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Pa. Lawmakers Urge Norristown To Overturn Its Rule Limiting 911 Calls By Renters

(File photo.  Credit: CBS3)

(File photo. Credit: CBS3)

Brad Segall Brad Segall
Brad Segall is the award-winning Suburban Bureau chief at KYW...
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By Brad Segall

NORRISTOWN, Pa. (CBS) — A pair of state lawmakers from Montgomery County, Pa. are calling on the Borough of Norristown to repeal its nuisance ordinance which they say ultimately punishes victims of crime, especially victims of domestic abuse.

It’s basically a “three strikes” ordinance that Republican state reps Mike Vereb and Todd Stephens say needs to go.

The ordinance calls for financial penalties for a landlord who has a tenant who calls police at least three times during a four-month period.

It also allows the landlord to evict a tenant who is convicted of disorderly behavior.

Vereb says domestic abuse victims in particular should feel they are able to call 911 freely.

“We will not tolerate any ordinance in any community that will restrict the right, either directly in language or just by the observation of the victim, an unintended consequence of which they do not want to call 911 because they fear losing the very last thing they have, and that’s a roof over their head,” he said today.

The ACLU filed a lawsuit in federal court last week on behalf of a Norristown woman who called police three times and was threatened with eviction (see related story).

Vereb says Norristown needs to work this out or they will go the legislative route.

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