By Larry Gavin
Two months ago, City officials unveiled a list of 11 properties they said were associated with criminal activities or constituted a public nuisance. They said they would like to address the “problem properties” as “one part and only one part of the answer to violence in our community.”
At the Jan. 19 City Council meeting, Grant Farrar, the City’s Corporation Counsel, outlined City officials’ thinking about two possible ordinances to deal with properties that constitute a public nuisance and to license buildings in which residential units are rented. He said the City’s police, health, and legal departments have been reviewing the issue for the past year, and the legal department has gathered input from the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Open Communities.
Draft ordinances will be presented at Council’s Feb. 8 meeting.
The Proposed Neighborhood Integrity Ordinance
A new ordinance called the “Neighborhood Integrity Ordinance” will replace the City’s current nuisance premises regulations, said Mr. Farrar. The ordinance will define what constitutes a “nuisance,” and will provide a mechanism to help ensure that property owners and managers are required to remove nuisances from their properties.