"Unrelated adults rule" upheld
Scott Tibbs, September 25th, 2003
The Indiana Supreme Court has upheld the city of Bloomington's "unrelated adults" rule. The Herald-Times reports that student renters find the law "ludicrous". The rule prohibits more than three unrelated adults from living in the same dwelling.
Instead of being able to split rent and utilities four ways, students who share a house will be able to split it three ways. For IU students working their way through school, this will be a financial hardship, especially with increased rents downtown. The city claims this is not an "anti-student" ordinance, but when you read about the complaints that the "unrelated adults rule" is meant to fix and the high concentration of students in Bloomington's rental properties, it is clear that this law was designed with IU students in mind.
The question for IU students is this: "can you afford a 33% increase in your rent and utilities"? If you are concerned about this, you should make sure you are registered to vote and get to the polls on November 5th. What Bloomington city government does affects IU students more than what your hometown does, so you have more of an interest in voting locally. IU students even have one of their own to vote for this year, in City Clerk candidate Matthew Stevenson.
In addition, your vote can make a difference. City elections were decided by a razor-thin margin in 1999. One hundred votes would have put a Republican in one of the at-large seats, and the student-heavy District 4 and District 6 seats were decided by about 100 votes each. The GOP barely missed control of the City Council. City Republicans have traditionally exposed these types of government regulations that increase costs for IU students.
However you vote, it is important that IU students get to the polls this year.