Wednesday, August 31, 2016

WDT: Jennings Steps Up Bid for Inspection Law


    Councilman Steve Jennings has made landlord registration and inspection the cornerstone of his time on Council.  Three years after campaigning on the issue, Mr. Jennings is lobbying for passage of his proposal. He wrote an op/ed that was in today's WDT.
     The public hearing is on September 19, but cobbling together three votes for passage will not be easy.
      Critics argue the information on ownership already exists and that the inspections are intrusive and will require staffing the city doesn't have.
     Mr. Jennings says his law will contribute to better maintained properties.
http://www.watertowndailytimes.com/opinion03/stephen-a-jennings-city-must-be-proactive-about-housing-20160831

39 comments:

Anonymous said...

John Doldo doesn't want this Jennings... Better watch out, what he says is law round these parts.

Anonymous said...

http://www.watertown-ny.gov/imo/search.aspx There is all the information he wants... It already exists

Anonymous said...

Apparently Jennings does not know that the fire department he wants to make more efficient, used to do inspections on every building in the city until ordered to stop by the City Manager 5 or 6 years ago. And no to the whiner that will comment, there was never any, that is 0 overtime to do these inspections, they were done on duty during regular business day just as they are in every other city in NY other than Watertown.
The media should be asking some questions here, why do they want to hire more inspectors for the codes department when they have a whole department already on duty, fully trained 24 hours a day. Just more mismanagement by the manager and council

Anonymous said...

This is an insult to all good landlords with well maintained properties. Another added layer of unnecessary oversight at taxpayers expense.

Jennings is done.

After this nonsense, I guarantee he won't seek reelection.

Anonymous said...

So if Mr. Jennings gets his way and the law is adopted; who is going to enforce it? Is the city going to hire an out-side agency to do it? Or does Mr. Jennings plan to hire Mike Sliger to do it for $50.00 an hour?

Anonymous said...

Stephen Jennings reminds me of the kid in school who reminded the teacher that she forgot to assign homework. Give it up dude & move on. Focus on something important like who is leaving used condoms on the floor of the first floor bathroom at city hall. ugggh...

Anonymous said...

Critics argue that it serves no reasonable purpose and makes investing in the city even less appetizing than it already is.

Jennings had the perfect opportunity to vote agaisnt the subsidized housing being built on the former Mercy site, as it will further hurt the city. Instead, he chose to rubber stamp the project, whcih is a far cry from what the developer promised.

Anonymous said...

LOL 2:27

Anonymous said...

Why does Manager Addison insist on putting firefighter & resident lives at risk by not allowing our first responders to do inspections & a walk through of a large complex. Being prepared and knowing where exits and water hook-ups are is life saving preparedness.

Ray said...

Next year! Just can't wait. Last year we should see this DUFAS!

Anonymous said...

How does this law make the landlord,or really this will extend to the property owner once they pass it,able to improve their property to the level that they wish?Watch,there will be people that can't afford the mandated improvements,and then the city will take over their properties and sell them again.Not everyone can make their house look like one on Ives street.

Anonymous said...

When is someone in this city going to notice the condition of the streets and the shoddy work the DPW does. The whole department has a raw attitude and it begins with the department head.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone ever noticed how many shithole apartments there are I this city run by scumbag deadbeat landlords??? I can't believe there is even a debate with this subject. The people that are fighting this are just pissed because they have to conform to city codes. Apartments are a business for the landlord; I own a business and the city inspects it once a year and I welcome them because I have nothing to hide. God forbid you have to fix your rundown house that is your bread and butter every month. Keep your properties up and there won't be a problem.

Anonymous said...

Crazy city !! The fire dept use to perform Inspections around the city for many years (ON Straight time) and would work with property owners and explain to them how they could fix their problem , that has always been a fire dept Job since the sixties until the city manager removed that from their job clasfication. So don't complain if you see therm sitting on down time .

Anonymous said...

Gotta laugh at the commentary here. The guy runs on this issue, wins by the way, and then goes out and does what he says he's gonna do. Watertown is a rathole that needs help and a good fixin up. The city council should vote for this.

Anonymous said...

many of you are right. Fire personnel use to do this for FREE and get every city building in the city inspected or at least looked at. Council woman macaluso said the fire department use to bombard the codes department with violations and they couldnt handle it. Lets not say one thing and do or say another to make your acts look promising. They cant handle it so will have to hire more people. Or the number of violations were not that bad.. which way do you want it?
If there were violations, then what should they have done, sit on them?? Many of them were fixed before they sent the bunch to codes, so there could have been many more I suspect. What or how many will the new inspection process find that they have NOT been looked at for over 5 or 6 years. Now its time to catch up for crazy decisions by some who are still on council.
Look at what you have. Use what we have and stop the cutting where its needed most.
it will come back to bite you all.. guaranteed.

Anonymous said...

Let's use some of this crazy spending and put Fire Prevention and education back in our schools, community and senior sites where its needed and most beneficial spending. We can't put a price tag on that. Some groups relied on this for their clients, employees and families. Doesn't that matter about them and their needs? Specialty and time is important, and a program which is consistent is most beneficial. The study which cost us taxpayers a lot even said it was important.

Anonymous said...


Completely unneeded. Yet another layer of government from a guy that just can's get enough regulation. I think adding 5 or 6 new full-time position to do something that could easily be done for free by the fire department is crazy.

Why not let the firemen do it (as Cody proposed) and save having to hire more people? I think this program could be a good thing so long as they don't expect the taxpayers to pony up more money to pay for it.

This BS with the fire department has gone on long enough and it is time to get back to common sense. These guys are already on-duty and could perform these inspections along with the other things they have to do. They have the time, the information, understand the code, and could use the inspections as a means to get information on the properties. Done correctly these inspections could also bring in some revenue to help offset the cost of the fire department. What is the issue? Looks like politics to me.

Anonymous said...

Read between the lines here people. The fire department used to do inspections and then pass on the violations to codes whom could not handle it. Too many violations for landlords like Mr. Doldo and the freak that owns the Crystal and not enough teeth in the Codes department to take on the violators. Don't you know who is wagging the dog here? The landlords! Jennings in only trying to reinstate the inspections and give SOMEONE some teeth to do something about it.
The Mercy project is a whole other beast that should be quietly be put out of its misery.

Anonymous said...

612.. Free, you say Free... Think for one second and realize how stupid this is....

Anonymous said...

7:20, I couldn't agree more. Horbacz is the only one to offer up an alternative. Which is just going back to the way it used to be done. Without adding more positions and stringing up more red tape! It's not rocket science! The two new council members are doing a great job. Keep it up!

Anonymous said...

The Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution provides, "[t]he right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

The ultimate goal of this provision is to protect people’s right to privacy and freedom from arbitrary governmental intrusions. Private intrusions not acting in the color of governmental authority are exempted from the Fourth Amendment.

just get a warrant and pay more for people to inspect.

Oh, and nothing is free.

Anonymous said...

The firequeens are out in force on this blog thread. Disgusting.

Anonymous said...


Free is the cost to the taxpayer duh! Since we are already paying the firemen, rather than hire more people, we let them fill in their time doing the inspections, these types of task are what is know as "accessory functions". If you would prefer to pay someone else to do what can be done at no additional expense then you are the stupid one 834. Thanks for your input 945. How is that beeper thing working out for you?

Anonymous said...

Jennings thinks his inspection program would improve the blight in neighborhoods.

The fire queens are bragging that, up until recently, they used to do these inspections.

yet, the city blight has been increasing for much more than 15 years.

Conclusions:
the inspections do not help the blight problem
the fire queens were doing a terrible job at the inspections.


Instead of an inspection that look for stupid fire queen violations, like smokes, CO's, GFI's and chains around your CO2 tank in the basement, they are going to write up landlords for: "porch needs painting", "roof doesn't leak but shingles look decrepit", "driveway needs seal coating" "lawn could use mowing".

Anonymous said...

No 9:45, you know what is disgusting, its your never ending hateful dribble that you spew.
I commented above and I am sure you think I am a union memeber, well let me set you straight, I am not a union member but I am a business owner in this city and pay my fair share of taxes. The one thing I do not mind paying for is police and fire protection. I nearly lost my business several years ago but these guys that you hate put themselves in harms way and stopped the fire from spreading and destroying my business and several others. Those would be businesses that would be off the tax rolls right now. Apparently that never enters into the minds of our narrow minded council. I watched those guys work their butts off that night and I can tell you that they needed more guys than they had when they showed up. Granted it does not happen every day but how many times does it take to destroy property and yes even lose lives. There are many old buildings close together in this city and large apartment buildings, it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out what will happen when you deplete your resources.
As far as the inspections go, I think it is a crying shame the city stopped the firemen from doing them. I welcomed them into my business every year to look things over, it was for MY protection and knowing they were checking to make sure my neighbors were also doing things correctly made me feel more comfortable.
Ever since this city manager rode her broom into town she has caused nothing but hate and discontent in this city. That is not how it is supposed to be. I have not seen her accomplish one thing that has not been screwed up, over budget or just plain wrong, unless you count tripling our citys legal expenses.
So if you want to continue your hateful rants at least state so facts that you can support because I have yet to ever hear any from you. You are just making yourself look even more ignorant.

Anonymous said...

more like 3rd floor flunkies 9:45...

Anonymous said...

well said 1:57,good old bart just hates firemen,in fact he hates every municipal employee because,he seems to be nutz.

Anonymous said...

1:57, Sorry to hear you are too stupid to keep your own business from burning to the ground and too stupid to have fire insurance. Not that anyone believes you actually have a business, other than the one you do on the side for tax-free cash, when you aren't on duty.

Danny M. Francis (Eyepublius) said...

More election fodder for the next couple of council races ... bet on it to get decent leadership in office ... which right now is sorely lacking.

Anonymous said...

Sorry to disappoint you 8:19 but there fire was not in my business, it was set by an arsonist in a neighboring business, so I am not sure how that makes me stupid? I do have insurance, but I would prefer to stay in business, does that make me stupid as well?

The only stupidity I am seeing is your disgusting posts. Once again I have yet to hear a statement from you that can be backed up with actual true facts. You are a sick person.

Anonymous said...

Jennings is gone next fall.

Anonymous said...

Jennings wins by a landslide 8:53. Want to wager?

Anonymous said...

I'm sick of this snobbish south sider attacking renters. He went after that poor kid who had a roommate who a south side neighbor didn't like... enough of Jennings and his snobbish policies. If you don't have two kids, a garage and a dog you just don't belong in their neighborhood.

Anonymous said...

8:41, I can't answer your question definitively, as to what it is that made you stupid, but its likely hereditary and had nothing to do with your preference to stay in business.

Here is a true fact for you: fire insurance is there to make sure you stay in business. It worked for the Riveredge. It worked for Whites Lumber. It could work for you, if you were a little sharper.

But since you think its a good deal to overpay city taxes for a bloated fire department, there is little chance your fictitious business had a any future.

Anonymous said...

The Codes department can't even do what its suppose to do as it is. The council has put them on a pedestal that they can complete everything when they cant keep up with what they need to do. 80 fire personnel use to do all the inspections and give them 10% of the problems because they helped guide the business owner to fix the unsafe things. Now the codes department does it all with two guys of which one is not qualified yet because of other antics CM has pulled. Some buildings are suppose to be inspected annually and some bi-annually and they haven't been inspected in over 3 or 4 years. How is this legal with the Codes department? You think the 3rd floor would worry about that after they just got their hands slapped for civil service issues and now the code enforcement is lacking too. Maybe the labor department will be here next to solve that issue. Give it back to the ones who can do the job right.

Anonymous said...

3:51, sounds like maybe somebody should investigate your past if you think insurance is the answer. You are a sick individual who really should seek mental health counseling.

Anonymous said...

10:04, Sounds like you should retire from the fire department and pray no one investigates that business you allegedly have (and if you do, its an all cash side job).

Yes insurance is the answer. That's why we buy it and that's why its a legal product for sale. The answer is not...repeat NOT...to write a blank check year after year and let the fire queens fill in the amount to the tune of $8+ million dollars every year.

I don't think you have mental health issues, you just have a cognitive deficiency. There is an obvious concept that most people develop at a young age known as "risk benefit". You have no clue.

Anonymous said...


1135 give us all a break. Every time someone speaks out about the stupidity at city hall you attribute it to firemen. One thing I can say about the poster who's business was saved is that he is obviously a good enough businessman to still be in business; are you?

I think your attitude may be a big part of why your business failed. You are a very unhappy person who needs to constantly insult other so that you feel better about yourself. You need to find God. I spoke to him yesterday and he told me that he is very disappointed with the way you treat people. He also told me that that beeper you sold him was a piece of junk. Karma has a funny way of catching up to people like you. Get a life.