Senate Committee Hears Bill on “Oppressive” Fines for Code Violations

A Senate committee this week heard testimony from a resident of the City of Pagedale that she was fined so frequently by her St. Louis County municipality that she had to take out a loan to pay the fines back.

Valarie Whitner, a 17 year resident of Pagedale, said she has been fined for having chipped paint, missing shingles, and for failing to keep her lawn cut. One landlord from St. Louis County even testified that he sometimes will be fined by a municipality in the County because a tenant has a flat tire.

Senator Eric Schmitt (R-Glendale) has filedSB 572, which would limit the amount of money a municipality can collect on code violations as a percentage of the city’s total revenue.  Last year, he filed a bill limiting how much cities can collect from traffic citations.  That bill passed.  He is now hoping to add code violations to the list.

Read a St. Louis Post Dispatch article about the bill here. 

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