From her plan -
2. Build code enforcement into an effective, efficient system, one that responds to needs of the entire community. Pay for the system, in part, through a small inspection fee.This is just genius! Hire a small army of code inspection people, go door to door and let the people pay for it! I'm wondering how many houses in my 1960 era neighborhood could pass this kind of inspection? :) This is exactly the reputation that Carbondale needs, we are already a place that is way more expensive to do business then anywhere else in Southern Illinois and now we can go even further down the path of unreasonableness.
In the real world, that everyone who wasn't born with a silver spoon in their mouth lives in, code enforcement on buildings is a tricky thing. Honest people know the building codes exist for a reason and follow them. Sometimes this costs more money, but how much does having your house burn down cost? The problems is there are always a few people who want to cut corners, make a few extra short term bucks and ignore our fairly common sense laws. In the last 20 years, the biggest example of this is a company called Home Rentals, owned by Henry Fisher.
We all know about Henry's story and his current location. We also know that Home Rentals has been nothing short of a juggernaut of property purchasing. A partial list of what they own - building next to 710 (that houses Attitude Designs), Corner Dinner building, Walk the Line building, Booby's Subs, old Papa C's building on College, office building next to it on College, all the big apartments on College between University and Popular, all the houses behind the DQ, check out their ads for what if for rent in the student papers in a few months.
Home Rentals also used to own the "American Tap" building on Illinois avenue. Since the city's purchase of the American Tap building is Sheila's only hope of winning this election, it should be called out. Yes, you can expect a whole series of posts about Sheila's BS about "the Tap" purchase. Isn't it amazing how someone running on a platform of ethics can throw mud at the same time? Guess it would be impossible for her to win on merit. Daddy's name and mud are her game.
The problems with enforcement on Home Rentals (in the old days) and the like is they just don't follow the rules very well. Since all the city can do is write them up and fine them, maybe try to keep people from being in the building, it is fairly easy to ignore what the city wants. This is one of the downside of one of the most important rights of US citizens, our strong rights of property owners. If you need examples of how to do this, feel free to challenge this idea in the comments and I'll explain it there.
If the city were to put through a law like this, it might have the good result of cleaning up a few rental units, but at what cost? The market forces are working on fixing this problem already. New apartments are going up all over and houses that in bad shape are sitting empty. As usual, market forces in student housing are powerful in Carbondale. Of course, if SIU had 25,000 students again, people would be living in basements, on dirt floors like the old days.
Does the city really need a tax increase and more city employees? Does the city need to become the city of crazy code inspection and draconian anti-business laws? A clear difference between Brad and Sheila, Sheila puts forward plans that just will not work in the real world, because she doesn't understand the real world (IMHO). The unintended consequences of this plan would more then negate any positives.
Your comments are always welcome.