Rental code up for change

Rental code up for change


RIDGELAND — Rental property owners here will be subject to licensing and inspections of the property between tenants by the city, according to a proposed residential inspection code under consideration by the city.

Public Works Director Alan Hart said provisions in the proposed Residential Inspection Code include an annually renewed rental license, an inspection by the city every time a property is vacated between tenants and utilities in the tenant's name.

The rental license comes with a $50 application fee for each unit the owner operates in the city.

The Community Development Division of the Public Works Department will enforce the codes.

The code itself says it aims to “ensure public health, safety and welfare in so far as they are affected by the initial and continued occupancy and maintenance of residential rental structures and premises.”

Hart said it will also include the requirement that each property has a local representative.

“That gives us someone to talk to,” Hart said.

The code stipulates that rentals shall be for a minimum of 30 days. A license issued by the mayor and board is required for any occupancy of a rental unit for a term that is less than three months.

Hart presented the proposed new codes to the Mayor and the Board of Aldermen during a public hearing on Sept. 20.

Jeff Stewart, a representative of Cincinnatti based Vinebrook Homes, was the lone person to address the board during the hearing. He asked if the protocols currently in place following a rehab project on a rental unit had changed. He was informed they would not be altered by the proposed codes.

McGee noted that the proposed codes would not be adopted at the Sept. 20 meeting so that community development would have time to finalize them.

Hart said he would like to bring the proposed codes before the board for approval as soon as the first meeting in October.

The proposed code runs about 19 pages and is available through the city. A checklist for the required inspection is included in the code.

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