That's why as I said earlier that we should know where the section 8 housing apts are in the 38th and 45th wards. I'm glad I brought this subject to light so we all are aware of who really rents these apts, also where do the building owners live? I'm sure it's not in the 38th or 45 wards, I'm just saying.
TLo, but see that is the problem to begin with. All those lists of don'ts that in turn allow criminals to take root in our neighborhoods. Should we not undo some of these laws and regulations which have proven to only empower and allow criminals free reign on our dime?
Also, just another truth for everyone here not privy. Not a single one of the 200 police officers moved onto the streets are going to be assigned to the 16th District. Not a one. All are going to areas where the community itself, for the most part, despise and hate law enforcement. Do not want law enforcement there and have an unreal sense of entitlement that only a major shift in their households will start to change their generation after generation of criminal downfall and destruction.
@Paul - don't get me wrong, I am not at all advocating on behalf of the voucher participants. I am letting people know there are significant legal protections in place for voucher holders regarding housing issues. Landlords (and yes, I am one) are blamed & vilified for the actions of their tenants -- even when we turn tenants in to Enforcement to the Housing Choice Voucher Program. HCVs response is to stop paying rent to the landlord but they will not assist with forcing the bad tenant to move. Then, once the tenant does move (can be many months later), their voucher picks right up and they become someone else's bad tenant. I have told CHA if tenants know there are consequences to their bad actions, they may be inclined to be better tenants. So far, CHA has chosen not to enforce their rules on tenants but they do on landlords. PS I don't know that anyone has said the victim in this incident had anything do with the the Housing Choice Voucher program, have they? That would be interesting to find out.
Inquiries with local, state or federal law enforcement agencies are common background checks landlords perform. Looking up sex offender registries and checking the applicant's information against those and other court records is also common.
A tenant's past history with other landlords is also a common check. Prospective landlords will typically call past landlords and ask about the tenant and any problems the landlord may have experienced.
And hence that is one of many real effects of too much government intrusion and not enough property rights/owner freedoms.
As for the last part of your question. All sources show that the recipient of the bullets (I will not use the word 'victim' as it is not correct for him) was a criminal gang banger that lived in that apartment complex. If anyone has info on the contrary, please share.
@Victor - we definitely do criminal checks. I can assure you the people on the lease come up clean. Then they move their boyfriend, brothers & cousins in. When served with a violation notice, they will cite the ordinance that says visitors can be there for up to 30 days without notifying the landlord. We spend time trying to catch them coming in and out. They will say they moved out for a week and came back to start the clock over again. This is also a violation of the housing choice voucher program that landlords frequently try to enforce but CHA does not have the manpower or desire to enforce it.
Prior landlords will not tell you anything. In fact if they are the current landlord, they will give the tenant a glowing reference just to get them out. I also check to make sure the kids are enrolled in school, do in-unit inspections of current housing and a bunch of other checks I don't want to talk about.
I was with a CHA inspector in one of my properties a couple of weeks ago. The tenant removed all of the smoke & carbon detectors (when he pressed her, she pulled them out of drawers and cabinets). There were numerous pairs of men's Nike shoes (which I later found out are over $200 each) and a whole makeshift apartment in the basement. Many violations. I pointed them out. Inspector said "You got your hands full here". I called Enforcement. I dropped off Lease Termination letter. CHA said they have cut her off as of February. She has no reason to move now. If CHA doesn't pay, the tenant doesn't have to pay. She'll stay until spring, move into another unit and her voucher will start right up.
@Ruth - to an extent, it is voluntary. Again you have to be sure you can justify renting to market rate if a voucher tenant comes back and claims they were similarly qualified. BTW the way landlords get around that by going thru the motions of renting to a voucher holder then make sure the unit will not pass CHA's initial move-in inspection. It can be as simple as a globe missing from a light that causes a fail.
I have very nice properties and performed in-depth searches to find the right tenant, subsidized or not. When a voucher holder came with a spotless background and raved about how getting out of "typical section 8 housing" will allow her kids to focus & excel in school, play outside for a change and improve their quality of life, I decided to give it a chance. You live and you learn.
@Ruth - NO! In fact when voucher holders have their orientation meeting before getting "moving papers", CHA tells them if any landlord refuses them because of the voucher, they should come immediately to the Law Dept. and they will be sued. I'll look for the law, but it has to do with Federal Fair Housing Laws and not being able to discriminate based on source of income (that also means Social Security, SS Disability, military pay -- even people who work for cash as is the case in childcare, hair braiders, lawn care, etc. If they have the funds, you can't discriminate).
Discrimination Against Voucher Holders Prohibited in Chicago The City of Chicago Fair Housing Ordinance,1 amended in July of 1998, makes it illegal to discriminate against an individual in the housing market “because of his race, color, sex, age, religion, disability, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, military discharge status or source of income.” (Section 5-8-020, emphasis added.) On April 19, 1999, the Chicago Commission on Human Relations issued an order that the Ordinance’s prohibition of “source of income” discrimination covers Section 8 vouchers and certificates. Therefore, it is illegal in the City of Chicago to either refuse to accept housing vouchers or to discriminate in any way against tenants based on the fact that they are participating in the voucher program. A landlord is not required to accept a Housing Voucher applicant if he or she does not meet the landlord’s usual rental criteria. However, the rental criteria must be the same for all applicants. Thus, a landlord may refuse to rent to an applicant if the applicant has bad credit or does not have enough income, as long as the voucher payment is considered.
Voucher holders often have a scant credit report as no credit has been extended to them. Market rate tenants, on the other hand, may be renters now because of a home foreclosure, job loss, cost of divorce, medical expenses, etc. Side-by-side, the voucher participant who says they have always paid cash and has no negative history looks better on paper.
Ruth - so then it is not worth being a property owner that rents in the city of Chicago. Another example of too much government and not enough personal freedom. So if I owned a three flat in Portage Park.. I would have to rent to a Section 8 voucher holder?
The best way for a politician to address section 8 is to admit that many people that are on section 8 are hard working decent people and there are some opportunities regarding some section 8 participants.
But I was told by the theives, i mean politicians that crime is down. Then why are gang bangers running wild in every neighborhood with a pistol in his hand? Wait... I smell a rat & we're being lied to. But some folks still buy the fact chicago is safe.
@Victor - I think that is how politicians do refer to Section 8. Though there are aldermen out there who do not want any more vouchers in their ward. I was working on a land sale transaction at work and we met with an alderman to discuss the planned development uses. He said flat out he would not support any subsidized housing plans, gas stations, convenience or liquor stores. He said his ward has more than it's fair share of voucher holders and he wants to attract market rate tenants and buyers. So the bolder ones will step out of their comfort zone a bit. But that ward had a much higher percentage of vouchers than anything we have around here.
Cindy, something tells me you're new to the city/neighborhood. Yes, the city isn't safe. No neighborhood in the city is absolutely crime free. Robberies, assaults, domestic violence is prevalent all over. In some areas more than others. Portage park is pretty fortunate in that it is a relevantly quiet area, but over the last 5 years or so, there has been an unfortunate increase in crimes. I've gotten the same song and dance from good ol' 16th that our beat is low and they don't have enough on duty officers to reply to all the calls, especially the one where my house had been broken in to and I had to wait over an hour for someone to come and make sure my house was safe to go back into. Instead of criticizing without really knowing what is going on and who is responsible, how about you get involved. Go to the CAPS meetings. Get to know your neighbors. Go to your Ward/Alderman's office and meet them. Get to know your neighbors and call when you see something that isn't right. If there's no calls on record, how can the Alderman claim that our area is in need of more police support? It's not something that'll be fixed in a day or by attending one meeting, but instead of complaining, do something about it! Maybe the city isn't for you, although, same stuff is going on in the burbs so good luck finding an area where your taxes are managed so efficiently that there's no crime or gangs.
Waiting an hour for an officer when I have a burglar on the block. There is no excuse. And for the record, im much involved. But constantly fed the same crap eveytime. " were looking into the problem" "we will pass that info along" id rather sorry mam you're screwed. At least it honesty I can respect
Yes, over an hour wait and 3 phone calls into 911 later, they came to search in case anyone was in the house. I had come home from work and found the door kicked in and the frame messed up. My handyman had arrived with a new door before the police did. Frustrating in the moment YES! Another officer came later on to take fingerprints so we couldn't touch anything until this was done. Now we deadbolt the doors, have the windows locked and door jambs on the doors we don't use. Live and learn I suppose. And leave Kenji alone, he provides additional entertainment here on EB when people tend to take themselves a little too seriously!
Oh! I have been a Landlord in Chicago for about 40 years now and have so many stories to tell about various situations in the Logan Square, Portage Park, Jefferson Park and surrounding neighborhoods. As a consequence, I have a deep sympathy for good Tenants, good Landlords and good neighbors who have to suffer from the actions of bad Tenants, bad Landlords and bad neighbors. Fortunately, the good far outweighs the bad but it is still very disconcerting to see the scales start to tip slightly more toward the bad. Also, don't expect too much help from the Police.
With respect to the Police you have to understand that they cannot get involved in any way with Landlord-Tenant disputes. Afterall, they are instruments of the Court and must follow the rules of the Court. They can only respond to 911 calls. They cannot respond to anything else. It is a legal matter. And they only respond to low priority 911 calls if they have the time. If you have been burgled and there is no burgler present then that is a low priority call. This is especially so when we are only half way through a 10-year recession and there is a shortage of money everywhere.
I had a Tenant once who called me late in the evening to report that someone had broken into his apartment. When asked if he had called 911 the response was no. Then I instructed him to do so.
When I arrived at the apartment a couple of hours later I learned that the Police had come and gone leaving a report and that the Evidence Technician had just arrived to dust for fingerprints. The Police had concluded that the perpetrator had entered through the broken dining room window off the roof of the adjacent lightwell.
I concluded that there was no burgler. But rather that their cats had been romping atop the dining room table and temporarily tipped the top of a chair into the window and broke it. The glass was broken from the inside out and the storm window was down and nothing was stolen.
Just so you understand why the entire Northwest Side and, in fact, the entire City of Chicago has Section 8 Tenants is due to the result of a lawsuit filed in Federal Court a dozen or so years ago. The CHA had been perpetrating rampant racial discrimination. Consequently, the CHA was taken over by the Feds for about 5 years. During this time a quota system was implemented, numerous CHA high rises and low rises were demolished and a policy of scattered site housing and tenant vouchers was implemented.
The intent was to elimimate concentrated public housing. Section 8 tenants now receive a day of training in the hopes of making them successful tenants and even prospective homeowners. No longer does a Landlord have to bring an entire building up to Section 8 standards but only the subject apartment and the public spaces.
Although there are entire scattered site buildings that are Section 8 these represent a small percentage of the Section 8 tenants. Most are acattered throughout the rental market. And most are not only good tenants but good neighbors.
And yes, Section 8 tenants are now main-streamed. That means they are treated like any other tenant and can even be evicted the same: through the due process of law in the Cook County Courts. It is not any more difficult to either accept, evict or relet a Section 8 tenant than a non-Section 8 tenant.
As far as rules go, for example, if you have a 1 bedroom apartment it is imperative that you inform all prospective tenants that you cannot rent to them if there are more than 3 tenants. Likewise, you cannot rent a second floor apartment to a person or person(s) that cannot negotiate stairs in a normal fashion , of course, you have an elevator. And so on.
In response to Mike in Jeff Park. There exists a misconception about whether you should give your name when you make a 911 call. The fact is, it does not matter in terms of the Police whether you give your name or not. Unless, of course, you are calling 911 to make some sort of a threat.
The 911 system employs a very sophisticated caller ID which not only identifies the phone number of the caller but the registration information of the phone itself. It also has a recording of the call which is kept for 30 days to allow for investigations by the Police as well as officers of the Court (lawyers, judges, etc). The system also knows the location of the call whether it is from a landline or a cellular device. The officer on the street is not privy to any of this information. Only a Sargeant or above can request to have it if necessary.
Named calls are not handled any different than anonymous calls. All calls of the same priority are handles in the same manner. However, if you think you can get away with making an anonymous prank or threatening 911 call you had better revise your thinking. Chances are very good that you will be arrested and prosecuted.
Both 911 and 311 calls are designed to remain anonymous. The only reason a call-taker asks if you want to be anonymous or that if you want to give your name is so that you will definitely remain anonymous. Giving your name clearly does not expedite the call in any way. Nor is it to your advantage to give your name unless, of course, you are the Mayor, the Chief of Police, a Detective, the Alderman or some other person of high importance to the system. It is better that the rest of us, the 99.9999 % remain anonymous.
And it is for that reason I feel that it is very important that if you choose to attend a CAPS meeting that you work hard at being anonymous. A friend of a gangbanger may be in the audience. It is far better to make anonymous calls to 911 and 311 or to meet with the Police in private.
D- I agree there are good and bad HCV tenants. I don't agree that the management of voucher tenants is the same as market rate tenants. For example, if a voucher tenant does not want to pay their tenant portion, they can call CHA for an emergency repair inspection, during which time they can show the front door lock is broken (they break it), a window is broken (ditto), the oven doesn't work (coated in grease) or the smoke detectors are missing (they were clearly there or the unit would have never passed initial inspection). CHA writes up the violations and certain ones - if not corrected in 24 hours- result in abatement. CHA doesn't care if they are tenant or landlord violations, from their perspective, it just needs to be fixed. Once in abatement, tenants are not required to pay their portion. Market rate tenants don't have this avenue available to them. Evictions are a double-edged sword for both subsidized or market rate tenants: The court case will show up on their credit report, making it almost impossible for them to get approved by another landlord. So they remain in your unit for free and you know you will never collect on the judgment you paid to have entered. If CHA was fair, they would require the voucher holder to pay their past obligations per the HAP before allowing them to use the voucher at their next unit. They don't.
@D I will just say listening to scanner calls since the days of crystal tuners, a beat car pulls up on a call that's dispatched, doesn't see a complainant, conversation goes like this: PO: "Squad, nobody is here and no answer at the door, got a complainant?" Squad (aka dispatcher): "Your friend anonymous" PO: "19 Paul" (unfounded)
Routine anonymously listed disturbance calls have a longer dispatch time limit than calls such as domestic disturbances, assaults and several others. All the inbound calls go up on a board at OEMC and they "age". If a call is not dispatched prior to its time limit the dispatcher has to get it out. And a typical "gang of punks" disturbance call can literally age for more than 2 hours. It's not that bad yet in 16, but down in the 6th or 3rd district most any weekend night can backlog for hours. But residents there know now to say they might have overheard that one of them had a gun or one of them keeps holding his side and up the priority chain it goes.
And remember, for every one officer Rahmfather reassigns somewhere, 1 retires. Actually that ratio is just slightly above 1.
These problems are not just isolated to Portage Park, they're city-wide. In my opinion, police do an excellent job considering the elements and people they deal with. I just hope Chicago isn't on the same path as Detroit.
Mike in Jeff Park. Mike, again that is not true. If the complaint was one of high priority, the Police would not have spoken to the dispatcher in that manner. They would have requested the identity of the caller.
And actually, they may have but you will never know because confidential information is not transmitted over the airwaves for others to decipher or know of. Rather, there is another aspect to current Police communications that became operation with the opening of the City's 911 Center in the mid-90's. And that is the most important or sensitive communications are transmitted via the new fiber optic network to the Officer in the squad or wherever there is access to the computer either in the car or with the Officer's laptop. This protects the confidentiality of all parties concerned and does not allow either concerned citizens with scanners or perpetrators to know anything other than what is transmitted over the air.
Also, your perception of the call board is not accurate. Yes, the calls do go up on a board so to speak. Actually, it goes up on one of the three computer screens at the calltakers console as well as the dispather's console and the supervisor's console(s). All of the calls are dispatched immediately.
But the Officers respond to the higher priority calls first and only if they have time do they respond to the lower priority calls. Sometimes the dispatcher will transfer the calls to another Officer if available and no other higher priority calls need to be addressed.
I used to occasionally listen to the web feed of the police scanner when the zone could be isolated. I was surprised the dispatch would read and repeat the name and address or phone number of the complaintant over the radio. I assumed that's why so many called in as anonymous. Also officers would call in drivers license info over the radio to have dispatch check for warrants. The computers in police cars have a high failure rate. Radio is still primary method of communication.
Well, TLo, please know that the Chicago Police have the finest radio and computer equipment made. It is not junk. It is military grade and can withstand a lot of abuse.
At first there were a lot of Officers who deliberately sabotaged the equipment for one reason or another. They often did not have computer savvy and resented being forced to use the computer. Naturally, if you dropped a laptop or even a radio from a third floor window it would break. If you stepped on a laptop screen it would break. And so on. But here we are 20 years later and most Officers would not be without a portable computer.
The radio is still the primary or initial method of communication. But the computer is also a primary method of communication and of the utmost importance. It allows the detectives, for instance, to do backround checks virtually instantaneously at the moment on the street without using the radio and without having to return with the suspect to the station. The computer saves an inordinate amount of time and allows the Officers to perform a lot more work in far less time.
The use of the computer also protects the information of the victim, the offender and the caller. Thus, it is not appropriate for Officers to transmit confidential information over the radio that can be intercepted by anyone using a scanner. Imagine a gang-banger learning from the Police radio that you are the one complaining about their illicit activities.
The reason people call in anonymously is because they are guaranteed by the City of Chicago that their calls will always be anonymous. If Police officers and dispatchers are discussing critical and confidential information over the radio such as you have witnessed then there is no honor to the system. Don't you agree? And remember, we are all innocent until proven guilty in a Court of Law. And none of use deserve to be intimidated by anyone as a result of confidential information falling into the wrong hands.
@D in my literal thousands of hours over the years tuned into Zone 1 I can assure you I regularly hear names, addresses, phone numbers, state ID numbers, DL numbers, SS numbers complete with a "name check" DOB. And if you give your name and the responding PO can't find you there is an odds on chance the dispatcher may read out the complainant's name. Yes they use the PDT's and that is almost exclusively relegated to "vice" complaints where they won't read those addresses over the airwaves and those almost always go to a "gang or Tac unit in 16.". I even hear them give out door codes to access apartment buildings. And I won't detail where you can even pick up undercover surveillance chatter, completely legally. The vast majority of calls are read out over the air. Nitty gritty details of some calls are "sent to your box".
As for the OEMC I have trained there as well as the 311 center. If the wheels ever fly off in a bad way I might be called for overflow duty.
And I'm sitting here now listening to MJ on the dispatch console for Zone 1 just like she has done on the night shift for more years than I can remember.
And if CPD had a top notch radio system they would be running an APCO 25 system with full interoperability capability with CFD and the ISP. But it still runs on an old VHF repeater system. Durable for sure, but no different than the 70's.