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Aug 30, 2013 9:36 AM by AP

NO council passes changes to building codes

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The New Orleans City Council has approved sweeping revisions to the city's building codes that are designed to combat blight by setting minimum standards for all properties, including occupied housing.

Councilwoman Stacy Head says the new rules, which give the city broader enforcement powers and the ability to impose stricter penalties on non-compliant homeowners, won't solve all of the problems with New Orleans' housing stock.

Under the new ordinance the city can remove any property deemed to be a public safety or health threat. The old law allowed the city to inspect and demolish properties only if they were in imminent danger of collapse. The new law also gives inspectors broader leeway to enter both unoccupied and occupied properties that are in violation of the law.

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