With the all news about the Budget Inn in the media, we’ve got to chime in. Why are slum lords and land lords given such a pass in Eureka? Most of the housing in Eureka is not owner occupied. Most are rentals and many are owned by people living outside of Eureka. In fact, many don’t even live in Humboldt County. Many owners rely on “property mangers”, who should more accurately be called “rental collection managers”. We’re not saying there’s anything wrong with renting out a house to supplement your income. But let’s face it, it’s a money making business. This type of business should be held to some kind of standards beyond what is currently on the books, or even enforced by the City. We’ve pointed out this situation. The unchecked/under-regulated housing situation is the breeding grounds for the excessively high crime rates experienced in Eureka.
Back to Budget Inn. We have to say as slum lords go this guy Mr. Ravindra “David” Kushwaha is one of the worst. He is probably even a cut below Floyd Squires. Thanks to Mr Chiv’d for doing some investigative reporting (he seems to be the only one doing any these days) on this: http://johnchiv.blogspot.com/2016/09/looks-like-kushwaha-didnt-learn-his.html
We would have advocated that instead of kicking poor people out on the street the City or County take action by requiring repairs and upgrades. If the landlord refused, then the City could hire contractors to do the repairs and maintenance. While the repairs were being done, tenants could be given vouchers to alternative housing and then return when the work was done. The landlord would be required to pay for these repairs/rehousing. If the landlord refused to pay, then the city could request that a lien is placed against the property. If there are liens amounting to more than 50% of the assessed value then the city could seize the property and sell it at auction for the money.
Of course, those suggestions would be forward thinking and actually solve a problem. The ideas wouldn’t help a well-connected plagiarizing local developer swoop in, get bottom dollar prices on a dilapidated property facing fines, and then make huge profits building a shopping center or some other such wasteful project that does nothing to help with affordable housing. However, solving problems in Eureka with regards to housing for lower income residents doesn’t seem to be real priority for the City, just another talking point they have to turn to when the obvious problem of houselessness rears its ugly head.