Some Lawrence landlords my want to check their smoke alarm batteries. Some Lawrence tenants may want to check their smoking bongs.
If Lawrence city commissioners approve a new citywide rental licensing program, both types of items may catch the eyes of city building inspectors.
As commissioners consider giving final approval to a citywide rental licensing program, some commissioners and members of the public are expressing concerns the inspections that come with it may create privacy concerns for tenants.
“One of the best arguments against this ordinance is that it could result in scope creep,” Mayor Mike Dever said. “You start assuming duties that were never intended. We can’t let that happen here.”
For example, the program is meant to ensure that rental units meet minimum safety codes — working smoke alarms, good electrical wiring, proper ventilation and the like. But what happens if a building inspector sees a bag of marijuana on a dining room table or drug paraphernalia or some other item that suggests illegal activity?
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