Last updated: March 04. 2014 11:13PM - 3306 Views
By B. Garret Rogan Times Leader Correspondent

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KINGSTON — Municipal Council held the first reading of an updated landlord registration ordinance during Monday night’s council meeting.

Municipal officials are confident the new enforcement measures will make the ordinance a more effective tool against blighted and nuisance properties.

After the meeting, municipal solicitor Harry Mattern said that once the amended ordinance is in place, officials will have stronger legal standing to prevent landlords from registering new tenants in properties that are not compliant with municipal code.

In cases in which tenants are already residing in noncompliant properties, Kingston will be able to take rent money from those tenants, to he held in escrow, as a financial incentive for the landlord to act on code violations.

Mattern compared this principle to that of current law that allows tenants to deduct expenses caused by landlord negligence from property rent.

In other matters, the council unanimously approved an intergovernmental agreement with the borough of West Pittston for access to the Kingston municipal swimming pool.

As part of the agreement, West Pittston will donate much of its now unused pool equipment to Kingston so that West Pittston residents will be able to obtain passes for the pool at the same rate as residents of Kingston.

The next regular council meeting will be on April 7 at 7 p.m.

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