CHAPTER 24
NUISANCES

Sections:

24.01    Purpose.

24.02    Nuisances and property maintenance.

24.03    Abatement by demolition, rehabilitation, repair, removal or closure.

24.04    Declaration of nuisance.

24.05    Notice of hearing to abate.

24.06    Posting and serving notice.

24.07    Form of proper service of notice.

24.08    Hearing by commission.

24.09    Action by council with no appeal.

24.10    Action by council with an appeal.

24.11    Service on owner of resolution to abate.

24.12    Abatement by city—Summary abatement.

24.13    Record of cost for abatement.

24.14    Report of hearing and proceedings.

24.15    Assessment of costs against the property—Joint and several liability.

24.16    Alternative to proceedings.

24.17    Vehicle abandonment.

24.18    Notice of violation.

24.19    Public hearing.

24.20    Notice to the California Highway Patrol.

24.21    Conduct of hearings and assessment of costs.

24.22    Removal authority.

24.23    Determination of costs.

24.24    Appeals.

24.25    Disposal of vehicle.

24.26    Notice of disposal.

24.27    Collection of costs.

24.01 Purpose.

This chapter establishes provisions for the correction or abatement of public nuisances for the protection of the public health, safety, and welfare of the city, as well as cost recovery provisions related thereto. (Ord. No. 2273, § 1, 2014.)

24.02 Nuisances and property maintenance.

(a)    Declaration of a Public Nuisance. It is hereby declared a public nuisance for any person owning, leasing, occupying, or having charge or possession of any premises in the city to maintain the premises in a manner that any of the conditions identified below are found to exist.

(b)    Entry on Private Property. Nothing in this division shall authorize entry upon private lands without the consent of the owner or person in lawful possession thereof, except with a judicial warrant issued by a court of competent jurisdiction.

(c)    Conditions Qualifying as a Public Nuisance. A condition shall not be declared a nuisance unless it can be observed and established without physical entry upon the property involved, or unless it can be observed and established during an entry onto the property with the consent of the person in control of the property, or under the authority of a judicial warrant issued by a court of competent jurisdiction. Conditions that qualify as a public nuisance include, but are not limited to, the following:

(1)    An occupied or vacant structure that is structurally unsafe or that constitutes a fire hazard, or that is otherwise dangerous to human life;

(2)    Land, the geology, topography, or configuration of which, whether in a natural state or as a result of grading operations, causes erosion, subsidence, or surface water drainage problems of a magnitude deemed to be injurious or potentially injurious to the public health, safety, and general welfare or to adjacent properties;

(3)    Structures that are abandoned, boarded up, partially destroyed, or left unreasonably in a state of partial construction;

(4)    Overgrown vegetation:

(A)    Likely to harbor rats, vermin, and other nuisances, or

(B)    Causing detriment to neighboring properties or property values;

(5)    Dead, decayed, diseased, or hazardous trees:

(A)    Dangerous to public safety and general welfare, or

(B)    Detrimental to nearby property or property values;

(6)    The accumulation and storage of dismantled, inoperative, or wrecked vehicles, except as expressly allowed, on private or public property (not including highways).

(A)    For the purpose of this subsection:

i.    “Vehicle” means a device by which any person or property may be drawn, moved, or propelled upon a highway, except a device moved by human power or used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks.

ii.    “Highway” means a way or place of whatever nature publicly maintained and open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel. Highway includes streets.

iii.    “Public property” does not include “highway.”

(B)    This subsection shall not apply to:

i.    A vehicle, or parts thereof, which is completely enclosed within a structure in a lawful manner where it is not visible from the street or other public or private property,

ii.    A vehicle, or parts thereof which, is stored or parked in a lawful manner on private property in connection with the business of a licensed dismantler, licensed vehicle dealer, or when storage or parking is necessary to the operation of a lawfully conducted business or commercial enterprise, or

iii.    A vehicle that has remained inoperative for less than seventy-two consecutive hours; provided, however, that this exception shall not apply to vehicles stored in front setback areas;

(7)    Attractive nuisances dangerous to children in the form of:

(A)    Abandoned and broken equipment,

(B)    Abandoned structures,

(C)    Hazardous excavations, ponds, or pools, or

(D)    Neglected machinery;

(8)    Inadequate sanitation including the following:

(A)    General dilapidation or improper maintenance,

(B)    Infestation of insects, rodents, or vermin as determined by the city’s health officer,

(C)    Lack of adequate garbage and rubbish storage and removal facilities as determined by the city’s health officer,

(D)    Lack of connection to a required sewage disposal system;

(9)    Structural hazards in occupied or vacant structures, including the following:

(A)    Deteriorated or inadequate foundations,

(B)    Defective or deteriorated flooring or floor supports,

(C)    Fireplaces or chimneys that bulge, list, or settle due to defective material or deterioration,

(D)    Flooring or floor supports of insufficient size to carry imposed loads with safety,

(E)    Members of ceilings, roofs, ceilings and roof supports, or other horizontal members that buckle, sag, or split due to defective material or deterioration,

(F)    Members of ceilings, roofs, ceiling and roof supports, or other horizontal members that are of insufficient size to carry imposed loads with safety,

(G)    Members of walls, partitions, or other vertical supports that buckle, lean, list, or split due to defective material or deterioration,

(H)    Members of walls, partitions, or other vertical supports that are of insufficient size to carry imposed loads with safety;

(10)    All wiring, except that which conformed to all applicable laws in effect at the time of installation; if currently in good and safe condition and working properly;

(11)    All plumbing, except that which conformed with all applicable laws in effect at the time of installation and which has been maintained in good condition, or which may not have conformed with all applicable laws in effect at the time of installation but is currently in good and safe condition and working properly, and which is free of cross connections and siphonage between fixtures;

(12)    All mechanical equipment, including vents, except that which conformed with all applicable law in effect at the time of installation and which has been maintained in good and safe condition, or which may not have conformed with all applicable laws in effect at the time of installation but is currently in good and safe condition and working properly;

(13)    Faulty weather protection, which shall include the following:

(A)    Crumbling, deteriorated, or loose plaster,

(B)    Deteriorated or ineffective waterproofing of exterior floors, foundations, roof, or walls including broken doors or windows,

(C)    Defective or lack of protection for exterior wall coverings, including lack of paint, or weathering due to lack of paint or other approved protective covering,

(D)    Broken, buckled, rotted, or split exterior wall coverings or roof coverings;

(14)    Any structure, or portions thereof, apparatus, device, equipment, combustible waste, or vegetation which, in the opinion of the chief of the fire department is in a condition so as to cause a fire or explosion or provide a ready fuel to augment the spread and intensity of fire or explosion arising from any cause;

(15)    All materials of construction, except those that are specifically allowed or approved by the building code, and which have been adequately maintained in good and safe condition;

(16)    Any occupied or vacant structure, or portions thereof, that is determined to be unsafe, in compliance with the city’s building codes;

(17)    All structures, or portions thereof, not provided with adequate exit facilities as required by the building code, except those structures, or portions thereof, whose exit facilities conformed with all applicable laws at the time of their construction and which have been adequately maintained and increased in relation to any increase in occupant load, addition or alteration, or any change in occupancy. When an unsafe condition exists through a lack of, or improper location of, exits, additional exits may be required to be installed;

(18)    All structures, or portions thereof, which are not provided with the fire-resistive construction or fire-extinguishing systems or equipment required by the building code, except those structures, or portions thereof, which conformed with all applicable laws at the time of their construction and whose fire-resistive integrity and fire-extinguishing systems or equipment have been adequately maintained and improved in relation to any increase in occupant load, addition or alteration, or any change in occupancy;

(19)    All structures, or portions thereof, occupied for cooking, dining, living, or sleeping, that were not designed or intended to be used for occupancy;

(20)    Inadequate structural resistance to horizontal forces;

(21)    Property in a condition that is defective, and unsightly, or in a condition of deterioration or disrepair that the same causes diminution to the property value of surrounding properties or is otherwise materially detrimental to adjacent properties and improvements. This includes the keeping or depositing on, or the scattering over the premises of, any of the following:

(A)    Debris, junk, lumber, or trash,

(B)    Abandoned, disregarded, or unused objects or equipment (e.g., cans, containers, freezers, furniture, refrigerators, or stoves),

(C)    Stagnant water and excavations, or

(D)    Any clothesline, decoration, design, device, fence, structure, or vegetation that is unsightly by reason of its condition or its inappropriate location;

(22)    A vacant parcel that is not planted with continuously maintained landscaping materials to prevent dust and erosion, that is not continuously maintained free from trash, litter, and other debris, and that does not cause a detriment to neighboring properties;

(23)    A vacant structure that is not maintained in weatherproof condition, that is not maintained to the same extent and appearance as if it were occupied, and/or is not secured to prevent entry by unauthorized persons at all times;

(24)    Any violation of this code;

(25)    Any property or business being operated in an illegal manner. This shall include, but not be limited to, any property that generates an unusually high number of calls for police, code enforcement and/or fire service due to illegal activity and/or public nuisance conditions, or where an unusual amount of criminal activity takes place as demonstrated by police investigations. An unusual number of calls for service may be determined in part by comparing similar or neighboring properties or businesses in similar zones or within the same or a similar neighborhood within the city;

(26)    The use or occupation of a cargo container, travel trailer, camper, motor home, vehicle or recreational vehicle as a temporary or permanent residence while parked on private or public property, subject to the following exceptions:

(A)    Parking and occupancy at a recreational vehicle park designed for exclusive occupancy by recreational vehicles and which includes a sanitary station or sanitary dumping station or facility used for removing and disposing of wastes from recreational vehicle sewage holding tanks;

(B)    Parking and occupancy with a permit obtained from the chief of police pursuant to SPMC 19.57-1(c)(4);

(C)    Parking and occupancy of a mobile home as a temporary residence with a permit pursuant to SPMC 36.410.050(B)(1);

(D)    Parking and occupancy of a recreational vehicle on private property by friends or family of the property owner or lawful tenant, where the owner or lawful tenant occupies the primary residence, is present, consents and occupancy of the recreational vehicle is limited to not more than five nights within any 30-day period; however, in no event may a recreational vehicle be used as a short term rental;

(E)    Subject to a permit, conditioned by required on-site access to sanitary facilities, issued by the city manager to the owner or lessor of a faith-based or nonprofit organization, parking and occupancy of a vehicle on the permittee’s private property by individuals in need of temporary shelter where the property of the permittee is not otherwise vacant and the temporary occupancy does not exceed 29 days;

(27)    The use of camping equipment and facilities, for habitation or other residential uses, unless such activities are expressly authorized pursuant to SPMC 21.10. This section is not intended to prohibit overnight camping on private residential property by friends or family of the property owner, while the owner or lawful resident occupies the primary residence, is present, consents and the overnight camping is limited to not more than five nights within any 30-day period. (Ord. No. 2273, § 2, 2014; Ord. No. 2312, § 2, 2017.)

24.03 Abatement by demolition, rehabilitation, repair, removal or closure.

All or any part of a premises found, as provided herein, to constitute a public nuisance shall be abated by demolition, rehabilitation, repair, or closure, in compliance with the procedures identified in this chapter. The identified procedures shall not, in any manner, limit or restrict the city from enforcing city ordinances or abating public nuisances in any other manner provided by law. (Ord. No. 2273, § 3, 2014.)

24.04 Declaration of nuisance.

(a)    Declaration by Resolution. Whenever the commission determines, based upon the request of the city manager, that any premises within the city may be maintained contrary to one or more of the provisions of Section 24.02 (Nuisances), above, the commission shall, by resolution, declare its intent to conduct a public hearing to determine whether the same does in fact constitute a public nuisance, the abatement of which is appropriate upon the police power of the city.

(b)    Contents of Resolution. The resolution shall describe the premises involved by street address, referring to the street by the name under which it is officially or commonly known, shall further describe the property by giving the block, lot, and tract number, shall give a brief description of the conditions contrary to the provision of Section 24.02 (Nuisances), and a brief statement of the required method of abatement. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.05 Notice of hearing to abate.

Within thirty days after the passage of a resolution by the commission, the secretary of the commission shall cause a certified copy of the resolution, and a notice of the time and place of the hearing before the commission, to be conspicuously posted on the premises. The notice shall be titled: “NOTICE OF HEARING” in letters not less than one inch in height, and shall be substantially in the following form:

NOTICE OF HEARING TO DETERMINE EXISTENCE OF PUBLIC NUISANCE
AND TO ABATE IN WHOLE OR IN PART

Notice is hereby given that on the ___ day of _____________, 20___ the Planning Commission of the City of South Pasadena passed a resolution declaring its intent to determine whether certain premises situated in the City of South Pasadena, State of California, known and designated as [name of business and/or address of property], and more particularly described as Lot No. _____ Block ____ Tract _____, constitute a public nuisance subject to abatement by the closure of the business or the rehabilitation of the premises or by the repair or demolition of structures situated thereon. If the premises, in whole or part, are found to constitute a public nuisance as defined in Section 24.02 (Nuisances) and the cost of closure, rehabilitation, repair, or demolition will be assessed upon the premises and the cost will constitute a lien upon the land until paid. (Reference is hereby made to Resolution No. _____ on file with the Secretary of the Planning Commission for further particulars.)

The alleged violations consist of the following:

The methods of abatement available are:

All persons having any objection to, or interest in, these matters are hereby notified to attend a meeting of the Planning Commission to be held on the ____ day of _____________, evidence will be heard and given due consideration.

Dated this ____ day of ____________, 20___

______________________________

Secretary of the Planning Commission (Ord. No. 2273, § 4, 2014.)

24.06 Posting and serving notice.

(a)    Director Shall Cause Service of Notice. The director shall cause to be served upon the owner of each of the affected premises, one copy of the notice and a copy of the commission’s resolution, in compliance with the provisions of Section 24.07 (Form of proper service of notice).

(b)    Service Fifteen Days Before Hearing. The notice and resolution shall be posted and served at least fifteen days before the scheduled hearing.

(c)    Proof of Posting and Service Required. Proof of posting and service of the notices and resolution shall be made by affidavit filed with the commission. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.07 Form of proper service of notice.

(a)    Service of the Notice and Resolution.

(1)    Service of the notice and resolution shall be by personal service upon the owner of the affected premises as the owner’s name and address appears on the last equalized assessment roll if the owner is found within the city limits.

(2)    If the owner is not found within the city limits, service of the notice and resolution shall be by depositing a copy of the notice and resolution in the U.S. Postal Service enclosed in a sealed envelope and with the postage fully prepaid.

(b)    Registered or Certified Mail. The mail shall be registered or certified and addressed to the owner at the last known address of the owner, and if there is no known address, then in care of the property address.

(c)    Completion of Service. The service is complete at the time of deposit in the U.S. Postal Service.

(d)    Owner Defined. The term owner shall mean any person in possession and also any person having or claiming to have any legal or equitable interest in the premises, as disclosed by a title search from an accredited title company.

(e)    Failure to Receive Notice. Failure of any person to receive notice shall not affect the validity of any proceedings conducted in compliance with this division. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.08 Hearing by commission.

(a)    Commission Shall Consider All Evidence. At the time stated in the notice, the commission shall hear and consider all relevant evidence, objections, or protests, and shall receive testimony from owners, witnesses, city staff, and interested persons relative to the alleged public nuisance and to the proposed demolition, rehabilitation, repair, or closure of the premises.

(b)    Burden of Proof. The existence of a public nuisance pursuant to this chapter shall be demonstrated by a preponderance of the evidence, the burden of proof to be borne by the city.

(c)    Opportunity to Present Evidence. In order to ensure that any person entitled to service under Section 24.07 (Form of proper service of notice), has the opportunity to fully present his or her argument, any such person shall be entitled to have witnesses subpoenaed, to appear and give testimony, and/or to provide documentary or photographic evidence with respect to the charges made against him or her. The commission shall consider all relevant and credible evidence, including exculpatory evidence, but shall have the authority to exclude repetitive or irrelevant evidence. The hearing may be continued from time to time.

(d)    Interpreter. At his or her own expense, any person appearing before the commission pursuant to this section may be assisted by a court-certified interpreter.

(e)    Commission Shall Determine Public Nuisance. Upon the conclusion of the hearing, the commission shall, based upon the competent sworn evidence received at the hearing, determine whether the premises, or any parts thereof, as maintained constitutes a public nuisance as defined in Section 24.02 (Nuisances).

(f)    Commission Shall Make Finding for Demolition. If abatement of the nuisance will require demolition, the commission shall also find, based upon the competent sworn evidence received at the hearing, that in fairness and justice there is no other reasonable way to correct the nuisance except demolition.

(g)    Commission Shall Make Findings for Closure. If abatement of the nuisance will require closure of a business, the commission shall also find, based upon the competent and sworn evidence received at the hearing, that justice and the protection of the public health, safety and welfare require closure of the business in order to prevent further violations of law.

(h)    Adoption of Resolution. If the commission finds that a public nuisance does exist and that there is sufficient cause to demolish, rehabilitate, repair, or shut down the same, the commission shall prepare and file with the Council a resolution containing a report of the findings and of its recommendations with respect to the required abatement.

(i)    Service of Commission’s Resolution. A copy of the resolution shall be served upon all owners in compliance with Section 24.07 (Form of proper service of notice), and the secretary of the commission shall cause a copy of the resolution to be conspicuously posted on the premises. (Ord. No. 2273, § 5, 2014.)

24.09 Action by council with no appeal.

In the absence of any appeal as identified in Section 24.10 (Action by council with an appeal), the council upon receiving the report from the commission, may by resolution declare the premises to be a public nuisance and order the abatement of the premises within thirty days, by having the premises or structures demolished, rehabilitated, repaired or shut down in the manner and means specifically identified in the resolution. (Ord. No. 2273, § 6, 2014.)

24.10 Action by council with an appeal.

(a)    Appeal. Any person entitled to service under Section 24.07 (Form of proper service of notice), may appeal the decision of the commission by filing, in the office of the city clerk within fifteen days after the date of service of the decision, a written and dated appeal, containing the following:

(1)    A heading in the words: “Before the City Council.”

(2)    A caption reading: “Appeal of __________,” giving the names of all appellants participating in the appeal.

(3)    A brief statement identifying the legal interest of each of the appellants in the structure or the land involved in the notice and order.

(4)    A statement in ordinary and concise language of the specific order or action protested, together with any material facts supporting the contentions of the appellant.

(5)    The signatures of all parties named as appellants, and their official mailing addresses.

(6)    The verification of at least one appellant as to the truth of the matters stated in the appeal.

(7)    Name and contact information of legal representatives, if applicable. The city clerk will communicate directly with the appellant unless requested to do otherwise in writing.

(b)    Hearing.

(1)    As soon as practicable after receiving the written appeal, the city clerk shall set a date for the hearing of the appeal by the city council, which date shall be not less than ten days nor more than forty-five days after the date the appeal was filed.

(2)    Written notice of the time and place of the hearing shall be given, at least ten days before the date of the hearing, to each appellant by the city clerk, either by causing a copy of the notice to be delivered to the appellant personally or by mailing a copy, postage prepaid, addressed to the appellant at the address shown on the appeal.

(3)    Continuances of the hearing may be granted by the city council on motion of appellant for good cause shown, or on the city council’s own motion.

(4)    The council shall hear the appeal de novo. De novo means that the city council reviews all evidence anew, giving no deference to the commission’s findings and conclusions.

(5)    When considering an appeal under this chapter, the city council shall not be limited by the statutory rules of evidence or procedure, but shall make inquiry as the city council deems advisable to protect the rights of the parties and to carry out the purposes of this chapter. The appellant shall be entitled to have witnesses subpoenaed, to appear and give testimony, and/or to provide documentary or photographic evidence with respect to the charges made against him or her. The city council shall consider all relevant and credible evidence, including exculpatory evidence, but shall have the authority to exclude repetitive or irrelevant evidence.

(6)    Burden of Proof. The existence of a public nuisance pursuant to this chapter shall be demonstrated by a preponderance of the evidence, the burden of proof to be borne by the city.

(7)    Interpreter. At his or her own expense, any person appearing before the city council pursuant to this section may be assisted by a court-certified interpreter.

(c)    Decision.

(1)    At the conclusion of the hearing on the appeal, the city council shall by resolution either:

(A)    Terminate the proceedings;

(B)    Confirm the action and decision of the commission; or

(C)    Modify the decision based upon the evidence presented at the hearing.

(2)    In the cases of the alternatives identified in subsections (c)(1)(B) or (C), the resolution shall declare the premises to be a public nuisance and order the abatement within thirty days by having the premises or structures demolished, rehabilitated, repaired or shut down in the manner and means specifically identified in the resolution. (Ord. No. 2273, § 7, 2014.)

24.11 Service on owner of resolution to abate.

(a)    Service of City Council’s Resolution. A copy of the city council’s resolution ordering the abatement of the nuisance shall be served upon the owner of the property in compliance with Section 24.07 (Form of proper service of notice), and shall contain a detailed list of needed corrections and abatement methods.

(b)    Completion of Demolition, Repairs or Closure Within Thirty Days. Any property owner shall have the right to have any premises demolished, rehabilitated, repaired or shut down in compliance with the resolution and at their own expense; provided, the same is completed before the expiration of the thirty-day abatement period.

(c)    Closure of Business Immediate. Any business that is declared a public nuisance by city council resolution pursuant to Section 24.09 or 24.10 shall cease operation immediately upon service of the adopted resolution.

(d)    Termination of Proceedings. The proceedings shall terminate upon the full and complete abatement by the owner. (Ord. No. 2273, § 8, 2014.)

24.12 Abatement by city—Summary abatement.

(a)    If the nuisance is not completely abated by the owner as directed within the thirty-day abatement period, the city council may direct the city manager to cause the same to be abated by city forces or by private contract. No entry upon private property may be made for the purposes of abatement without a judicial warrant issued by a court of competent jurisdiction, or as otherwise provided by law.

(b)    Notwithstanding any other provisions of this chapter, whenever the city manager determines that a property, a building, structure or activity is structurally unsafe, or constitutes a fire hazard, or is otherwise dangerous to human life, and such condition constitutes an immediate hazard or danger, he or she may, without observing the provisions of this chapter with reference to abatement procedures, immediately and forthwith abate the existing public nuisance. Any abatement pursuant to this subdivision shall be limited to the actions necessary to neutralize the immediate danger only. A post-abatement hearing shall be provided and all other procedures set forth in Sections 24.13 through 24.15 shall apply for the recovery of abatement costs. (Ord. No. 2273, § 9, 2014.)

24.13 Record of cost for abatement.

(a)    City Manager’s Account of Related Costs. The city manager shall keep an account of the cost (including incidental expenses) of abating the nuisance on each separate parcel of land where the work is done and shall render an itemized report in writing to the city council, showing the cost of abatement, which shall include, as applicable, the cost of demolishing, rehabilitating, repairing, or closure of the premises or structures, including any salvage value, as well the cost of investigating the nuisance, enforcing money judgments, and attorney fees and costs. “Incidental expenses” shall mean the actual expenses and costs of the city in the preparation of notices, specifications, and contracts, and in inspecting the work, as well as the costs of printing and the required mailings. Before the report is submitted to the city council, a copy shall be posted for at least five days upon the premises, together with a notice of the time when the report shall be heard by the city council for confirmation.

(b)    Service of Report and Notice. Additionally, a copy of the report and notice shall be served upon the owners of the property, in compliance with Section 24.07 (Form of proper service of notice), at least five days before submitting the report to the council. Proof of posting and service shall be made by affidavit filed with the city clerk. (Ord. No. 2273, § 10, 2014.)

24.14 Report of hearing and proceedings.

(a)    Council Shall Consider the Report. At the time and place fixed for receiving and considering the report, the council shall hear and pass upon the report of the city manager, together with any objections or protests.

(b)    Council’s Action to Confirm. The council may make the revision, correction, or modification in the report as it may deem just, after which by resolution the report, as submitted or as revised, corrected, or modified, shall be confirmed.

(c)    Council’s Decision is Final. The decision of the council on all protests and objections that may be made shall be final and conclusive. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.15 Assessment of costs against the property—Joint and several liability.

(a)    The total cost for abating the nuisance, as confirmed by the city council, shall constitute a special assessment against the respective parcel of land to which it relates.

(1)    Recordation of Notice. A notice of the special assessment, as made and confirmed, shall be recorded in the office of the county recorder.

(2)    Manner of Collection. After confirmation and recordation, the special assessment may be collected at the same time and in the same manner as ordinary municipal taxes are collected, and shall be subject to the same penalties and the same procedure and sale in case of delinquency as provided for ordinary municipal taxes. All laws applicable to the levy, collection, and enforcement of municipal taxes shall be applicable to the special assessment. However, if any real property to which the cost of abatement relates has been transferred or conveyed to a bona fide purchaser for value, or if a lien of a bona fide encumbrancer for value has been created and attaches thereon, before the date on which the first installment of the taxes would become delinquent, the cost of abatement shall not result in a lien against the real property, but instead shall be transferred to the unsecured roll for collection.

(3)    Form of Notice. The notice of special assessment shall be in a form substantially as follows:

NOTICE OF SPECIAL ASSESSMENT FOR NUISANCE ABATEMENT

(Claim of the City of South Pasadena)

In compliance with to the authority of the provisions of Section 24.12 (Abatement by City) of the South Pasadena Municipal Code, the City Manager of the City of South Pasadena did on or about the ____ day of ___________, 20____, cause the premises hereinafter described to be rehabilitated or the structure(s) or improvement(s) on the property to be demolished or repaired or shut down in order to abate a public nuisance on the real property; and the abatement was conducted in compliance with an order of abatement dated the ____ day of ___________, 20____; and the City Council of the City of South Pasadena did on the ____ day of ___________, 20____, assess the cost of the demolition, rehabilitation, repair, or closure upon the real property; and the same has not been paid nor any part thereof; and that the City of South Pasadena does hereby declare the costs of the demolition, rehabilitation, repair, or closure in the amount so assessed, to with the sum of ___________ dollars ($___________), to be a special assessment against the real property.

The special assessment shall be collected at the same time and in the same manner as ordinary municipal taxes are collected, and shall be subject to the same penalties and the same procedure and sale in case of delinquency as provided for ordinary municipal taxes. All laws applicable to the levy, collection, and enforcement of municipal taxes shall be applicable to the special assessment.

However, if any real property to which the cost of abatement relates has been transferred or conveyed to a bona fide purchaser for value, or if a lien of a bona fide encumbrancer for value has been created and attaches thereon, before the date on which the first installment of the taxes would become delinquent, the cost of abatement shall not result in a lien against the real property, but instead shall be transferred to the unsecured roll for collection.

The real property hereinbefore mentioned, and upon which the special assessment is levied, is that certain parcel of land lying and being in the City of South Pasadena, County of Los Angeles, State of California, commonly known as [street address], and more particularly described as follows:

[Legal description, including assessor’s parcel number]

The owner of record of the parcel of land is:

[Name and address of recorded owner of the parcel]

(b)    The property owner, tenant, lessee, business owner and/or operator shall each be jointly and severally liable for the cost of abatement, which shall constitute a personal debt of the property owner, tenant, lessee, business owner and/or operator. The city attorney is authorized to enforce such indebtedness pursuant to a civil action, in addition to any other remedy available to the city at law or equity. (Ord. No. 2273, § 11, 2014.)

24.16 Alternative to proceedings.

Nothing in the foregoing sections shall be deemed to prevent the council from ordering the city attorney to commence a civil or criminal proceeding to abate a public nuisance under applicable Civil or Penal Code provisions as an alternative to the proceedings identified above. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.17 Vehicle abandonment.

Any violation of Section 24.02(c)(6) (Conditions qualifying as a public nuisance), shall be abated in compliance with the following sections. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.18 Notice of violation.

(a)    Enforced by Chief of Police. Except as otherwise provided, the provisions of Sections 24.17 (Vehicle abandonment) to 24.27 (Collection of costs) shall be administered and enforced by the chief of police.

(b)    Right to Enter Property. In the enforcement, the chief of police and assigned deputies may with the consent of the owner enter upon private or public property to examine a vehicle, or parts thereof, or to obtain information as to the identity of a vehicle.

(c)    Method of Written Notice. Where the enforcement officer determines that there is an abandoned, dismantled, wrecked, or inoperative vehicle, the officer shall give written notice of the determination in the following manner:

(1)    By personally serving the occupant of the premises; or

(2)    By placing or affixing the notice to the vehicle, or parts thereof.

(d)    Content of Notice. The notice shall state the date, the determination as defined in Section 24.02 (Nuisances), and prescribe a minimum of forty-eight hours within which the vehicle, or parts thereof, shall be removed.

(e)    Copy to Secretary of Commission. A copy of the notice shall be promptly delivered to the secretary of the commission. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.19 Public hearing.

(a)    Presentation of Violation to Commission. Upon receipt of a copy of the notice identified in Section 24.18 (Notice of violation), and expiration of the forty-eight-hour period, the secretary of the commission may present the violation to the commission at its regular meeting, but in no event less than fifteen days after the date stated on the notice.

(b)    Mailing of Notice of the Public Hearing. Notice of the hearing shall be mailed at least ten days before the hearing by certified mail, with a five-day return requested, to the owner of the land as shown on the last equalized county assessment roll and to the last registered and legal owner of record of the vehicle, or parts, unless in the condition that identification numbers are not available to determine ownership. If any of the foregoing notices are returned undelivered by the U.S. Post Office, the hearing shall be continued to a date not less than ten days after the date of the return.

(c)    Commission Shall Hold a Hearing. At the commission meeting, a hearing shall be held on the question of abatement and removal of the vehicle, or parts thereof, as an abandoned, dismantled, wrecked, or inoperative vehicle and the assessment of all applicable administrative costs and costs of removal of the vehicle, or parts thereof, against the property on which it is located. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.20 Notice to the California Highway Patrol.

Notice of the commission’s hearing shall also be given to the California Highway Patrol, identifying the vehicle, or parts thereof, proposed for removal. The notice shall be mailed at least ten days before the commission’s hearing. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.21 Conduct of hearings and assessment of costs.

(a)    Commission’s Hearing. All hearings shall be held before the commission, which shall hear all facts and testimony it deems pertinent. The facts and testimony may include testimony on the condition of the vehicle, or parts thereof, and the circumstances concerning its location on the private or public property. The commission shall not be limited by the technical rules of evidence. The owner of the land on which the vehicle is located may appear in person at the hearing or present a written statement in time for consideration at the hearing and deny responsibility for the presence of the vehicle on the land, with the reasons for the denial.

(b)    Commission’s Action.

(1)    The commission may impose conditions and take other action, as it deems appropriate under the circumstances to carry out the purpose hereof. It may delay the time for removal of the vehicle, or parts thereof, if, in its opinion, the circumstances justify it.

(2)    At the conclusion of the public hearing, the commission may:

(A)    Find that a vehicle, or part, thereof, has been abandoned, dismantled, wrecked, or is inoperative on private or public property;

(B)    Issue its written order to have the vehicle removed from the property as a public nuisance and disposed of in compliance with the following sections; and

(C)    Determine whether the administrative costs and the cost of removal are to be charged against the owner of the parcel of land on which the vehicle, or parts thereof, is located.

(3)    The order requiring removal shall include a description of the vehicle, or parts thereof, and the correct identification number and license number of the vehicle, if located thereon.

(c)    Commission Shall Not Assess Costs. If it is determined at the hearing that the vehicle was placed on the land without the consent of the landowner (or the tenant in possession) and that the owner or tenant has not subsequently acquiesced in its presence, the commission shall not assess costs of administration or removal of the vehicle against the property upon which the vehicle is located or otherwise attempt to collect the costs from the landowner.

(d)    Notification of Commission Decision. If any interested party makes a written presentation to the commission but does not appear, the party shall be notified in writing of the commission decision. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.22 Removal authority.

When the council has contracted with or granted a franchise to any person(s), the person(s) shall be authorized to enter upon the private or public property to remove or cause the removal of a vehicle, or parts thereof, declared to be a nuisance. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.23 Determination of costs.

The costs of removal and abatement shall be the actual charges submitted by the person(s) under contract or franchise with the city for the removal. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.24 Appeals.

(a)    Filing of Notice of Appeal. Any interested party may appeal the decision of the commission by filing a written notice of appeal with the city clerk within six days after the date of the mailing of the notice of the decision of the commission.

(b)    Appeal To Be Heard by Council. The appeal shall be heard by the council, which may affirm, amend, or reverse the order or take other action deemed appropriate.

(c)    Notice of Council Hearing. The city clerk shall give written notice of the time and place of the hearing to the appellant and those persons specified in Sections 24.18 (Notice of violation) and 24.20 (Notice to the California Highway Patrol), above.

(d)    Conduct of Council Hearing. In conducting the hearing, the council shall not be limited by the technical rules of evidence. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.25 Disposal of vehicle.

Unless so appealed, six days after the mailing of the order declaring the vehicle, or parts thereof, to be a public nuisance and ordering its removal, the city may cause the vehicle, or parts thereof, to be disposed of by removal to a scrapyard, automobile dismantler’s yard, or other suitable site. After a vehicle has been removed, it shall not thereafter be reconstructed or made operable. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.26 Notice of disposal.

Within five days after the date of removal of the vehicle, or parts thereof, notice shall be given to the State Department of Motor Vehicles identifying the vehicle, or parts thereof. At the same time, there shall be transmitted to the Department of Motor Vehicles any evidence of registration available, including registration certificates, certificates of title, and license plates. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)

24.27 Collection of costs.

If the administrative costs and the cost of removal which are charged against the owner of a parcel of land in compliance with Section 24.21 (Conduct of hearings and assessment of costs), above, are not paid within thirty days of the date of the order, or the final disposition of an appeal, the costs shall be assessed against the parcel of land in compliance with State law (Government Code Section 38773.5) and shall be transmitted to the tax collector for collection. The assessment shall have the same priority as other city taxes. (Ord. No. 2115, § 1.)