Feb 152005
Authors: Brian Park

The Fort Collins City Council decided not to amend the two existing Public Nuisance Ordinances Tuesday night.

The two ordinances would have created a new misdemeanor criminal offense directed at people who are involved in social gatherings or parties that are loud and spill over onto neighboring properties. If the property was being rented, landlords could also be found liable according to the proposed amendments. The Public Nuisance Ordinance (NPO) currently states that a property can be claimed a public nuisance if there are two violations within six months, three violations in one year or five violations in two years.

While the city council discussed the proposed ordinances Councilman Kurt Kastein, District 4, voiced his disapproval of the amendments.

"I don't like the public nuisance ordinance," Kastein said. "I will not be supporting the ordinance until owners and landlords can be removed from being guilty."

The city council was also presented with the Residential Rental Registration Ordinance, which would establish procedures for identifying all rental units in Fort Collins. The only units that would be excluded would be multi-family units larger than four-plexes. This ordinance would strive to increase the nuisance code by having rental and landlord information in a database and available to community members.

Courtney Stephens, director of Community Affairs for Associated Students of CSU, spoke out against the rental registration to the city council.

Stephens said ASCSU was in favor of the ordinance in the past but not anymore because there is no mention in the ordinance concerning the health and safety of renters.

"The ordinance places an unfair burden on the landlord," said Jim Norman, 42, a Fort Collins resident.

Kevin Wilcox, 33, a Fort Collins resident is against the rental registration.

"The ordinance does not address any new solutions," Wilcox said. "It does not solve anything, it's empty."

At press time the city council had not voted on the Residential Rental Registration Ordinance.

Councilwoman Marty Tharp, District 5, said the ordinance will "go down in flames" and it is rather frustrating to know it will not pass.

"This looked like a good start in the right direction," Tharp said. "It we don't take care of our neighborhoods we will have this wonderful university surrounded by slums and nobody will want to live there."

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