City officials held a “public” meeting with South Euclid landlords/property owners on Wednesday, December 3, 2008. The meeting was called due to the highly contested change in fees and requirements for the issuance of a “Certificate of Occupancy” for rental unit dwellings. It is unclear as to how and when this meeting was advertised. The city did not contact all landlords/property owners to inform them of this meeting.
The meeting was inconveniently held at 10:00 A.M. on a Wednesday. According to one eyewitness account, the attendees of the meeting were irate. Sources reported that some individuals were prepared to face jail sentencing in defiance of the unreasonable rate hike and intrusive new processing procedures imposed by the city.
There was further discussion on the matter at a Committee Meeting and City Council Meeting on December 08, 2008.
In the video below, Housing Manager, Sally Martin reads a prepared statement at the Committee Meeting.
- time: 7 min. 12 sec.
Mayor Welo cites the "Good Neighbor Committee" as being the impetus for Ordinance 55-08, increasing the fees and requirements for "Certificates of Occupancy."
Welo speaks as if the “Good Neighbor Committee” is an arm of the city government. This group is not sanctioned by voter approval, nor do they have any legal power. Is it possible that people were selected and appointed based on their willingness to promote this administration’s policies?
1. Who exactly comprises the “Good Neighbor Committee?”
2. How does one go about being “appointed” to the Committee?
Also on the video, Councilwoman Ruth Gray gives her opinion.
If Mayor Welo would have attended the Committee Meeting, she would have realized that no one from either her Administration or City Council raised the issue of the “Good Neighbor Committee” playing any role in the decision to enact Ordinance 55-08. Both the Administration and Council members present at this meeting laid blame on increased costs of running the program, including manpower for inspections.
Welo gives the impression that the legislation was hatched from a movement of residents fed up with run-down rental properties. If this scenario is to be believed, the new policy would basically be the imposition of punishment.
Is it possible that a third explanation exists? Could this simply be one more revenue generating scheme aimed at already overburdened taxpayers?
- time: 6 min. 28 sec.
Disgruntled landlords/property owners voice their concerns to city officials:
- time: 6 min. 24 sec.