Ordinance could force Sunbury property owners to certify building managers

Apr. 23—SUNBURY — Property owners in Sunbury might have to name certified building managers based on ordinance changes being considered in the city.

City Councilman John Barnhart, who is in charge of the city code department, said he and Solicitor Joel Wiest have been working on the ordinance so building managers with knowledge and responsibility for the property could be contacted in emergencies. The current ordinance allows anyone to be responsible for a property.

Barnhart said this is a way for the city to keep track of who is managing properties.

"You'll need to come in to City Hall and register," he said. "This way you will have to show the property documents showing you are capable of looking after the property."

Barnhart said this will also help with property maintenance.

"If something were to go wrong, then at least the property manager would have some background in the situation and be able to handle it," Barnhart said.

Mayor Josh Brosious said the ordinance would be beneficial for the city.

"This will hold landlords accountable and will also make sure properties are in safe living conditions," Brosious said. "Safety is the priority when it comes to making sure homes are up to livable standards for residents."

Another ordinance Barnhart is working on would allow police to put an immobilizing boot on abandoned or unregistered vehicles parked on city streets.

Some vehicles have been parked for months, or even years, he said.

Police Chief Travis Bremigen said he liked the idea and agreed it would help clean up the city.

Wiest said as part of the ordinance vehicles could also be towed. He said owners would be able to get their vehicles back once they got the necessary documents to make the vehicle legal.

Barnhart said he would bring the proposals to city council for a vote soon.