|ITEM # and DESCRIPTION_||IREK VOTED||COUNCIL VOTED||TYPE OF ITEM|
|8.12 – Transit Windsor Affordable Pass Program||Yes||10-0||Delegations|
|11.1 – Residential Rental Licensing||Yes||10-0||Deferral|
|8.16 – Windsor Essex Community Housing Corporation – Loan Repayment Application||Yes||10-0||Consent|
11.1 – Residential Rental Licensing: This is one of those issues where there are lots of valid arguments on both sides – and where the decision could respectfully fall either way. After several votes that were deadlocked – 4 to 4 – a motion was put forward to defer the issue to a later date.
There appears to be a universal appreciation that there is a problem – namely, a minority of landlords who are in serious breach of bylaws and certain minimum safety standards. There is also an appreciation of the serious consequences at stake. As well, there appears to be a consensus developing around this issue that the current status quo cannot hold.
Where Council is split is on the prescription to address that particular challenge.
After careful review of best practices in other cities, my position is that before moving towards a rental licensing regime –which will add significant costs to the majority of landlords who abide by the bylaws and maintain certain standard, and which will establish an additional layer of bureaucracy – I firmly believe we should take the interim step of “beefing up” our bylaw enforcement capacity by hiring additional staff who can proactively target the problematic rental units.
After a period of time – e.g. 12 or 24 months – a report can come back and Council can review the performance of the new more robust enforcement regime.