Chapter 16.18
NUISANCE CODE

Sections:

Article I. In General

16.18.101    Title.

16.18.102    Purpose.

16.18.103    Application.

Article II. Enforcement

16.18.201    Authority.

16.18.202    Right of entry.

16.18.203    Responsibility for proper property maintenance.

16.18.204    Hearing examiner.

16.18.205    Violations and penalties.

Article III. Definitions

16.18.301    Generally.

Article IV. Nuisances Specified

16.18.401    Generally.

16.18.402    Complete and timely correction required.

Article V. Abatement Generally

16.18.501    Alternative abatement process.

16.18.502    Commencement of proceedings – Notice of pending enforcement action.

16.18.503    Notice.

16.18.504    Hearings – Generally.

16.18.505    Record of oral evidence at hearing.

16.18.506    Continuances.

16.18.507    Oaths – Certification.

16.18.508    Evidence rules.

16.18.509    Rights of parties.

16.18.510    Official notice.

16.18.511    Inspection of premises.

16.18.512    Form and contents of decision – Finality of decision.

16.18.513    Service of the hearing examiner’s decision.

Article VI. Special Procedure for Abatement of Certain Vehicles

16.18.601    Purpose of article.

16.18.602    Procedure – Same except as specified.

16.18.603    Notice.

16.18.604    Notice – Right of owner of premises to disclaim responsibility for vehicle.

16.18.605    Hearing notice.

16.18.606    Hearing by hearing examiner.

16.18.607    Form and contents of decision – Finality of decision.

16.18.608    Preventing rotation of abandoned, wrecked, dismantled and inoperative vehicles.

16.18.609    Inapplicability to certain vehicles.

16.18.610    Abandoned vehicles – Abandonment prohibited.

16.18.611    Costs of abating abandoned vehicles.

Article VII. Enforcement of Order of Hearing Examiner

16.18.701    Generally.

16.18.702    Failure to obey order.

16.18.703    Failure to complete work.

16.18.704    Extension of date for completion.

16.18.705    Interference with work prohibited.

Article VIII. Removal of Motor Vehicles and Transfer of Title

16.18.801    Generally.

16.18.802    Notice to Department of Motor Vehicles.

Article IX. Summary Abatement

16.18.901    Dangerous condition.

16.18.902    Lien or personal obligation.

16.18.903    Summary abatement of graffiti.

Article X. Recovery of Cost of Abatement

16.18.1001    Costs of abatement – Confirmation.

16.18.1002    –

16.18.1007    Repealed.

Article XI. Special Procedure for Abatement of Abandoned Drive-In Enterprises

16.18.1101    Purpose of article.

16.18.1102    Definition of building.

16.18.1103    Abatement.

16.18.1104    Procedure in general.

16.18.1105    Commencement of proceedings.

16.18.1106    Preliminary notice.

16.18.1107    Voluntary compliance and hearing notice.

16.18.1108    Hearings and decisions.

16.18.1109    Decision.

16.18.1110    Time for abatement – Special circumstances.

16.18.1111    Enforcement of the decision of the hearing examiner.

16.18.1112    Recovery of cost of abatement.

Article XII. Pay Telephones

16.18.1201    Pay telephones – Prohibited locations.

16.18.1202    Pay telephones – Public nuisance.

16.18.1203    Abatement generally.

16.18.1204    Replacement prohibited.

16.18.1205    Notice to pay telephone vendor.

16.18.1206    List of abated locations.

Article XIII. Securing of Unimproved Real Property

16.18.1300    Securing of unimproved real property.

16.18.1301    Notice to owner.

16.18.1302    Failure to obey order to secure.

16.18.1303    Securing of vacant structures in abatement proceedings.

Article XIV. Neighborhood Nuisance Code

16.18.1401    Title.

16.18.1402    Findings and purpose.

16.18.1403    Application.

16.18.1404    Responsibility for proper property management.

16.18.1405    Authority.

16.18.1406    Violations.

16.18.1407    Generally.

16.18.1408    Citation and order issued.

16.18.1409    Citation and order – Content, service, fee.

16.18.1410    Chief of police’s and director’s review – Administrative penalties.

16.18.1411    Right to hearing.

16.18.1412    Requests for hearing.

16.18.1413    Hearing notice.

16.18.1414    Hearings – Generally.

16.18.1415    Record of oral evidence at hearing.

16.18.1416    Continuances.

16.18.1417    Oaths.

16.18.1418    Evidence rules.

16.18.1419    Rights of parties.

16.18.1420    Official notice.

16.18.1421    Inspection of premises.

16.18.1422    Form and contents of decision – Finality of decision.

16.18.1423    Enforcement of hearing officer orders.

16.18.1424    Recovery of costs of abatement.

16.18.1425    Procedures for collection of administrative penalty.

16.18.1426    Use of costs and penalties.

Article XV. Shopping Carts

16.18.1500    Definitions.

16.18.1501    Cart identification required.

16.18.1502    Abandonment prohibited.

16.18.1503    Removal prohibited.

16.18.1504    Posted notice.

16.18.1505    Abandoned cart prevention plan.

16.18.1506    Abandoned cart prevention plan approval.

16.18.1507    Abandoned carts.

16.18.1508    Violation.

Article XVI. Repeat Nuisance Service Calls

16.18.1600    Purpose.

16.18.1601    Scope and application.

16.18.1602    Definition of nuisance service call or similar conduct.

16.18.1603    Repeat nuisance service call fee.

16.18.1604    Citation.

16.18.1605    Right to appeal repeat nuisance service call fee.

16.18.1606    Legal remedies nonexclusive.

Article XVII. Property Maintenance Code

16.18.1700    Title.

16.18.1701    Purpose and intent.

16.18.1702    Definitions.

16.18.1703    Standards for residential property.

16.18.1704    Standards for commercial property.

16.18.1705    Authority.

16.18.1706    Right of entry.

16.18.1707    Responsibility for property maintenance.

16.18.1708    Hearing examiner.

16.18.1709    Violations and penalties.

Article I. In General

16.18.101 Title.

This chapter shall be known as the nuisance code, may be cited as such, and will be referred to herein as “this code.” [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.102 Purpose.

A. It is the intent of the city council of Rancho Cordova in adopting this code to provide a comprehensive method for the identification and abatement of public nuisances within the city.

B. The provisions of this code are to be supplementary and complementary to all of the provisions of the Rancho Cordova Municipal Code, state law, and any law cognizable at common law, or in equity, and nothing herein shall be read, interpreted or construed in any manner so as to limit any existing right or power of the city of Rancho Cordova to abate any and all nuisances. [Ord. 50-2004 § 1; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.103 Application.

The provisions of this code shall apply generally to all property throughout the city of Rancho Cordova wherein any of the conditions herein specified are found to exist; provided, however, that any condition which would constitute a violation of this code, but which is permitted or authorized under any city, state or federal law, shall not be deemed to violate this code. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

Article II. Enforcement

16.18.201 Authority.

The enforcement official is hereby authorized to use the provisions of this code for the purpose of abating nuisances which exist as the result of violation of this chapter. [Ord. 50-2004 § 2; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.202 Right of entry.

To the extent authorized by law, the enforcement official may enter on such premises at reasonable times to make inspections authorized by the Rancho Cordova Municipal Code or state law. [Ord. 50-2004 § 2; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.203 Responsibility for proper property maintenance.

A. Every owner of real property within the city is required to maintain such property in a manner so as to not violate the provisions of this code, and such owner remains liable for violations thereof regardless of any contract or agreement with any third party regarding such property.

B. Every occupant, lessee or holder of any interest in property, other than an owner thereof, is required to maintain such property in the same manner as is required of the owner thereof, and the duty imposed by this section on the owner thereof shall in no instance relieve those persons herein referred to from the similar duty. [Ord. 50-2004 § 2; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.204 Hearing examiner.

Whenever the term “hearing examiner” is utilized in this chapter, it shall be deemed to refer to a person assigned the responsibility of conducting a hearing by the city manager. The city manager shall be authorized to assign hearing responsibilities from time to time to any person or persons, qualified by training or experience, whom the city manager may appoint, employ or who are retained by contract to conduct such hearings. [Ord. 50-2004 § 2; Ord. 8-2004 § 2; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.205 Violations and penalties.

A. Notice to Appear Citation. Law enforcement agencies and the enforcement official may issue a notice to appear citation to the property owner, any person occupying or leasing the property or premises of another, and/or other responsible party for violation of this code.

B. Infractions. A property owner, any person occupying or leasing the property or premises of another, and/or other responsible party who violates any provision of this code shall be guilty of an infraction. Each day, or portion thereof, a violation exists may be a new and separate offense. Any person convicted of an infraction shall be subject to payment of a fine pursuant to the terms set forth in Section 36900 of the State of California Government Code, as that section or its successor reads at the time of the offense, plus any additional penalties assessed by the court. After a third conviction of the same section of this code, subsequent violations of the same section may be charged as a misdemeanor rather than as an infraction.

C. Misdemeanor. Any person convicted of a misdemeanor under this code shall be punished by a fine of not more than $1,000, or by imprisonment not to exceed six months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

D. Notwithstanding subsections (A), (B) and (C) of this section, the prosecuting authority may file a misdemeanor for any violation of this code, including a failure to obey an administrative citation as described in RCMC 1.01.190(K). In addition, the city attorney or his or her authorized designee may take other steps and apply to such court to seek any and all legal or equitable relief as permitted under law.

E. Second or Subsequent Civil or Criminal Judgment – Treble Damages. Pursuant to Section 38773.7 of the Government Code, upon entry of a second or subsequent civil or criminal judgment within a two-year period finding that an owner of property is responsible for a condition that may be abated in accordance with the abatement procedure outlined in this chapter, the court may order the owner to pay treble the costs of the abatement. This section does not apply to conditions abated pursuant to Section 17980 of the Health and Safety Code.

F. Administrative Citations.

1. Applicability. This section provides for administrative citations, which are in addition to all other legal remedies, criminal or civil, which the city may pursue to address a violation of this code. Use of this section is at the sole discretion of the city. This section is authorized under Sections 36901 and 53069.4 of the Government Code.

The procedures in this section shall not be used to enforce a continuing violation regarding building, plumbing, electrical, or other similar structural or zoning issues, without first allowing the person in violation a reasonable time to correct the violation, consistent with the procedures set forth in subsection (F)(2) of this section.

2. Continuing Violations of Building and Zoning Issues. If a violation is a continuing one and pertains to a building, plumbing, electrical, or other structural or zoning issue that does not create an immediate danger to health or safety, the city shall provide a reasonable period of time for the responsible person to correct or otherwise remedy the violation before the imposition of an administrative citation or penalty.

3. Administrative Citation.

a. Authority. Whenever an enforcement officer determines that a violation of any of the provisions of any of the ordinances of the city has occurred, the enforcement officer has the authority to issue an administrative citation to the person responsible for the violation.

b. Contents of Citation. Each administrative citation shall contain the following information:

i. The date of the violation.

ii. The address or a definite description of the location where the violation occurred.

iii. The section of the code violated and a description of the violation.

iv. The amount of the fine for the code violation.

v. A description of the fine payment process, including a description of the time within which and the place to which the fine shall be paid.

vi. An order prohibiting the continuation or repeated occurrence of the code violation described in the administrative citation.

vii. A description of the administrative citation review process, including the time within which the administrative citation may be contested and the place from which a request for hearing form to contest the administrative citation may be obtained.

viii. The name and signature of the citing enforcement officer. In the case of a continuing violation involving building, plumbing, electrical, or other similar structural or zoning issues identified under subsection (F)(2) of this section, the administrative citation shall also have attached a copy of the prior notice that was sent to the responsible party.

c. Delivery of Citation. The administrative citation shall be delivered personally or sent by certified mail to the person responsible for the violation.

d. Dismissal of Citation. At any time before the hearing, if the enforcement officer determines that there was no violation as charged in the administrative citation or that the citation should be dismissed in the interest of justice, the enforcement officer shall dismiss the administrative citation, cancel the hearing, and refund any administrative citation fine.

4. Amount of Fine.

a. Maximum Amount of Fine. The maximum amount of the fine imposed for each code violation under this section is as follows:

i. One hundred dollars per day for a first violation;

ii. Two hundred dollars per day for a second violation of the same ordinance within one year; and

iii. Five hundred dollars per day for each additional violation of the same ordinance within one year.

b. Additional Amounts. Administrative costs, interest, late payment charges, costs of compliance reinspections, and collection costs are in addition to the fine. These include:

i. Administrative costs: based on time spent by code enforcement department staff, supervisors and city attorney’s office, at the full-cost hourly rate of each employee, including salary, benefits and overhead.

ii. Late payment charges: due at the rate of 10 percent per month.

iii. Compliance reinspections: based on staff time at the full-cost hourly rate.

iv. Collection costs: actual collection costs.

c. Discretion of Enforcement Officer or Hearing Office – Factors in Establishing Fine. In determining the amount of the fine and additional amounts, the enforcement officer or hearing officer has the discretion to set the fine lower than the maximum amount, or to reduce the additional costs, based on any or all of the following factors:

i. The duration of the violation;

ii. The frequency, recurrence and number of violations, related or unrelated, by the same violator;

iii. The seriousness of the violation;

iv. The good faith efforts of the violator to come into compliance;

v. The economic impact of the fine on the violator;

vi. The impact of the violation on the community; and

vii. Such other factors as justice requires.

5. Payment of the Fine.

a. Due Date. The fine shall be paid to the city within 30 days from the date of the administrative citation. The city may suspend the imposition of fines for any period of time during which the violator has filed for necessary permits, and such permits are required to achieve compliance, and the permit applications are actively pending before the appropriate governmental agency.

b. Refund. The city shall refund a fine paid if the hearing officer determines, after a hearing held under subsection (F)(8) of this section, that the person charged in the citation was not responsible for the violation or that there was no violation as charged.

c. Further Violations Not Excused. Payment of a fine under this section shall not excuse or discharge any continuation or repeated occurrence of the code violation.

6. Hearing Request.

a. Hearing Request. A person who receives an administrative citation may contest the citation on the basis that there was no violation of the code or that he or she is not the responsible party. To contest the citation, the person shall submit a request for hearing form to the city within 30 days from the date of the administrative citation. Directions on how to obtain the request form will be provided on the administrative citation. The completed request must be submitted together with an advance deposit of the fine.

b. Notice of Hearing. The person requesting the hearing shall be notified of the time and place set for the hearing at least 10 days before the date of the hearing.

c. Additional Reports. If the enforcement officer submits an additional written report concerning the administrative citation to the hearing officer for consideration at the hearing, then a copy of this report also shall be provided to the person requesting the hearing at least five days before the date of the hearing.

7. Hearing Officer. Pursuant to RCMC 16.18.204, a hearing officer will be assigned the responsibility of conducting a hearing by the city manager. The city manager shall be authorized to assign hearing responsibilities from time to time to any person or persons, qualified by training or experience, whom the city manager may appoint, employ or who are retained by contract to conduct such hearings.

8. Hearing Procedure.

a. Setting the Hearing. A hearing before the hearing officer shall be set for a date that is not less than 15 days nor more than 60 days from the date that the request for hearing is filed. The person requesting the hearing shall be notified of the time and place set for the hearing as soon as it is set, and at least 10 days before the hearing. If the enforcement officer submits a written report concerning the citation to the hearing officer for consideration at the hearing, then a copy of the report shall be served on the person requesting the hearing at least five days before the hearing. No hearing shall be held unless the fine has been deposited in advance, under subsection (F)(6)(a) of this section.

b. Failure to Appear. The failure of the person requesting the hearing to appear at the hearing shall constitute a forfeiture of the fine and a failure to exhaust his or her administrative remedies.

c. At the Hearing. The administrative citation and any additional report submitted by the enforcement officer shall constitute prima facie evidence of the respective facts contained in those documents. At the hearing, the party contesting the citation shall be given the opportunity to testify and to present evidence concerning the citation.

d. Continuances. The hearing officer may continue the hearing and may request additional information from the enforcement officer or the person receiving the citation before issuing the decision.

9. Hearing Officer’s Decision.

a. Decision. After considering the testimony and evidence presented at the hearing, the hearing officer shall issue a written decision to uphold, dismiss or modify the administrative citation. The hearing officer shall state the reasons for the decision and shall send a copy of the decision to the person that requested the hearing and to the enforcement officer. The decision of the hearing officer is final, and may not be appealed.

b. Status of Fine. If the citation is upheld, then the fine amount on deposit with the city shall be retained by the city.

If the citation is dismissed, the city shall promptly refund the amount of any fine deposited, together with interest at the average rate earned on the city’s portfolio for the period of time that the fine was held by the city.

10. Late Payment Charges. A person who fails to pay to the city the fine imposed under this section on or before the date that fine is due is also liable for the payment of the applicable late payment charges set forth in subsection (F)(6)(b) of this section.

11. Recovery of Administrative Citation Fines and Costs.

a. Costs of Securing Payment. A person who fails to pay any fine or other charges owed to the city under this section is liable in any action brought by the city for all costs incurred in securing payment of the delinquent amount, including but not limited to administrative costs and attorneys’ fees. Such collection costs are in addition to any fines, interest, and late charges.

b. Other Costs. In addition to the administrative citation fine, the city may collect its administrative costs, interest, late payment charges, costs of compliance reinspections, and collection costs.

c. Collection. The city may collect any past due administrative citation fine and other costs and charges by any available legal means, including without limitation placing a lien on the property.

12. Right to Judicial Review. A person aggrieved by the hearing officer’s decision on an administrative citation may obtain review of the decision by filing a lawsuit with the superior court in Sacramento County within 20 days after service of the final decision in accordance with the timelines and provisions set forth in Section 53069.4 of the California Government Code.

13. Notices.

a. Method of Service. The administrative citation and all notices required to be given by this section shall be served on the responsible party either by personal service, by first class mail, or by certified mail, return receipt requested.

b. Real Property. When real property is involved in the violation, the original notice, the administrative citation and all notices required to be given by this section shall be served on the responsible party and, if different, to the property owner at the address as shown on the last equalized county assessment roll. If personal service or service by mail on the property owner is unsuccessful, a copy of each notice and the citation shall be conspicuously posted at the property which is the subject of the violation. The city may, in its discretion, also serve notice on a tenant, a mortgagor or any other person having an interest in the property.

c. Failure to Receive Notice. The failure of a person to receive a required notice shall not affect the validity of any proceedings taken under this section.

G. Attorneys’ Fees. Pursuant to Section 38773.5 of the Government Code, attorneys’ fees may be recovered by the prevailing party. However, in no action, administrative proceeding, or special proceeding shall an award of attorneys’ fees to a prevailing party exceed the amount of reasonable attorneys’ fees incurred by the city in the action or proceedings.

H. In addition to the penalties provided for in this section, any condition caused or permitted to exist in violation of any of the provisions of any of the ordinances of the city is hereby declared to be a public nuisance and may, by the city, be abated as provided for in this code. [Ord. 43-2013 § 7; Ord. 60-2006 § 1; Ord. 54-2006 § 1; Ord. 50-2004 § 2; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

Article III. Definitions

16.18.301 Generally.

For purposes of this code, the following words shall have the following specified meanings:

“Abandoned drive-in enterprise” means any drive-in enterprise which has ceased providing goods and services for at least 180 days. The term “abandoned drive-in enterprise” shall not include any enterprise, all or a part of which has been lawfully converted to another use permitted by zoning regulations, and for which all necessary permits, licenses and other entitlements have been issued, so long as the premises are occupied and maintained for such use.

“Drive-in enterprise” means any commercial enterprise such as a service station or drive-in restaurant upon which enclosed buildings occupy less than 25 percent of the lot area and where the primary method of providing goods and services to customers is by means of a drive-through service.

“Enforcement official” means the city manager, or his or her designee.

“Junk” means any cast-off, damaged, discarded, junked, obsolete, salvaged, scrapped, unusable, worn-out or wrecked object, thing or material composed in whole or in part of asphalt, brick, carbon, cement, plastic or other synthetic substance, fiber, glass, metal, paper, plaster, plaster of paris, rubber, terra cotta, wool, wood, cloth, canvas, organic matter or other substance, which is ready for destruction or has been collected or stored for salvage or conversion to some use.

“Junk yard” means any premises on which any junk is abandoned, bailed, bartered, bought, brought, bundled, deposited, disassembled, disposed of, exchanged, handled, kept, packed, processed, scattered, shipped, sold, stored or transported, regardless of whether or not such activity is done for profit.

“Owner” means the owner of record of real property, occupant, lessee, or interested holder in same, as the case may be.

“Premises” means any real property, or improvements thereon, as the case may be.

“Property” means premises.

“Public right-of-way” shall include, but not be limited to, a street, alley, lane, or sidewalk.

“Service station” means any premises upon which the improvements are designed and built for the primary purpose of selling to or providing others with fuels for internal combustion engines of motor vehicles, whether or not providing related automotive maintenance and repair services. [Ord. 50-2004 § 3; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

Article IV. Nuisances Specified

16.18.401 Generally.

It is hereby declared a violation of this code for any person owning, leasing, occupying or having charge or possession of any premises in the city to maintain such premises in such a manner that any one or more of the conditions or activities described in the following subsections are found to exist:

A. The keeping, storage, depositing, or accumulation on the premises of any personal property, including but not limited to abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicles, automotive parts and equipment, appliances, furniture, containers, packing materials, scrap metal, wood, building materials, junk, rubbish, and debris, which is within the view of persons on adjacent or nearby real property or the public right-of-way and which constitutes visual blight or reduces the aesthetic appearance of the neighborhood or is offensive to the senses or is detrimental to nearby property or property values; provided, however, that wood and building materials being used or to be used for a project of repair or renovation for which a building permit has been obtained may be stored for such a period of time as is necessary expeditiously to complete the project.

B. The keeping, storage, depositing or accumulation of dirt, sand, gravel, concrete or other similar materials, which constitutes blight or reduces the aesthetic appearance of the neighborhood or is offensive to the senses or is detrimental to nearby property or property values.

C. The operation of a junk yard or automobile dismantling yard, except in an industrial zone pursuant to a special use permit.

D. Any abandoned drive-in enterprise.

E. Any dangerous, unsightly, or blighted condition which is detrimental to the health, safety or welfare of the public.

F. Any condition so as to create any of the following conditions on adjacent or contiguous public property, except as may be allowed by the Rancho Cordova Municipal Code or zoning code:

1. Outdoor Storage, Operations or Encroachment.

a. The tracking of mud, dirt, sand, gravel, and concrete onto the street or public right-of-way.

b. The spilling of debris, including trash, paper, wood, plant cuttings and other vegetation, onto the street or other public right-of-way.

c. Vehicles and/or other materials associated with business activity stored on the street or in the public right-of-way.

d. Trash receptacles stored in the street or in the public right-of-way anytime outside of the 12 hours before or after the designated pickup time.

2. Miscellaneous.

a. Any other condition or use of property which gives rise to a reasonable determination that the effect of said use or condition on adjacent public property represents some threat to the health and welfare of the public by virtue of its unsafe, dangerous or hazardous nature, or which is so out of harmony with the standards of properties in the vicinity so as to cause substantial diminution of the enjoyment, use, or property values of such properties.

G. Any condition recognized in law or in equity as constituting a public nuisance.

H. The maintenance of the exterior of any vacant or unoccupied building or the interior of any such building which is readily visible from any public street or adjacent parcel of property in a state of unsightliness so as to constitute a blighted condition detrimental to property values in the neighborhood or otherwise detrimental to the public welfare.

I. Any unimproved real property which has become a dumping ground for litter, garbage, junk, debris, or discarded vehicles, vehicle parts and/or vehicle hulks, and which real property has been subject to abatement on one or more occasions by the city.

Once proceedings have been commenced pursuant to this chapter to declare a property to be a public nuisance under this subsection, no such property shall be deemed to be in compliance with this chapter solely because such property thereafter becomes occupied.

J. The maintenance or keeping of the premises in a neglected, run-down or improperly maintained condition, which creates or promotes a condition that is injurious to the health, safety and/or general welfare of the public, or which is readily visible from any public right-of-way or adjacent parcel of property and which constitutes visual blight or reduces the aesthetic appearance of the neighborhood or is offensive to the senses or is detrimental to nearby property or property values. The provisions of this section are intended to apply to the exterior and interior of buildings or other structures on the premises and any fixtures thereto. Conditions in violation of this provision shall include, but will not be limited to: untended vegetation or landscaping; broken doors, windows or other fixtures; the accumulation of junk, rubbish and debris; and buildings, fences or other structures that are cracked, leaning, fallen, decayed, deteriorated or defaced.

K. The maintenance or keeping of any vacant or unoccupied building in an unsecured condition. Conditions in violation of this provision shall include, but not be limited to, broken exterior doors or windows, or the absence of locks or other security devices on exterior doors or windows.

L. The maintenance or accumulation on the premises of any junk, rubbish, debris, vegetation or other condition that impedes or impairs access to, or the use of, any public right-of-way or traffic control device.

M. The maintenance or keeping of any commercial signage in a neglected, run-down or improperly maintained condition, which creates or promotes a condition that is injurious to the health, safety and/or general welfare of the public, or which is readily visible from any public right-of-way or adjacent parcel of property and which constitutes visual blight or reduces the aesthetic appearance of the neighborhood or is offensive to the senses or is detrimental to nearby property or property values.

N. The maintenance or keeping of any commercial parking lot or sidewalk, which is open to use by the public, in a neglected, run-down or improperly maintained condition, which creates or promotes a condition that is injurious to the health, safety and/or general welfare of the public, or which is readily visible from any public right-of-way or adjacent parcel of property and which constitutes visual blight or reduces the aesthetic appearance of the neighborhood or is offensive to the senses or is detrimental to nearby property or property values.

O. The maintenance or keeping of any parking lot or sidewalk open for common use in a multifamily housing complex in a neglected, run-down or improperly maintained condition, which creates or promotes a condition that is injurious to the health, safety and/or general welfare of the public, or which is readily visible from any public right-of-way or adjacent parcel of property and which constitutes visual blight or reduces the aesthetic appearance of the neighborhood or is offensive to the senses or is detrimental to nearby property or property values.

P. The maintenance or keeping of clotheslines or clothes hanging in front yards, side yards, porches or balconies, and visible from the public right-of-way adjacent to or across from the front yard. [Ord. 25-2005 § 1; Ord. 50-2004 § 4; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.402 Complete and timely correction required.

A. Any building for which a notice and order has been issued is not brought into compliance with the provisions of this code merely by vacating the building and securing it against entry. Such interim action does not constitute a satisfactory correction or abatement of violations of state building standards. Vacant buildings, even if boarded and fenced, can create a fire hazard, and may contribute to unhealthy, blighting and deteriorating influences in the neighborhood. Complete corrective action must be accomplished according to a reasonable and feasible schedule for expeditious repair.

B. Any vacant building that is unrepaired after one year from the date a notice of violation and order to correct concerning it has been issued by the city under this chapter, Chapter 16.20 or 16.22 RCMC may be abated by the city through the actions and procedures established in Article V of this chapter (RCMC 16.18.501 through 16.18.513).

C. Notwithstanding any provision of this code to the contrary, where the city determines that the health, safety and welfare of the public require, the city may, at any time, commence any appropriate action or proceeding to correct or abate the violations or nuisance.

D. For purposes of subsection (B) of this section, a building is “vacant” if, on more than one occasion, during a previous 12-month period, it has had no lawful occupant present during a consecutive 48-hour period.

E. For purposes of subsection (B) of this section, a building is “unrepaired” if actual work correcting all violations on the premises is not being diligently pursued under a reasonable and feasible schedule of expeditious repair. Securing the property against entry, such as by boarding or fencing the premises, shall not constitute actual work correcting all violations on the premises. Failure to obtain necessary permits and failure to commence actual on-site work to correct all violations shall constitute satisfactory evidence of lack of diligence.

F. In an action or proceeding brought hereunder it shall be presumed that the owner of the subject property has failed to make a timely choice of repairing or demolishing the building under Section 17980(b) of the Health and Safety Code.

G. If unusual or mitigating circumstances warrant, the enforcement official or designee may extend the one-year period referenced in subsection (B) of this section. In such cases, the enforcement official will seek input from the complainant, neighborhood associations or block watches in the area, area residents, or other staff as appropriate, to assist in making a determination.

H. A building or structure in good repair, or which is actively being offered for sale or rent, or is involved in legal proceedings prohibiting repair, sale or lease may be exempted by the enforcement official if the property owner demonstrates that the building or structure does not pose a threat to the health, safety or welfare of any person. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1146 § 4, 1999; SCC 1031 § 1, 1996].

Article V. Abatement Generally

16.18.501 Alternative abatement process.

In addition to the enforcement procedures authorized for abatement of public nuisances and violations pursuant to RCMC 16.18.205 and Chapters 6.20, 6.28, 6.32, 6.68, 6.120, 16.02, 16.04, 16.20, 16.22 and 17.04 RCMC, RCMC Titles 4 and 8, the zoning code, and any applicable provisions of state or federal law, upon a determination by the enforcement official, in his or her absolute discretion, he or she may elect to employ the alternative enforcement procedures to cause abatement of the nuisance as provided herein. [Ord. 50-2004 § 5; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.502 Commencement of proceedings – Notice of pending enforcement action.

A. Whenever the enforcement official has inspected or caused to be inspected any premises and has found and determined that such premises are in violation of this code, he may commence proceedings to cause abatement of the nuisance as provided herein by notifying in writing the owner of the premises indicating the nature of the violation and ordering the action necessary to correct it. The content of such notice shall be as stated in RCMC 16.18.503.

B. A notice of pending enforcement action describing the property and the nature of the claim shall be recorded by the city. When the enforcement action has been fully resolved and all costs associated therewith finally settled, a certificate of compliance describing the property and referencing the recorded notice of pending enforcement action shall be recorded. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1146 § 5, 1999; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.503 Notice.

A. The enforcement official shall issue a notice directed to the owner of record of the premises. The notice shall contain:

1. The street address and such other description as is required to identify the premises.

2. A statement specifying the conditions which constitute the nuisance.

3. A request that the nuisance be corrected by a date certain, which shall be a reasonable time in the judgment of the enforcement official, based upon the circumstances of the particular violation, the period of time the nuisance has existed, and the potential threat to public health and safety created by the violation. If the violation pertains to building, electrical, or other similar structural or zoning issues where the violation does not create an immediate threat to health or safety, the responsible party shall be provided not less than 10 calendar days in which to correct, abate, or otherwise remedy the violation.

4. A statement that the failure to correct or abate the nuisance may result in the nuisance being removed under authority of the city and the costs of such removal and abatement made a legal charge against the owner or owners of the property, a lien or special assessment on the property and subject to collection with property taxes in accordance with this chapter.

5. One of the following:

a. A statement referencing the right to appeal the enforcement official’s determination. Such statement shall provide instruction on how to request an appeal hearing, a time frame for requesting an appeal hearing, and a statement that the failure to file a timely and proper appeal shall constitute a failure to exhaust administrative remedies and preclude judicial review. The time frame for requesting an appeal shall be consistent with the date set forth by the enforcement official for correcting the violation and in no event shall the time for requesting an appeal hearing be more than 15 days from the date the notice was issued unless in the judgment of the enforcement official an extension is warranted based upon the particular circumstances of the case. If requested, a hearing shall be set no less than 10 calendar days after the request is received. Enforcement of a notice shall be stayed during the pendency of an appeal therefrom which is properly and timely filed; or

b. An order to appear before a hearing examiner at a stated time, but in no event less than 20 calendar days after having mailed such notice, to show cause why the premises should not be declared a public nuisance and the same abated in accordance with this code. The order shall advise the owner that he has the option of voluntarily abating the nuisance prior to the date set for hearing. If the owner chooses voluntary abatement, such abatement must be completed prior to the hearing date. The owner must advise the enforcement official in writing that he will abate the nuisance, and the date of completion. The enforcement official will inspect the premises on the completion date, and if the nuisance has been abated, the hearing will be taken off the calendar. The owner may request a continuance of the hearing pursuant to RCMC 16.18.506.

6. A statement advising the owner that he may be responsible for all costs incurred by the city for any abatement activities, including hearings.

7. A statement advising the owner that, pursuant to Section 38773.5 of the Government Code, the city intends to seek recovery of attorneys’ fees incurred in any abatement activity, and that attorneys’ fees may be recovered by the prevailing party.

B. The notice, and any amended or supplemental notice, shall be served either by personal delivery or by mailing a copy by certified mail, postage prepaid, return receipt requested, upon the owner of record or his/her/their address as it appears on the latest equalized assessment roll of Sacramento County, or as known to the enforcement official; a copy of the notice shall also be posted on the premises. The failure of any person to receive a notice of violation that was sent via certified mail shall not affect the validity of any enforcement proceedings under this code.

C. Proof of service of the hearing notice shall be certified by written declaration under penalty of perjury executed by the person effecting service, declaring the time, date and manner in which service was made.

D. The failure of a notice to satisfy all of the requirements of this provision shall not affect the validity of any other enforcement proceedings under this code. [Ord. 50-2004 § 6; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.504 Hearings – Generally.

At the time set for hearing, the hearing examiner shall proceed to hear the testimony of the enforcement official, the owner, and other competent persons respecting the condition of the premises, and other relevant facts concerning the matter. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.505 Record of oral evidence at hearing.

A. The proceedings at the hearing may be reported by a tape recorder. Either party may provide a certified shorthand reporter to maintain a record of the proceedings at the party’s own expense.

B. Preparation of a record of the proceeding shall be governed by Section 1094.6 of the California Code of Civil Procedure, as presently written or hereinafter amended. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.506 Continuances.

The hearing examiner may, upon request of the owner of the premises or upon request of the enforcement official, grant continuances from time to time for good cause shown, or upon his own motion. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.507 Oaths – Certification.

The hearing examiner or certified shorthand reporter shall administer the oath or affirmation. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.508 Evidence rules.

Section 11513, Subsections (a), (b) and (c), of the Government Code of the state of California, as presently written or hereinafter amended, shall apply to hearings conducted under this chapter. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.509 Rights of parties.

Each party may represent themselves, or be represented by anyone of their choice. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.510 Official notice.

In reaching a decision, official notice may be taken, either before or after submission of the case for decision, of any fact which may be judicially noticed by the courts of this state or which may appear in any of the official records of the city or any of its departments. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.511 Inspection of premises.

The hearing examiner may inspect the premises involved in the hearing prior to, during or after the hearing; provided, that:

A. Notice of such inspection shall be given to the parties before the inspection is made;

B. The parties are given an opportunity to be present during the inspection; and

C. The hearing examiner shall state for the record during the hearing, or file a written statement after the hearing for inclusion in the hearing record, upon completion of the inspection, the material facts observed and the conclusion drawn therefrom;

D. Each party then shall have a right to rebut or explain the matters so stated by the hearing examiner either for the record during the hearing or by filing a written statement after the hearing for inclusion in the hearing record. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.512 Form and contents of decision – Finality of decision.

If it is shown by a preponderance of the evidence that the condition of the premises constitutes a public nuisance:

A. The decision of the hearing examiner shall be in writing and shall contain findings of fact and a determination of the issues presented. The decision shall also require the owner to commence abatement of the nuisance not later than 15 days after the issuance of the decision, and that the abatement be completed within such time as specified by the hearing examiner, or in the alternative, within the time designated by the enforcement official. The decision shall inform the owner that if the nuisance is not abated within the time specified, the nuisance may be abated by the city in such manner as may be ordered by the enforcement official and the expense thereof made a lien or special assessment upon the property involved.

B. The decision shall also state that the city, as the prevailing party, is entitled to recovery of attorneys’ fees as part of its costs in the nuisance abatement action.

C. The decision shall also inform the applicant that the time for judicial review is governed by Section 1094.6 of the California Code of Civil Procedure. Copies of the decision shall be forthwith delivered to the parties personally or sent to them by certified mail. The decision shall be final when signed by the hearing examiner and served as herein provided. [Ord. 50-2004 § 7; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.513 Service of the hearing examiner’s decision.

Upon issuance of the decision, the enforcement official shall post a copy thereof conspicuously on the premises involved and shall serve a copy on the record owner, in the same manner as set forth in RCMC 16.18.503(B), and one copy shall be served on each of the following, if known to the enforcement official or disclosed from official public records: the holder of any mortgage or deed of trust or other lien or encumbrance of record; the owner or holder of any lease of record; and the holder of any other estate or legal interest of record in the premises. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

Article VI. Special Procedure for Abatement of Certain Vehicles

16.18.601 Purpose of article.

A. The provisions of this article are intended to provide a procedure for the abatement of abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicles, or parts thereof, and are enacted under the authority granted by the state of California under Section 22660 of the Vehicle Code.

B. It is the intent of the city council to provide that the abatement of public nuisances consisting of abandoned, wrecked, dismantled and inoperative vehicles may be carried on either concurrently with or separately from the abatement of other conditions, if any, constituting a public nuisance on any premises within the city, as deemed appropriate under the circumstances. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.602 Procedure – Same except as specified.

The alternative procedure specified in this article shall be used in the case of a nuisance which consists solely of abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle(s) or parts thereof. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.603 Notice.

When the involved enforcement official determines pursuant to his inspection conducted according to RCMC 16.18.202 that the conditions existing on the premises constituting a violation of the provisions of this code are the result of the existence on said premises of any abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle(s), or the parts thereof, the enforcement official may do the following:

A. Issue a notice of intention to abate and remove the vehicle(s) or parts thereof as a public nuisance, directed to the owner of the premises on which the vehicle(s) or parts thereof are located and the owner of the vehicle(s) or parts thereof. This notice shall contain:

1. The street address and such other description as is required to identify the premises on which the vehicle(s) or parts thereof is located.

2. The identity of the vehicle(s) or parts thereof to be abated.

3. A statement that the enforcement official has found the vehicle(s) or parts thereof to be a public nuisance as specified in this code with a special citation to the applicable section hereof, and to other sections of the Rancho Cordova Municipal Code if applicable, including sufficient detail to provide the owner with information as to the conditions constituting the alleged nuisance.

4. A statement of the action required to be taken as determined by the enforcement official, and that such action is to be completed within 10 days after the mailing of the notice.

5. A statement providing for a hearing by the hearing examiner upon written request to the enforcement official by the owner of the premises on which the vehicle(s) or parts thereof are located or by the owner of the vehicle(s) or parts thereof within 10 days after the mailing of the notice of the existence of a public nuisance on the premises.

6. A statement that failure either to take the action required or to request a hearing within the applicable 10-day period shall be deemed a waiver of such rights, and that the enforcement official may proceed to abate the nuisance.

7. A statement advising that, pursuant to Section 38773.5 of the Government Code, the city intends to seek recovery of attorneys’ fees incurred as part of the summary abatement costs.

B. The notice shall be sent certified mail, postage prepaid, to the owner of the premises as shown on the latest equalized assessment roll of the county of Sacramento using such address as may be shown by said assessment roll or such other address as may be known by the enforcement official and to the last registered and legal owner(s) of record, unless the vehicle(s) or parts thereof is in such condition that identification numbers are not available to determine ownership.

C. Upon issuance of the notice, the enforcement official may provide additional notice by posting a copy thereof conspicuously on the vehicle(s) or parts thereof to be abated. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1066 § 4, 1997; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.604 Notice – Right of owner of premises to disclaim responsibility for vehicle.

The notice shall include therein the following statement on the copy of the notice sent to the owner of the premises:

As to any vehicle(s) or parts thereof listed herein, you may file with the hearing examiner a sworn written statement denying responsibility for the presence on your property of the vehicle(s) or parts thereof listed, together with your reasons for such denial.

This statement shall be construed as a request for a hearing by you which you need not attend. At the hearing, your statement will be considered by the hearing examiner in determining whether the cost of removing said vehicle(s) or parts thereof will be assessed against your property as a lien in the event that removal of the vehicle(s) or parts thereof are undertaken by the city.

You need not file a sworn statement if you intend to attend the hearing, but you may do so if you wish. Such sworn statement will be considered only as to vehicle(s) or parts thereof, and will not be considered as to the existence of any other condition on your property which may be found to constitute a nuisance in this or any other proceeding.

[Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.605 Hearing notice.

Whenever the owner of the premises on which the vehicle(s) or parts thereof is located or the owner of the vehicle(s) or parts thereof requests a hearing (hereinafter called “requesting party”), the enforcement official shall issue a hearing notice to the requesting party allowing that party to appear before a hearing examiner to show cause why the vehicle(s) or parts thereof is not a public nuisance and should not be abated by the city. The hearing notice shall be served upon the requesting party either personally or by mailing a copy of such notice by certified mail, postage prepaid, return receipt requested, not less than five calendar days prior to the hearing date. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.606 Hearing by hearing examiner.

At the time fixed in the notice required by RCMC 16.18.605, the hearing examiner shall proceed to hear the testimony of the enforcement official, requesting party, and other competent persons regarding the condition of the vehicle(s) or parts thereof and other relevant facts concerning the matter. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.607 Form and contents of decision – Finality of decision.

A. If it is shown by a preponderance of all the evidence that the condition of the vehicle(s) or parts thereof constitute a violation of this code, the decision of the hearing examiner shall be in writing and shall contain findings of fact and a determination of the issues presented. The hearing examiner shall issue an order that the vehicle(s) or parts thereof are a public nuisance and direct the owner to abate the nuisance, and that if the nuisance is not abated, it may be abated by the city in such manner as may be ordered by the enforcement official and the expense thereof may be made a lien on the property involved, unless the hearing examiner has found that the owner of the premises is not responsible for the presence of the vehicle(s) or parts thereof on his property. The order shall identify the abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle(s), or parts thereof, to be abated. The order shall require that abatement of the nuisance be physically completed five days after issuance of the order or, in the alternative, within such time as the enforcement official shall determine to be reasonable under all of the circumstances.

B. The decision shall also inform the requesting party that the time for judicial review is governed by Section 1094.6 of the California Code of Civil Procedure. Copies of the decision shall be forthwith delivered to the parties personally or sent to them by certified mail. The decision shall be final when signed by the hearing examiner and served as herein provided.

C. The decision shall state that the prevailing party may seek recovery of attorneys’ fees. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1066 § 5, 1997; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.608 Preventing rotation of abandoned, wrecked, dismantled and inoperative vehicles.

In the event the enforcement official shall determine that the owner or person in possession of premises which have been declared a nuisance and ordered abated according to the provisions of this code, in whole or in part, because of the existence thereof of any abandoned, wrecked, dismantled, or inoperative vehicle, or parts thereof, has removed from said premises the vehicle or vehicles or parts thereof specifically identified and ordered abated by the enforcement official in his notice issued pursuant to RCMC 16.18.605, and has caused or permitted another vehicle or other vehicles, or parts thereof, to replace those removed or ordered removed, the enforcement official shall:

A. Notify the owner of the premises that said act is in violation of the notice of the enforcement official, and order the owner to remove such vehicle(s) or parts thereof; and

B. Notify the city attorney of the violation. The city attorney shall have recourse to and is hereby authorized to use every remedy provided by law to prevent the owner of the premises from placing or causing to be placed upon the premises any abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle, or parts thereof. [Revised during 2008 codification; Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.609 Inapplicability to certain vehicles.

The provisions of this article shall not apply to any vehicle(s) or parts thereof which:

A. Is completely enclosed within a building in a lawful manner where it is not visible from the street or other public or private property; or

B. Is stored or parked in a lawful manner on private property in connection with the business of a licensed dismantler, licensed vehicle dealer or a junk yard, provided such business is not unsightly or otherwise detrimental to the public health, safety or welfare. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.610 Abandoned vehicles – Abandonment prohibited.

No person shall abandon a vehicle upon public or private property without the express or implied consent of the owner or person in lawful possession or control of the property. Violation of this section shall be a misdemeanor. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.611 Costs of abating abandoned vehicles.

Notwithstanding any other provision of this code, the costs of abating any inoperative, dismantled or abandoned vehicle, or parts thereof, including the actual tow costs, attorneys’ fees, plus an administrative fee covering direct and indirect overhead to be set by resolution of the city council, is the joint and several personal obligation of the property owner and the last registered owner; provided, however, that a property owner who establishes lack of responsibility for the presence of the vehicle or parts on the property as permitted by RCMC 16.18.604 and 16.18.607 shall not be personally liable for the costs; and provided, further, that a last registered owner who can satisfy the requirements of Section 22524(b) of the Vehicle Code shall not be personally liable for the costs. The director shall take the appropriate steps to collect the costs from those who are liable. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1066 § 6, 1997; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

Article VII. Enforcement of Order of Hearing Examiner

16.18.701 Generally.

After any order of the hearing examiner made pursuant to this code shall have become final, no person to whom any such order is directed shall fail, neglect or refuse to obey any such order. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.702 Failure to obey order.

If, after any order of the hearing examiner made pursuant to this code has become final, the person to whom such order is directed shall fail, neglect or refuse to obey such order, the enforcement official may institute any appropriate action to abate such conditions on the subject premises which constitute the public nuisance. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.703 Failure to complete work.

A. Wherever the required abatement is not completed within the time so specified in the order, the enforcement official may, in addition to any other remedy herein provided, cause the nuisance to be abated, so as to put the premises in such a condition that no violation of this code exists thereon.

B. The cost of such abatement shall be assessed against the property as a lien or made a personal obligation of the owner thereof as provided in Article X of this chapter. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.704 Extension of date for completion.

A. Upon receipt of an application from the person required to conform to the order by a date fixed in the order, and an agreement by such person that he will comply with the order if allowed additional time, the enforcement official may, in his discretion, grant an extension of time, not to exceed an additional 120 days, within which to complete such abatement, if the enforcement official determines that such an extension of time will not create or perpetuate a situation imminently dangerous to life or property.

B. The authority of the enforcement official to extend time is limited to the physical abatement of the nuisance or for such other purposes as may be reasonably required by the circumstances of the case, but such extension will not in any way affect or extend the time to appeal the order. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.705 Interference with work prohibited.

No person shall obstruct, impede or interfere with any officer, employee, contractor or authorized representative of the city, or with any person who owns or holds any estate or interest in any premises on which a nuisance exists and which must be abated under the provisions of this code, whenever such officer, employee, contractor or authorized representative of the city, or person having an interest or estate in such premises is engaged in the work of abating any nuisance as required by the provisions of this code, or in performing any necessary act preliminary to or incidental to such work authorized or directed pursuant to this code. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

Article VIII. Removal of Motor Vehicles and Transfer of Title

16.18.801 Generally.

A. In the event the enforcement official must cause to be removed a vehicle ordered abated pursuant to Article VI of this chapter, the enforcement official may cause the vehicle, or parts thereof, to be taken to a licensed scrap yard or automobile dismantler’s yard.

B. Thereafter the licensed dismantler or owner of the commercial enterprise who receives possession of the vehicle from the city shall be deemed to be the sole owner of the vehicle by reason of involuntary transfer made pursuant to law. After a vehicle has been removed it shall not thereafter be reconstructed or made operable, unless it is a vehicle which qualifies for either horseless carriage license plates or historical vehicle license plates pursuant to Section 5004 of the Vehicle Code. Licensed dismantlers or commercial enterprises acquiring vehicles removed pursuant to this article shall be excused from the reporting requirements of Section 11520 of the Vehicle Code and any fees and penalties which would otherwise be due the Department of Motor Vehicles are waived pursuant to Section 22660 of the Vehicle Code; provided, that a copy of the order made pursuant to RCMC 16.18.607 is retained in the business records of the dismantler or commercial enterprise. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.802 Notice to Department of Motor Vehicles.

Within five days after the date of removal of the vehicle or parts thereof, notice shall be given to the Department of Motor Vehicles identifying the vehicle or part thereof removed. There shall also be transmitted to the Department of Motor Vehicles any evidence of registration available, including, but not limited to, the registration card, certificates of ownership, or license plates. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

Article IX. Summary Abatement

16.18.901 Dangerous condition.

If, in the opinion of the enforcement official, there exists a condition on any premises which is of such a nature as to be imminently dangerous to the public health, safety or welfare, which, if not abated according to the procedures of this code, would, during the pendency of the proceedings, subject the public to potential harm of a serious nature, the same may be summarily abated forthwith without compliance with the provisions of this code. Notwithstanding the foregoing, a reasonable effort shall be made to notify the owner of the premises in advance of abatement. [Ord. 50-2004 § 8; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.902 Lien or personal obligation.

The cost of summary abatement including attorneys’ fees and all administrative costs of any action taken hereunder shall be assessed against the subject premises as a lien or special assessment on real property, and/or made a personal obligation to the owner as provided in Article X of this chapter; except, that in the event the courts shall decide the action taken under this article was improper, no lien shall be assessed and attorneys’ fees may be awarded to the prevailing party. [Ord. 50-2004 § 8; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.903 Summary abatement of graffiti.

Repealed by Ord. 11-2012. [Ord. 50-2004 § 8; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

Article X. Recovery of Cost of Abatement

16.18.1001 Costs of abatement – Confirmation.

When proceedings under this chapter result in the correction of a violation of this code or in a final judgment that a violation exists subsequent to the date specified in any notice issued pursuant to the provisions of the Rancho Cordova Municipal Code or zoning code, costs of such proceedings incurred by the city may be assessed against the property by recording a lien or imposing a special assessment, pursuant to the procedures in RCMC 1.01.200. Such may include, but not by way of limitation, those incurred in inspecting property, publication, mailing and posting of notices, conducting hearings, processing appeals and pursuing any judicial action and attorneys’ fees awarded to the prevailing party. It is the purpose of this section to allow the assessment against the property of costs of proceedings if a violation is corrected in any manner. [Ord. 27-2014 § 3; Ord. 50-2004 § 9; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4].

16.18.1002 Costs – Assessments.

Repealed by Ord. 27-2014. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(J)); Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1003 Treble costs.

Repealed by Ord. 27-2014. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1004 Hearing of protests.

Repealed by Ord. 27-2014. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1005 Assessment for summary abatement.

Repealed by Ord. 27-2014. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1006 Time for contest of assessment.

Repealed by Ord. 27-2014. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1007 Filing copy of report with finance director.

Repealed by Ord. 27-2014. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(J)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

Article XI. Special Procedure for Abatement of Abandoned Drive-In Enterprises

16.18.1101 Purpose of article.

The provisions of this article are intended to provide an alternative procedure for the abatement of abandoned drive-in enterprises. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1102 Definition of building.

As used in this article, “building” shall mean any and all physical improvements or structures which are designed, built, or adopted for use as or in connection with a drive-in enterprise, and shall include any and all canopies, tables, pumps, pump islands, tanks, mechanical equipment, storage sheds, wells, foundations, signs and any and all other improvements situated on such drive-in site. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1103 Abatement.

Abatement of an abandoned drive-in enterprise may be accomplished in any of the following ways:

A. Occupation by the owner, or any tenant, lessee or other party entitled to possession, and institution of the previously permitted drive-in enterprise.

B. Demolition and removal of all buildings on and in the premises and the filling of all excavations.

C. Conversion of the premises and commencement of ongoing occupancy and maintenance of the premises for another use permitted by the zoning regulations and for which all necessary permits, licenses and other entitlements have been issued. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1104 Procedure in general.

Except as otherwise provided herein, the procedure set forth in Article V of this chapter shall be applicable to nuisances abated pursuant to this article. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1105 Commencement of proceedings.

A. When any of the directors of public works, planning or environmental management has reason to believe that a drive-in enterprise is not in use, he shall notify the chief building official of the location of such enterprise. The chief building official may contact the owner of such enterprise and inform him generally of the procedures provided by this article for the abatement of abandoned drive-in enterprises.

B. When the chief building official has inspected or caused to be inspected any premises and has found and determined an abandoned drive-in enterprise exists upon such premises, proceedings shall commence to abate the nuisance as provided herein. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1106 Preliminary notice.

Preliminary notice shall be provided in accordance with RCMC 16.18.502. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1107 Voluntary compliance and hearing notice.

Whenever the chief building official has given written notice to the owner as set forth in RCMC 16.18.502, and at least 60 calendar days have passed from the mailing of that notice, and the owner has failed to respond or when in the opinion of the chief the negotiations with the owner to abate the nuisance are unsuccessful or not proceeding satisfactorily, an order shall be issued hereinafter referred to as “the hearing notice.” The hearing notice shall direct the owner to appear before a hearing examiner to show cause why the premises should not be declared a public nuisance and the same abated by the city. The hearing notice shall be served not less than 10 calendar days prior to the hearing date. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1108 Hearings and decisions.

Hearings shall be conducted in accordance with Article V and decisions and notice provided as set forth therein. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1109 Decision.

The decision of the hearing examiner shall be in accordance with RCMC 16.18.511; provided, however, that abatement shall be commenced and completed within 120 calendar days. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1110 Time for abatement – Special circumstances.

Notwithstanding any other provisions of this article to the contrary, the hearing examiner in rendering a decision pursuant to RCMC 16.18.1109 may extend the time for abatement up to one year whenever, due to a bona fide dispute with the United States Federal Energy Administration concerning an allocation of fuel, or due to other special circumstances, it reasonably appears to the hearing examiner that a particular abandoned drive-in enterprise will be reoccupied pending resolution of said dispute or pending settlement of said circumstances.

In extending the time for abatement pursuant to this section, the hearing examiner shall attach such conditions as it deems necessary to ensure proper maintenance of the premises and protect the public health, safety and welfare. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1111 Enforcement of the decision of the hearing examiner.

The decision of the hearing examiner shall be enforced in accordance with Article VII of this chapter. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1112 Recovery of cost of abatement.

The costs of abatement performed by the city shall be recovered in accordance with Article X of this chapter. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

Article XII. Pay Telephones

16.18.1201 Pay telephones – Prohibited locations.

A. No pay telephone shall be installed, located, or maintained on unimproved property.

B. Any existing pay telephone which is located or maintained in violation of subsection (A) of this section shall be removed within 90 days after the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter. Notwithstanding the previous sentence, any pay telephone which is the subject of a written contract authorizing its installation which was entered into prior to the enactment of this chapter and which contains provisions for termination shall be removed by the first date after enactment of this chapter on which permissive termination of the written contract by either party could take effect, if either party elected to terminate, or within 90 days after the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter, whichever occurs later.

C. Any pay telephone which is installed, located, maintained, or operated in violation of this section is hereby declared to be a public nuisance. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1202 Pay telephones – Public nuisance.

A. Any pay telephone which is used as an instrumentality for or contributes substantially by its presence to any of the following conditions is hereby declared to be a public nuisance:

1. Selling or giving away controlled substances (as defined in Division 10 of the California Health and Safety Code); soliciting, agreeing to engage in, or engaging in any act of prostitution; or other criminal activity;

2. Consumption of alcoholic beverages on nearby outdoor public or private property except where outdoor consumption of alcoholic beverages is specifically authorized pursuant to a license issued by the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control;

3. Loitering on nearby public or private property; or

4. Excessive noise.

B. As used in this section, “loitering” shall mean remaining on any property under such circumstances that a reasonable person would conclude that the person who remains on the property does not have a purpose connected with the usual and ordinary use to which such property is put, does not have bona fide intent to exercise a constitutional right, and is causing public inconvenience or annoyance. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1203 Abatement generally.

A. Whenever the enforcement official determines that any pay telephone constitutes a public nuisance as defined in RCMC 16.18.1201 or 16.18.1202, the enforcement official may commence proceedings to abate the nuisance. The abatement proceedings shall conform to Articles V, VII and X of this chapter, except as specified in this article.

B. No proceedings to abate a public nuisance as defined in RCMC 16.18.1202 shall be commenced unless the enforcement official first has made a reasonable effort to work with the property owner where the pay telephone is located or the pay telephone vendor to eliminate the conditions described in RCMC 16.18.1202 by voluntary measures, such as blocking incoming calls, adding lighting, changing the telephone’s location on the parcel, making the telephone temporarily inoperative, or temporarily removing the telephone. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1204 Replacement prohibited.

If the public nuisance to be abated is one defined in RCMC 16.18.1202:

A. The hearing notice required by RCMC 16.18.502 shall specify that abatement shall consist of removal of the pay telephone, and that no pay telephone shall be installed on the same parcel, or on any contiguous parcel owned by the same property owner, to replace the removed telephone for a period of one year from the date of removal; and

B. Any decision of the hearing officer ordering abatement shall specify that no pay telephone shall be installed on the same parcel, or on any contiguous parcel owned by the same property owner, to replace the removed telephone for a period of one year from the date of removal. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1205 Notice to pay telephone vendor.

All notices shall also be sent to the vendor of the pay telephone, if known to the enforcement official. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1206 List of abated locations.

The enforcement official shall maintain, and make available upon request, a list of locations where installation of pay telephones is prohibited pursuant to RCMC 16.18.1204. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

Article XIII. Securing of Unimproved Real Property

16.18.1300 Securing of unimproved real property.

Whenever the enforcement official or his/her authorized representative has found that any unimproved real property within the city of Rancho Cordova has reoccurring dumping problems as may constitute a violation of the requirements stated in RCMC 16.18.401, the enforcement official may order the property owner(s) to secure the property to prevent further dumping on the property by requiring the owner to do any or all of the following:

A. Erect a fence with gate(s) to city specifications;

B. Erect a lockable gate at specified access points;

C. Install barricading to city specifications to reduce or eliminate accessibility to the property; or

D. Establish security patrols at regular intervals to ensure integrity of fences and gates. [Revised during 2008 codification; Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1301 Notice to owner.

A. The owner(s) of any unimproved property which has been found by the enforcement official to require securing shall be notified in writing by either certified mail, postage prepaid, return receipt, or personal service. If the owner, after several attempts, cannot be served by certified mail or personal service, then the enforcement official may make service by publication in a city or Sacramento-area newspaper of general circulation.

B. Upon receipt of the notice to secure, or upon 10 days after publication of the notice, the owner(s) shall have 30 days in which to secure the property. [Revised during 2008 codification; Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1302 Failure to obey order to secure.

Upon expiration of the time period as set forth in RCMC 16.18.1301, and upon failure of the owner(s) to secure, the enforcement official or his/her authorized representative may issue a hearing notice pursuant to the procedures set forth in RCMC 16.18.502. Abatement and securement procedures of Articles V, VII and X of this chapter shall apply. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 0982 § 1, 1995].

16.18.1303 Securing of vacant structures in abatement proceedings.

The enforcement official may require properties containing vacant structures that are in violation of this chapter, Chapter 16.20 or 16.22 RCMC to be secured against entry as provided in Chapter 16.23 RCMC. [Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1146 § 6, 1999].

Article XIV. Neighborhood Nuisance Code

16.18.1401 Title.

This article shall be known as the neighborhood nuisance code, and may be cited as such, and will be referred to herein as “this code.” [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1402 Findings and purpose.

The city council finds as follows:

A. The behavior of persons, either separately or in combination with physical conditions of properties, may become public and private nuisances, just as the solely physical conditions of properties within the city of Rancho Cordova may become public and private nuisances. Examples of behavior which may constitute nuisances include large and noisy gatherings, noisy activities during late-night hours, use or sale of controlled substances on the premises, the coming and going of persons with the intent to purchase controlled substances, and the use of buildings or public places for the purpose of prostitution.

B. It is as important for the public health, safety and welfare for the city to be able to abate nuisance-creating behaviors as well as abate nuisance-creating physical conditions.

C. The owners of properties within the city of Rancho Cordova have the responsibility to monitor their properties and to take appropriate actions if a nuisance exists thereon, whether that nuisance be created by existing physical conditions or by nuisance-creating behaviors. Such nuisances may be avoided, in whole or in part, with adequate property management. If a property owner does not fulfill his or her responsibilities, it is necessary for the safety, health and welfare of neighborhoods and the city as a whole that the city be able to undertake abatement action. Nuisance-creating physical conditions can be abated pursuant to this chapter and Chapters 6.20, 6.28, 6.32, 6.68, 6.120, 16.02, 16.04, 16.20, 16.22 and 17.04 RCMC, RCMC Titles 4 and 8, the Rancho Cordova zoning code, and Section 24400 of the Health and Safety Code. A comparable abatement remedy for nuisance-creating behaviors is needed.

D. Neighborhood health and safety must be protected in a way which does not promote housing discrimination or promote evictions based on prejudice, unfounded fears, or personal animosities.

E. Nothing in this article exempts property owners from strict compliance with state housing law on evictions, retaliatory conduct or discriminatory conduct, or invasion of privacy.

F. This article does not supersede state or federal laws with respect to discrimination, evictions, privacy and retaliatory conduct. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1403 Application.

A. The purpose of this article is to put in place a remedy which will permit the city to take effective, efficient judicial or administrative actions against property owners who permit nuisance-creating behaviors to occur on their properties on a continuing basis, in order to compel such owners to abate the nuisance-creating behaviors.

B. Provisions of this article are intended to be supplementary and complementary to all of the other provisions of the Rancho Cordova Municipal Code and state law and all remedies set forth herein shall be cumulative to other remedies which may be available under the Rancho Cordova Municipal Code or state law.

C. Provisions of this article shall apply generally to all property located in the city of Rancho Cordova wherein any of the nuisances hereinafter specified are found to exist; provided, however, that any condition which would constitute a violation of this article, but which is duly authorized under any county, state or federal law, shall not be deemed to violate this article.

The provisions of this article shall not apply to activities which constitute a bona fide exercise of constitutional rights. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1404 Responsibility for proper property management.

A. Every owner of real property within the city of Rancho Cordova is required to use reasonable care in the management of their property in a manner so as not to violate the provisions of this code, and the owner remains liable for violations thereof regardless of any contract or agreement with any third party regarding the property.

B. Every occupant, lessee, guest or holder of any possessory interest in real property is required to behave in a reasonable manner so as to not create a nuisance on the property, and supervise any guests on the property in a manner so as not to violate the provisions of this code. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1405 Authority.

The Rancho Cordova chief of police, or the chief of police’s designee (hereinafter “chief of police”) and the planning director, or the director’s designee (hereinafter “director”), shall administer the provisions of this chapter.

Hearings or appeals of the chief of police’s or director’s orders shall be heard by a hearing officer appointed pursuant to the provisions of RCMC 16.18.204. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1406 Violations.

Nothing in this chapter precludes any party from exercising their rights under other state, federal and local laws. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1407 Generally.

It is hereby declared a public nuisance and a violation of this code for any person, firm or corporation, whether owner, lessee, guest, sublessor, sublessee or occupant of any premises in this city, to maintain those premises in such a manner that any one or more of the activities described in the following subsections are found to occur repeatedly thereon:

A. The illegal sale of controlled substances and other illegal drugs and substances which creates a public nuisance as defined in Sections 3479 and 3480 of the Civil Code, and Section 11570 of the Health and Safety Code.

B. The illegal use of controlled substances, illegal drugs or substances, or substances injurious to health which creates a public nuisance as defined in Sections 3479 and 3480 of the Civil Code, and Section 11570 of the Health and Safety Code.

C. The frequent gathering, or coming and going, of people who have an intent to purchase or use controlled substances on the premises.

D. The occurrence of prostitution, as defined in Sections 11225 and 11230 of the Penal Code.

E. The unlawful activities of a criminal street gang, as defined in Sections 186.22, 186.22a and 186.25 of the Penal Code, and Section 11570 of the Health and Safety Code.

F. The making or continuing, or causing to be made and continued, of any loud, unnecessary or unusual noise which disturbs the peace and quiet of the neighborhood or which causes discomfort or annoyance to any reasonable person of normal sensitiveness residing in the area. The standards set forth in Chapter 6.68 RCMC shall be considered in determining whether a violation of this subsection exists.

G. The firing of gunshots or brandishing of weapons by a resident on the premises, or by a guest of a resident. The standards set forth in Chapter 9.40 RCMC shall be considered in determining whether a violation of this subsection exists. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1408 Citation and order issued.

A. Whenever the chief of police or director has inspected or caused to be inspected any premises and has found and determined that the premises are in violation of this code, the chief of police or director may issue a citation and order to abate the nuisance as provided in RCMC 16.18.1409. Before a citation and order is issued, the chief of police or director shall communicate in writing with the owner to request that the owner voluntarily cooperate with the city to abate the nuisance. Upon receipt of the written communication, the owner shall contact the chief of police or director within 15 days (unless good cause is otherwise shown) for the purposes of acknowledging receipt of the communication and for discussion of resolving the nuisance cited by the chief of police or director. Failure to contact the chief of police or director may result in the issuance of a citation and order pursuant to RCMC 16.18.1409.

B. No citation and order shall be issued hereunder if the owner is making good faith efforts to abate the nuisance within 30 days of receipt of the initial written communication from the chief of police or director. Indicia of good faith may include, but shall not be limited to:

1. Prompt responses to city communications and requests;

2. Active professional property management;

3. Submitting and implementing a written commitment, in consultation with the chief of police or director, which states what the property owner intends to do to abate the nuisance and sets forth a reasonable timeline to accomplish those goals;

4. Taking and accomplishing the steps outlined in the written commitment to repair physical or behavioral conditions which contribute to the nuisance in a reasonable time and in compliance with a timeline which is approved by the director and/or the chief of police; or

5. Providing the director and/or the chief of police with weekly progress reports at the time and in the manner requested by the director and/or chief of police.

C. Notice Requirements.

1. Whenever the chief of police or director sends a written notice to an owner or manager of rental residential property, the written notice shall specifically describe the nuisance alleged, including, when known, the name or names, addresses and unit numbers of the person or persons allegedly causing the nuisance. The director or chief of police shall concurrently give a copy of any written notice to the specific tenant(s) or unit and the executive director of the human rights/fair housing commission as described in subsection (C)(3) of this section. Notice need not be given to the specific tenant or unit when the chief of police or director determines that doing so would endanger persons or compromise an ongoing police investigation.

2. Whenever the chief of police or director issues a citation and order to abate a nuisance, the citation and order shall specifically describe the nuisance and the city’s remedies under this code. The citation and order shall also state that tenants may contact the chief of police or director to provide or receive information about their building. The notice or citation and order shall also state that tenants who are served with 30-day eviction notices shall have the right to an informal meeting with the director of the human rights/fair housing commission as described in subsection (C)(3) of this section. The tenant must contact the director of the human rights/fair housing commission as described in subsection (C)(3) of this section within 15 days (unless good cause is otherwise shown) of receiving the eviction notice for the purpose of appealing the termination. The director or chief of police shall concurrently issue the citation and order to the tenants of the cited property by posting a copy of the notice or citation and order on each of the building(s) located thereon.

3. The executive director of the human rights/fair housing commission, or the executive director’s designee, shall hold an informal meeting pursuant to subsections (C)(1) and (2) of this section no later than five business days after the tenant’s request. At the meeting, the tenant shall be given the opportunity to demonstrate that he or she is not causing a nuisance. The executive director, or the executive director’s designee, shall mail certified copies of a letter describing the results of the informal meeting to the tenant, the owner, and the director or chief of police within two business days after the meeting. The executive director will forward to the director or chief of police each month a statistical summary of all informal meetings held.

4. The chief of police or director shall post all notices of subsequent proceedings and actions pursuant to this chapter on all of the buildings located on the property. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1409 Citation and order – Content, service, fee.

A. The citation and order shall contain:

1. The street address and such other description as required to identify the premises.

2. A statement specifying with particularity the behaviors which constitute the nuisance and the actions which the chief of police or director orders the record owner to take to abate the nuisance.

3. A statement advising the owner to abate the nuisance within 60 calendar days of mailing of the citation and order, or such longer time as the chief of police or director may order. An extension of time to abate the nuisance shall be granted if the owner is making good faith efforts to abate the nuisance and those efforts are delayed due to judicial proceedings relating to the property.

4. A statement advising the owner that he or she has the right to request a hearing to contest the citation and order.

5. A statement advising the owner that an administrative penalty in an amount not to exceed $5,000 may be imposed upon the owner and made a lien on the property involved if the nuisance is not abated as required by the citation and order and no written request for hearing is filed within 30 days of receipt of the citation notice.

6. A statement advising the owner that an owner may not retaliate against any tenant, as set forth in Section 1942.5 of the Civil Code.

7. A statement that in responding to the citation and order, the owner should comply with all applicable federal, state, and local regulations relating to evictions and prohibitions against discrimination.

8. A statement advising the owner that when the proceedings under this code result in the correction of a violation of this code or in a final abatement order that a violation exists subsequent to the date specified in any notice issued pursuant to this code, costs of such proceedings incurred by the city may be assessed against the property. Such costs may include, but not by way of limitation, those incurred in inspecting the property, publication, mailing and posting of notices, conducting hearing, processing appeals and pursuing any judicial action.

9. A statement advising that the tenant(s) has the right to contest the allegations of nuisance at an informal meeting with the executive director of the human rights/fair housing commission as described in RCMC 16.18.1408(C)(3).

B. The citation and order shall be served and proof of service shall be made in the same manner as provided in RCMC 16.20.405(C) and (D).

C. Recovery of the cost to abate a nuisance under this code is governed by RCMC 16.18.1001 through 16.18.1007.

D. The citation and order shall state that a written abatement plan executed by the owner and director shall be deemed to be a final order of the hearing officer. [Revised during 2008 codification; Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1410 Chief of police’s and director’s review – Administrative penalties.

A. After the time for abatement set forth in the citation and order has expired, the chief of police or director shall determine whether the owner has taken the action ordered by the chief of police or director and whether the nuisance has been abated. If the chief of police or director determines that the nuisance has been abated, the owner and any occupants other than the owner shall be notified in writing of such determination and the citation shall be dissolved.

B. If the chief of police or director determines that the nuisance has not been abated, the chief of police or director may seek to impose an administrative penalty of up to $5,000 as provided in RCMC 16.18.205. Notice of any administrative penalty shall be served and proof of service shall be made in the same manner as provided in RCMC 16.18.503(B) and (C). The notice shall provide that any administrative civil penalty imposed shall be administratively reviewed by a hearing officer before it is enforced. In addition, the chief of police or director may issue another citation and order to the owner pursuant to RCMC 16.18.1408. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1411 Right to hearing.

The property owner has the right to request a hearing to contest any citation and order issued by the chief of police or director. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1412 Requests for hearing.

A. All requests for hearing shall be made to the chief of police or director.

B. A request for hearing to contest a citation and order shall be made in writing within 30 calendar days after mailing of the citation and order.

C. If a request for hearing is not filed within the time period set forth in subsection (B) of this section, the citation shall be deemed a final order of the hearing officer. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1413 Hearing notice.

A. Upon the owner’s request for a hearing, the director or chief of police shall issue a hearing notice. The notice shall contain:

1. A copy of the citation and order;

2. A copy of the notice of administrative penalty, where applicable;

3. An order to the owner to appear before a hearing officer at a stated time, but in no event less than 20 calendar days after mailing of the hearing notice;

4. A list of the actions which the chief of police or director intends to ask the hearing officer to order the owner to take if the matter is not resolved before the hearing. Nothing shall prevent the hearing officer from ordering other actions not listed in the hearing notice, but the owner shall have the right to ask for a supplemental hearing on such other actions as set forth in RCMC 16.18.1422;

5. A statement that all interested persons may attend and testify at the hearing;

6. A statement advising the owner that he or she may be responsible for all costs incurred by the city for any abatement hearing.

B. The hearing notice, and any amended or supplemental notice, shall be served either by personal delivery or by mailing a copy by certified mail, postage prepaid, return receipt requested, upon the owner of record or his/her/their address as it appears on the latest equalized assessment roll of Sacramento County, or as known to the director. At the discretion of the chief of police or director, copies of the notice may also be mailed to the owner by first class mail or mailed to any holder of an interest in the property or a mortgage, deed of trust, or other lien or encumbrance of record.

In lieu of personally serving the owner or service by certified mail, service of the notice and any amended or supplemental notice may be made as follows:

1. In the event that the owner refuses to accept certified return receipt mail or cannot be personally served, service may be made by substituted service. In lieu of personal delivery of a copy of the notice, a notice or any amended or supplemental notice may be served by leaving a copy during usual office hours in his/her office with the person who is apparently in charge, and by thereafter mailing by first class mail a copy of the notice to the owner at the address where the copy was left.

2. In the event the owner refuses to accept certified return receipt mail or cannot be personally served and has a property manager or rental agency overseeing the premises, substituted service may be made as set forth in subsection (B)(1) of this section upon the property manager or rental agency.

3. If the owner lives out of state and will not accept certified return receipt mail, then service may be made by first class mail.

4. If the owner of the property cannot be located after a diligent search, service may be made by publication in a city or Sacramento-area newspaper of general circulation which is most likely to give actual notice to the owner.

C. Proof of service of the hearing notice shall be certified by written declaration under penalty of perjury executed by the person effecting service, declaring the time, date and manner which service was made.

D. Failure to effect service on any person specified herein shall not invalidate proceedings against any person who is properly served. [Revised during 2008 codification; Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1414 Hearings – Generally.

At the time set for hearing, the hearing officer shall proceed to hear the testimony of city staff, the owner, any tenants and other persons respecting the nuisance-creating behavior on the premises and the steps necessary to abate the nuisance, or the imposition of an administrative penalty pursuant to RCMC 16.18.205. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1415 Record of oral evidence at hearing.

A. The proceedings at the hearing shall be recorded by a tape recorder. Either party may provide a certified shorthand reporter to maintain a record of the proceedings at the party’s own expense.

B. Preparation of a record of the proceedings shall be governed by Section 1094.6 of the California Code of Civil Procedure, as presently written or hereinafter amended. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1416 Continuances.

The hearing officer may grant continuances from time to time for good cause shown. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1417 Oaths.

The hearing officer shall administer the oath or affirmation. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1418 Evidence rules.

Section 11513, Subsections (a), (b) and (c), of the Government Code of the state of California, as presently written or hereinafter amended, shall apply to hearings conducted under this chapter. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1419 Rights of parties.

A. Each party may represent themselves, or be represented by anyone of their choice.

B. If a party does not proficiently speak or understand the English language, the party may provide an interpreter, at the party’s own cost, to translate for the party. An interpreter shall not have had any involvement in the issues of the case prior to the hearings. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1420 Official notice.

In reaching a decision, official notice may be taken, either before or after submission of the case for decision, of any fact which may be judicially noticed by the courts of this state or which may appear in any of the official records of the city or any of its departments. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1421 Inspection of premises.

The hearing examiner may inspect the premises involved in the hearing prior to, during or after the hearing; provided, that:

A. Consent is granted by a person with the lawful right to grant consent or an inspection warrant is obtained;

B. Reasonable notice of such inspection shall be given to the parties before the inspection is made;

C. The parties are given an opportunity to be present during the inspection;

D. The hearing examiner shall state for the record during the hearing, or file a written statement after the hearing for inclusion in the hearing record, upon completion of the inspection, the material facts observed and the conclusion drawn therefrom; and

E. Each party then shall have a right to rebut or explain the matters so stated by the hearing examiner either for the record during the hearing or by filing a written statement after the hearing for inclusion in the hearing record. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1422 Form and contents of decision – Finality of decision.

A. If it is shown by a preponderance of the evidence that behaviors occurring on the premises constitute a public nuisance and that the owner of the premises has not taken adequate steps to abate the nuisance as prescribed by the chief of police or director, the hearing officer shall issue a written decision, not later than 15 days from the hearing date, declaring the premises a public nuisance. The hearing officer may order the owner to take such action it deems appropriate to abate the nuisance. The actions ordered shall be reasonable and may include, but shall not be limited to:

1. Provision of additional exterior lighting;

2. The posting of security personnel on the premises;

3. Installation of appropriate fencing;

4. Posting of signs on the premises, and provisions in rental applications and agreements, which state that illegal use of controlled substances and other nuisance-creating behavior on the premises shall be grounds for eviction;

5. Hiring a competent property management firm to manage the property;

6. Hiring of a competent resident manager who has experience, education, and training in rental property management;

7. Making available to the tenants the telephone number and name of the owner or of a local property manager who is authorized to make decisions relating to management of the property;

8. Obtaining education and training in rental property management;

9. Other such reasonable actions as may be deemed appropriate by the hearing officer.

B. The hearing officer shall not have the authority to order that the owner evict a tenant or any other person from the premises.

C. If the hearing officer orders the owner to take specified actions to abate the nuisance, the director or chief of police shall review the owner’s compliance with the hearing officer’s order pursuant to RCMC 16.18.1411.

D. The decision shall inform the owner that if the nuisance is not abated within the time specified and the owner has not complied with all orders of the hearing officer, and an administrative penalty has not already been imposed, that an administrative penalty in an amount not to exceed $5,000 may be imposed upon the owner pursuant to RCMC 16.18.205.

E. If the decision orders the owner to take any actions which were not listed in the hearing notice, the decision shall specifically designate those actions, and if the owner objects to those actions as unnecessary or infeasible, the owner may request a supplemental hearing before the hearing officer on the subject of the appropriateness of those actions only, by filing a request with the director within 15 calendar days after the decision is mailed to the owner. A request for supplemental hearing shall not stay the hearing officer’s order to take actions which were listed in the hearing notice.

F. The decision of the hearing officer shall be final. The decision shall inform the owner that the time for judicial review of the hearing officer’s decision is governed by Section 1094.6 of the California Code of Civil Procedure.

G. The decision shall be in writing and shall contain findings of fact and a determination of the issues presented. The decision shall also require the owner to commence abatement of the nuisance not later than 15 days after the issuance of the decision, and that the abatement be completed within such time as specified by the hearing examiner, or in the alternative, within the time designated by the chief of police or enforcement official.

H. The decision shall be posted on the premises and served upon the owner by personal delivery or by certified mail, return receipt requested, and shall be sent by first class mail to any occupants other than the owner, any holder of any mortgage or deed of trust or other lien or encumbrance of record, the owner or holder of any lease of record, and the holder of any other estate or legal interest of record in the premises. The decision shall be final when signed by the hearing examiner and served as herein provided. Failure to serve the decision on any person specified shall not invalidate proceedings against any person who is properly served. [Ord. 38-2007 § 1 (Exh. 1(A)); Ord. 50-2004 § 10; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1423 Enforcement of hearing officer orders.

After any order of the hearing officer made pursuant to this code shall have become final, no owner to whom any such order is directed shall fail, neglect or refuse to obey such order. The city may commence appropriate judicial action against any owner who fails to abate a nuisance pursuant to the order of the hearing officer. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1424 Recovery of costs of abatement.

Recovery of costs of abatement is governed by RCMC 1.01.200 and 16.18.1001. [Ord. 27-2014 § 5; Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1425 Procedures for collection of administrative penalty.

The administrative penalty shall be due and payable within 30 days after the decision of the director becomes final or within 30 days after the hearing officer’s decision is issued. If the penalty is not timely paid, the city may pursue all reasonable and legal means in collecting those sums authorized and due.

No owner shall pass on to tenants penalties incurred pursuant to this article. Costs of capital improvements and security and safety enhancements may be passed on. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

16.18.1426 Use of costs and penalties.

All costs and administrative penalties received by the city pursuant to this article shall be used exclusively for administration and enforcement of this article. [Ord. 21-2003 §§ 2, 4; Ord. 20-2003 §§ 2, 4; SCC 1102 § 1, 1998].

Article XV. Shopping Carts

16.18.1500 Definitions.

“Abandoned cart” means any cart that has been removed from the owner’s premises without written consent of the owner and is located on either public or private property.

“Abandoned cart prevention plan” or “plan” means a plan that meets the requirements of RCMC 16.18.1505 and has been approved by the city in accordance with RCMC 16.18.1506.

“Cart” means a basket that is mounted on wheels or a similar device that is provided by an owner to a customer for the purpose of transporting goods of any kind.

“Code enforcement director” means the individual in charge of code enforcement activities for the city or his/her designee.

“Owner” means a person or entity who, in connection with the conduct of a business, makes carts available to the public.

“Premises” means the entire area owned, occupied or utilized by an owner, including any parking lot or other property provided by or on behalf of an owner for customer parking or use. [Ord. 37-2004 § 1].

16.18.1501 Cart identification required.

Every cart provided by any owner must have a sign permanently affixed to the cart that contains all of the following information:

A. The identity of the owner of the cart;

B. The address and phone number of the owner or retailer for cart return;

C. A statement that the removal of the cart from the premises is a violation of state law and this chapter; and

D. The procedure for authorized removal of the cart from the premises. [Ord. 37-2004 § 1].

16.18.1502 Abandonment prohibited.

It is unlawful for any person to cause or permit any cart to be abandoned on or upon any sidewalk, street or other public area, or any private property, other than the premises of the owner of such cart. [Ord. 37-2004 § 1].

16.18.1503 Removal prohibited.

It is unlawful for any person, either temporarily or permanently, to remove a cart from the premises of the owner of such cart, or to be in possession of a cart that has been removed from the premises of the owner of such cart, which is properly marked in conformity with this chapter, without the written consent of the owner. This section shall not apply to carts removed from the premises, with the consent of the owner, for the purposes of repair, maintenance or disposal. [Ord. 37-2004 § 1].

16.18.1504 Posted notice.

There shall be posted by the owner, prominently and conspicuously, at all public entrances and exits to the business, a notice in substantially the following form:

REMOVAL OF SHOPPING CARTS (or Laundry Carts, or other types of carts, if applicable) IS PROHIBITED BY LAW AND SHALL SUBJECT THE VIOLATOR TO A MINIMUM FINE OF $100.00.

[Ord. 37-2004 § 1].

16.18.1505 Abandoned cart prevention plan.

Every owner who allows or intends to allow the use of carts outside a building or enclosed area of a business shall develop, implement and comply with an abandoned cart prevention plan.

A. The plan must include, at a minimum, the following information:

1. The name of the business, address and phone number of the premises where the business is conducted, and the address and phone number of the cart owner, if different;

2. A procedure for providing notification to customers that removal of carts from the premises is prohibited and a violation of state and local law in addition to the notice required under RCMC 16.18.1501 and 16.18.1504. This notice may be provided in the form of flyers, warnings on shopping bags, or any form of written notification that will effectively notify customers of the prohibition;

3. A description of the physical measures that will be implemented to prevent the removal of carts from the premises. Physical measures may include, but are not limited to: devices on carts that prevent their removal from the premises; posting of a designated employee or security guard to deter and stop customers from removing carts from the premises, prohibiting carts outside the building of the business unless accompanied by an employee; and

4. A procedure for the retrieval of abandoned carts by its employees, or proof that the owner has entered into a contract for cart retrieval services that has been approved by the code enforcement director.

B. Two or more businesses may collaborate and submit a single plan. [Ord. 37-2004 § 1].

16.18.1506 Abandoned cart prevention plan approval.

A. Each owner shall submit a proposed abandoned cart prevention plan to the code enforcement director within 60 days of the effective date of the ordinance codified in this article, and by July 1st of each year thereafter. Proposed businesses shall have an approved abandoned cart prevention plan prior to commencing business. After initial submission and approval of an abandoned cart prevention plan, an owner submitting the same plan to comply with the requirement of submitting a plan by July 1st of each subsequent year may do so by submitting a letter of intent stating that the owner is submitting the plan currently in operation.

B. The code enforcement director shall approve or reject the proposed abandoned cart prevention plan within 30 days of the plan’s submission. The code enforcement director may deny a plan based upon any of the following grounds:

1. Implementation of the plan violates any provision of the building, zoning, health, safety, fire, police or other provision of this code or any county, state or federal law which substantially affects public health, welfare, or safety;

2. The plan fails to include all of the information required by this chapter;

3. The plan is insufficient or inadequate to prevent removal of carts from the premises;

4. The plan fails to address any special or unique conditions due to the geographical location of the premises as they relate to cart retention and prevention efforts;

5. Implementation of the plan violates a term or condition of a plan or other requirement of this chapter; and/or

6. The owner knowingly makes a false statement of fact or omits a fact required to be revealed in an application for the plan, or in any amendment or report or other information required to be made.

C. If the plan is rejected as incomplete or inadequate, the code enforcement director shall indicate areas that are incomplete or inadequate, and the owner shall have an additional 30 days within which to resubmit a complete and adequate plan. The code enforcement director shall approve or reject the resubmitted plan within 30 days of the date of resubmission of the plan.

D. Once approved, the measures included in the plan shall be implemented no later than 30 days of the plan’s approval. If an owner is proposing new measures, the measures from the approved plan in the previous year shall be continued until the new measures are implemented.

E. Any owner that fails to submit a plan, implement the plan measures, or implement any required modifications to the plan within the time frames specified in this chapter shall be required to keep all carts inside the building or enclosed areas of the business.

F. Any owner who is required to but fails to keep all carts inside the building or enclosed area of the premises in violation of subsection (E) of this section shall be subject to an administrative civil penalty in accordance with RCMC 16.18.205.

G. The code enforcement director’s decision to deny a plan may be appealed to the city manager or the city manager’s designee. A written notice of appeal must be submitted to the code enforcement director within 10 days of the denial of the plan and accompanied by a copy of the plan. The city manager or designee shall review the plan under the grounds for denial set forth in subsection (B) of this section and provide a decision approving or denying the plan within 30 days of receipt of the notice of appeal.

H. Even though approved, a plan may be reevaluated at any time by the code enforcement director if operation of the plan demonstrates the plan’s insufficiency or inadequacy in preventing removal of carts from the premises. [Ord. 37-2004 § 1].

16.18.1507 Abandoned carts.

A. Notification for Retrieval of Abandoned Carts.

1. The city shall notify the owner of any abandoned carts located within the city.

2. The notice shall contain:

a. The street address or other description of the location of the abandoned carts; and

b. The date and approximate time that the abandoned carts were found.

3. The notice may be served by personal service on the owner, manager or other designated responsible parties of the business or by fax transmission.

4. The city may include multiple locations of abandoned carts on one notice.

5. The owner shall have three days from the date the notification is given to retrieve the carts from the specified locations.

B. Administrative Costs and Fines.

1. Any owner that fails to retrieve any abandoned cart after receiving the notice by the city shall pay the city’s administrative costs for providing notice to the owner and for retrieving and storing the cart.

2. Any owner that fails to retrieve an abandoned cart within three days in accordance with this article in excess of three times during a specified six-month period shall be subject to a $50.00 fine for each occurrence. An occurrence includes all carts owned by the owner that are impounded by the city in a one-day period. This fine shall be in addition to any other fees or costs that are due.

C. Alternative Provisions Regarding Retrieval of Abandoned Carts. Notwithstanding subsection (A) of this section, the city may impound an abandoned cart so long as the owner is given notice within 24 hours following the impound and the notice informs the owner as to the location where the cart may be claimed. Any cart reclaimed by the owner within three business days following the date of notice shall be released to the owner without charge. Any cart not reclaimed by the owner within three business days following actual notice shall be subject to the fees and penalties set forth in subsection (B) of this section.

D. Disposition of Carts After 30 Days. Any cart not reclaimed from the city within 30 days after notification to the owner shall be sold or otherwise disposed of by the city. [Ord. 37-2004 § 1].

16.18.1508 Violation.

Any person violating any provision of this article shall be guilty of an infraction in accordance with RCMC 16.18.205. [Ord. 37-2004 § 1].

Article XVI. Repeat Nuisance Service Calls

16.18.1600 Purpose.

The purpose of this article is to protect the public safety, health and welfare and to prevent and abate repeat service response calls by the city to the same property or location for nuisance service calls, as defined herein, which prevent police or public safety services to other residents of the city. It is the intent of the city by the adoption of this article to impose and collect service call fees from the owner or occupant, or both, of property to which city officials must repeatedly respond for any repeat nuisance event or activity that generates extraordinary costs to the city. The repeat nuisance service call fee is intended to cover that cost over and above the cost of providing normal law or code enforcement services and police protection citywide. [Ord. 22-2014 § 1].

16.18.1601 Scope and application.

This article shall apply to all owners and occupants of private property which is the subject or location of the repeat nuisance service call by the city. This article shall apply to any repeat nuisance service calls as set forth herein made by a Rancho Cordova peace officer, part-time peace officer, community service officer, animal control officer, code enforcement officer, or other city enforcement officer. [Ord. 22-2014 § 1].

16.18.1602 Definition of nuisance service call or similar conduct.

A. The term “nuisance service call” shall mean any activity, conduct, or condition occurring upon private property within the city to which the city is required to respond, which: (i) unreasonably annoys, injures or endangers the safety, health, or welfare of any member of the public; (ii) or will, or will tend to, alarm, anger or disturb others or provoke breach of the peace, including, but not limited to, the following:

1. Any activity, conduct, or condition occurring on the property deemed a public nuisance under any provision of the RCMC;

2. Any conduct, activity or condition occurring on the property constituting a violation of local or state laws prohibiting or regulating prostitution, gambling, controlled substances, gang activity, or use of firearms;

3. Any conduct or activity amounting to a violation of RCMC Title 8, Animals; and

4. Any conduct, activity, or condition occurring on the property constituting disorderly conduct under California Penal Code Section 647.

B. A criminal conviction is not required for establishing the occurrence of a violation pursuant to this article.

C. Exceptions. Calls and services pertaining to the following activities or conduct shall not amount to a nuisance service call under this article:

1. Medical emergencies;

2. Domestic violence incidents or incidents related to an order for protection stemming from domestic violence; or

3. Investigations or welfare checks related to crimes or incidents that occurred off the property. [Ord. 22-2014 § 1].

16.18.1603 Repeat nuisance service call fee.

A. The city may impose a repeat nuisance service call fee upon the owner or occupant of private property if the city has rendered services or responded to the property for a nuisance service call on:

1. Four or more occasions to a single-family, duplex, triplex residential property, or a commercial or industrial property within a period of 30 days; on eight or more occasions within a period of 90 days to such properties; or on 12 or more occasions within a period of one year to such properties; or

2. Six or more occasions to a multifamily residential property containing at least four units within a period of 30 days; on 12 or more occasions within a period of 90 days to such properties; or a monthly average of at least 0.2 occasions per unit over a 12-month period (for a 100-unit property this would amount to a monthly average of at least 20 calls).

B. The repeat nuisance service call fee under this section shall be an amount as set forth and duly adopted by city council resolution, and may include the cost of services in addition to the base fee. All repeat nuisance service call fees imposed and charged against the owner or occupant under this section shall be deemed delinquent 30 days after the city’s mailing a billing statement therefor. Delinquent payments are subject to a 10 percent late penalty of the amount due. The city may pursue any and all legal remedies to recover delinquent payments, including those provided for in this chapter. [Ord. 22-2014 § 1].

16.18.1604 Citation.

A. Any citation issued under this article shall be an administrative citation, and shall contain:

1. The street address and such other description as required to identify the premises.

2. A statement specifying with particularity the behaviors which constitute the violation.

3. A statement advising the occupant or owner that he or she has the right to request a hearing to contest the citation and that the written request for hearing must be filed within 10 days of receipt of the citation notice.

4. A statement advising the owner, if applicable, that an owner may not retaliate against any tenant, as set forth in Section 1942.5 of the Civil Code.

5. A statement advising the owner or tenant that any unpaid fees and subsequent delinquent charges related to the citation may be collected by the city through any available legal remedy, including an assessment against the property.

B. The citation shall be served and proof of service shall be made in the same manner as provided in RCMC 16.20.405. [Ord. 22-2014 § 1].

16.18.1605 Right to appeal repeat nuisance service call fee.

A. Upon the imposition of a repeat nuisance service call fee, the city shall inform the owner or occupant of his/her right to a hearing on the alleged repeat nuisance service calls. The owner or occupant upon whom the fee is imposed may make a written request for a hearing by serving such request upon the city clerk within 10 days of receipt of the citation.

B. Unless otherwise specified in this article, the hearing procedures set forth in RCMC 16.18.504 through 16.18.513 shall apply to hearings under this article.

C. An owner or occupant’s right to a hearing shall be deemed waived if the owner or occupant fails to serve a written request for hearing as required herein or fails to appear at the scheduled hearing date. Upon waiver of the right to hearing, or upon the hearing officer’s written findings of fact and conclusions that the repeat nuisance call service fee is warranted hereunder, the owner or occupant shall immediately pay the fee imposed and any applicable delinquent charges. [Ord. 22-2014 § 1].

16.18.1606 Legal remedies nonexclusive.

Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the city’s other available legal remedies for any violation of the law which may constitute a nuisance service call hereunder, including criminal, civil, injunctive or others. [Ord. 22-2014 § 1].

Article XVII. Property Maintenance Code

16.18.1700 Title.

This chapter shall be known as the property maintenance code, may be cited as such, and will be referred to herein as “this code” or “chapter.” [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].

16.18.1701 Purpose and intent.

A. The purpose of this chapter is to provide standards for the maintenance and appearance of privately owned properties and buildings, both residential and commercial, that are visible from public property, including public streets and/or public rights-of-way. The procedures and requirements of this chapter are enacted to:

1. Promote the community’s health, safety, and welfare by providing clear standards for the maintenance of property and prevents the unsightliness of property within the city;

2. Ensure that all property within the city does not pose a health and safety hazard to pedestrian and vehicular traffic;

3. Ensure that all property within the city does not pose a health and safety hazard to the community at large by creating fire hazards, attracting vermin, and/or attracting criminal behavior such that the property is a nuisance to the community.

B. The provisions of this chapter are not intended to be exclusive and instead are intended to operate in conjunction with all other provisions of the Rancho Cordova Municipal Code, including, but not limited to, Chapters 15.12, 16.20, and 23.716 RCMC pertaining to standards for property maintenance and landscaping. This chapter shall supplement and be in addition to the other regulatory codes, statutes, and ordinances heretofore and hereafter enacted by the city, the state, and/or any other legal entity or agency having jurisdiction, and any remedies stated herein shall be in conjunction with any remedies available for any other violation of the municipal code. In the event of a conflict between this property maintenance code and any other section of the municipal code, the more specific provision shall apply. [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].

16.18.1702 Definitions.

A. “Building” means any house, garage, duplex, apartment, condominium, stock cooperative or other structure, whether partially or wholly constructed, whether intended for residential, recreational, retail, industrial, or commercial purposes, and whether intended for permanent or temporary use.

B. “Cart” means a basket that is mounted on wheels or a similar device that is provided by an owner of a commercial business to a customer for the purposes of transporting goods of any kind.

C. “Dilapidation” means the decay, decomposition or disrepair of a material or structure.

D. “Director” means the director of the neighborhood services division of the city of Rancho Cordova or his/her designee.

E. “Dwelling” means any building or structure, or part thereof, used and occupied for human habitation, or intended to be so used, and includes any garages or other accessory buildings belonging thereto, including those which are rented or leased for any term or duration, type or tenure.

F. “Enforcement authority” means the code enforcement officer or his/her designee.

G. “Garbage” includes, but is not limited to, the following: waste resulting from the handling of edible foodstuffs or resulting from decay, and solid or semisolid putrescible waste, and all other mixed, nonrecyclable wastes which are generated in the day-to-day operation of any business, residential, governmental, public or private activity, and may include tin cans, bottles and paper or plastic, or other synthetic material, food or beverage containers.

H. “Graffiti” means any inscription, word, figure, mark, or design that is written, marked, etched, scratched, drawn, or painted on, or otherwise glued, posted, or affixed to or on any personal or real property unless the same was authorized in advance by the owner thereof.

I. “Property” means any parcel of land located within the city.

J. “Property owner” means an owner of a fee title in real property.

K. “Parties in interest” means all persons, businesses, partnerships, and corporations who have a mortgage or other interest of public record in a dwelling or dwelling unit, or who are in possession thereof.

L. “Public property” means any public street, roadway, place, alley, sidewalk, park, parkway, square, plaza, easement, right-of-way, or any other interest in land dedicated to public use.

M. “Refuse” means useless, or valueless waste and includes rubbish and garbage, as defined herein.

N. “Residential property” means any parcel of land whose primary use is as a dwelling.

O. “Rubbish” includes all the following but is not restricted to, nonputrescible wastes, such as paper, cardboard, grass clippings, tree or shrub trimmings, wood, bedding, crockery, rubber tires, construction waste and similar waste materials.

P. “Vegetation” includes any organism belonging to the vegetable kingdom including, but not limited to, flowers, plants, grass, shrubs, vines, weeds, herbs, trees, bushes.

Q. “Weeds,” as used in this article, includes any of the following:

1. Weeds which bear seeds of a downy or wingy nature;

2. Sagebrush, chaparral, and any other brush or weeds which attain such hard growth     as to become, when dry, a fire menace to adjacent improved property;

3. Weeds and grasses which are otherwise noxious;

4. Poison oak and poison ivy when the conditions of growth are such as to constitute a menace to the public health;

5. Dry grass, stubble, brush, litter, or other flammable material which endangers the public safety by creating a fire hazard. [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].

16.18.1703 Standards for residential property.

No property owner or party in interest shall create, cause, or permit any of the following conditions to exist on privately owned residential properties or buildings when such conditions are visible from public property:

A. The existence of property which lacks landscaping, turf, ground cover, live plant material, rocks, or other commonly used landscaping materials and which creates a condition of excessive dust, soil erosion; grass exceeding eight inches in height; or other weeds and conditions that affect the public health, safety, or general welfare and is detrimental to the aesthetics of the community. Landscape design and planting requirements and maintenance of residential landscaping shall conform to RCMC 23.716.020, 23.716.050, 23.716.060 and 23.716.100;

B. The discharge or deposit of any sewage, garbage, feculent matter, offal, refuse, filth, or any animal, mineral, vegetable, or hazardous matter into the following: American River or any of the feeders or tributaries of the river within the city of Rancho Cordova in violation of Chapter 6.16 RCMC; or any discharge of non-storm water substance or material into the county storm water conveyance system; or directly into the Sacramento River, American River, Cosumnes River, Mokelumne River, or navigable waters of the Sacramento – San Joaquin River Delta in violation of Chapter 15.12 RCMC;

C. The overgrowth of vegetation that is likely to harbor rodents, vermin, insects, or other nuisances; or which obstructs the view of drivers or bicyclists on streets, public rights-of-way, or private driveways; or which impedes, obstructs, or denies pedestrian or other lawful travel on sidewalks, walkways, or other public rights-of-way;

D. The dumping of weeds or refuse or the accumulation of weeds or refuse such that the weeds or refuse constitute a fire hazard. Weeds and refuse shall be abated in accordance with Chapter 17.12 RCMC;

E. The presence of dead, decayed, or diseased vegetation, including but not limited to: trees, weeds, bushes or shrubs that create an unsightly appearance or create a danger to the public health, safety, or general welfare. All tree preservation, maintenance, and removal shall be in accordance with Chapters 19.04, 19.08, 19.12 and 23.716 RCMC;

F. The accumulation or presence of packing boxes, cardboard boxes, lumber, rubbish, refuse, barrels, drums, salvage materials, broken or discarded furniture, household fixtures, equipment or furnishings, garbage receptacles, including unpermitted storage containers such as shipping containers, shopping carts, laundry carts, or other debris;

G. The creation of attractive nuisances that create a danger to children and other persons, including but not limited to: abandoned, broken, or neglected equipment, machinery, appliances, construction materials and/or equipment, hazardous pools, ponds, and excavations;

H. The storage of personal property, including, but not limited to: inoperable vehicles, boats, trailers, or vehicle parts which are abandoned, or left in a state of partial repair. Except as otherwise expressly provided by RCMC 6.56.160 and 6.56.360, abandoned, wrecked, dismantled, or inoperative vehicles, or any part thereof, either covered or uncovered, and situated upon any private or public property, including highways, within the city of Rancho Cordova are prohibited and shall be abated in accordance with Chapter 6.56 RCMC;

I. The presence of unpainted buildings and/or buildings having dry rot, warping, or termite infestation, which shall include, but is not limited to, any building on which the condition of the paint has become so deteriorated as to permit decay, excessive checking, cracking, peeling, chalking, dry rot or warping so as to render the building unsafe or unsightly, or in a state of disrepair;

J. The presence of buildings with windows containing broken glass or no glass at all, where the window is of a type which normally contains glass, and which constitutes a hazard and/or invites trespassers and malicious mischief;

K. The presence of building exteriors, walls, fences, driveways, sidewalks or walkways which are maintained in such a condition as to become dangerous, defective, dilapidated or unsightly;

L. The presence of conditions which are conducive to or allow the breeding of flies, mosquitoes, or other vermin, including rodents. Fly and rodent abatement shall be in accordance with Chapter 6.80 RCMC, and mosquito abatement shall be in accordance with Chapter 6.24 RCMC;

M. The storage of construction equipment, farm machinery, or machinery of any type or description parked or stored in such a manner that it is visible from public property, the street and/or the public right-of-way, unless such equipment or machinery falls within one of the following exceptions:

1. An active building permit or similar permit has been issued and covers the excavation, construction or demolition operations that are in progress; or

2. Active farming operations are underway in an area properly zoned for agricultural use; or

3. When such machinery is located within an area zoned agricultural or industrial and such equipment has been appropriately stored; or

4. Active landscaping improvements which require the use of equipment or machinery. This exception shall only apply to allow parking or storing of machinery or equipment visible from public property for a period not to exceed 48 hours;

N. The keeping, storing, depositing, or accumulating of dirt, sand, gravel, concrete, or other landscaping materials in a manner that creates conditions that affect the public health, safety, or general welfare;

O. The maintenance or keeping of any graffiti on any building or structure. Graffiti removal or abatement shall be in accordance with Chapter 6.120 RCMC. Graffiti shall be abated by repainting the entire surface area on which the graffiti exists and the property owner shall use paint that matches (to the greatest degree possible) the color of the original remaining portions of the structure being painted, or as otherwise approved by the city;

P. The maintenance or keeping of temporary electrical decorative lighting or electrical decorations that have not been approved by Underwriter’s Laboratory for long term outdoor use beyond a 90-day period, or that are being maintained in a manner which creates conditions that affect the public health, safety or general welfare;

Q. The installment of a chain-link, barbed wire or electrified fence, razor, or concertina wire in conjunction with a fence or wall, unless approved pursuant to Chapter 23.125 RCMC for security needs or as required by city, state or federal regulation. Fences shall be constructed with redwood, cedar, pine, Douglas fir, vinyl, wrought iron, or any other fencing material approved by the planning director;

R. Parking of any vehicle not in conformance with RCMC 23.719.130(C)(1);

S. The presence of any trash receptacles stored in the front yard and not screened from view or in the public right of-way outside of the 12 hours before or after the designated time for pick up. Screening of residential trash enclosures/recycle containers shall be in accordance with RCMC 23.731.080(A)(6);

T. The presence of any dangerous, unsightly, or blighted condition which is detrimental to the health, safety or welfare of the public;

U. The maintenance or keeping of the premises in a neglected, run-down or improperly maintained condition, which creates or promotes a condition that is injurious to the health, safety, and/or general welfare of the public, and which constitutes visual blight or reduces the aesthetic appearance of the neighborhood, is offensive to the senses or is detrimental to nearby property or property values;

V. Any condition recognized in law or in equity as constituting a public nuisance;

W. The maintenance or keeping of driveway pavement that does not conform to RCMC 23.716.060, or any other section of the zoning code;

X. The maintenance or keeping of any nonoperative locking mechanism or approved key pad that provides access to and from an apartment complex or multifamily dwelling unit. [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].

16.18.1704 Standards for commercial property.

No property owner or party in interest shall create, cause, or permit any of the following conditions to exist on privately owned commercial properties or buildings when such conditions are visible from public property:

A. The existence of property which lacks landscaping, turf, ground cover, live plant material, rocks, or other commonly used landscaping materials and which creates a condition of excessive dust, soil erosion; grass exceeding eight inches in height; weeds or other conditions that affect the public health, safety, or general welfare and is detrimental to the aesthetics of the community. Landscape design and planting requirements and maintenance of commercial landscaping shall conform to RCMC 23.716.020, 23.716.050, 23.716.060 and 23.716.100;

B. The discharge or deposit of any sewage, garbage, feculent matter, offal, refuse, filth, or any animal, mineral, vegetable, or hazardous matter into the following: American River or any of the feeders or tributaries of the river within the city of Rancho Cordova in violation of Chapter 6.16 RCMC; or any discharge of non-storm water substance or material into the county storm water conveyance system; or directly into the Sacramento River, American River, Cosumnes River, Mokelumne River, or navigable waters of the Sacramento – San Joaquin River Delta in violation of Chapter 15.12 RCMC;

C. The overgrowth of vegetation that is likely to harbor rodents, vermin, insects, or other nuisances; or which obstructs the view of drivers or bicyclists on streets, public rights-of-way, or private driveways; or which impedes, obstructs, or denies pedestrian or other lawful travel on sidewalks, walkways, or other public rights-of-way;

D. The dumping of weeds or refuse, or the accumulation of weeds or refuse such that the weeds or refuse constitute a fire hazard. Weeds and refuse shall be abated in accordance with Chapter 17.12 RCMC;

E. The presence of dead, decayed, or diseased vegetation, including but not limited to: trees, weeds, bushes or shrubs that create an unsightly appearance, or create a danger to the public health, safety, or general welfare. All tree preservation, maintenance, and removal shall be in accordance with Chapters 19.04, 19.08, 19.12 and 23.716 RCMC;

F. The accumulation or presence of packing boxes, cardboard boxes, lumber, rubbish, refuse, barrels, drums, salvage materials, broken or discarded furniture, household fixtures, equipment or furnishings, garbage receptacles, including unpermitted storage containers such as shipping containers, shopping carts, laundry carts, or other debris;

G. The creation of attractive nuisances that create a danger to children and other persons, including but not limited to: abandoned, broken, or neglected equipment, machinery, appliances, construction materials and/or equipment, hazardous pools, ponds and excavations;

H. The storage of personal property, including, but not limited to: inoperable vehicles, boats, trailers, or vehicle parts which are abandoned, or left in a state of partial repair. Except as otherwise expressly provided by RCMC 6.56.160 and 6.56.360, abandoned, wrecked, dismantled, or inoperative vehicles, or any part thereof, either covered or uncovered, and situated upon any private or public property, including highways, within the city of Rancho Cordova are prohibited and shall be abated in accordance with Chapter 6.56 RCMC;

I. The presence of unpainted buildings and/or buildings having dry rot, warping, or termite infestation, which shall include, but is not limited to, any building on which the condition of the paint has become so deteriorated as to permit decay, excessive checking, cracking, peeling, chalking, dry rot or warping so as to render the building unsafe or unsightly, or in a state of disrepair;

J. The presence of buildings with windows containing broken glass or no glass at all, where the window is of a type which normally contains glass, and which constitutes a hazard and/or invites trespassers and malicious mischief;

K. The presence of building exteriors, walls, fences, driveways, sidewalks or walkways which are maintained in such a condition as to become dangerous, defective, dilapidated or unsightly;

L. The presence of conditions which are conducive to or allow the breeding of flies, mosquitoes, or other vermin, including rodents. Fly and rodent abatement shall be in accordance with Chapter 6.80 RCMC, and mosquito abatement shall be in accordance with Chapter 6.24 RCMC;

M. The storage of construction equipment, farm machinery, or machinery of any type or description parked or stored in such a manner that it is visible from public property, the street and/or the public right-of-way, unless such equipment or machinery falls within one of the following exceptions:

1. An active building permit or similar permit has been issued and covers the excavation, construction or demolition operations that are in progress; or

2. Active farming operations are underway in an area properly zoned for agricultural use; or

3. When such machinery is located within an area zoned agricultural or industrial and such equipment has been appropriately stored; or

4. Active landscaping improvements which require the use of equipment or machinery. This exception shall only apply to allow parking or storing of machinery or equipment visible from public property for a period not to exceed 48 hours;

N. The keeping, storing, depositing, or accumulating of dirt, sand, gravel, concrete, or other landscaping materials in a manner that creates conditions that affect the public health, safety, or general welfare;

O. The maintenance or keeping of graffiti on any building or structure. Graffiti removal or abatement shall be in accordance with Chapter 6.120 RCMC. Graffiti shall be abated by repainting of the entire surface area on which the graffiti exists and the property owner shall use paint that matches (to the greatest degree possible) the color of the original remaining portions of the structure being painted, or as otherwise approved by the city;

P. The installment of a chain-link, barbed wire or electrified fence, razor, or concertina wire in conjunction with a fence or wall, unless approved pursuant to Chapter 23.125 RCMC for security needs or as required by city, state or federal regulation. Fences shall be constructed with redwood, cedar, pine, Douglas fir, vinyl, wrought iron, or any other fencing material approved by the planning director;

Q. The maintenance or keeping of vehicle parking areas with garbage and debris, and damage to asphalt, concrete surface, landscape areas, curbing. All parking standards shall be maintained in conformance with Chapter 23.719 RCMC;

R. The maintenance or keeping of trash receptacles and loading docks without screening from public view. Screening of commercial loading docks and refuse areas shall be in accordance with RCMC 23.731.080(A)(5);

S. The maintenance or keeping of commercial trash receptacles without locks when those receptacles are not in use;

T. The presence of any dangerous, unsightly, or blighted condition which is detrimental to the health, safety or welfare of the public;

U. The maintenance or keeping of the premises in a neglected, run-down or improperly maintained condition, which creates or promotes a condition that is injurious to the health, safety, and/or general welfare of the public, and which constitutes visual blight or reduces the aesthetic appearance of the neighborhood, or anything that is offensive to the senses or is detrimental to nearby property or property values;

V. Any condition recognized in law or in equity as constituting a public nuisance;

W. The maintenance or keeping of any commercial signage in a neglected, run-down or improperly maintained condition;

X. The maintenance or keeping of any commercial business entrance, sidewalk, or commercial parking lot, which is open to use by the public, in a neglected, run-down, or improperly maintained condition or unreasonably unsanitary condition. A commercial business entrance, sidewalk and parking lot shall be periodically cleaned to remove hazardous waste, biohazardous waste and other contaminants. Parking stalls and loading zones and other areas of the surface of the parking lot shall be periodically painted with paint that meets or exceeds ASTM International standards. All design standards for surface parking lots, including the painting of stalls, shall conform to RCMC 23.719.090;

Y. The maintenance or keeping of property or buildings in a manner that violates (1) conditions of approval that have been imposed on the property during the process of approval of the development, or (2) conditions imposed on a building permit, use permit, or other entitlement issued by the city or the business license or special license issued, or (3) if no conditions of approval or imposed conditions apply, in any manner that does not meet the landscaping and parking standards of Chapters 23.716 and 23.719 RCMC;

Z. The maintenance or keeping of shopping carts in a manner that is not in compliance with a commercial business’s abandoned cart prevention plan pursuant to RCMC 16.18.1505 and applicable state laws. [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].

16.18.1705 Authority.

The enforcement official is hereby authorized to use the provisions of this code for the purpose of abating nuisances which exist as the result of violation of this chapter. [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].

16.18.1706 Right of entry.

To the extent authorized by law, the enforcement official may enter onto the property or premises at reasonable times to make inspections authorized by the Rancho Cordova Municipal Code or state law. [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].

16.18.1707 Responsibility for property maintenance.

A. Every owner of real property within the city is required to maintain such property in a manner so as to not violate the provisions of this code, and such owner remains liable for violations thereof regardless of any contract or agreement with any third party regarding such property.

B. Every occupant, lessee, or holder of any interest in property, other than an owner thereof, is required to maintain such property in the same manner as is required of the owner thereof, and the duty imposed by this section on the owner thereof shall in no instance relieve those persons herein referred to from the similar duty. [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].

16.18.1708 Hearing examiner.

Whenever the term “hearing examiner” is utilized in this chapter, it shall be deemed to refer to the city manager, or his or her designee, assigned the responsibility of conducting an administrative hearing for an appeal of a violation. [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].

16.18.1709 Violations and penalties.

A. Notice to Appear/Citation. Law enforcement agencies and the enforcement officials may issue a notice to appear citation to the property owner, any person occupying or leasing the property or premises of another, and/or other interested party for violation of this code.

B. Infractions. A property owner or any interested party occupying or leasing the property or premises of another who violates any provision of this code shall be guilty of an infraction. Each day, or portion thereof, a violation exists may be a new and separate offense. Any person convicted of an infraction shall be subject to payment of a fine pursuant to the terms set forth in Section 36900 of the State of California Government Code, as that section or its successor reads at the time of the offense, plus any additional penalties assessed by the court. After a third conviction of the same section of this code, subsequent violations of the same section may be charged as a misdemeanor rather than as an infraction.

C. Misdemeanor. Any person convicted of a misdemeanor under this code shall be punished by a fine of not more than $1,000, or by imprisonment not to exceed six months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

D. Notwithstanding subsections (A), (B) and (C) of this section, the prosecuting authority may file a misdemeanor for any violation of this code, including a failure to obey an administrative citation as described in RCMC 1.01.190(K). In addition, the city attorney or his or her authorized designee may take other steps and apply to such court to seek any and all legal or equitable relief as permitted under law.

E. Second or Subsequent Civil or Criminal Judgment – Treble Damages. Pursuant to Section 38773.7 of the Government Code, upon entry of a second or subsequent civil or criminal judgment within a two-year period finding that an owner of property is responsible for a condition that may be abated in accordance with the abatement procedure outlined in this chapter, the court may order the owner to pay up to three times the cost of the abatement. This section does not apply to conditions abated pursuant to Section 17980 of the Health and Safety Code.

F. Administrative Citations.

1. Applicability. This section provides for administrative citations, which are in addition to all other legal remedies, criminal or civil, which the city may pursue to address a violation of this code. Use of this section is at the sole discretion of the city. This section is authorized under Sections 36901 and 53069.4 of the Government Code.

The procedures in this section shall not be used to enforce a continuing violation regarding building, plumbing, electrical, or other similar structural or zoning issues, without first allowing the person in violation a reasonable time to correct the violation, consistent with the procedures set forth in subsection (F)(2) of this section.

2. Continuing Violations of Building and Zoning Issues. If a violation is a continuing one and/or pertains to a building, plumbing, electrical, or other structural or zoning issue that does not create an immediate danger to health or safety, the city shall provide a reasonable period of time for the responsible person to correct or otherwise remedy the violation before the imposition of an administrative citation or penalty.

3. Administrative Citation.

a. Authority. Whenever an enforcement officer determines that a violation of any of the provisions of any of the ordinances of the city has occurred, the enforcement officer has the authority to issue an administrative citation to the person responsible for the violation.

b. Contents of Citation. Each administrative citation shall contain the following information:

i. The date of the violation.

ii. The address or a definite description of the location where the violation occurred.

iii. The section of the code violated and a description of the violation.

iv. The amount of the fine for the code violation.

v. A description of the fine payment process, including a description of the time within which and the place to which the fine shall be paid.

vi. An order prohibiting the continuation or repeated occurrence of the code violation described in the administrative citation.

vii. A description of the administrative citation review process, including the period of time within which the administrative citation may be contested, and the place from which a request for hearing form to contest the administrative citation may be obtained.

viii. The name and signature of the citing enforcement officer. In the case of a continuing violation involving building, plumbing, electrical, or other similar structural or zoning issues identified under subsection (F)(2) of this section, the administrative citation shall also have attached a copy of the prior notice that was sent to the responsible party.

c. Dismissal of Citation. At any time before the hearing, if the enforcement officer determines that there was no violation as charged in the administrative citation or that the citation should be dismissed in the interest of justice, the enforcement officer shall dismiss the administrative citation, cancel the hearing, and refund any administrative citation fine.

4. Amount of Fine.

a. Maximum Amount of Fine. The maximum amount of the fine imposed for each code violation under this section is as follows:

i. One hundred dollars for a first violation;

ii. Two hundred dollars for a second violation of the same section of this article within one year; and

iii. Five hundred dollars for each additional violation of the same ordinance within one year.

b. Additional Amounts. Administrative costs, interest, late payment charges, costs of compliance re-inspections, and collection costs are in addition to the fine. These include:

i. Administrative costs: based on time spent by code enforcement department staff, supervisors and city attorney’s office, at the full-cost hourly rate of each employee, including salary, benefits, and overhead.

ii. Late payment charges: due at the rate of 10 percent per month.

iii. Compliance reinspections: based on staff time at the full-cost hourly rate.

iv. Collection costs: actual collection costs.

c. Discretion of Enforcement Officer or Hearing Officer – Factors in Establishing Fine. In determining the amount of the fine and additional amounts, the enforcement officer or hearing officer has the discretion to set the fine lower than the maximum amount, or to reduce the additional costs, based on any or all of the following factors:

i. The duration of the violation;

ii. The frequency, recurrence, and number of violations, related or unrelated, by the same violator;

iii. The seriousness of the violation;

iv. The good faith efforts of the violator to come into compliance;

v. The economic impact of the fine on the violator;

vi. The impact of the violation on the community; and

vii. Such other factors as justice requires, including but not limited to health and safety concerns.

5. Payment of the Fine.

a. Due Date. The fine shall be paid to the city within 30 days from the date of the administrative citation. The city may suspend the imposition of fines for any period of time during which the violator has filed for necessary permits, and such permits are required to achieve compliance, and the permit applications are actively pending before the appropriate governmental agency.

b. Refund. The city shall refund a fine paid if the hearing officer determines, after a hearing held under subsection (F)(8) of this section, that the person charged in the citation was not responsible for the violation or that there was no violation as charged.

c. Further Violations Not Excused. Payment of a fine under this section shall not excuse or discharge any continuation or repeated occurrence of the code violation.

6. Hearing Request.

a. Hearing Request. A person who receives an administrative citation may contest the citation on the basis that there was no violation of the code or that he or she is not the responsible party. To contest the citation, the person shall submit a request for hearing form to the city within 30 days from the date of the administrative citation. Directions on how to obtain the request form will be provided on the administrative citation. The completed request must be submitted together with an advance deposit of the fine.

b. Notice of Hearing. The person requesting the hearing shall be notified of the time and place set for the hearing at least 10 days before the date of the hearing.

c. Additional Reports. If the enforcement officer submits an additional written report concerning the administrative citation to the hearing officer for consideration at the hearing, then a copy of this report also shall be provided to the person requesting the hearing at least five days before the date of the hearing.

7. Hearing Officer. Pursuant to RCMC 16.18.204, a hearing officer will be assigned the responsibility of conducting a hearing by the city manager. The city manager shall be authorized to assign hearing responsibilities from time to time to any person or persons, qualified by training or experience, whom the city manager may appoint, employ, or who are retained by contract to conduct such hearings.

8. Hearing Procedure.

a. Setting the Hearing. A hearing before the hearing officer shall be set for a date that is not less than 15 days nor more than 60 days from the date that the request for hearing is filed. The person requesting the hearing shall be notified of the time and place set for the hearing as soon as it is set, and at least 10 days before the hearing. If the enforcement officer submits a written report concerning the citation to the hearing officer for consideration at the hearing, then a copy of the report shall be served on the person requesting the hearing at least five days before the hearing. No hearing shall be held unless the fine has been deposited in advance, under subsection (F)(6)(a) of this section.

b. Failure to Appear. The failure of the person requesting the hearing to appear at the hearing shall constitute a forfeiture of the fine and a failure to exhaust his or her administrative remedies.

c. At the Hearing. The administrative citation, and any additional report submitted by the enforcement officer shall constitute prima facie evidence of the respective facts contained in those documents. At the hearing, the party contesting the citation shall be given the opportunity to testify and to present evidence concerning the citation.

d. Continuances. The hearing officer may continue the hearing and may request additional information from the enforcement officer or the person receiving the citation before issuing the decision.

9. Hearing Officer’s Decision.

a. Decision. After considering the testimony and evidence presented at the hearing, the hearing officer shall issue a written decision to uphold, dismiss, or modify the administrative citation. The hearing officer shall state the reasons for the decision and shall send a copy of the decision to the person that requested the hearing and to the enforcement officer. The decision of the hearing officer shall be final.

b. Status of Fine. If the citation is upheld, then the fine amount on deposit with the city shall be retained by the city.

If the citation is dismissed, the city shall promptly refund the amount of any fine deposited, together with interest at the average rate earned on the city’s portfolio for the period of time that the fine was held by the city.

10. Late Payment Charges. A person who fails to pay to the city the fine imposed under this section on or before the date that fine is due is also liable for the payment of the applicable late payment charges set forth in subsection (F)(4)(b) of this section.

11. Recovery of Administrative Citation Fines and Costs.

a. Costs of Securing Payment. A person who fails to pay any fine or other charges owed to the city under this section is liable in any action brought by the city for all costs incurred in securing payment of the delinquent amount, including but not limited to administrative costs and attorneys’ fees. Such collection costs are in addition to any fines, interest, and late charges.

b. Other Costs. In addition to the administrative citation fine, the city may collect its administrative costs, interest, late payment charges, costs of compliance reinspections, and collection costs.

c. Collection. The city may collect any past due administrative citation fine and other costs and charges by any available legal means, including without limitation placing a lien on the property.

12. Right to Judicial Review. A person aggrieved by the hearing officer’s decision on an administrative citation may obtain review of the decision by filing a lawsuit with the superior court in Sacramento County within 20 days after service of the final decision in accordance with the timelines and provisions set forth in Section 53069.4 of the California Government Code.

13. Notices.

a. Method of Service. The administrative citation and all notices required to be given by this section shall be served on the responsible party either by personal service, first-class mail or by certified mail with return receipt requested upon the owner of record or his/her/their address as it appears on the latest equalized assessment roll of Sacramento County, or as known to the enforcement official; a copy of the notice may be served by U.S. Mail and/or by posting to the premises.

b. Real Property. When real property is involved in the violation, the original notice, the administrative citation and all notices required to be given by this section shall be served on the responsible party and, if different, to the property owner at the address as shown on the last equalized county assessment roll. If personal service or service by mail on the property owner is unsuccessful, a copy of each notice and the citation shall be conspicuously posted at the property which is the subject of the violation. The city may, in its discretion, also serve notice on a tenant, a mortgagor, or any other person having an interest in the property.

c. Failure to Receive Notice. The failure of a person to receive a required notice shall not affect the validity of any proceedings taken under this section.

G. Attorneys’ Fees. Pursuant to Section 38773.5 of the Government Code, attorneys’ fees may be recovered by the prevailing party. However, in no action, administrative proceeding, or special proceeding shall an award of attorneys’ fees to a prevailing party exceed the amount of reasonable attorneys’ fees incurred by the city in the action or proceedings.

H. Nuisance. In addition to the penalties provided for in this section, any condition caused or permitted to exist in violation of any of the provisions of any of the ordinances of the city is hereby declared to be a public nuisance and may, by the city, be abated as provided for in this code.

I. Recorded Notice of Noncompliance. If a violation of this chapter is not corrected pursuant to the notice of violation or citation within the time allotted or if the violation is upheld after an appeal pursuant to subsection (F) of this section, a notice of noncompliance may be recorded in the office of the county recorder. The notice of noncompliance shall describe the property and specify the ordinance sections(s) or permit terms or conditions violated. The director or his or her designee shall record a release of notice of noncompliance with the office of the county recorder only if and after the violations have been fully corrected and all the city’s enforcement costs and fees outstanding have been paid to the satisfaction of the director, or his or her designee. The violator must pay a fee for recordation of the release of notice of noncompliance, which shall be set by resolution of the council. [Ord. 9-2017 § 1].