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Renters' Forum in Racine Draws a Big Crowd

Aug. 5, 2019 9:30p 

(WGTD)---A listening session on problems faced by renters drew an overflow crowd Monday night. The session was sponsored by Racine Mayor Cory Mason as part of his research into whether new policies and procedures should be advocated. 

The forum was held in the Racine Public Library and was attended by about 100 people, a few of whom were landlords.

Small group discussions took up most of the 90-minutes. Facilitators then reported out the major topics of discussion, some of which were repeated over and over again.

They included finding better ways to inform tenants and landlords of their rights and responsibilities. Complaints were registered about the poor responses of some landlords to infestation issues. Rapidly rising rents were cited, as was a general unavailability of affordable housing, especially for larger families. Some tenants said they feared retaliation for filing complaints with the city.

At the end of the forum, Mayor Mason thanked those for coming and said the information was helpful. "It really doesn't become real until you hear from people who are directly impacted by these issues," he said.

Several city council members also attended.