Urbana City Council waits to approve rental registration program

By Rob Warren

The Urbana City Council met Monday to pass several resolutions and discuss the upcoming rental registration program.

The program would require renters to register their property with the city and pay a registration fee; it also carries a set of punishments for renters who do not register or if they fail inspections.

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“Property owners need to be educated and informed about this legislation,” said Sally Eissfeldt, president of the Central Illinois Apartment Association. “I have received no information as to when we are to be informed about this legislation.”

“What scares me is that this began as a safety and property maintenance and has started to infringe on property owners’ rights,” said Neil Malone, a representative of the Illinois Association of Realtors.

“Don’t tenants have a greater right to safety?” asked Charlie Smyth, D-Ward 1.

The council deferred passing the entire registration program because Mayor Laurel Prussing was absent. However, the discussion was productive.

  • The council unanimously passed a resolution approving a steering committee chaired by multiple local government bodies for establishing bikeways and trails in Urbana.
  • The council passed several traffic regulations in a 7-0 vote. They included a reduction of the speed limit on Philo Road and a joint resolution with Champaign for research to modernize traffic signals on Lincoln Avenue.