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Laurie Ender: RENT plans to increase public safety for all

Live From City Hall

Posted: March 26, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: March 26, 2011 1:55 a.m.
 

Have you ever wondered about the safety of your rental property?

Thanks to a new public-safety initiative launched by the city of Santa Clarita Sheriff’s Business Alliance, landlords and property managers can protect their property, tenants and even their neighborhoods from issues related to crime and nuisance.

Earlier this year, the city of Santa Clarita Sheriff’s Business Alliance launched the Santa Clarita Valley Rental Community Education and Nuisance Abatement Team (RENT) program.

The goal of SCV RENT is to educate landlords and property representatives about various resources available to the public to help maintain safe rental properties free of drugs, gangs and crime.

Right now, the city and Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Capt. Paul Becker are working with special teams and the community to eradicate drug dealers and illegal street-gang members from the Santa Clarita Valley. As part of this communitywide effort, the city partnered to create the SCV RENT program.

Research has shown that this criminal element can be prevalent in rental communities throughout Los Angeles.

However, Santa Clarita has a different housing market than many surrounding cities.

There are more single-family homes for rent in this area, versus large apartment complexes. The program instituted here has been designed to focus on all types of rental properties throughout the Santa Clarita Valley.

SCV RENT consists of three phases: landlord training, property inspections with the Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) concepts in mind and the development of a neighborhood watch program with the tenants.

Once the property owners have completed all three phases, they are awarded the coveted SCV RENT certification.

The SCV RENT certification helps landlords demonstrate their property is safe and actively managed. Their commitment to safe and secure properties can aid them in attracting prospective tenants and reducing vacancy factors.

Approximately 75 people attended the first landlord-training seminar in February at City Hall. Topics included information about protecting properties through ongoing management, how landlords can make sure rental properties are safe and crime-free, crisis resolution and the role of law enforcement.

The program was made possible through the collaborative efforts of city officials and the Sheriff’s Department, and the response has been overwhelmingly positive.

Future RENT seminars are scheduled for May.

With the help of landlords and property managers, the city can preserve its outstanding reputation as a safe place to live, work and raise a family.

The city of Santa Clarita would like to encourage everyone from individual home landlords to managers of large multi-family properties to take advantage of all the tools SCV RENT has to offer.

This is a great program to increase safety for Santa Clarita residents as well as our business community.

This community belongs to us all. If you see something, say something. Anyone with information about a local crime is encouraged to contact the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Santa Clarita Valley Station at (661) 255-1121.

If you prefer to provide information anonymously, please call Crime Stoppers by dialing (800) 222-TIPS (8477), texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274-637).

To learn more about the SCV Rent program or to participate in future seminars, visit SCVRentProgram.com.  or contact Sergeant Ron Shaffer at (661) 255-4990 or rtshaffe@lasd.org.

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