APA-IL Legislative Alert
Legislative Committee American Planning Association – Illinois Chapter March 25, 2021
House Bill 0267 Would Significantly Hamper Local Government Building Inspection Powers Designed to Protect the Public
The bill, which preempts home rule powers, would only allow home inspections by a unit of local government under certain circumstances.
UPDATE as of 3/25/20: The hearing for HB0267 is scheduled for 3/26/2021 at 12:00 PM. Continue to advocate AGAINST this bill.
There are 2 ways you can advocate:
#1: Fill out a Witness Slip
HB 0267 online witness slips can be submitted up to the conclusion of the Counties & Townships Committee hearing (hearing begins 3/26/21 at noon).
#2: Contact your legislators
Step #1: Visit www.elections.il.gov to find your legislators and their contact information.
Step #2: Email your legislators and let them know they should OPPOSE HB0267.
Sponsors: Rep. Sam Yingling (D-62nd Dist., Lake County) Status: HB 0267 is scheduled to be discussed at a virtual Counties & Townships Committee Hearing on March 26, 2021 @ noon in Virtual Room 2. Summary: The bill, which preempts home rule powers, would only allow home inspections by a unit of local government under the following circumstances:
A fire, medical, or police emergency,
As otherwise permitted by specified provisions of Section 9 of the Fire Investigation Act,
Voluntary consent of the owner or occupant of the property,
A lawful warrant, or
A court order.
Perhaps as a way to deflect criticisms that the bill would unreasonably limit local governments’ ability to ensure for safe structures, the bill also imposes requirements on owners to maintain their buildings, as well as restrictions on what they may store at their properties. Why you should OPPOSE this bill: Realtors have long sought legislative relief from what they believe are unnecessary government intrusions into how real estate markets function. Home inspections has been a target of theirs for years. The trouble is, home inspections—which in most instances have a loose connection to zoning—play an important role in ensuring for a safe supply of housing in communities throughout Illinois. Homes that are not maintained in a safe manner creates problems for neighboring properties and property values. This fact is precisely why the bill’s requirements on how property owners’ maintain their properties and limits on what owners may store at their properties are empty provisions, and create a need for more, not less, inspections. HB0267 also runs counter to several Illinois statutes that specifically authorize home inspections to ensure, in conjunction with other regulations like zoning and subdivision powers, for an adequate supply of safe housing. Many communities use a system of issuing, after a home inspection, “zoning certificates” prior to issuing certificates of occupancy to ensure compliance with zoning. This provides lenders with an important assurance that the property is being used in a manner consistent with zoning, allowing a smooth flow of capital to real estate markets across the state. This bill would upend these systems and complicate important home inspection programs designed to ensure for safe housing, but also stable real estate markets.
This bill is identical to a bill Rep. Yingling proposed during the previous General Assembly.
Recommendation: Contact your state legislators to OPPOSE HB0267 and file witness slip in opposition prior to the end of the 3/26/21 12:00PM House Counties & Townships Committee Hearing.
Please note: Online witness slips can be submitted up to the conclusion of the committee hearing.