United States District Court, D. Hawaii
HOWARD G., INDIVIDUALLY AND ON BEHALF OF HIS MINOR CHILD, JOSHUA G.; AND JOSHUA G., Plaintiffs,
STATE OF HAWAII, DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, and CHRISTINA M. KISHIMOTO, IN HER OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS SUPERINTENDENT OF THE STATE OF HAWAII, DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, Defendants.
ORDER GRANTING AND DENYING IN PART PLAINTIFFS'
MOTION REQUESTING JUDGMENT BE SET OUT IN SEPARATE
Derrick R. Watson, United States District Judge.
6, 2019, Plaintiffs filed a Motion Requesting Judgment Be Set
Out in Separate Document. Motion, Dkt. No. 126. By this
Motion, Plaintiffs seek entry of two separate judgments, one
pursuant to the Court's May 2018 Order Granting
Plaintiff's Motion for Judgment Granting Reimbursement Of
Private Tuition (Order, Dkt. No. 116), and, second, what
would effectively be a deficiency judgment obligating
Defendants to satisfy the balance allegedly remaining on the
Court's tuition reimbursement Order in the amount of $99,
014.48. Defendants objected (Dkt. No. 127), and the Court
ordered additional briefing from both parties (Dkt. No. 128).
Supplemental briefing has been completed (Dkt. Nos. 129,
132), and the Court found these matters suitable for
disposition without a hearing, pursuant to Local Rule 7.2(d).
reasons set forth below, Plaintiffs' Motion is GRANTED IN
PART. The Court will direct entry of judgment in favor of
Plaintiffs, consistent with its May 2018 Order (Dkt. No. 116)
and this Order. However, because Defendants have satisfied
the Court's Order and prospective judgment in full,
exclusive of attorneys' fees and costs, and Plaintiffs
are not entitled to the disputed $99, 041.48, or any portion
thereof, no additional judgment is warranted.
Court's May 2018 Order granted judgment in favor of
Plaintiffs for reimbursement of private tuition. Dkt. No.
116. In so ordering, the Court stated “… this
Court awards to Parents reimbursement for any costs or
expenses related to Student's private education
retroactive to the deficient September 14, 2009 IEP, upon
their documentation of such costs or expenses (e.g.,
AMS invoices, Dkt. No. 95 at 5-56), but clarifies that DOE is
to be credited for all payments it has already made to
Parents that would otherwise be captured under this
Judgment.” Id. at 23. Plaintiffs provided the
documentation of costs through the declaration of Rose
Magbual, a bookkeeper for AMS. Magbual Declaration, Dkt. No.
118. It is undisputed that DOE has made payment of $408,
914.75, the cost of unpaid tuition at AMS for the relevant
period, as documented in Magbual's Declaration. Motion at
now move the Court to set out judgment in a separate
document. Notwithstanding the title of the Motion, the crux
of Plaintiffs' request appears to be that the Court find
that DOE has only partially satisfied the May 2018 Order
(Dkt. No. 116). Motion at ¶4. According to Plaintiffs,
although DOE has made payment of $408, 914.75, there remains
an unpaid balance of $99, 041.48 (the
“deficiency”). Id. at ¶8.
parties variously characterize what this $99, 041.48
represents. Magbual's Declaration, for instance, includes
the statement that the deficiency “represents interest
on the outstanding invoices” and attaches an
explanation of how she calculated the interest using the
“Prime Rate.” Id., 3; Ex. B. Plaintiffs
similarly describe the deficiency as “interest on
amounts owed for private tuition” (Dkt. No. 120 at 2),
while the DOE describes it as “pre-judgment
interest” (Dkt. No. 127 at 2). To clarify, the Court
ordered supplemental briefing, directing Plaintiffs to
“explain how and why the $99, 041.48 in question
‘represents documentation of interest on amounts owed
for private tuition as a cost or expense.'” Dkt.
their responsive supplemental briefing, Plaintiffs now state
the deficiency represents interest accrued on personal loans
made by the then-director of AMS, Arlene Greenberg, to AMS to
cover the shortfall in revenue created by DOE's failure
to pay Plaintiff J.G.'s tuition. Dkt. No. 129 at 4. In so
stating, Plaintiffs disclaim DOE's assertions that the
deficiency judgment they seek relates to prejudgment
interest. The Court therefore treats the alleged
deficiency as interest allegedly accrued on personal loans
from Greenberg to AMS.
Ms. Greenberg's declaration that she made such personal
loans (Dkt. No. 129-1), Plaintiffs provide no documentation,
such as a loan agreement, evidencing money borrowed by AMS
from Greenberg, no documentation of interest allegedly
charged by Greenberg to her own company, nor any
documentation of how, to what extent, or even if AMS passed
the costs and interest associated with these loans onto
students, such as J.G. Equally significant, the interest
charges allegedly borne by Greenberg to keep her business
afloat appear, at best, to be damages that she incurred, not
Plaintiffs. As a non-party to this case, Ms. Greenberg is
entitled to nothing from the DOE. Moreover, her attempt to
use Plaintiffs to collect on her behalf, and as a means to
circumvent her standing problem, is supported by no authority
of which this Court is aware, and certainly by no authority
that has been provided by Plaintiffs.
Motion for Judgment to be Set out in Separate Document is
GRANTED IN PART. The Clerk of Court is directed to enter
judgment for Plaintiffs, consistent with the Court's May
2018 Order. Plaintiffs' Motion is DENIED in all other
respects, including its request for the entry of a separate
deficiency judgment in the amount of $99, 041.48.