Philly landlords blame tenants for repeat code violations

Some Philadelphia landlords who have racked up hundreds of code violations came to City Council to tell their side of the story Wednesday.  

They had to, they were subpoenaed.

Raymond Hogeland, who owns all or part of nearly 300 Philadelphia properties, blames bad tenants for most of his code violations.

“The landlords get this connotation that we are responsible for everything.  The tenant’s behavior is never discussed,” he said. “In other words, the violation that I am now paying for was caused by them.”

About 6,200 properties are cited each year for code violations. Councilman Bobby Henon, who says he wants that number cut, shot back that landlords can’t “pass the buck.”

“You can’t continue to neglect properties and destroy neighborhoods,” Henon said.

Two of Philadelphia’s most notorious landlords did not attend the hearing.  One is fighting the subpoena, while the council can’t find the other one.

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