Chapter 8.22
ABATEMENT OF NUISANCES

Sections:

8.22.010    Purpose and scope.

8.22.020    Definitions.

8.22.030    Service of notice to abate nuisance.

8.22.040    Second notice to abate nuisance.

8.22.050    Hearing.

8.22.060    Order of the council.

8.22.070    Costs and accounting.

8.22.080    Notice of assessment.

8.22.090    Hearing on account and proposed assessment.

8.22.100    Recordation of lien.

8.22.110    Penalty.

8.22.120    Summary abatement of immediate dangers.

8.22.010 Purpose and scope.

Any nuisance, as defined in this chapter, existing on any parcel of land in the city of Lakeport, may be abated as provided herein. The procedure for said abatement shall not be exclusive, but shall be cumulative and in addition to any other abatement procedures as provided by the laws of the state of California or the city of Lakeport Municipal Code. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.020 Definitions.

For the purpose of this chapter, the following words and phases shall have the following meanings:

“Affected or responsible person” means any agent, lessee, or other person occupying or having charge or control of any premises, except the owner.

“Beneficial owner” means any mortgagee of record; a beneficiary under a recorded deed of trust; the owner or holder of any lease of record; provided, however, that the United States, the state of California, and the city of Lakeport shall not be deemed to be beneficial owners by virtue of any lien for unpaid taxes.

“City staff” means any officer or department head of the city of Lakeport charged with the duty of enforcing regulations of the city of Lakeport or laws of the state of California.

“Council” means the city council of the city of Lakeport.

“Junk” means any material or object, used or new, which is not presently useable, or objects or materials so worn, deteriorated, or obsolete as to make them unusable in their existing condition, or objects or materials not capable of being used in their present location on the property, or which cannot be legally used in their present condition. “Junk” may include any objects or materials which are also defined as “trash.”

“Nuisance” means anything which is injurious to health, including, but not limited to, the illegal sale of controlled substances, or is indecent or offensive to the senses, or an obstruction to the free use of property, so as to interfere with the comfortable enjoyment of life or property, or unlawfully obstructs the free passage or use, in the customary manner, of any navigable lake, or river, bay, stream, canal, or basin, or any public park, square, street, or highway, is a nuisance.

A “nuisance” shall also mean:

1.    Any public nuisance known under common law or equity; or

2.    Any attractive nuisance which may prove dangerous or detrimental to any person; or

3.    Any condition that is dangerous to human life, unsafe, or detrimental to the public health or safety, including the accumulation of trash or junk and the existence of dangerous buildings as defined under the Uniform Building Code for the abatement of dangerous buildings.

“Occupier” means the person occupying or otherwise in real or apparent charge and control of the premises affected.

“Owner” means the owner of record of the land or premises affected.

“Trash” means all waste items whether described as rubbish, trash, waste, or refuse, used or new, including but not limited to paper, tin cans, bottles, glass, containers, rags, ashes, scrap metals, bones, cloth, rubber pieces, rope, asphalt, concrete, plaster, tile, bricks, crates, cartons, barrels, boxes, tree limbs, leaves, dead plants and trees, trimmings from plants and trees, grass clippings, tools, fixtures, utensils, lumber, pipe and pipe fittings, machinery or parts thereof, appliances, furniture, motor vehicle parts or tires, or any waste material from the premises, including those building materials for or produced from remodeling or construction, and material or objects which may become a breeding place for flies, mosquitoes, or vermin, or which give off unpleasant odors. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.030 Service of notice to abate nuisance.

A.    Determination of Nuisance. City staff, upon discovery of, or upon notice or complaint of a nuisance, shall investigate the alleged nuisance, and make a determination of the existence of a nuisance as defined herein.

Upon the determination by staff that a nuisance exists, staff shall prepare a notice of nuisance, and shall cause copies of said notice of nuisance to be served as provided herein.

Any notice required to be given by the provisions of this section shall be deemed to have been given when:

1.    A copy of said notice is either served personally or has been deposited in the mail, postage prepaid, certified, return receipt requested, to every owner, occupier, and beneficial owner of the premises or land affected, addressed to such persons at his last known place of address.

2.    A copy of the notice is prominently and conspicuously affixed to the premises affected by the proceedings herein.

The failure of city staff to make or attempt to make such service on any person required herein to be served shall not invalidate any proceedings hereunder as to any other person duly served. If no address can be found by city staff, then any notice shall be so mailed to such person to the address of the premises affected by the proceedings taken hereunder; and

B.    The notice of nuisance shall contain the following:

1.    A street address, legal description, or other description sufficient to identify the premises affected.

2.    A description of the condition causing the nuisance. Where city staff has determined that the condition causing the nuisance can be corrected or abated by repair or action thereof, the notice shall state the repairs or action which will be required, and a date by which time such repair or actions shall be completed.

3.    Where city staff has determined that the condition causing the nuisance is imminently dangerous to human health, life, or limb, or is unsafe, or is detrimental to the public health or safety, staff may order that the building or structure affected be vacated, pending the correction or abatement of the conditions causing the nuisance; order the abatement of said nuisance within thirty days, and thereafter diligently prosecute and complete said abatement.

4.    A statement that if the required abatement is not commenced within the time limit specified, staff will recommend to the council an order that the city complete abatement of said nuisance. The costs of such abatement shall become a charge against the premises, and shall be made a special assessment against the premises. Said special assessment may be collected at the same time and in the same manner as is provided for the collection of ordinary county taxes, and shall be subject to the same penalties, interest, and to the same procedures of foreclosure and sale in the case of delinquency as is provided for ordinary county taxes.

At the time said notice of nuisance is served as provided herein, city staff shall cause a copy of said notice of nuisance to be recorded in the office of the city clerk and the Lake County recorder. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.040 Second notice to abate nuisance.

A.    Notice to Abate Nuisance. (Second Notice). If upon the expiration of the period specified in the notice of nuisance, action to abate the nuisance has not been commenced, or, if it has been commenced, it has not been pursued with the due diligence nor completed within a reasonable time, city staff shall cause a second notice to abate nuisance to be prepared, and shall serve such notice as provided herein.

B.    The second notice to abate nuisance shall contain the following:

1.    A heading, “Second Notice to Abate Nuisance,” in large bold lettering.

2.    A notice to appear before the council at a stated time and place, which said time and place shall not be less than twenty-one days after service of said notice, to show cause why such condition should not be condemned as a nuisance, and why such nuisance should not be abated by the city. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.050 Hearing.

At the time and place specified in the second notice to abate nuisance, the council shall proceed to hear the testimony of city staff, the testimony of the owner or his representatives, and the testimony of other competent persons concerning the conditions constituting such nuisance, the estimated cost of abatement, and other matters which the council may deem pertinent. Any person affected may be present at such hearing, may be represented by counsel, may present testimony, and may cross-examine city staff, and other witnesses. The hearing may be continued by the council from time to time. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.060 Order of the council.

A.    Upon the conclusion of the hearing, the council may terminate the abatement proceedings, or it may order the owner or other affected or responsible person to abate the nuisance, prescribing the requirements of such abatement and prescribing a reasonable time, not less than thirty days, for the completion of such abatement.

B.    Such order may further provide that, in the event such abatement is not commenced, pursued, or completed within the terms set by the council, city staff shall be empowered and authorized to abate said nuisance.

C.    The order of the council shall be served as provided in Section 8.22.030, and the time limits set by the council shall not commence until said order is served as provided therein.

D.    Upon the expiration of the time limits set by the council as set forth above, city staff shall acquire jurisdiction to abate said nuisance. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.070 Costs and accounting.

A.    The council may create a revolving fund or funds from which may be paid the costs of abating nuisances and enforcing the provisions of this chapter, and into which shall be paid the receipts from the collection of costs as hereinafter set forth.

B.    City staff shall keep an itemized account of the costs of enforcing the provisions of this chapter, and of the proceeds of the sale of any materials connected therewith.

C.    The materials contained in any nuisance abated by city staff may be sold in the same manner as surplus city property is sold, and the proceeds from such sale shall be paid into the revolving fund. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.080 Notice of assessment.

A.    Upon the completion of the abatement, city staff shall cause a notice to be prepared, specifying the work done, an itemized account of the costs and receipts of performing the work, an address, legal description or other description sufficient to identify the premises, the amount of the assessment proposed to be levied against the premises, and the time and place when and where city staff will submit the account to the council for confirmation.

B.    The time and place specified shall not be less than twenty-one days after the service of the notice as provided herein. The notice shall contain a statement that the council will hear and consider objections and protests to said account and proposed assessment. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.090 Hearing on account and proposed assessment.

At the time and place fixed in the notice, the council shall hear and consider the account and proposed assessment, together with objections and protests thereto. At the conclusion of the hearing, the council may make such modifications and revisions of the proposed account and assessment as it deems just, and may order the account and proposed assessment confirmed or denied, in whole or in part, or as modified and revised. The determination of the council as to all matters contained therein shall be final and conclusive. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.100 Recordation of lien.

A.    Upon the confirmation by the council, city staff shall cause to be prepared and recorded, in the office of the Lake County recorder, a notice of lien. Said notice shall contain the following:

1.    An address, legal description, or other description sufficient to identify the premises.

2.    A description of the proceeding under which the special assessment was made, including the order of the council confirming the assessment.

3.    The amount of the assessment.

4.    A claim of lien upon the described premises.

B.    Upon the recordation of such notice of lien, the amount claimed shall constitute a lien upon the described premises. Such lien shall be upon a parity with the liens of state and county taxes.

C.    The notice of lien, after recordation, shall be delivered to the county auditor who shall enter the amount of the lien on the assessment roll as special assessments. Thereafter, the amount set forth shall be collected at the same time and in the same manner as ordinary county taxes are collected, and shall be subject to the same penalties and interest, and to the same procedures for foreclosure and sale in case of delinquency, as is provided for ordinary county taxes, and all laws applicable to the levy, collection, and enforcement of county taxes are hereby made applicable to such assessment. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.110 Penalty.

A.    Any person who violates any of the provisions of this chapter is guilty of a misdemeanor, which may be prosecuted as an alternative to other remedies contained herein, and which is punishable by a fine not exceeding one thousand five hundred dollars or by imprisonment not exceeding six months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

B.    Any person who removes any notice or order posted as required in this chapter shall be guilty of a misdemeanor. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)

8.22.120 Summary abatement of immediate dangers.

Whenever any condition on or use of property causes or constitutes, or reasonably appears to cause or constitute, an imminent or immediate danger to the health or safety of the public, or a significant portion thereof, any enforcement officer or his or her authorized representative shall have the authority to summarily and without notice abate the same. The expenses of such abatement shall become a lien on the property and be collectible as provided herein. (Ord. 802 (part), 1999)