Letter: Rental ordinance won’t solve Austin’s property problems

Published 9:19 am Wednesday, December 17, 2014

As the only local trade associated specifically tasked to protect the rights of property owners, Southeast Minnesota Association of Realtors (representing 850 members in southeast Minnesota) closely monitors any laws or ordinances that adversely affect the rights of preperty owners. We have been watching the development of the proposed rental ordincances in Austin.

Councilwoman Judy Enright is passionate in her believe that this ordinance will solve Austin’s blighted property problem by forcing landowners to register with the city of Austin. Her proposed ordinance requires landowners live within 60 miles of their property or they are forced to hire services of a professional property manager. The criteria for what constitutes a property manager have not been defined, nor has the required landlord education among other outstanding questions we’ve mentioned.

SEMAR believes using the existing ordinances and allowing the new staff to do their work are in the best interests of all property owners, tenants, homeowners and the community. Holding all property owners’ accountable for the failure of the few will be neither fair nor likely effective.

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We believe Councilman Jeremy Carolan has conducted himself with grace and dignity, exercising his right as an elected member of the City Council to voice his concerns and opposition to this ordinance on behalf of the citizens of Austin.

Karen Becker,