Sunday, November 06, 2016

City Slaps Rental Building With Vacate Order After Landlord Fails To Correct Series Of Structural Issues That Make Premises Unsafe For Habitation; Code Enforcement Inspection Triggered By Tenants' Complaints, 120 Now Face The Boot, Getting 72 Hours To Pack Bags & Take A Hike

In Stockton, California, KXTV-TV Channel 10 reports:
  • A hundred and twenty residents could be forced to move from their apartments in Stockton because the owner has not fixed structural issues the city deems unsafe.

    In September, Code Enforcement Officers with the City of Stockton inspected the Doyle Garden Apartments at 625 East Oak Avenue following complaints from residents about the living conditions there, Public Information Officer Joseph Silva with the Stockton Police Department said.

    The inspection revealed a series of structural issues that have made the apartment building unsafe for people to live in.

    The stairwell, balconies and walkways at the apartment complex are structurally unsound and dangerous, Officer Silva said. Code Enforcement Officers notified the building owner in September that the issues would need to be resolved, but the owner never made the necessary repairs, Silva said.

    On Friday residents received notices to vacate the building within 72 hours due to the unsafe living conditions. If an effort is not made to make the necessary repairs asked by the city, resident may be asked to leave as early as next week, Silva said.

    “We don’t want to evict anyone that’s living there without making sure that they have another place to go,” Silva said. “So before we actually get to that point, we’ll go back out and meet with the residents with some service providers so that we can make sure that they all have a place to go to if the property owners does not bring up this building to code.”

    The Stockton Police Department is working with the San Joaquin Housing Authority, San Joaquin Fair Housing Association, and California Rural Legal Assistance agency to insure that residents will have temporary location should they be forced to vacate their homes.

    Any costs associated with temporary relocation such as residents being moved to hotels will be the responsibility of the owner because of negligence, Silva said. If the owner does not take care of those costs, a lien may be taken out against the property, and if necessary law enforcement officials will take the matter to court.

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