City Council Discusses Landlord Registry

In the wake of the Yale Park apartment troubles Omaha city officials gathered for the first time on Tuesday in a private meeting to discuss the possibility of creating a landlord registry.

A committee consisting of politicians and city officials discussed the matter.  Officials want to create a quality assurance program designed to help renters recognize landlords who provide safe, secure rental housing. 

It all started when Omaha city officials conducted a mass inspection of the Yale Park apartments near 34th and Lake at the end of September. 

They took thousands of pictures and uncovered more than 2,500 code violations. 

"I really don't know that much about it. I can see where both sides are coming from. My first inclination is the government screws up about everything it does," Kay Anderson, the owner of Yale Park. 

City officials are discussing a plan that will prevent anything like it from happening again in an Omaha rental unit. 

"It is our responsibility to assure, as city government, to assure the health and safety of our citizens, and I think we need to continue conversation to develop a practical long-term plan for the city of Omaha," said Mayor Jean Stothert.

Jeremy Aspen is a property manager. He said he believes there should be more people involved in the discussion concerning housing. 

"To me, a solution looks more like having the city council put together a group of people that know what they're talking about. They have a stake, and hashing it out a little bit," Aspen told 6 News. 

Anderson said he hopes he will get his chance to voice his opinion about the landlord registry.

"I'm not a fan of big government and I'm not a fan of just more regulations. My experience is there's better ways to solve things than beating people with sticks," he said. 

Officials believe there are more than 75,000 rental properties in the city of Omaha, and they are hoping none of them will require an entire city operation to check for code violations. 

The committee will meet again in a couple of weeks to further discuss a possible landlord registry.


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