Second Ward, Minneapolis

This is the public policy forum of Minneapolis Second Ward (Green) City Council Member Cam Gordon and his staff. We use this space to talk about some of what Cam’s working on, explain his positions, and share a little of what life in City Hall is like. Please feel free to comment on posts, within certain ground rules. See our disclaimer, including ground rules, here:

Friday, October 03, 2008

Low-Heat / No-Heat in Effect

The low-heat/no heat ordinance I worked on with CM Remington has taken effect. Starting October 1, landlords in Minneapolis are required to keep interior temperatures at 68 degrees or above. If you’re a renter, and your unit is cooler than 68 degrees, you can call 311 and make a complaint to housing inspections. Of course, if you are comfortable and prefer a lower temperature that is fine. What we learned, however, when we studied the issue, is that for some older people, infants and people who are ill, temperatures below 68 can have serious and detrimental consequences to their health.

My office spearheaded the effort to get this new ordinance passed, replacing the old, complicated external-temperature formula that was so difficult for our staff to effectively enforce. Now it's simple: landlords must provide at least 68 degrees between October 1 and May 1. In the transition periods in late fall and early spring (defined in the code as September 15 through October 1 and May 1 through May 15) landlords must provide 65 degrees.


At 12:54 PM, Blogger Toby said...

Thank you for passing this No Heat/Low Heat ordinance. It is a victory for everyone who rents an apartment or home in Minneapolis! If you need any help organizing community members or educating the public on this matter, please let me know.

At 2:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is great, however -The flaw is when you call 311 to report that your landlord won't turn on the heat = You have to give your name which then goes to your landlord... I understand they need a location, however it's the entire building / block of buildings that are without heat.
So, say I make a formal complaint with the City = The heat eventually gets turned on... But now I'm seen as a problem renter...
I live in an apartment where there are younger renters that are willing to 'wait it out'... However, I'm older and know something will break or leak and it won't be fixed should I make a formal complaint with the City. And Yes, I've tried a space heater - Unfortunately that has blown out my power... and I'm still locked to my lease for the year.


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