Rockford landlords uncertain about bringing home rule back to ci - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Rockford landlords uncertain about bringing home rule back to city

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ROCKFORD (WREX) -

In March, voters will decide whether home rule should come back to Rockford. One group on the fence on the issue is landlords from the area.

"You could tell from the room there's an underlying concern about it. That people are apprehensive about what could happen to them, " said Paul Arena, a landlord in Rockford.

Arena was among a group of landlords that invited Mayor Tom McNamara to share his thoughts on home rule. McNamara supports the idea, saying it will give the city more power over how it spends its money and governs itself. Right now the state has a lot of say on both those issues. McNamara adds home rule could help the city lower property taxes.

What has some landlords concerned is their relationship with the city. They say it hasn't always been strong and they want to improve that before giving the city more power.

:I think it's a good thing that the mayor wants to try and repair the relationship between our association and landlords in general. I don't know if our membership is ready to accept home rule at this time. I think that if we do repair that relationship there would probably be more likelihood that they would accept it," said Arena.

The mayor plans on making more talks about home rule ahead of the vote on the issue in the primary on March 20.

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