FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Aug. 23, 2017
A new Missouri law is giving the City of Kansas City a tool to help keep rental and vacant properties from becoming potential neighborhood eyesores. Starting Aug. 28, limited liability companies (LLCs) owning rental or vacant property in Kansas City must file an affidavit with the City listing the name and street address of at least one individual, not a company, who has management control and responsibility for the property.
“The prior statute had no real ‘teeth’ to it,” said John A. Wood, assistant city manager and director of the city’s Neighborhoods and Housing Services Department.
Wood and other city leaders made several trips to Jefferson City, lobbying lawmakers for support of the measure. During testimony at the Capitol, Wood talked about how difficult it was to obtain contact information for out-of-state and LLC-controlled property owners.
“Many of the properties were not being properly maintained and with no up to date or correct contact information, there was no way the City could ensure compliance,” Wood said.
There are several blighted properties in the 2700 block of Olive that are owned by LLC owners from as far away as Nevada and Australia. Since it’s nearly impossible to make contact with these owners, the City has to jump in and take action. More than 3,300 abandoned properties in the City of Kansas City are owned by LLCs.
Under the new law, the LLC has to update the affidavit within 30 days if the person previously named is no longer responsible for management control or responsibility of the property. If the LLC does not register the property, it can face legal action by the City asking a court to force compliance. The Kansas City Police Department and the Kansas City Fire Department will also have access to the information.
If the law is successful in Kansas City, it could be implemented statewide.
For more information, contact Neighborhoods and Housing Services Department Communications/Community Liaison John Baccala by email or at 816-513-3202.