Section 11-256 Weed abatement.

    (a)  Initiation of abatement procedure.  When the hearing officer has reason to believe that weeds have been allowed to grow on any property in violation of this article, the hearing officer may initiate an abatement procedure by calling a hearing to determine whether a violation exists.

    (b)  Notice of hearing.  The owner of the property on which the violation of this article is believed to exist shall be given notice of the hearing at least four (4) days before the hearing. The notice shall describe the location and nature of the alleged violation and state the time and place of the hearing.  When there is more than one owner of the property, notice need be given to only one of the owners.

    (c)  Service of notice.  The notice shall be served by at least one of the following methods:

    (1)    Personal service on the owner or the owner’s agent,

    (2)    Service by mail addressed to the last known address of the owner or the owner’s agent,

    (3)    Posting the notice on the property where the violation is alleged to exist.

Notice shall be considered given on the date the notice is personally served, mailed or posted.

    (d)  Hearing and order.  The hearing officer shall conduct an informal hearing at the time and place designated in the notice of hearing.  If the hearing officer determines, after reviewing all evidence presented at the hearing, that weeds have been allowed to grow on the subject property in violation of this article, the hearing officer may declare the weeds to be a nuisance and order them to be abated within five (5) business days.  

    (e)  Abatement by city.  If weeds are not cut down and removed as ordered by the hearing officer, the hearing officer may have the weeds cut down and removed by city employees or by persons under contract with the city.  No person shall enter private property containing an occupied single family residential structure to abate a weed nuisance unless an owner or occupant of the property has consented to the entry or unless the municipal judge has issued a warrant for the entry.

    (f)  Collection of abatement costs.  The director shall certify the cost of abatement to the city clerk.  The cost shall include administrative costs as well as the actual cost of cutting and removing the weeds.  The city clerk shall  cause a special taxbill against the property to be prepared in the amount of the abatement cost.  The taxbill from the date of its issuance shall be a lien on the property until paid and shall be prima facie evidence of the recitals therein and of its validity.  No clerical error or informality in the taxbill or in the proceedings leading up to the issuance of the taxbill shall be a defense in an action to collect the taxbill.  Taxbills issued under this section, if not paid when due, shall bear interest at the rate of eight percent (8%) per annum. The cost of abatement shall also constitute a personal obligation of the property owner.

(Code 1964, § 10.6080; Ord. No. 16982, § 2, 8-6 -01)

(16982, Amended, 09/01/2001, Prior Text)