St. Pete City Council Approves New Notice Requirement
On May 21, the St. Pete City Council voted unanimously to pass a requirement that landlords must provide a notice of resident rights in lease agreements. The notice is a one-page statement prescribed by City Council, which provides general descriptions of rights and responsibilities of residents and landlords, and contact information for entities that residents can use in the event they feel their rights are not being observed, like code enforcement and the Pinellas County Office of Human Rights.
BAAA actively engaged City Council in the lead up to this ordinance, secureing various changes along the way. Additonal edits to the ordinance were made during the Council meeting to ensure the notice can be given as part of an electronic lease package and to move the effective date to September 1, 2020. Edits were also made to the text of the notice that provide additional clarity that provisions in a lease could shift responsibilities of some duties, like pest control, to the resident. A copy of the ordinance that includes all edits is available here.
During the meeting, City officials also shared that they would begin enforcement of the late fee notice requirement on September 1, 2020. The late fee notice requirement was passed last year as part of the Tenant Bill of Rights, but its implementation was delayed so that City Officials coud educate landlords about both new requirements at the same time.