Property Owners in Oakland Get a Pass on Fines
Oakland Mayor Jean Quan says the city will waive some overdue fines for building code violations. "My main goal is to get these properties fixed up," said Quan. "Some people give up and it's like, 'oh with the fines, I just can't afford to do this.' If they've been dragging their feet for a year or two, the fines can be pretty stiff--maybe even more than what it would cost to fix the blighted property to begin with."
The amnesty applies to homeowners with penalties dating back as far as July 2006. Homeowners must fix the violations by the end of November. No word on how much money Oakland would lose by not charging the penalties.
Quan says the city is also improving its code enforcement methods. A grand jury report last year said Oakland's enforcement practices were hostile to property owners.