Anaheim Mayor Pro Tem Kris Murray

Anaheim Mayor Pro Tem Kris Murray

The Anaheim City Council on Tuesday unanimously adopted the “Quality Rental Housing Program” a rental housing code enforcement ordinance – an initiative that Mayor Pro Tem Kris Murray has pursued for at least a year now. From the staff report:

The goal of the Quality Rental Housing Program is to provide safe and healthy units and neighborhoods. One important component of the Program is the routine, periodic survey of rental housing units. These surveys will allow the City to identify, and work with owners to correct code violations that result in:

• Unsanitary, unsafe and /or unhealthful living conditions
• Threats to the structural integrity of buildings
• Deferred maintenance of structures

Initially, apartment owners will be required complete a self-assessment questionnaire of best management practices:

If an owner indicates that he/she employs at least 90% of the common management techniques, and that all units on the property comply with minimum standards, the City will visit the property to evaluate the exterior of the units. If the exterior is in compliance with City standards, the property will be deemed in compliance with the program and issued a Safe Home Certificate. These owners will pay no fees as a result of their participation in the program, other than Business License fees that are already required when an owner has more than four rental properties in the City.

if an owner falls short of the 90% mark, the city will schedule an inspection of a determined number of units. If any violations found are fixed within a set timeframe, the owner will face no penalties or fees. If not, owners will face fines.

Pretty straightforward and reasonable – not that the usual critics aren’t already finding fault with it. Gabriel San Roman of the OC Weekly assailed it as an secret assault on the poor, because the questionnaire asks such insidious and anti-poor person questions such as whether there are more people living in a rental unit than are listed on the lease, or allowed under occupancy limits – because we all know the best thing for poor people is for them to live in over-crowded, unsanitary squalor.