Lawsuit: Georgia city illegally restricts utilities access

ATLANTA (AP) — A federal lawsuit says a Georgia city’s policies illegally restrict access to utility services and that those policies disproportionately affect black and Latino residents.

The lawsuit against the city of LaGrange was filed Thursday in federal court in Atlanta.

It says the city, which is the only provider of basic utilities, threatens to cut utilities if residents don’t pay outstanding municipal court fines. Another policy denies utility services to applicants who can’t provide a Social Security number and a state or federal government-issued photo ID.

The lawsuit asks a judge to permanently block the policies and to award damages.

The LaGrange mayor and city manager didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment Thursday.

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