City Explores Partial Eviction Law

 City council members in Midland, Pennsylvania are looking at ways to enforce a law that requires landlords to evict tenants involved in drug-related crimes.

According to a report, the council is considering a partial eviction rule that targets only the tenant or occupant suspected of a drug-related crime, and not necessarily the other occupants.

Lawmakers say they believe that the law will reduce crime, and that it has worked in neighboring communities, according to the report. Council is exploring the legal ramifications and has asked for input from the district attorney.

The ACLU brought a claim against the city of Norristown, Pennsylvania over a “three-strikes” eviction law that required landlord to evict tenants associated with nuisance or crime properties, after police warned the victim of a domestic violence incident that she’d be evicted if she asked for police protection again.

The report says that Midland officials are also exploring ways to build a trail of evidence against routine offenders — something the police can create that will hold up in court. One problem landlords have faced under these crime ordinances that require eviction when police are called to a rental property is the inability to prove to the satisfaction of the eviction court that the tenant has violated the lease.

Midland council members told reporters that focusing on rental properties will send a message to criminals that they are not wanted, and improve the appeal of the city for other,  law-abiding citizens.

According to the report, the council recently approved the development and sale of a triplex townhouse, hoping that such dwellings will attract “young professionals” into the area.

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