Modesto could hire a new property management firm Tuesday, and will expect the company to conduct regular visits to the city's rental homes.
The move comes 8½ months after police discovered a $1 million marijuana growing operation in a home owned by the city at Dry Creek Park.
Police arrested four men on marijuana cultivation charges during the Oct. 26 bust, and seized 560 marijuana plants and growing equipment strung throughout the house. The large farmhouse near the El Vista bridge was destroyed by a suspected arson fire a week later.
The city terminated a contract with Wolverine Property Management, which had leased the house to a man and was expected to conduct site visits, city officials said. Wolverine had overseen five city-owned homes since 2005.
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The city staff is recommending that the City Council approve a contract with Valley Oak Property Management of Modesto to manage the four remaining homes at city parks.
Valley Oak was one of three companies that responded to the city's request for proposals in late March. A committee used a rating system to evaluate the companies based on references, experience, service capabilities and costs.
Valley Oak got the highest score, followed by Liberty Property Management. Wolverine, a division of California Prudential Realty, submitted a bid and scored the lowest.
According to the city's call for proposals, the contractor is supposed to collect the rent and security deposits from tenants, handle tenant disputes and report needed repairs to the city.
The company also is expected to conduct site visits, inside and outside the dwellings, and file reports on the condition of the homes every three months. It would be paid 7 percent of the tenants' rent.
The City Council will meet at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday in the basement chamber of Tenth Street Place, 1010 10th St.
Bee staff writer Ken Carlson can be reached at email@example.com or 578-2321.