Las Vegas City Council to vote on vacant property rules
A proposed Las Vegas ordinance that would make lenders maintain vacant properties in default or foreclosure will go up for vote as soon as Dec. 7. The city's Recommending Committee approved the bill Tuesday, sending it up to the city council. The 7-member council will hear arguments and other public testimony on the bill at its meeting next month. The council could bring the bill to a vote, make further changes, table it or kill it. The proposal, which the committee first considered earlier this month, would require a lender to inspect properties in pending or actual default and, if vacant, register them with the city for $200. The bank must then choose a property manager for the home. Maintenance required would include regular watering and mowing, along with other landscaping up to neighborhood standards. Violators would receive a maximum $1,000 fine or six months in jail for each offense, though an amendment to the bill added a provision to enforce the ordinance through civil action in court. The amendment also changed the timetable on the property inspection from 10 to no later than 15 days after notice of default as well as appointment of a property manager from five to 10 days after inspection. The lender's required inspection and maintenance may be waived, according to the bill amendment, in cases where the mortgage contract considers these actions as trespassing. About one in every 171 homes in Las Vegas received a foreclosure filing in October, according to RealtyTrac. The data firm said there are 28,060 foreclosure homes in the city. Write to Andrew Scoggin. Follow him on Twitter @ascoggin.