Chapter 8.60CODE ENFORCEMENT

Sections:

8.60.010
Purpose.
8.60.015
Applicability.
8.60.020
Definitions.
8.60.030
Voluntary correction.
8.60.040
Notice of civil violation.
8.60.050
Stop work order.
8.60.060
Cease and desist order.
8.60.065
Notice to vacate.
8.60.070
Removal of stop work, cease and desist order, or notice to vacate – Misdemeanor.
8.60.080
Hearing before the administrative hearing examiner.
8.60.090
Violations – Monetary penalty and costs.
8.60.100
Subsequent repeat violation – Failure to abate – Misdemeanor.
8.60.110
Abatement.
8.60.120
Costs of abatement – Lien.
8.60.130
Collection of penalties and costs.
8.60.140
Additional enforcement procedures.
8.60.150
Conflicting code provisions.
8.60.160
Duty not creating liability.
8.60.010Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to establish an efficient system to enforce regulations of the city, providing an opportunity for a prompt hearing and decision on alleged violations and establishing penalties for violations. This chapter shall apply to all regulations as defined in CEMC Section 8.60.020(M); provided that a regulation that provides for criminal penalties in addition to or as an alternative to enforcement under this chapter may, at the discretion of the city, be prosecuted as a criminal violation.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.015Applicability.

This chapter is applicable to the enforcement of City of Cle Elum ordinances and codes relating but not limited to Title 5: Business Licenses, Taxes and Regulations, Title 8: Health and Safety, Title 12: Streets, Sidewalks and Public Places, Title 13: Public Services, Title 15: Buildings and Construction, Title 16: Subdivisions, Title 17: Zoning, and Title 18: Critical Areas Development, and shall be construed as supplemental to any excess provision for criminal penalties contained elsewhere in Cle Elum Municipal Code for such violations, in which case this chapter shall be considered supplementary thereto.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.020Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless a different meaning is plainly required:

A. “Abate” means to repair, replace, remove, destroy or otherwise remedy a condition that constitutes a civil violation by such means, in such manner, and to such an extent as the code enforcement officer or the administrative hearing examiner determines is necessary in the interest of the general health, safety and welfare of the community.

B. “Act” means doing or performing something.

C. “Administrative hearing examiner” means the code enforcement hearing examiner and the office thereof established pursuant to Chapter 2.13, CEMC.

D. “City” means City of Cle Elum.

E. “Civil violation” or “violation” means an act or omission contrary to a regulation as defined in subsection M of this section. A violation continues to exist until abated and each day, or a portion thereof, that a violation exists constitutes a separate and distinct offense.

F. “Code enforcement officer” means the city’s code enforcement officers or any other person or persons assigned or directed by the mayor, or his or her designee, to enforce the regulations subject to the provisions of this chapter.

G. Costs of Abatement. The costs of any abatement action taken by the city to abate the violation using lawful means in the event that the person responsible for the violation fails to do so. The term includes incidental expenses including, but not limited to, personnel costs, both direct and indirect and including attorney’s fees; costs incurred in documenting the violation; hauling, storage and disposal expenses; and actual costs and expenses of the city in preparing notices, specifications and contracts, and in accomplishing and/or contracting and inspecting the work; the costs of any required printing and mailing; and costs of enforcement.

H. “Costs” or “costs of enforcement” means costs incurred related to enforcement under this chapter, including, but not limited to costs of service of notice, costs of the hearing, administrative costs established by resolution for enforcement of garbage and refuse and nuisance vegetation violations, as well as other administrative costs.

I. “Omission” means a failure to act.

J. “Person” means any individual, firm, associations, partnership, corporation or any entity, public or private.

K. “Person responsible for the violation” or “person who violates” means, unless otherwise defined, any person who has titled ownership of the property or structure which is subject to the regulation, an occupant in control of the property or structure which is subject to the regulation, a developer, builder, or business operator or owner who is developing, building, or operating a business on the property or in a structure which is subject to the regulation and/or any person who created the violation or any person who has control over the property and allows the violation to continue.

L. “Property” or “premises” means any building, lot, parcel, real estate or land or portion of land whether improved or unimproved, including adjacent sidewalks, public rights-of-way, and parking strips and any lake, river, stream, drainage way or wetland.

M. “Regulation” means and includes the following, as now enacted or hereafter amended:

1. All Cle Elum city code provisions making reference to this chapter;

2. All standards, regulations and procedures adopted by the city that make reference to this chapter; and

3. The terms and conditions of any permit or approval issued by the city, or any concomitant agreement with the city pursuant to code provisions that make reference to this chapter.

N. “Repeat violation” means two or more violations of the same regulation in any location by the same person for which voluntary compliance previously has been sought within two years or for which a notice of civil violation has been issued within two years.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.030Voluntary correction.

A. Applicability. The provisions of this section may be utilized whenever the code enforcement officer or administrative hearing examiner determines that a violation of a regulation has occurred or is occurring.

B. General. Prior to the issuance of a notice of violation, the code enforcement officer may, at his or her discretion, attempt to secure the voluntary correction of a violation of a regulation by contacting the person responsible for the violation, explaining the violation, and requesting correction. The failure of the code enforcement officer to seek voluntary correction shall not invalidate any code enforcement action taken by the code enforcement officer or the City of Cle Elum.

C. Issuance of Voluntary Correction Agreement. A voluntary correction agreement may be entered into between the person responsible for the violation and the city, acting through the code enforcement officer.

D. Content of Agreement. The voluntary correction agreement is a contract between the city and the person responsible for the violation under which that person agrees to abate the violation within a specified time and according to specified conditions. The voluntary correction agreement shall include the following:

1. The name and address of the person responsible for the violation;

2. The street address or a description sufficient for identification of the building, structure, premises, or land upon or within which the violation has occurred or is occurring;

3. A description of the violation and a reference to the regulations which have been violated;

4. An acknowledgment by the person responsible for the violation that the violation described in the correction agreement exists;

5. The necessary corrective action to be taken, the date or time by which correction must be completed, and an acknowledgment by the person responsible for the violation that he or she will correct the violation within the time specified in the voluntary correction agreement;

6. Acknowledgment by the person responsible for the violation that the city may inspect the premises as may be necessary, during reasonable times, to determine compliance with the voluntary correction agreement;

7. Acknowledgment by the person responsible for the violation that the city may abate the violation and recover its costs and expenses of enforcement and abatement and/or a monetary penalty pursuant to this chapter from the person responsible for the violation if the terms of the voluntary correction agreement are not met; and

8. The time and place for a hearing before the administrative hearing examiner in the event that the alleged violation is not abated by the person responsible for the violation.

E. Extension – Modification. An extension of the time limit for correction or a modification of the required corrective action may be granted by the code enforcement officer if the person responsible for the violation has shown due diligence and/or substantial progress in correcting the violation but unforeseen circumstances render correction under the original conditions unattainable.

F. Abatement by the City. In addition to any other remedy provided for in this chapter, the city may seek abatement of the violation in accordance with CEMC Section 8.60.110 if the terms of the voluntary correction agreement are not met.

G. Penalties and Costs. If the terms of the voluntary correction agreement are not met, the person responsible for the violation may be assessed a monetary penalty plus all costs of enforcement pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.090 and costs of abatement pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.110.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.040Notice of civil violation.

A. Issuance of Notice of Violation. When the code enforcement officer determines that a violation has occurred or is occurring, and does not secure voluntary correction pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.030, the code enforcement officer may issue a notice of civil violation to the person responsible for the violation.

B. Content of Notice. The notice of civil violation shall include the following:

1. The name and address of the person responsible for the violation;

2. The street address or description sufficient for identification of the building, structure, premises, or land upon or within which the violation has occurred or is occurring;

3. A description of the violation and a reference to the code provisions and regulations that have been violated;

4. The required corrective action and the date and time by which the corrective action must be completed;

5. The date, time and location of a hearing before the administrative hearing examiner;

6. A statement indicating that the hearing will be canceled and no monetary penalty will be assessed if the code enforcement officer approves the completed, required corrective action at least forty-eight hours prior to the hearing;

7. A statement that the costs and expenses of enforcement incurred by the city and a monetary penalty in an amount per day for each violation pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.090 and costs of abatement pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.110 may be assessed against the person to whom the notice of civil violation is directed as specified and ordered by the administrative hearing examiner; and

8. A statement that the failure to attend the hearing before the administrative hearing examiner may result in a default judgment against the person responsible for the violation, whereby the administrative hearing examiner may enter judgment in favor of the city, assess penalties and costs against the person responsible for the violation, and order the abatement of the violation at the expense of the person responsible for the violation.

C. Extension. Extensions of the time specified in the notice of civil violation for correction of the violation may be granted at the discretion of the code enforcement officer; the city attorney, or his or her designee; or by order of the administrative hearing examiner.

D. Service of Notice. The code enforcement officer shall serve or cause to be served the notice of civil violation upon the person responsible for the violation by personal service pursuant to subsection (E)(1) of this section, or by mail pursuant to subsection (E)(2). If the person responsible for the violation cannot be reasonably personally served within the city and if an address for mailed service cannot be ascertained notice shall be served by posting a copy of the notice of civil violation conspicuously on the affected property or structure pursuant to subsection (E)(3) of this section and/or publication pursuant to subsection (E)(4).

E. Methods of Service Defined. The methods of service of notice as used in this chapter are defined as follows:

1. Personal Service. Personal service on the person responsible for the violation shall mean handing the notice to the person responsible for the violation or leaving it at his or her dwelling house or usual place of abode with some person of suitable age and discretion then residing therein, or leaving it at his or her office or place of employment with a person in charge thereof; or

2. Mailing. Mailing shall mean mailing notice to the last known address of the person responsible for the violation which shall be accomplished by placing one copy of the notice of violation in the mail of the United States by ordinary first class mail, directed to the last known address of the person responsible for the violation, and by placing another copy in the mail of the United States in a form requiring a signed receipt showing when and to whom it was delivered and directed to the last known address of the person responsible for the violation. The last known address shall include the address appearing on the last equalized tax assessment roll of the county assessor; or

3. Posting. Posting shall mean posting a copy of the notice in a conspicuous place on the property, with at least one copy of such notice placed at the entryway to the property or structure, if an entryway exists, or other conspicuous place on the property; or

4. Publication. Publication of notice shall mean publication as set forth in RCW 4.28.100.

F. Proof of Service. Proof of service shall be made by a written declaration under penalty of perjury executed by the person effecting the service, declaring the time and date of service, the manner by which the service was made, and if by posting and/or publication in lieu of personal service or mail, the facts showing that due diligence was used in attempting to serve the person personally or by mail.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.050Stop work order.

In addition to any remedy provided for in this chapter, the code enforcement officer may issue a stop work order whenever a violation of a regulation will materially impair the code enforcement officer’s ability to secure compliance, or when a violation of the regulation threatens the health, safety, or welfare of any member of the public or occupants of the property. The stop work order shall contain substantially the same information as required by CEMC Section 8.60.040(B) and may be appended to, or incorporate by reference in, a notice of violation. Notice of the stop work order shall be deemed served upon posting of the notice as required by CEMC Section 8.60.040(E)(3), and shall be effective upon service. The violation of a stop work order shall constitute a misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment in jail for a maximum term fixed by the court of not more than ninety days, or by a fine in an amount fixed by the court of not more than one thousand dollars, or by both such imprisonment and fine.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.060Cease and desist order.

In addition to any remedy provided for in this chapter, the code enforcement officer may issue a cease and desist order whenever a violation of a regulation threatens the health, safety, or welfare of any member of the public or occupants of the property. The cease and desist order shall contain substantially the same information as required by CEMC Section 8.60.040(B), and may be appended to, or incorporate by reference in, a notice of violation. Notice of the cease and desist order shall be deemed served upon posting of the notice as required by CEMC Section 8.60.040(E)(3), and shall be effective upon service. The violation of a cease and desist order shall constitute a misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment in jail for a maximum term fixed by the court of not more than ninety days, or be a fine in an amount fixed by the court of not more than one thousand dollars, or by both such imprisonment and fine.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.065Notice to vacate.

In addition to any remedy provided for in this chapter, the code enforcement officer may issue a notice to vacate whenever a violation of a regulation results in a condition as to make it immediately dangerous to life, limb, property or safety of the public or occupants of the property. The notice to vacate shall contain substantially the same information as required by CEMC Section 8.60.040(B), and may be appended to, or incorporate by reference in, a notice of violation. Notice of the notice to vacate shall be deemed served upon posting of the notice as required by CEMC Section 8.60.040(E)(3), and shall be effective upon service. The violation of a notice to vacate shall constitute a misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment in jail for a maximum term fixed by the court of not more than ninety days, or by a fine in an amount fixed by the court of not more than one thousand dollars, or by such imprisonment and fine.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.070Removal of stop work, cease and desist order, or notice to vacate – Misdemeanor.

The removal of a stop work order or cease and desist order posted in conformity with the requirements of CEMC Section 8.60.050 or CEMC Section 8.60.060, without the authorization of the code enforcement officer or administrative hearing examiner, shall constitute a misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment in jail for a maximum term fixed by the court of not more than ninety days, or by a fine in an amount fixed by the court of not more than one thousand dollars, or by both such imprisonment and fine.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.080Hearing before the administrative hearing examiner.

A. Notice. A person to whom a notice of civil violation is issued will be scheduled to appear before the administrative hearing examiner not less than ten calendar days from the date of service of the notice of violation or entrance into a voluntary correction agreement. In the event that the hearing is held after the person responsible for the violation enters a voluntary correction agreement, the date of the hearing shall be the date specified in the voluntary correction agreement. An extension for the time for compliance with the correction requirements of a notice of violation or a voluntary correction agreement, as well as the date and time for a hearing before the administrative hearing examiner, may be granted at the discretion of the code enforcement officer; the city attorney, or his or her designee; or the administrative hearing examiner.

B. Prior Correction of Violation. The hearing will be canceled and no monetary penalty will be assessed if the code enforcement officer or the city attorney, or his or her designee, approves the completed corrective action at least forty-eight hours prior to the scheduled hearing.

C. Procedure. Except as otherwise provided for herein, the administrative hearing examiner shall conduct a hearing on the civil violation pursuant to Chapter 2.13, CEMC. The city and the person to whom the notice of civil violation was directed may participate in the hearing and each party, or its legal representatives, may call witnesses and present evidence. The city shall have the burden of proving, by a preponderance of the evidence, that a violation has occurred and that the corrective action required by the code enforcement officer is reasonably calculated to correct the violation. Formal rules of evidence shall not apply to any such hearing.

D. Decision of the Administrative Hearing Examiner.

1. In the event that the administrative hearing examiner determines that a violation occurred or is occurring, the administrative hearing examiner shall issue an order to the person responsible for the violation which contains the following information:

a. The decision regarding the alleged violation including findings of fact and conclusions based thereon in support of the decision;

b. The required corrective action;

c. The date and time by which the correction must be completed;

d. The monetary penalties and costs of enforcement, if any, assessed pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.090 and costs of abatement, if any, assessed pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.110;

e. The date and time after which the city may proceed with abatement of the unlawful condition if the required correction is not completed.

E. Notice of Decision. The administrative hearing examiner shall mail a copy of the decision by first class regular mail to the person to whom the notice of a civil violation was issued and to the code enforcement officer within ten working days of the hearing, unless the administrative hearing examiner determines that more time is necessary.

F. Failure to Appear. If the person to whom the notice of civil violation was issued fails to appear at the scheduled hearing, the administrative hearing examiner may issue at the city’s request, or upon his or her own ruling, an order of default, assess the appropriate penalty and costs pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.090 and order abatement of the violation at the expense of the person responsible for the violation. The city may serve notice of the default and penalty and cost assessment on the person responsible for the violation and enforce the administrative hearing examiner’s order and recover all costs of abatement, related costs of enforcement, including the cost of the hearing and any monetary penalty from that person. Within seven days after service of the default order, the party against whom it was entered may file a written motion requesting that the order be vacated. The administrative hearing examiner may, at his or her discretion, based upon a showing of good cause, vacate the order of default, and schedule the matter for hearing. In the event that the default order is vacated, the person against whom it was entered shall pay all costs attributable to his or her failure to appear.

G. Appeal to Superior Court. An appeal of the decision of the administrative hearing examiner must be filed with the superior court within twenty-one calendar days of the issuance of the decision.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.090Violations – Monetary penalty and costs.

A. Assessment of Monetary Penalty. The administrative hearing examiner shall, upon finding that a violation of a regulation has occurred, assess a monetary penalty in an amount of five hundred dollars for each violation. Each day, or a portion thereof, that a violation exists constitutes a separate and distinct offense for which a monetary penalty may be assessed. The administrative hearing examiner shall have the discretion to assess a lesser amount per day if he or she believes the situation warrants such. The monetary penalty shall, at the discretion of the administrative hearing examiner, be assessed as of:

1. The date of the issuance of the notice of civil violation; or

2. The date on which the matter was heard by the administrative hearing examiner; or

3. The date upon which the person responsible for the violation is or was to have corrected the violation.

B. Costs. In addition, the administrative hearing examiner may assess costs of enforcement as defined in CEMC Section 8.60.020(H) and costs of abatement as defined in CEMC Section 8.60.020(G).

C. Modification of Monetary Penalty. Upon a finding that the person responsible for the violation will correct the violation within a reasonable time of the hearing, the administrative hearing examiner may postpone the assessment of the monetary penalty for a reasonable period. If, prior to the expiration of the period of postponement the code enforcement officer or the city attorney or his or her designee is satisfied that the violation has been corrected, the administrative hearing examiner or the city attorney may relieve the person responsible for the violation of the duty to pay all or a portion of the monetary penalty. If, after the period of postponement, the violation has not been corrected, the penalties assessed against the person responsible for the violation shall be assessed from the date of the violation, and payment shall be due.

D. Monetary Penalty for Repeat Violations. The administrative hearing examiner shall, upon finding that a repeat violation as defined in CEMC Section 8.60.020(N) has occurred, assess a monetary penalty in an amount of one thousand dollars for each repeat violation, per day, or a portion thereof. The administrative hearing examiner shall have the discretion to assess a lesser amount per day if he or she believes the situation warrants such.

E. Collection of Costs and Monetary Penalties. The costs and monetary penalties assessed pursuant to this section constitute a personal obligation of the person to whom the notice of civil violation is directed or the person responsible for the violation. Any costs or monetary penalties assessed must be paid to the city within ten calendar days from the date of mailing of the administrative hearing examiner’s decision or a notice from the city that costs or penalties are due. The city attorney, or his or her designee, is authorized to take legal action to collect the costs or monetary penalties including filing civil actions or turning the matter over to collection pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.130.

F. Continued Duty to Correct. Payment of a monetary penalty pursuant to this chapter does not relieve the person responsible for the violation of the duty to correct the violation.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.100Subsequent repeat violation – Failure to abate – Misdemeanor.

The commission of a subsequent violation or the failure or refusal to abate a violation pursuant to an order of the administrative hearing examiner after receipt of written notice of such order shall constitute a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in jail for a maximum term fixed by the court of not more than ninety days or by a fine in an amount fixed by the court of not more than one thousand dollars or by both such imprisonment and fine. The city attorney, or his or her designee, shall, at his or her discretion, have authority to file a subsequent violation as either a civil violation pursuant to this chapter or a misdemeanor. All misdemeanor charges filed under this section shall be filed with the Cle Elum Municipal Court and shall bear the signature of the Cle Elum city attorney or his or her designee. When the city files a criminal offense pursuant to this subsection, it shall have the burden of proving, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the violation occurred.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.110Abatement.

A. In General. At the hearing before the administrative hearing examiner, the code enforcement officer or the city attorney or his or her designee may request that an order of abatement issue in the event that the administrative hearing examiner determines that a violation of a regulation exists. The order of abatement shall require the person responsible for the violation to abate the violation and permit the city to abate the violation using lawful means in the event that the person responsible for the violation fails to do so. The city may seek such judicial process as it deems necessary to effect the removal or correction of such condition causing the violation.

B. Abatement by the City. The city may abate a condition which was caused by or continues to be a civil violation when:

1. The terms of voluntary correction agreement pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.030 have not been met; or

2. A notice of civil violation has been issued pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.040 and (a) a hearing has been held pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.080 and the required correction has not been completed by the date specified in the administrative hearing examiner’s order, or (b) a hearing has been held by a court of competent jurisdiction and the required correction has not been completed by the date specified in the court’s order; or

3. The condition is subject to summary abatement as provided for in CEMC Section 8.60.110(C).

C. Summary Abatement. Whenever any nuisance causes a condition, the continued existence of which constitutes an immediate threat to the public health, safety or welfare or to the environment, the city may summarily and without prior notice abate the condition. Notice of such abatement, including the reason for it shall be given to the person responsible for the violation as soon as reasonably possible after the abatement. No right of action shall lie against the city or its agents, officers, or employees for actions reasonably taken to prevent or cure any such immediate threats, but neither shall the city be entitled to recover any costs incurred for summary abatement, prior to the time that actual notice of same is provided to the person responsible for the violation.

D. Authorized Action by the City. Using any lawful means, the city may enter upon the subject property and may remove or correct the condition which is subject to abatement. The city may seek such judicial process as it deems necessary to effect the removal or correction of such condition.

E. Interference. Any person who knowingly obstructs, impedes, or interferes with the city or its agents, or with the person responsible for the violation in the performance of duties imposed by this chapter, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment not exceeding ninety days and a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars.

F. Other Abatement Proceedings Not Precluded. Nothing in this section shall prohibit the city from pursuing abatement pursuant to any other laws of the state of Washington or the City of Cle Elum.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.120Costs of abatement – Lien.

A. Costs of Abatement. The costs and incidental expenses of any abatement action taken by the city as defined in CEMC Section 8.60.020(G), including costs of enforcement set forth in CEMC Section 8.60.020(H), shall become a charge to the person responsible for the violation. These charges may be assessed against the person responsible for the violation or the property upon which the violation occurred. Costs of abatement must be paid to the city within ten calendar days from the date of mailing of notice from the city that the costs are due. The city may use any lawful means to collect charges, including but not limited to those set forth in CEMC Section 8.60.130. The city attorney, or his or her designee, is authorized to take legal action to collect the costs of any abatement. All such costs and expenses shall constitute a lien against the affected property, as set forth in CEMC Section 8.60.120(B).

B. Lien – Authorized.

1. Account of Expense. The code enforcement officer shall keep an itemized account of expense incurred for the cost of abatement of property. Upon completion of the work, the code enforcement officer shall prepare and file with the city clerk, a report specifying the work done, the itemized total cost of the work, including administrative charge, a description of the property abated, and the name and addresses of the owner or agent, and occupant or tenant if known.

2. Report Transmitted to Council. Upon receipt of the report, the city clerk shall present it to council for consideration. The council shall fix a time, date and place for hearing the report and any protests or objections thereto. The city clerk shall cause notice of said hearing to be posted upon the property involved, and served by certified mail, postage prepaid, addressed to the owner or agent of the owner, and occupant or tenant if known. If the tenant or occupant is not known, notice shall be sent by first class mail to the occupant of the residence subject to the abatement. Such notice will be given at least ten days prior to the date set for hearing and shall specify the date, hour and place when the council will hear and pass upon the code enforcement officer report, together with any objections or protests which may be filed as hereinafter provided by any person interested in or affected by the proposed charge. Notice of the hearing shall also be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the City of Cle Elum when required by law.

3. Protests and Objections. Any person interested in or affected by the proposed charge may file written protests or objections with the city clerk prior to the hearing. Each protest must state the grounds of such protest or objection. The clerk shall present such protests and objections to the council at the time of the hearing and no other protests or objections will be considered.

4. Hearing. The council shall hear and pass upon the report of the code enforcement officer, together with objections and protests. The council may revise or modify the report as it may deem just. When the council is satisfied with the correctness of the charge, the report, together with the charge, shall be confirmed or rejected. The decision of the council on the report and the charge, and on all protests or objections, shall be final and conclusive.

C. Assessment Against Property. The city shall have a lien for the costs and incidental expenses of any abatement as defined in CEMC Section 8.60.080, for the cost of any abatement action taken by the city, under this chapter, against the real property on which the work of abatement was performed as follows:

1. Unfit Structures. Liens established as the result violations of the Building Code for the Abatement of Dangerous Buildings as adopted pursuant to CEMC Chapter 15.06 assessed pursuant to said code. Pursuant to RCW 35.80.030(1)(h) and as supplemented by CEMC authorized by RCW 35.80.030(5), both incorporated herein by reference, the lien shall be assessed upon the tax rolls of the subject property and shall be subordinate to all previously existing special assessment liens imposed on the same property and shall be superior to all other liens, except for state and county taxes, with which it shall be on a parity.

2. Garbage. Liens for garbage and rubbish abatement shall be assessed against the subject property pursuant to RCW 35.21.140 and RCW 35.21.150 and shall be prior to all liens filed subsequent to the filing of the notice of lien with the county auditor, except liens of general taxes and local improvements.

3. Nuisance Vegetation. Liens for nuisance vegetation abatement, when initiated by city council resolution, whether or not enforced in conjunction with a hearing before the administrative hearing examiner pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.080, shall be assessed against the subject property pursuant to RCW 35.21.310 and shall be enforced and foreclosed in the manner as provided by law for liens for labor and materials.

4. Other. Other liens shall be assessed against the subject property as authorized by law or court order.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.130Collection of penalties and costs.

A. Collection. In addition to, or in lieu of the provisions set forth in this chapter, the city may, at its option, turn the matter over to collection or commence a civil action in any court of competent jurisdiction to collect costs and expenses of enforcement, costs of abatement incurred by the city to obtain compliance pursuant to this chapter and/or to collect any penalties that have been assessed. Further, the city administration, upon concurrence of the city attorney, may file for injunctive or other civil relief in superior court regarding code violations.

B. Use of Collection Agency. The city, at its discretion, may, pursuant to Chapter 19.16 RCW, use a collection agency for the purposes of collecting penalties assessed pursuant to this chapter. The city shall add a reasonable fee, payable by the person responsible for the debt, to the outstanding debt for the collection agency fee incurred or to be incurred as a result of the use of the collection agency. No debt may be assigned to a collection agency until at least thirty days have elapsed from the time that the city attempts to notify the person responsible for the debt of the existence of the debt and that the debt may be assigned to a collection agency for collection if the debt is not paid.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.140Additional enforcement procedures.

A. The provisions of this chapter are not exclusive, and may be used in addition to or in conjunction with other enforcement and penalty provisions authorized by the Cle Elum City Code or state law.

B. In lieu of and as an alternative to a hearing before the administrative hearing examiner pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.080, the city may file an action in a court of competent jurisdiction to seek enforcement of a notice of violation issued pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.040, abatement of the violation pursuant to CEMC Section 8.60.110 and assessment and collection of penalties, costs and abatement as provided for in this chapter.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.150Conflicting code provisions.

In the event a conflict exists between the enforcement provisions of this chapter and the enforcement provisions of any uniform code, statute, or regulation that is adopted in the Cle Elum City Code that are subject to the enforcement provisions of this chapter, the enforcement provisions of this chapter will prevail, unless the enforcement provisions of this chapter are preempted or specifically modified by said code, statute, or regulation.

(Ord. 1255 § 1 (Exh. A (part)), 2006)

8.60.160Duty not creating liability.

No provision or term used in this title is intended to impose any duty upon the city or any of its officers or employees which would subject them to damages in a civil action.