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City will fine if property not mowed, cleared PDF Print E-mail
By Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican

    Three new ordinances passed at the June 8 city council meeting provide for direct fines to city residents for over-growing grass and other nuisances on their property.
    The council passed the three ordinances after waiving second and third readings, which puts them into effect immediately.
    A resident will be given notice, either personally or by registered mail, if a nuisance is determined, then given five days to get it taken care of.
    If it  isn’t, a fine of $25 can be assessed for the first violation, followed by second and third violation fines of $50 and $75.
    Should the fine not be paid within five days, the city attorney will  file a complaint with the Chase County Court.
    Nuisances for which a citation can be issued include:
    1) Grass or weeds in excess of 12 inches;
    2) Litter found on property;
    3) Any building or structure determined dangerous; and
    4) Property being used as a junk yard or dumping ground.
    The ordinances also allow for the city to clean up the nuisance if the owner doesn’t, with that cost and expense to be paid by the property owner.
    At last week’s council meeting, City Attorney Phil Pierce said the ordinances give the city police chief the authority to issue a ticket for these nuisances.
    Residents will still have due process should they decide to fight it in court, he added.
    Pierce said there is no state statute that says a municipality has the authority or does not have the authority to issue tickets for such nuisances, so believes the city can do so.
    Similar ordinances were also approved by the Grant city council last week.
    All three Imperial ordinances are printed in their entirety in the newspaper’s legal section this week.