COMMISSIONERS ORDINANCE NO. 0-2008-005
AN ORDINANCE OF THE BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS OF THE CITY OF NEWPORT, KENTUCKY CREATING CHAPTER 99 OF THE CODE OF ORDINANCES OF THE CITY OF NEWPORT, KENTUCKY CONCERNING RENTAL DWELLING LICENSES, MAKING PROVISIONS THEREFORE AND PROVIDING A PENALTY FOR VIOLATION THEREOF.
BE IT ORDAINED BY THE CITY OF NEWPORT, KENTUCKY
WHEREAS, it is the intention of the Board of Commissioners of the City of
Newport, Kentucky to adopt legislation concerning the licensing of rental dwellings
within the City in order to establish reasonable and uniform regulations concerning the
same and to protect the health, safety and general welfare of the owners and occupants of
rental dwellings within the City if Newport, Kentucky,
THEREFORE, be it ordained, as follows:
That Chapter 99 of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Newport, Kentucky is
hereby created to include the following:
CHAPTER 99: RENTAL DWELLING LICENSE
Section 99.01 DEFINITIONS
For the purpose of this Chapter, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or required a different meaning.
DIRECTOR: Director shall mean the Director of the Development Services Department for the City of Newport or such person, regardless of title, who shall perform the same or similar functions for the City.
LICENSE: License shall mean and refer to the Rental Dwelling License.
MULTIPLE USE PROPERTY: Any parcel of real estate that is being utilized, simultaneously, for both residential and commercial purposes, for which the collection of rent on one or more units is required to be made. However, the provisions set forth herein shall only apply to the residential portion thereof.
RENTAL DWELLING: Any rented residential structure or any residential or commercial building containing one or more rental dwelling units or rooming units as defined in Chapter 90 hereof, including multiple use properties.
Section 99.02 APPLICABILITY/EXEMPTIONS
(1) This Chapter shall apply to all rented or occupied rental dwellings as defined herein, including single-family residential dwellings and dwelling units or rooming units in otherwise owner-occupied dwellings, including, but not limited to, boarding houses, condominiums, townhouses and leasehold cooperatives.
(2) The requirement to obtain a Rental Dwelling License and payment of the requisite fee hereunder shall not apply to rental dwellings owned or operated by governmental agencies as public housing or by any entity recognized as a non-profit corporation or exempt organization under the provisions of 26 USC § 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code, however they shall be subject to the remaining provisions hereof, in particular the licensing standards and conditions and inspection guidelines.
(3) The provisions hereof shall not apply to licensed hotels or motels, bed and breakfast establishments, jails, convents, monasteries, nursing homes, board and care homes, parsonages, parish houses, rectories or hospitals.
Section 99.03 LICENSE REQUIRED
No person shall rent or allow to be occupied any rental dwelling unless the owner has first obtained a Rental Dwelling License under the terms hereof.
Section 99.04 COVERAGE
One (1) Rental Dwelling License shall be issued for each rental dwelling unit.
The City shall have authority to exercise its regulatory powers hereunder, including the power to issue, deny, renew, revoke and suspend any Rental Dwelling License, with respect to any rental dwelling unit.
Section 99.05 APPLICATION
The owner of each rental dwelling shall make initial written application to the Chief Financial Officer or his/her designee for a Rental Dwelling License to carry on the business of renting residential property. The owner of each rental dwelling shall submit the application for such license prior to occupancy. Each initial written application shall be accompanied by a non-refundable Forty ($40.00) Dollar application processing fee. The application processing fee shall be applied to the licensing fee upon approval and shall be retained if the application is denied or voluntarily withdrawn by the applicant.
The owner of any rental dwelling which has a valid occupational license upon the effective date hereof shall be deemed to have been issued a Rental Dwelling License hereunder, provided that such owner shall be required to submit an updated written application setting forth the requirements herein within thirty (30) days of notice of such requirement being given to the owner.
The purchaser of any existing rental dwelling shall be required to make an initial written application to the Chief Financial Officer or his/her designee for a Rental Dwelling License within ninety (90) days of such purchase.
Application shall be made on a form furnished by the City and shall set forth the following information:
(1) Name, address and telephone number of the owner of the rental dwelling. If the owner is a partnership, the name of the partnership and the name and residence address of the managing partner shall be included. If the owner is a corporation, the name and address of the corporation, the name of the chief operating officer and its agent for service of process in Kentucky.
(2) If the owner has appointed an agent authorized to maintain and manage the property, the name, business or residence address and telephone number of such agent.
(3) Every applicant, whether an individual, partnership or corporation, shall identify in the application, by name, residence or business street address and telephone number, the person who is actively involved in, and responsible for the maintenance and management of the premises. Said person shall, if other than the owner, affix his or her notarized signature to the application, thereby accepting joint and several responsibility with the owner (including any potential criminal, civil, or administrative liability) for the maintenance and management of the premises. A Post Office Box or commercial mail receiving service is not acceptable as an address for such person.
(4) Street address of the rental dwelling.
(5) Number and kind of units within the rental dwelling. For each unit, if applicable, the floor number, unit number and/or letter and/or any other designation.
In the event that any of the information required to be provided herein should change, the applicant or licensee shall, within fourteen (14) days thereof, notify the Chief Financial Officer or his/her designee, in writing, of any such change.
Pending the approval of any application, any rental dwelling may be or remain occupied so long as the same meets with the provisions of all applicable fire, zoning, life safety, property maintenance and/or building codes of the City.
Section 99.06 FEES
The annual Rental Dwelling License fee required for each rental dwelling unit shall be Forty ($40.00) Dollars.
The maximum annual amount payable by an individual, partnership or corporation hereunder shall not exceed Ten Thousand ($10,000.00) Dollars per license period.
Any change in ownership shall require a new license application and payment of the license fee.
The annual license fee shall be increased by fifty percent (50%) when more than fifteen (15) days late. Late applicants shall not be entitled to prorated license fees.
License fees shall be prorated as follows:
Issued during first half of license year Full fee
Issued during second half of license year ˝ fee
Section 99.07 LICENSING STANDARDS AND CONDITIONS
The following minimum standards and conditions shall be met in order to obtain and renew a Rental Dwelling License. Failure to comply with any of these standards and conditions shall be adequate grounds for the denial, refusal to renew, revocation or suspension of any Rental Dwelling License.
(1) The applicant shall have paid the required Rental Dwelling License fee.
(2) Rental dwellings shall not exceed the maximum number of units permitted by the zoning code. All rental dwelling applications shall be reviewed by the Director of Development Services for compliance herewith and who’s approval shall be required for issuance.
(3) No rental dwelling shall be overcrowded or illegally occupied in violation of either the fire, zoning, life safety, property maintenance and/or building codes of the City.
(4) The rental dwelling shall not have been used or converted to any other type of use in violation of the zoning code.
(5) Any rental dwelling containing three (3) or more rental dwelling units shall require a fire inspection by the City Fire/EMS Department.
(6) Comply with all provisions of the applicable City fire, zoning, life safety, property maintenance and/or building codes.
(7) The applicant shall maintain a current register of all tenants and other persons with a lawful right of occupancy to any rental dwelling.
(8) The applicant shall have submitted a complete application.
(9) There shall be no delinquent property taxes, assessments or any unpaid code enforcement citations and/or liens on the rental dwelling.
(10) No new Rental Dwelling License shall be issued for the property during the pendency of any adverse license action until disposition of the same.
Section 99.08 TRANSFERABILITY
Any Rental Dwelling License issued hereunder is nontransferable. A new license application shall be required for each change of ownership of any rental dwelling.
Section 99.09 DURATION/PAY DATE/EXPIRATION/RENEWAL
All Rental Dwelling Licenses shall be issued on an annual basis with the required fee due and payable by April 15th of each year. The License period shall be for one full year commencing July 1st and extending through and expiring on June 30th of the following year, subject to renewal year to year in the manner provided herein. All licensees shall apply for renewal of such licenses on a form provided by the City. No license shall be granted without payment of the required annual fee.
Section 99.10 INSPECTION GUIDELINES
The Director shall be required to periodically inspect all rental dwellings required to be licensed hereunder to determine:
(1) Compliance with all provisions of the applicable City fire, zoning, life safety, property maintenance and/or building codes.
(2) Rental dwellings with delinquent property taxes or any other assessments.
(3) Property identified by the Code Enforcement Division of the Development Services Department as having housing code violations or a history of noncompliance with housing inspection orders.
(4) Rental dwellings for which no license has been applied for or which are unlicensed or unregistered.
(5) Rental dwellings with police and/or fire/ems runs relating to drug offenses,
prostitution, crimes of force or violence or loud and disorderly disturbances.
Section 99.11 ISSUANCE OF LICENSE
When, upon completion of the inspection of any rental dwelling, the Director or his/her designee finds the minimum standards for licensing set forth herein have been met, a Rental Dwelling License shall be issued.
Section 99.12 DETERMINATION OF NONCOMPLIANCE/NOTICE
If the Director or his/her designee determines that any rental dwelling fails to meet the licensing standards and conditions set forth herein, he/she shall mail a notice to the owner or the owner’s agent. Notice shall be deemed sufficient if sent by regular first class mail to the owner or owner’s designated agent at the address specified in the last license application filed with the City. Notice shall also be conspicuously posted on the rental dwelling or unit. The notice shall specify the reasons for the rental dwellings failure to meet the required licensing standards and conditions and shall include a copy of any inspection report, if applicable.
If the rental dwelling fails to meet one or more of the required standards and conditions, the notice shall indicate that the license holder or applicant has thirty (30) days in which to correct the defects, after which time action may be taken to deny, refuse to renew, revoke or suspend the Rental Dwelling License.
Whenever a notice of noncompliance is issued hereunder, the Director or his/her designee shall also cause a notice to the tenants to be prominently posted on the rental dwelling. The notice shall indicate that a license proceeding has been commenced against the owner because the rental dwelling has been found to be in violation of the property maintenance code or any other applicable code and that the tenants may be required to vacate the building.
Section 99.13 CONDEMNED BUILDINGS
When any rental dwelling is condemned as hazardous or unfit for human habitation due to defects in its structure or its electrical, plumbing, or mechanical systems, or is boarded, requiring a code compliance inspection prior to re-occupancy, the Rental Dwelling License issued therefore shall be suspended by the Director or his/her designee effective the date of condemnation. Any appeal thereof shall be taken to the Appeals Board. The rental dwelling shall thereafter only be eligible to hold a Rental Dwelling License upon issuance of a certificate of occupancy.
Section 99.14 VACATION OF AFFECTED RENTAL DWELLING
When any Rental Dwelling License has been denied, revoked or suspended, has failed to be initially applied for or renewed, or when the license holder has failed to obtain a current Rental Dwelling License upon proper application, the Director or his/her designee shall order the rental dwelling vacated, giving the tenants thereof a reasonable time to arrange for new housing, not to exceed sixty (60) days. No rental dwelling unit shall be rented again until the license holder/owner is properly licensed.
Section 99.15 REINSTATEMENT FEE
A fee of Five Hundred ($500.00) Dollars must accompany any application for reinstatement of any Rental Dwelling License revoked or suspended. The reinstatement fee shall be in addition to the regular Rental Dwelling License fee imposed herein. Such fee however shall not apply to rental dwellings condemned because of destruction by an act of God or casualty for which the licensee is not responsible. The City Manager may, upon recommendation of the Director or his/her designee, waive the reinstatement fee or any portion thereof.
Section 99.16 SUSPENSION/REVOCATION
If the Director or his/her designee determines or has probable cause to believe that any rental dwelling fails to comply with any of the licensing standards and conditions or any other provision set forth herein, the same shall be sufficient grounds to request the revocation or suspension any Rental Dwelling License issued hereunder, with notice to the holder and upon a hearing as hereinafter provided.
The Director or his/her designee shall mail, both certified and regular, the notice of any request for revocation or suspension of the Rental Dwelling License. In the event that the certified mail is returned unclaimed, the notice shall then be conspicuously posted on the building. The notice shall contain the following information:
(1) That the Director or his/her designee has determined that the rental dwelling fails to comply with the licensing standards and conditions or any other provision set forth herein, indicating the specific reasons for such failure, including copies of applicable inspection reports or notices sent to the licensee of conduct on the licensed premises which have not been remedied. Notice shall be delivered to the tenant of each rental dwelling unit and shall also be conspicuously posted on the rental dwelling.
(2) That the licensee has failed to take appropriate remedial action following conduct by tenants.
(3) That the Director or his/her designee has referred the matter to the Appeals Board with a recommendation to revoke or suspend the Rental Dwelling License who shall have the final determination.
(4) The notice shall set forth the date, time and place for the hearing
before the Appeals Board.
(5) That after any revocation or suspension, the rental dwelling shall not be reoccupied or rented until sufficient proof has been provided to the Director or his/her designee that all violations are corrected and the Rental Dwelling License reinstated or reissued.
Section 99.17 APPEALS BOARD
The Existing Structures Board shall be designated as the Appeals Board authorized to conduct hearings on appeals from recommendations of the Director or his/her designee for the revocation or suspension of any Rental Dwelling License and shall have the power to render decisions with regard thereto and to do any and all other acts as necessary to perform its function.
The decision of the Appeals Board shall be reduced to writing and shall be final. The written decision shall be mailed to the licensee by both regular and certified mail. Any aggrieved party to a decision thereof may appeal the same, within thirty (30) days of the date of the issuance thereof, to the Campbell Circuit Court, as provided by law, the indication of which shall be set forth thereon.
Section 99.18 DUTIES OF LICENSEE
(1) Every holder of Rental Dwelling License shall, upon receipt, be required to conspicuously place the issued license certificate in a frame with transparent cover and place the same in a public corridor, hallway or lobby of the rental dwelling for which it is issued. For other than multiple dwellings, the certificate shall be conspicuously posted at or near the front entrance of the structure.
(2) The owner of any rental dwelling which is required to be licensed hereunder, prior to the time of sale of said rental dwelling, shall notify the buyer, in writing, of all unabated orders and notices of violations issued against the said rental dwelling, as well as that said rental dwelling, upon acquisition by a new owner, must be properly licensed. A copy of the notification shall be mailed to the Chief Financial Officer or his/her designee within five (5) days of furnishing the notification to the buyer. For the purpose hereof, “time of sale” shall be construed to mean when a written purchase agreement is executed by the buyer or, in the absence of a purchase agreement, upon the execution of any document providing for the conveyance of any rental dwelling required to be licensed.
Section 99.19 CONDUCT ON LICENSED PREMISES
It shall be the responsibility of the licensee to prevent the use of or condition upon the licensed premises for any purpose contrary to any statue or ordinance and to undertake corrective measures or appropriate action following any use or conduct by the licensee, tenants and/or guests upon the licensed premises which has been determined to be in violation thereof. The licensee shall have thirty (30) days from the notice of such determination to take such corrective measures or appropriate action to remedy the said use or conduct on the licensed premises so as to prevent further use or conduct from occurring thereon or to evict the offending tenant, if necessary. Notification by regular first class mailing of such determination to the licensee shall act as prima facie proof that the licensee has been placed on notice of the same.
A determination that the use or conduct aforesaid on the licensed premises has occurred shall be made upon substantial evidence to support such a determination. It shall not be necessary that criminal charges be brought to support such a determination, nor shall the fact of dismissal or acquittal of any criminal charge operate as a bar to any adverse license action which may be taken hereunder.
Failure to comply shall be grounds for revocation of suspension of any Rental Dwelling License issued hereunder.
Section 99.20 REMEDIES NOT EXCLUSIVE
The remedies provided herein are not to be deemed exclusive. They shall be in addition to and do not supersede or preempt other remedies such as condemnation, written violation orders and warnings, and/or criminal charges for violation of substantive provision of any City or State codes relating to fire, zoning, life safety, property maintenance and/or buildings. Further, the remedies herein do not supersede or affect the legal rights and remedies provided under law to the tenants to any rental dwelling or unit therein.
Section 99.21 PROMULGATION OF RULES AND REGULATIONS
The Director, with the approval of the City Manager, shall have authority to issue and promulgate such rules and regulations as he or she may consider necessary for the administration of this Ordinance, provided such rules and regulations are not inconsistent with the provisions hereof.
Section 99.22 PENALTY
(1) Any person who allows to be occupied, or lets to another, any rental dwelling or unit therein, without the required Rental Dwelling License or after such Rental Dwelling License has been revoked or suspended shall, upon conviction, be guilty of a Class B misdemeanor in accordance with the Kentucky Revised Statutes.
In addition thereto, the City shall also have the right to seek civil
injunctive relief against any person who allows to be occupied, or lets to another, any rental dwelling or unit therein, without either having obtained or renewed the requisite Rental Dwelling License, or who shall continue to allow to be occupied, or let to another, any rental dwelling unit therein, after such Rental Dwelling License has been revoked or suspended, requiring such person to cease and desist from the same until the appropriate Rental Dwelling License has been properly issued or renewed or until such time that the suspension or revocation has been removed.
(2) Any person who removes, defaces, tampers or in any way interferes with any notice posted pursuant to the provisions hereof, shall, upon conviction, be guilty of a Class B misdemeanor, in accordance with the Kentucky Revised Statutes.
Section 99.23 EFFECTIVE DATE
The provisions hereof shall take effect for the fiscal year 2008-2009.
That this Ordinance shall be signed by the Mayor, attested by the City Clerk, recorded,
published and be effective upon publication.
PASSED: First reading 3-10-2008
PASSED: Second reading 3-24-2008
MAYOR THOMAS L. GUIDUGLI
Q. EVONE BRADLEY, CITY CLERK
PUBLISHED: In full in the Campbell County Recorder the 3rd day of April, 2008.