Draft of code does not require landlords to list tenants

JENNIFER GUSTAVSON FILE PHOTO | Greenport Mayor David Nyce at a meeting earlier this year.

The Greenport Village code committee approved proposed rental permit legislation Tuesday after deciding to forgo requiring landlords to provide the village with a list of names and contact information for their tenants.

During the code committee’s regular meeting at Village Hall, Mayor David Nyce said the draft law has been changed because ,at a July public hearing, residents had expressed privacy concerns. At that time, the Village Board voted to keep the public hearing open and to send the draft law back to the code committee for further review.

According to village documents, the proposed legislation aims to improve renters’ quality of life, as well as prevent overcrowding and deter blight. Under the draft law, landlords will be required to complete inspections to determine how many people can occupy a rental property.

Village officials have said that if a house is suspected of being unsafe, the village currently lacks the authority to inspect it unless the landlord or tenant agrees.

Mr. Nyce said after Tuesday’s code committee meeting that he believes it isn’t necessary for the village to know who is living in a rental property as long as it has the landlord’s contact information.

“We’re not looking to create issues for people,” Mr. Nyce said. “We’re looking to enhance the rental situation for both tenants and landlords.”

The code committee voted 4-0 to approve the draft law. Code committee members Linn Atkinson-Loveless, chairwoman of the village Planning Board, and Greenport Business Improvement District president Peter Clarke were absent from the meeting.

The village currently has no rental permit code on its books. Before the Village Board can vote on adopting the new legislation it must reopen the public hearing for comment.

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