Chapter 19.08
NUISANCE ABATEMENT

Sections:

19.08.010    Nuisance abatement (nonemergency).

19.08.020    Summary abatement (emergency).

19.08.030    Notice of violation—Stop work order.

19.08.040    Time allowed for abatement by the responsible party.

19.08.050    Violation disputes.

19.08.060    Abatement hearing.

19.08.070    Abatement order and abatement warrant.

19.08.080    Appeal of an abatement order.

19.08.090    Recovery of abatement costs.

19.08.100    Report and confirmation of abatement costs.

19.08.010 Nuisance abatement (nonemergency).

Whenever a code enforcement officer determines that a code violation exists, the code enforcement officer may pursue the abatement of such violation according to the procedures provided in this chapter. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))

19.08.020 Summary abatement (emergency).

Notwithstanding any other provision of this code, whenever, in the reasonable discretion of the code enforcement officer, the existence or continuance of any violation poses an imminent or immediate threat of harm to persons or property, or to public health, welfare or safety, a code enforcement officer may act immediately and without prior notice or hearing to abate or cause the abatement of such violation on behalf of the city pursuant to this section. Notwithstanding the foregoing, a reasonable effort shall be made to notify the owner of the premises in advance of abatement.

The city’s director of financial management shall keep an itemized account of the costs incurred by the city in abating the violation and shall submit a report of the abatement costs to the director in accordance with Section 19.08.100. The report of abatement costs shall also be served on the responsible party and shall include notice of the time and place when a hearing will be conducted in which the responsible party may contest the validity of the summary abatement and the costs incurred by the city in abating the violation pursuant to the procedures in Section 19.08.100. Such costs may be recovered to the same extent and in the same manner that abatement costs are recovered pursuant to Section 19.16.060. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))

19.08.030 Notice of violation—Stop work order.

A.    A notice of violation serves as a written warning of responsibility and requires action by the responsible party to cease and abate the violation. A notice of violation is not required if the code enforcement officer determines that summary abatement is necessary pursuant to Section 19.08.020.

B.    The notice of violation shall include the following information:

1.    The date, approximate time and location of the violation, including the address or other description of the location where the violation occurred or is occurring;

2.    The name(s) of the responsible party(ies), if known;

3.    The code section(s) violated and a description of the violation(s);

4.    An order prohibiting the continuation or repeated occurrence of the violation;

5.    A description of the action necessary to abate the violation;

6.    A period of time during which the action necessary to abate the violation shall be commenced and completed, which shall be determined pursuant to Section 19.08.040;

7.    A statement that the period of time during which the action necessary to abate the violation shall be commenced and completed may be extended pursuant to the procedure set forth in Section 19.08.040;

8.    A statement informing the responsible party that he or she may dispute the violation by contacting the city clerk to set up a meeting with the director to discuss the matter within ten (10) days of receiving the notice of violation;

9.    An order requiring the responsible party to appear at an abatement hearing upon the expiration of the period of time to abate the violation or any extension of that time period granted by the director pursuant to Section 19.08.040 in the event that the responsible party fails to abate the violation;

10.    The time, date and place for the abatement hearing;

11.    A description of the abatement process, including the types of evidence that may be submitted at the abatement hearing; and

12.    The name and signature of the code enforcement officer, city contact information (address, telephone number) for additional information and, if possible, the signature of the responsible party.

C.    If the violation is related to a permit, license, or other city approval of a project, the notice of violation may be accompanied by a stop work order which orders the responsible party to immediately stop any and all work on the project that is subject to the permit, license or approval until the violation is corrected. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))

19.08.040 Time allowed for abatement by the responsible party.

A.    Any notice of violation issued pursuant to Section 19.08.030 or abatement order issued pursuant to Section 19.16.040 shall provide a reasonable time during which the action necessary to abate the violation shall be commenced and completed based upon the circumstances of the particular violation, taking into consideration the following factors:

1.    The means required to abate the violation;

2.    The period of time that the violation has existed; and

3.    The potential threat to public health and safety created by the violation.

B.    If a violation pertains to building, plumbing, electrical, mechanical, or other similar structural or zoning issues and does not pose an imminent threat of harm to persons or property, or to the public health, welfare, or safety, the responsible party shall be provided an appropriate amount of time to abate the violation as determined by the code enforcement officer, but in no event shall that amount of time be less than seven days.

C.    Any responsible party receiving a notice of violation may file a written request for extension with the city clerk for consideration by the director for an extension of time to abate the violation identified in the notice of violation; provided, that the written request is received before the end of the period set forth in the notice of violation to abate the violation. The director may grant an extension of time to abate the violation if the person requesting the extension of time has supplied sufficient evidence showing that the abatement cannot reasonably be made within the period set forth in the notice of violation. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))

19.08.050 Violation disputes.

If a person designated as the responsible party in the notice of violation wishes to dispute the alleged code violation, he or she may contact the city clerk to set up a meeting with the director to discuss and seek resolution of the matter within ten (10) days of receiving the notice of violation. If the concerns of the person designated as the responsible party in the notice of violation are not satisfactorily addressed in this meeting, he or she will be entitled to present those concerns at an abatement hearing as described in this title. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))

19.08.060 Abatement hearing.

All abatement hearings shall be conducted pursuant to the procedures set forth in Chapter 19.16 and shall be subject to all of the provisions of this title. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))

19.08.070 Abatement order and abatement warrant.

A.    An abatement order issued pursuant to Section 19.16.040 may include any combination of the following remedies:

1.    Issue a cease and desist order requiring the responsible party to immediately stop the violation.

2.    Require the responsible party to abate the violation according to a proposed schedule to abate the violation within a reasonable time as determined according to Section 19.08.040.

3.    Require the responsible party to restore a site or location that has been damaged or disturbed as a result of the violation to a previolation condition.

4.    Require the responsible party to mitigate any damage or disturbance to protected or environmentally sensitive areas as a result of any violation, including, without limitation, off-site replacement of damaged or destroyed natural resources where on-site restoration or mitigation is not feasible, as determined by the city.

5.    Impose conditions that restrict or regulate the development of, use of, or activity on real property where a nexus exists between the violation and the development, use, or activity. Conditions may be imposed until the violation is fully abated. Restrictions and regulations on current or future development, use, or activity may include site restoration and/or the suspension or revocation of any entitlements issued by the city.

6.    Authorize the city to abate or cause the abatement of the violation where the responsible party has refused or otherwise neglected to abate the violation or is unable to take steps to abate the violation. The abatement order shall specify that if the city undertakes the abatement of the violation, the city shall be entitled to recover all costs of abatement incurred in performing such work and other costs necessary to enforce the order. Any abatement costs incurred as a result of the city actions to abate a violation pursuant to an abatement order may be recovered by the city as a personal obligation and/or through a lien or a special assessment on the affected property pursuant to Section 19.16.060.

7.    Any other order or remedy that serves the interests of justice.

B.    If an abatement order is issued pursuant to Section 19.16.040 authorizing the city to abate a violation, an authorized representative of the city may petition a court of competent jurisdiction for an abatement warrant authorizing a code enforcement officer or any employee, authorized agent, representative, or contractor of the city to enter onto any affected property to abate the violation. An abatement warrant, as contemplated in this section, shall be requested in the same manner, and be in substantially the same form, as an inspection warrant pursuant to Code of Civil Procedure Section 1822.50 et seq. The city shall seek the written consent of the responsible party to allow the city to perform the necessary work prior to seeking an abatement warrant from a court. Upon issuance of an abatement warrant, as described in this section, the code enforcement officer shall cause such warrant to be executed in accordance with the procedures set forth in Code of Civil Procedure Section 1822.56. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))

19.08.080 Appeal of an abatement order.

An abatement order issued pursuant to Section 19.16.040 may be appealed to the city manager pursuant to Section 19.16.050. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))

19.08.090 Recovery of abatement costs.

The city may elect to recover its costs to abate a violation, including, without limitation, the costs of any abatement hearing (including staff time necessary to prepare for and attend an abatement hearing), any costs incurred by the city in performing or contracting for work required to achieve compliance with an abatement order, any reinspections required to determine or confirm that compliance has been achieved, production of all staff reports, environmental tests or measurements that are deemed necessary or appropriate by the code enforcement officer, third party inspection(s) or consultant services as deemed necessary by the city and any attorneys’ fees incurred in pursuing enforcement. Any abatement costs incurred may be recovered even if the nuisance is abated by the responsible party. If the city elects at the initiation of an administrative enforcement action or proceeding to seek recovery of attorneys’ fees, pursuant to Government Code Section 38773.5, the prevailing party shall be entitled to recover attorneys’ fees in an amount not to exceed the amount of attorneys’ fees incurred by the city in such action. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))

19.08.100 Report and confirmation of abatement costs.

A.    The city’s director of financial management shall keep an accounting of all abatement costs as described in Section 19.08.090.

B.    The city’s director of financial management shall submit an itemized report of the abatement costs to the director for confirmation.

C.    The city clerk shall serve a copy of such report upon the responsible party pursuant to Section 19.04.100. The report of abatement costs shall be accompanied by a notice of the time and place when a hearing will be conducted by the director to consider confirmation of such report. The report and notice shall be served upon the responsible party at least ten (10) days prior to the scheduled date of the hearing.

D.    At the time and place fixed in the notice of the confirmation hearing, the director shall consider the report of abatement costs submitted by the city’s director of financial management and hear any protests or objections thereto by the responsible party or any other interested persons. The hearing may be continued from time to time without further written notice.

E.    Upon the conclusion of the hearing, the director shall make such revisions, corrections, or modifications to the report as may be necessary or appropriate, based upon the evidence presented at the hearing, and shall thereafter confirm the report as submitted or modified by issuing an order for collection of the abatement costs pursuant to Section 19.16.060. The decision of the director shall be final and conclusive, unless timely appealed to the city council in accordance with the procedures provided in Chapter 2.44 of this code. (Ord. 2010-01 § 1 (part))