MADISON — The state Court of Appeals has denied property owner Mike Crook’s challenge to a city of Madison ordinance he argues was designed to keep renters out of the Jackson suburb.
Crook was convicted in 2011 of violating the ordinance and fined $600.
City officials say Crook, a former Madison County chancery clerk and ex-Ridgeland aldermen, didn’t post a $10,000 bond required under the ordinance despite numerous letters and phone calls to him.
A city judge ruled Madison’s ordinance was constitutionally sound and in compliance with state law. But Crook argued charging landlords a $10,000 bond to rent in a home is a way to keep renters out.
Under the ordinance, passed in 2008, landlords must post bonds or other adequate sureties to be in compliance with Madison’s safety codes, according to the city attorney’s office.
Crook lost appeals in Madison County Court and circuit court. A circuit judge upheld Crook’s conviction and fine in 2012.
The city argued it has a right to adopt ordinances dealing with general public health and safety.
The Appeals Court upheld Crook’s fine for violating the ordinance.
The court also said Madison’s ordinance was not unconstitutional. The court said a city has an interest in regulating property and enacting building codes and zoning regulations to prevent the deterioration of property values.
BEFORE YOU GO…
… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.
If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.Click for more info