Strong opposition shown to rental ordinance - - Jackson, MS

Strong opposition shown to rental ordinance

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT

It was standing room only Tuesday night at Pearl City Hall as renters and property owners met face to face with the mayor and board of alderman about mandated zoning changes.

More than 100 residents and rental property owners packed the board room to show opposition to the Rental Housing Code Ordinance.

It requires rental property owners of apartments, manufactured homes and single-family homes to install sprinklers, storm warning sirens and storm shelters in existing structures.

The mandate is called costly and unconstitutional by owners.

Randall Stephens, a concerned citizen, spoke on behalf of the group during public comment.

"What I'm hoping to have happen is that the board and mayor will reconsider these needless regulations that they're putting on property owners today which will ultimately get pushed down to tenants," said Stephens.

73-year-old Motha Jayroe is on a fixed income and has lived in Pemberton Apartments for 7 1/2 years.

She was forced to retire early from her job with Coca Cola because surgery to remove a cyst on her brain left her with some mobility issues.

"I'm too old to have to move somewhere. I couldn't buy a home, so I wouldn't. I had a house and sold, moved into these apartments because the doctor would let me do the upkeep on it," said Jayroe.

Ritchie Berry owns the complex where Jayroe lives.

He is one of 10 apartment owners who filed an appeal in Rankin County Circuit Court claiming that the ordinance is unconstitutional.

Mayor Brad Rogers made a motion to the table the public hearing on the ordinance.

"We're attempting to work with some of these property owners regarding this issue and I think we might make some steps that might be a positive for all sides," said Rogers.

The mayor declined further comment citing that negotiations are ongoing.

The Public hearing on the ordinance has been moved to February 17th.

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