker wrote that he had concluded that no further hearing in the matter would be necessary. Shortly thereafter, the Pupil Placement Board granted the transfers requested by the children involved in the suit. Shortly thereafter this court entered the order which was subsequently appealed from. That order struck the cause from the docket but expressly provided that it
could be reinstated on the docket without payment of any filing fee in the event the plaintiffs or anyone who would have had a right to intervene in the cause should file a petition for reinstatement and/or intervention. No such petition has been filed.
The situation here is therefore clearly distinguishable from that in Bell v. School Board of Powhatan County, Virginia. There is here no "long continued pattern of evasion and obstruction" nor a refusal to take the initiative. On the contrary, the County has consistently understood that segregation cannot be maintained and has consistently pleaded for a conference at which a program could be agreed upon. It is the belief of the court that much of this litigation could have been avoided had counsel for the plaintiffs been willing to sit down and discuss the situation with counsel for the defendants. There has been here no long continued pattern of evasion and obstruction and the interposition of a variety of administrative obstacles such as was found in the Powhatan County case and was referred to by the Court of Appeals as a basis for awarding counsel fees. Consequently, I find in this case that no counsel fees should be awarded.
An order will be entered accordingly.