annually. They would like to educate before proceeding. Every complaint is reviewed
closely. On average, it takes 1 to 3 business days to respond. The ordinance does
not address resident complaints. Tenants would fill out a complaint form. They also
take complaints other ways. Web form is preferred as it helps with tracking. They
would receive an auto reply with next steps and resources. The auto response is in
Spanish and English. If there is a landlord application, it is on file. In the case of self
certification, staff may ask the landlord for supporting documentation. There are 3
outcomes: 1) landlord reaches out and requests information, 2) submits an application
and come into compliance, 3) lower rent to come into compliance, 4) landlord takes
action, which causes the investigation to continue. That leaves filing an exception.
Wiese went over the detailed process flowchart for the rent increase process.
Noecker said the self-certification is available between this percent and that percent.
Wiese responded it may change depending on CPI.
Noecker said one of her goals is to streamline this process for staff, landlord, and
tenants. Is this easier? Wiese responded no one said it would be easy. Their job is
to make sure it is enforced. They tried to codify some of the things. They have rules,
the ordinance, and they are trying to make it clear and transport. Is it easier? Maybe
not, but they are trying to make it clear to the user what is expected.
Marcia Moermond said she will be talking about the appeals process. The trigger that
is made by DSI is whether the rent cap will be granted. The appeal to that
determination could be made by the landlord. An appeal could also be filed by a
tenant who is affected by that decision. Tenants will be notified. They would have a
21-day window. They could file an appeal. If an appeal is filed, they will review the
appeal and notify DSI that an appeal has been received. They also will be notifying the
other interested parties: If a tenant files an appeal, the landlord will be notified, and
vice versa. The tenants have been identified earlier in the process. The information is
never complete when it walks into the door. They need the background, they may
have missing information from the landlord and tenants. Sometimes, we won’t get that
ahead of time. Her intent is for an appeal to be heard within 2 to 4 weeks for an
adequate analysis. In the Legislative Hearing, the first party she hears from is from
staff. Their professional opinion is put on the record. Then they hear from the
appellant and anyone from the public. Other information could be introduced. Often,
they are able to conclude the LH in one sitting. This is new and will be the case for a
while. It is her intention to provide a letter with findings and recommendations. What
they look at now are minutes from the meetings. There will be an explicit reasoning for
what is going on. They don’t have 30 years of implementing an ordinance here. This is
the beginning and it is important to be clear. If additional information comes in, that
could change the recommendation that She is making to the Council. In the end, the
Council is the decision maker.
Tolbert said much of what they talked about is not in the current ordinance. This
ordinance adds this additional information. She wanted to thank the people who
worked on the draft: Mayor Carter, his staff, Wiese, McMahon, MM, city attorney who
worked on this. He was on the stakeholder group of this Council, so he was more
involved than anyone else. They have had a lot of feedback from the constituents. He
will ask it to be laid over to August 17 and ask colleagues to bring amendments at
that time, hear the amendments, and then have a public hearing on that day.
Councilmember Prince said she is not sure who she should address the questions to.
She thanked Tolbert and staff. This has been a huge issue. To Noecker’s questions,
it seems the amendments ask processes. She is wondering if we need a fiscal note.
It seems like adding processes would require an increase in staff. Brendmoen
responded the processes should continue to be streamlined as we move forward. The