Concerns brought up over property operating as disability service
—At the Atascadero City Council meeting on Mar. 27, local Geoff Condon brought up concerns about a disability service business that operates at 8500 San Rafael. Condon asked the city council about how to address multiple questions, such as safety compliance, types of disabilities and screenings, and more.
“Perez [who owns the property] is receiving compensation from the state of California, I believe, to provide housing for these individuals,” said Condon at the meeting, and also noted that there one full-time employee that works 24/7 at the residence and he has not seen a staff change or state vehicles outside the property.
A code enforcement officer, Jon Jones, was sent out to the property and was in contact with employees about code requirements. Jones sent an email to Condon with a summary of the visit, concluding that the home is for mentally disabled adults and the city of Atascadero cannot legally issue a license or do anything in regards to compliance due to the house having six beds or less, per state law. While the complaint has been closed, Condon is concerned with the safety of the neighborhood.
“The state regulates houses with six beds or less. We [the city] have no ability to monitor, license, control, or change the rules or activities like this, whether it be a child care activity with six children or less, a house for people with disabilities with six beds or less, even a house with parolees and others with six beds or less. The state takes that right away from us so we have no ability to license it, we have no ability to check in to those questions he [Condon] had… in fact, the state takes away our ability to even require them to pay business taxes…this truly is an issue that we have no legal jurisdiction over,” said city manager Rachelle Rickard during the meeting, and noted that the people contacted at the residence were helpful with their information.
The home must be treated the same as any other single-family residential home. Police can investigate if there is suspected criminal activity, which is the same rule that applies to residential homes.
“As a matter of fact, the law enforcement officer found the living situation to be quite pleasant and the people there to be wonderful people so I look forward to the neighbors getting along just fine once they get to know them,” said Chief of Police Jerel Haley.
In summary, the city of Atascadero does not have the legal jurisdiction to find compliance, license, or otherwise monitor homes with six beds or less due to state laws.
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