PITTSBURGH, PA (December 8, 2015) More than 20 neighborhood groups support the proposal for a rental registration program that would ensure safe, quality rental housing for our residents, provide incentives for property owners to keep their apartments in excellent shape, and reward demonstrably good landlords. Together, these initiatives will help protect our neighborhoods from neglect and protect our residents from unsafe housing.
After much work by the community groups, property owners, landlords, Mayor William Peduto’s Administration and Pittsburgh City Council, Council is set to take a preliminary vote on the proposal tomorrow.
Leaders from the following community organizations had the following to say about the proposal:
“The proposed rental registration ordinance looks to be an effective preemptive tool to get a handle on properties in our community that are not up to code and problematic. While giving notice to long-time, derelict property owners, it gives hope for enhanced community wellbeing and growth,” said Jeanne McNutt, Executive Director, Uptown Partners.
“To us, this is not about nitpicking enforcement that could displace tenants; this is about having contact info transparency for an accountable rental property manager. On a community level, we will then reach out to that property manager to work together to resolve the identified issues prior to enforcement and fines,” said Aaron Sukenik, Executive Director, Hilltop Alliance.
“I am in full support of the landlord registration legislation as a result of feeling that it impacts a landlord in terms of keeping a landlord accountable," said LaShawn Burton-Faulk, Executive Director, Manchester Citizens Corporation. “It allows the city to be in touch with the landlord -- and using measures to be accountable, if there is something that goes wrong there’s an agent assigned. The agent can really get behind and support the tenant in making sure the tenant has a proper place of living and that things are kept up to code.”
“Rental Registration will bring much-needed accountability, organization, and responsibility that has been sorely lacking within the rental housing enterprise in Pittsburgh. Owners will be held responsible to take reasonable steps to ensure that properties are safe and clean, thus improving the overall quality of life in our communities,” said Lauren Byrne, Executive Director, Lawrenceville United. “We have spent countless hours tracking down owners and representatives of irresponsibly managed or poorly maintained rental housing in Lawrenceville in an effort to improve the the health, safety, and wellbeing of residents in our neighborhood, and we believe that this legislation and the enforcement of this ordinance will be an important tool in the continued revitalization and reinvestment in our neighborhood.”
Homewood Concerned Citizens Council “is in support of the Rental Registration Legislation on behalf of tenants to ensure that landlords keep their properties in compliance with City of Pittsburgh building code ordinances. Too often the tenants that rent from private landlords have no recourse to ensure that properties are in compliance with building codes; tenants will welcome the periodic inspections that will be required to ensure enforcement of health and safety codes. Together tenants and landlords will have a greater responsibility for the quality of life in rental properties,” said Cherylie Fuller, HCCC Executive Director.
Oakland Planning & Development Corporation “supports the rental registration bill to give city officials the tools they need to ensure that all rental properties are maintained properly with no adverse effects on communities where they are located. Many other cities in Pennsylvania and across the country utilize this mechanism – it’ll be great for Pittsburgh to have this tool as well. OPDC owns and manages rental units and will register them and willingly have them inspected,” said Wanda Wilson, OPDC Executive Director.
“Oakwatch supports the rental registration bill and looks forward to its passage. Oakwatch is a community-created organization whose mission is to focus enforcement of existing laws, codes and ordinances to improve the quality of life in our neighborhoods. We believe rental registration will strengthen the City's ability to use its building code as a positive force for community stabilization and improvement. Further, rental registration is used in other municipalities in Pennsylvania and in other states. Pittsburgh should have access to the same process to help regulate its rental market, said Oakwatch Co-Chair Geoffrey Becker.
“The Stanton Heights Neighborhood Association's board of directors feels that rental registration legislation would have a positive impact in our neighborhood by ensuring rental properties are safe for both the renter and community, while simultaneously promoting a stronger sense of responsibility among property owners,” said Jessica Varone, President, Stanton Heights Neighborhood Association.
The following organizations support the rental registration proposal:
Tuesday, December 8, 2015
City of Pittsburgh
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