Unpublished Disposition, 922 F.2d 844 (9th Cir. 1991)Annotate this Case
Joseph F. BRAZILE, Plaintiff-Appellant,v.LOS ANGELES UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT; Leonard M. Brittion;Superintendent of Schools; Janalyn Williams;David W. Koch, Defendants-Appellees.
United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit.
Submitted Dec. 7, 1990.* Decided Jan. 8, 1991.
Before FARRIS, K.K. HALL and KOZINSKI, Circuit Judges.
Brazile first asserts a claim under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 alleging that the Los Angeles Unified School District deprived him of a property right when it dismissed him from his job. The hearing officer of the School District Personnel Commission found that Brazile had engaged in work-related dishonesty and unauthorized use of School District property. SER 62. The Commission adopted his findings and concluded that Brazile was properly dismissed therefor. ER 58. We are bound by the Commission's factual findings; Brazile may not relitigate his dismissal in federal court. University of Tennessee v. Elliot, 478 U.S. 788, 799 (1986).
Brazile's remaining claim is that the School District violated his rights under 42 U.S.C. §§ 1981-1983 by improperly withholding money owed to him. He has not stated a claim under section 1981. Patterson v. McLean Credit Union, 109 S. Ct. 2363, 2373-75 (1989) (conduct occurring after contract formation but not interfering with the ability to enforce them--including breach of contract--does not implicate section 1981). He has not stated a claim under section 1982 either, having failed to allege any way in which the School District abridged his right to "inherit, purchase, lease, sell, hold [or] convey real [or] personal property." 42 U.S.C Sec. 1982.
Nor does Brazile's allegation that the School District wrongfully withheld money owed to him state a claim under section 1983. He essentially alleges a contract dispute: Brazile claims he should be paid in full for services rendered; the School District claims the right to offset losses caused by Brazile's malfeasance. As we stated in San Bernardino Physicians' Servs. Medical Group, Inc. v. County of San Bernardino, 825 F.2d 1404, 1408 (9th Cir. 1987), "not every interference with contractual expectations" creates "a claim under section 1983.... It is neither workable nor within the intent of section 1983 to convert every breach of contract claim against a state into a federal claim." (emphasis in original). Brazile's claim that he was wrongfully deprived of guaranteed employment would have given rise to a section 1983 action were it not barred by his prior litigation; but his claim that the state breached its contract to pay him does not. See id. at 1409; Medical Laundry Servs. v. Board of Trustees, 906 F.2d 571, 573 (11th Cir. 1990) (simple breach of contract by state does not rise to the level of a constitutional deprivation). To the extent Brazile alleges a taking of property without compensation, his claim is unripe as he has not exhausted his state court remedies. Williamson County Regional Planning v. Hamilton Bank, 473 U.S. 172, 194-95 (1985).
Because plaintiff had no valid federal claims, the district court did not err in dismissing his pendent state claims.