Boulder County: Final Approval For Occupancy Ordinance

The Boulder City Council gave final approval to an ordinance that will make it easier to enforce the city’s occupancy limit. The ordinance doesn’t change the occupancy limit but gives the City new enforcement tools. Property owners must put the legal occupancy limit on their rental license applications and post it on the inside of the main entrances to the residences.

The ordinance also makes it an offense to advertise properties for sale or rent above the legal occupancy limit. This will allow City prosecutors and code enforcement officers to use advertising as evidence that a unit was over-occupied without proving how many people actually were living there. Finally, the ordinance creates higher fines in neighborhoods with higher numbers of student rentals — the Hill, Martin Acres, and Goss-Grove.

Some Council members believe the additional enforcement will create a political climate in which legalizing co-op housing is more palatable in the community. With that in mind, the Council asked staff to schedule a discussion regarding a co-op housing ordinance in the fall of 2016.  Note: Suzanne Jones, the executive director of Eco-Cycle, was elected mayor by a 5-4 vote. It will be interesting to see what type of leadership style she adopts.

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