WBPA Suing City of Kenmore Over Rental Ordinances
I’m writing to let you know that the Washington Business Properties Association filed suit late last week in King County Superior Court against the City of Kenmore. We are seeking declaratory relief over municipal ordinances that "conflict with and are preempted by state law and that improperly place unconstitutional burdens infringing upon the rights of landlords to enter into and enforce the terms of residential lease relationships with tenants."
In 2022, the City adopted two ordinances, Ordinance 22-0545 and 22-0554 that we argue violate state law and the Impairment of Contracts clause in Article I, Section 23 of the Washington Constitution.
These two ordinances are in clear violation of state law and the Constitution. They are requiring what state law prohibits and forbidding what state law allows. In addition to the concerning interference with constitutionally protected contractual rights, these ordinances should be invalidated.
Public records that we obtained also reveal a concerning pattern by some local elected officials to coordinate with outside activist groups to implement these aggressive and legally questionable ordinances.
That’s where you come in. We need your continued financial support to keep up the pressure in the courts and with policy makers. Please consider a generous contribution today.
The origin of these poorly written ordinances are telling and reveal a disturbing pattern being forced on cities throughout King County. We are taking a stand for our members’ ability to provide safe and affordable housing in their communities.
A court date has been set for August 12, 2024. You can read the full complaint here.
This is the kind of high-impact work that we are doing for our members and property rights in Washington State. Let me be clear, these activist groups aren’t stopping here and we chose Kenmore to put other cities on notice that we won’t cede anymore ground on the rights of housing providers.