Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski recently stood outside 619 Cedar Street, to induct the owner of the property, Mohinder Kaur, into his Landlord Hall of Shame. Kaur, with addresses listed in South Whitehall Township, New York and California, became the latest property owner to join the infamous list.
The property, which has numerous code violations, has been tagged Unfit for Human Habitation, most recently in May, and is under consideration for inclusion on the Allentown Redevelopment Authority Blighted Property List. Utilities for the structure have been shut off.
“The owner’s refusal to make any necessary repairs to this building brought us to this point,” the mayor said. “It has been years since the city has seen any evidence that Mr. Kaur has done anything at this property.”
A citation has been filed against Kaur for more than $3000 in outstanding unpaid SWEEP violations. Kaur also owes the city $700 in rental registration fees and more than $600 in boarding-up charges, interest and penalties. The city has also filed liens against the property for more than $1,400 in back taxes.
The Landlord Hall of Shame was established in October 2008 for the purpose of bringing public pressure to bear on property owners who refuse to improve sub-standard conditions on their rental properties and bring down property values across the neighborhood.
The mayor also encouraged qualifying property owners to take advantage of the city’s Rental Rehabilitation Program. “It is not my desire to be standing outside any properties conducting induction ceremonies for the Landlord Hall of Shame,” Pawlowski said. “What I want is for property owners to take advantage of the city’s Rental Rehabilitation Program which provides funding to rehabilitate permanent rental housing that is affordable to and occupied by low-income persons and families. Landlords can call our Financial Specialist at 610-437-7696 for more information,” the mayor added.
The city is giving the public the opportunity to nominate a property owner for the next Hall of Shame induction. Suggestions can be called-in to the Bureau of Building Standards & Safety at 610-437-7690.