Public commenters urge Douglas County leaders to take more action to protect renters from eviction

photo by: Austin Hornbostel/Journal-World

Commissioner Shannon Reid reads a proclamation designating May as Building Safety Month in Douglas County at the Douglas County Commission's Wednesday, April 27, 2022 meeting.

Wednesday’s Douglas County Commission meeting was relatively brief, but county leaders did hear from a group of public commenters who urged them to consider taking more action to help protect renters from eviction.

Specifically, the group of four commenters all asked for new protections that would grant tenants facing eviction the right to an attorney, similar to the right to a court-appointed attorney in criminal trials. Douglas County leaders haven’t considered any proposals like that or discussed such a measure recently, but an ordinance like that was passed by the city council of Kansas City, Missouri, late last year.

After the commenters’ remarks, Commissioner Patrick Kelly asked county staff about the viability of funding such a service. County Administrator Sarah Plinsky said that’s the sort of thing that would come up in budget requests after a party submits a request or proposal indicating what level of funding they’re looking for.

Otherwise, the commission didn’t have much business to take care of Wednesday. Commissioner Shannon Reid read a proclamation designating May as Building Safety Month in Douglas County, and the commission heard an update from a government relations consultant about the progress of legislation at the state level.


Welcome to the new Our old commenting system has been replaced with Facebook Comments. There is no longer a separate username and password login step. If you are already signed into Facebook within your browser, you will be able to comment. If you do not have a Facebook account and do not wish to create one, you will not be able to comment on stories.