The Norman Transcript

Opinion

March 4, 2014

Three-persons unrelated law is useful

NORMAN — The Norman Transcript published an article Feb. 13 regarding a discussion during the City Council Oversight Committee on the three-persons unrelated law that protects single-family neighborhoods. This law prohibits more than three unrelated individuals from occupying a home in a single-family neighborhood.

One individual, a local real estate dealer, broker, property manager and landlord proclaimed during this discussion that the law is an “ugly ordinance that may violate (the) fair housing law.” He further proclaimed that the law should be abolished. He obviously does not understand the full ramifications of this ordinance.

The discussion focused on students living in single-family neighborhoods. However, students are not the sole population the ordinance addresses, and all elements within our city should be considered in making decisions on these issues.

Here is a detailed actual example. Our quiet, single-family neighborhood had a large home leased to four individuals who signed the lease agreement with the private owner who lived in Tulsa.

I contacted the Norman ordinance enforcement officer when the volume of cars visiting and staying at the home appeared excessive. They advised me the proper approach was to document and report the situation. With evidence, they would approach the occupants and owner.

I followed the ordinance enforcement officer’s instructions. I documented each vehicle type and tag number, along with the date and time of the day. The vehicles over the six-month period were the same vehicles appearing at different times during the week.

The volume of different cars parked in the driveway, on both sides of the street and on the lawn reached a total of 45 vehicles over a six-month period. Many were parked in the wrong direction on both sides of the street.

Since the same 45 vehicles were showing up at multiple times, I resorted to taking pictures, beginning at 5 a.m. to document their presence. Many vehicles would leave around 6 a.m. and return late in the evening.

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