OCT 11 1995 The Honorable Strom Thurmond United States Senate 217 Russell Office Building Washington, D.C.

20510-4001 Dear Senator Thurmond: Your letter to the Department of Labor on behalf of your constituent, Edwin Poulnot, III (your case number 5206230003), was referred to the Department of Justice for reply. Mr. Poulnot has questions about existing retail space that he is trying to sublease to another tenant. Mr. Poulnot wished to know his obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). Please excuse our delay in responding. The ADA does not establish specific requirements regarding alterations that must be made to existing facilities for the purpose of accessibility, if alterations are not otherwise planned. Title III of the ADA, which applies to places of public accommodation and commercial facilities, simply requires that places of public accommodation, including sales and rental establishments, remove architectural and communication barriers to the extent that it is readily achievable to do so. Such barriers must be removed from all public areas of the place of public accommodation, including restrooms. Congress defined the term "readily achievable" to mean "easily accomplishable and able to be carried out without much difficulty or expense." In determining whether an action is readily achievable, the factors to be considered include: 1) the nature and cost of the action needed; 2) the overall financial resources of the entity; 3) the number of persons employed by the entity; 4) the effect which complying will have on the entity's expenses and resources; 5) legitimate safety requirements necessary for safe operation; 6) the impact otherwise of the action upon operation of the site; 7) the relationship of the entity to any parent corporation or entity; and 8) the overall financial resources, size, and types of operations of any parent corporation or entity. cc: Records; Chrono; Wodatch; McDowney; Milton; FOIA n:\udd\congress\achvable.thu\sc. young-parran 01-03700 ​ -2The Department of Justice regulation implementing title III

of the ADA requires that measures taken to remove barriers must comply with the ADA Standards for Accessible Design unless such compliance is not readily achievable. If it is not readily achievable to remove barriers in an existing facility that is not otherwise being altered, then barrier removal is not required. However, where barrier removal is not readily achievable, the public accommodation must nonetheless make its goods, services, or facilities available through alternative methods, such as curbside service, home delivery, or relocation of activities, where those methods are readily achievable. Thus, businesses such as retail stores may need to adjust their layout of racks and shelves in order to permit wheelchair access, but they are not required to do so if it would result in a significant loss of selling space. However, the store is still required to make the goods and services that are located along inaccessible aisles available to individuals with disabilities through alternative methods. For example, the store could instruct a clerk to retrieve inaccessible merchandise, if it is readily achievable to do so. Finally, please note that both the landlord and the tenant of a retail establishment are public accommodations and have full responsibility for complying with all ADA title III requirements applicable to that place of public accommodation. The title III regulation permits the landlord and the tenant to allocate responsibility, in the lease, for complying with particular provisions of the regulation. However, any allocation made in a lease or other contract is only effective as between the parties, and both landlord and tenant remain fully liable for compliance with all provisions of the ADA relating to that place of public accommodation. I hope this information will be helpful to you in responding to your constituent. Sincerely, Deval L. Patrick Assistant Attorney General Civil Rights Division 01-03701 ​ KERRISONS *DOWNTOWN--260 KING ST. CHARLESTON, S.C. 29401 *ST. ANDREWS CENTER

*NORTHWOODS MALL Mr. John Payne Office Sen. J. Strom Thurmond Washington, D.C. FAX 202-224-1300


Dear Mr. Payne I am writing you to ask your help in clarifying the implications of the Disability Act on a property that I am trying to sublease to another tenant. This building is 26,500 square feet and is located in the City of Charleston. It was constructed in 1966, and is free standing within a strip center. It has wheel chair ramps at the front and rear doors. We are presently offering public rest rooms for male and female. These restrooms are small and do not have access for wheel chairs. The rooms are quite small and have two stalls in the mens room and four stalls in the womens area. Store aisles in the main aisles are about five feet, but in the interior aisles the width varies according to the department. My question is, what do we have to do (if anything) to conform to the Disabilities Act. Any information which you can obtain for us would be sincerely appreciated. July 25, 1995 Sincerely, Edwin Poulnot, III President Fax. 803-722-4045 01-03702