Inspectors also failed properties for conditions that were completely within the control of the tenant, such as dirty dishes in the sink or piles of laundry on the floor.
Both the inspection and reporting requirements of Marietta’s Inspection Ordinance directly contradict state law. of applicable codes.”[xii] The same bill provides that “in no event may a local government require the registration of residential rental property.”[xiii] According to one of the legislators who helped pass the statute, it was specifically intended to prevent local governments from passing laws like Marietta’s Inspection Ordinance.[xiv] If Marietta is genuinely concerned with ensuring code compliance, it is hard to understand why it would pass an ordinance that directly contradicts state law by requiring inspections that are not based on probable cause. Fortunately, the notion that renters are second-class citizens—with less right than homeowners to enjoy the security and privacy of their own homes—exists only in the minds of Marietta politicians, not in the pages of any law book. La Fave, Search and Seizure: A Treatise on the Fourth Amendment, § 4.1 (collecting Supreme Court cases) (2004). Contrary to the mayor’s and city council members’ misconception, Marietta tenants enjoy the same constitutional rights as Marietta homeowners, including the right to decide who may enter their homes and for what purposes. Nothing in the ordinance, however, required the landlord or the City to obtain the tenant’s consent before conducting the intrusive inspection. Yet, without inspection, no rental license would be issued, and the City Manager could order the property to be vacated. In order to vindicate that right, and to help put a stop to Marietta’s unconstitutional efforts to advance its social engineering goals, the Institute for Justice has filed a lawsuit in Cobb County Superior Court on behalf of three Marietta tenants seeking a declaration that Marietta’s rental inspection ordinance violates both the U. and Georgia Constitutions and requesting a permanent injunction to prohibit further warrantless, unconsented inspections of rental properties.
“Reinventing” Marietta by Getting Rid of Renters Marietta is in the midst of an effort to redefine and redevelop itself.
In fact, the ordinance permits the city to evict tenants from homes that have not been inspected, giving the city tremendous leverage to force tenants to submit to these warrantless inspections.
Thus, in Marietta, homeowners and even suspected criminals enjoy greater constitutional protections from unreasonable searches than people who live in apartments, duplexes and other rental properties.
The City of Marietta enacted a rental-housing inspection ordinance in 2004, requiring landlords to obtain “rental licenses” for all rental properties.
To obtain a license, landlords had to hire and pay City-approved “rental housing inspectors” to inspect and certify that properties were in compliance with all housing codes.
Introduction Marietta, Georgia wants to have more homeowners and fewer home-renters.