Most of the comments at a public hearing were against it but the Logan Municipal Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to adopt a landlord licensing ordinance which goes into effect on July 1. Councilmember Laraine Swenson made the motion to approve the business license for landlords, which will cost $50 a year per landlord. Mayor Randy Watts has said the ordinance should be passed for safety reasons but opponents said it has nothing to do with safety. The council voted unanimously in favor of the licensing ordinance. The vote came shortly after a lengthy public hearing where far more people spoke out against landlord licensing than those who supported it. Rick Rose, resident of Smithfield who owns property in Logan, was typical of those who said such a license is simply not needed. “Our rental market is in better shape than those that already have it, a lot of them,” Rose said. “I know because I work in them.” Rose further contended that this new ordinance is not necessary because of the laws that currently exist in Logan city. “We already have an ordinance on the books,” he said. “I very much doubt that anybody even knew it existed before this whole issue came up. It’s right here. “It hasn’t been given an opportunity to be used. I would appreciate you considering we take care of the laws already on the books.” Another property owner said the new ordinance is more about eliminating rentals from neighborhoods made up mostly of homes near Utah State University. One landlord said the ordnance takes away property rights and another said everything it tries to accomplish is already in the law. After a study by what the council called a “diverse committee” the mandatory inspection provision was taken out of the ordinance. Inspections will be complaint-driven but the city could be the complaining partner.
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