14 May Warrant-Less Searches Are Illegal
According to the Bill of Rights, Warrant-Less searches are illegal. The problem is that most cities and municipalities now consider themselves above the law. That’s right they see themselves as greater than the Bill of Rights.
In the state of Illinois, cities with a populations over 25,000, think that by declaring “Home Rule” they can rewrite the United States Constitution to fit their prejudiced desires. They want to impose occupancy inspections, occupancy permits, annual re-inspections and all sorts of other inspections for which they charge a revenue generating fee.
Potential Racial Profiling
Alton came out in favor of racial determination on the new landlord application. The city even went so far as to ask the race of the Landlord on their landlord application. How does someone’s race make them a better or worse landlord?
If you research the demographics they are trying to defeat it looks like a racist plot to prevent what the city determines to be “undesirables” from living in their neighborhoods.
Revenue Grab that screams Warrant-Less Searches are Illegal
Now the City of Alton is set up to seize between one quarter of a million to half a million dollars a year through the additional revenue stream of Landlord Licensing. At $100.00 dollars a year plus an additional $20.00 per rental unit it adds up quickly. A landlord with 50 rental units would have an additional annual cost of $1,100.00 per year.
This landlord licensing program is just another fund raising tax in addition to the inflated real estate tax a landlord pays. A non owner occupied property pays an additional annual real estate tax of 30% here in Illinois.
That’s right! Landlord licensing is a tax. Now don’t brush it off and say it is the Landlord’s problem. It is every citizen’s problem. The Landlord License is in effect a “Tenant Tax”. Each and every one of these costs will be passed onto the tenants currently in residence and those tenants to come.
No other business is charged by the number of units. A plumber pays for one license but can work on any number of houses. The same goes for an electrician. How is a Landlord Different. Because municipalities think they have deep pockets and will never organize. The city attorney knows that few individuals have the money to fight them in court. The don’t believe it will ever result in a class action suit.
Prior Legislative Victories
In 1994 a group of concerned citizens won their class action lawsuit against the Village of Cahokia and had landlord licensing overturned.
Recently in Portsmith Ohio the U.S. Disctrict Court found in favor of the Landlords and ruled the landlord licensing law was illegal.
Regarding the ruling itself, Charles Tassell, Chief Operating Officer of the National Real Estate Investors Association said, “The ruling won by the 1851 Center For Constitutional Law was a victory for freedom against a tyranny with which the Founding Fathers were all too familiar. Citizens of the United States have an expectation to live without local, state or federal inspection of their home based on flimsy excuses disguised as law.”
My argument is not with consensual inspection. Land Lords and Land Ladies have no problem with maintaining their properties and protecting their tenants from harm. They do this, if not out of an act of conscience, then an act of prevention in an effort to avoid being sued. It’s not the municipality’s job to interfere.
Have you noticed that housing safety code enforcement officers are armed police officers. That is an armed invasion which you are legally required to comply with.
Big Brother is Watching
It looks like the key for the municipality is to have 24/7 access to your home in order to search your home not just for code violations, but to spy on you as well. George Orwell in his book “1984” did not miss the mark at all.
If grandma comes to live with you is she an undocumented resident since she is not on the approved occupancy permit. They can fine you for taking in a family member.
The Bill Of Rights
Long before George Orwell, the founding Fathers of this great nation knew that government power can and will be abused. To guard against this they wrote the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Article 4 of the bill of rights reads as follows:
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized”
Support the Constitution
You have every right to be safe in your home and free from government meddling and prying. But municipalities like Alton, IL want to take away that right. They will politely wait until business hours, at least for now. But they want in and you had better let them in. OR ELSE!
Time to Take a Stand
We have decided to take a stand and are supporting the “Alton Fair Housing Legal Defense Fund” which has been established by concerned citizens to raise awareness of these illegal warrant-less searches and legally petition the courts to uphold the constitution.
Will you join us?
Alton Fair Housing Legal Defense Fund
2919 South Belt West
Belleville, IL 62226-5140