Realtor concerns postpone action on North Charleston code enforcement ordinances

Proposed regulations aimed at giving North Charleston a greater ability to order the repair or demolition of dilapidated business properties were pulled from City Council’s agency Thursday at the request of a real estate association.

The ordinances, which had received preliminary approval from council at a previous meeting, would allow for declaring a commercial building a public nuisance and scheduling a hearing before the Public Safety and Housing Committee.

Mayor Keith Summey said the Charleston Trident Association of Realtors had expressed concern and asked for more time to review and comment on the ordinance, which had been discussed at two public hearings.

Ryan Castle, government affairs director for the Charleston Trident Association of Realtors, said the organization just became aware of the ordinance.

Several council members suggested that the organization should pay more attention to the city’s agendas in the future, but did not object to sending the ordinances back to the committee level.

Council committees next meet April 18.

The ordinances would, according to city officials, put commercial buildings on a level playing field with residential buildings, which are already subject to code enforcement actions.

Dilapidated or abandoned buildings, one of the ordinances says, can become locations for everything from “homeless encampments” and prostitution to shelters for “poisonous snakes and spiders, raccoons, etc.” which may carry diseases such as rabies.

Reach David Slade at 937-5552 or Twitter @DSladeNews.

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