St Charles proposes licensing landlords, evicting criminals

Or, as the Daily Herald headline so colorfully phrases it, "St Charles looks to chase riffraff out of rental units."

Responding to what's reported to be disproportionate police activity in rental units, St Charles is considering a licensing program for landlords. According to the Daily Herald:

The program would help landlords navigate criminal background checks for tenants while also pushing for better property maintenance and evictions of tenants who commit crimes in the rental units.

The licensing program would carry a fee for landlords and possibly fines for property owners who fail to comply.

"Crime-free housing is the number one goal," according to a St Charles Alderman.

Rental leases typically empower landlords to evict tenants who engage in criminal behavior, so it's unclear what the St Charles program would add – except, perhaps, the threat of revoking a landlord's license if he doesn't evict tenants that St Charles considers "riffraff."

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