Weed Ordinance

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Last Updated on Thursday, 08 January 2015 16:30

 Weed Ordinance

Chapter 5.32

Weeds Sections:

 

5.32.010 Definitions.
5.32.020 Owner's duty to control spread of noxious weeds.
5.32.030 Permitting accumulation unlawful.
5.32.040 Removal -- Duty of owner.
5.32.045 Removal -- Notice.
5.32.050 Complaint for noncompliance -- Penalty for violation.
5.32.060 Hearings on contested cases of liability.
5.32.070 Entry upon property.
5.32.080 Fees for performance of enforcement .
5.32.010 Definitions

Unless a different meaning is plainly required by the context, the following words and phrases as hereinafter used in this Chapter shall have the following meanings:
(1) "Agent" means any occupant or any other person acting for the owner and working, or in charge of, the land.
(2) "Lot" or "land" means public or private property and the paved or unpaved portion of a public right-of- way which abuts upon public or private property.
(3) "Noxious weed" or "weed" means any plant growing in the city which is determined by the state noxious weed control board to be injurious to crops, livestock, or other property and which is included for purpose of control on Whitman County's noxious weed list; or, if not included on Whitman County's noxious weed list has been designated for control by resolution of the City Council.
(4) "Owner" means the person in actual control of real property, or his agent, whether such control is based on legal or equitable title or on any other interest entitling the holder to possession and, for purposes of liability for payment pursuant to the provisions of this
Chapter means the possessor of legal or equitable title or the possessor of an easement; provided, that when the possessor of an easement has the right to control or limit the growth of vegetation within the boundaries of an easement, only the possessor of such easement shall be
deemed, for the purpose of this Chapter, an owner of the property within the boundaries of such easement.
(5) "Person" means any individual, partnership, corporation, firm, the state, or any department, agency, or subdivision thereof, or any other entity.
(6) As pertains to the duty of an owner, the word "control" and the term "prevent the spread of noxious weeds" means conforming to the standards of noxious weed control or
prevention adopted by rule or regulation by the Whitman County noxious weed control board. (Ord. 82- 25 § 2, 1982).

5.32.020 Owner's duty to control spread of noxious weeds.
 It shall be the duty of every owner and every owner shall perform, or cause to be performed such acts as may be necessary to control and to prevent the spread of noxious weeds from his property; and, the failure to do so is unlawful. (Ord. 82- 25 § 3, 1982).

 

5.32.030 Permitting accumulation unlawful.
 It is unlawful for any owner of a lot or land within the city to permit or maintain on any such lot or land living weeds included on the Whitman County noxious weed list; or, which are included on the state of Washington noxious weed list and have been designated by resolution of the City Council for control although any such noxious weed may not have been included on the Whitman County noxious weed list. (Ord. 83 -7 § 1, 1983; Ord. 82- 25 § 4, 1982).

 

5.32.040 Removal-- Duty of owner.
 It shall be the duty of every owner of any lot or land to cut and remove or eradicate or
cause to be cut and removed or eradicated from such property as often as may be necessary all prohibited weeds, in order to comply with the provisions of Section 5.32.030. (Ord. 82-25 § 5, 1982).

 

5.32.045 Removal--Notice.
 If it appears to the satisfaction of the director of public services that any provision of this
Chapter is being or has been violated the director of public services shall serve written notice either personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested upon the owner, or if the
owner cannot be located, the agent having the care or control of the premises upon which the violation exists, which notice shall state:
(1) the description of the property on which the alleged violation has occurred; and
(2) the specific nature of that violation; and
(3) the section or sections of this Chapter alleged to be violated; and
(4) the date by which the violating condition is to be abated, which date shall not be less than seven days after receipt of such notice by the offender; and
(5) that if removal or destruction of the violating condition is not made by the owner within the time limit set forth as provided for in subsection (4) of this section, that
then the director of public services will bring this matter before the City Council, the date thereof to be specified in the notice, and request of the City Council the passage of a resolution authorizing the director of public services to cause the removal or destruction of the violation; and
(6) that should the director of public services cause the removal or destruction of the violating condition, the cost thereof incurred by the city shall become a charge
against the owner of the property and a lien against the property as provided for in R.C.W. 35.21.310 as that section now exists or may hereafter be amended. (Ord. 85-9 § 1, 1985; Ord. 82-25 § 6, 1982).

 

5.32.050 Complaint for noncompliance--Penalty for violation.
In the event any owner or agent to whom notice has been given does not do or cause to be done the abatement of the violating condition as described in the notice within the time provided in the notice, the city attorney may file a complaint in a court of competent jurisdiction for failure to comply with such notice of violation and any owner found guilty of violating any provision of this Chapter is guilty of a misdemeanor. (Ord. 82-25 § 7, 1982).

 

5.32.060 Hearings on contested cases of liability.
Any owner who wishes to dispute the cost of weed control which has been carried out on his land may request a hearing before the director of public services. The owner shall file, with the director of public services, a request in writing for a hearing within twenty days after the city has mailed the demand for payment to the owner. The hearing shall be conducted within thirty days after receipt of the request for hearing. The hearing shall be conducted informally and the formal rules of evidence shall not apply. The director of public services shall listen to whatever witnesses the owner might wish to call and the director of public services shall, at the
conclusion of the hearing, determine whether or not the costs assessed were proper. Such determination shall be final unless that determination is appealed to a court of competent jurisdiction within ten calendar days of the rendition thereof. (Ord. 82-25 § 8, 1982).

 

5.32.070 Entry upon property.
The director of public services, or his designees, in the performance of his duties under
this Chapter may go upon any real property located within the city at any reasonable time for any reason necessary to effectuate the purposes of this Chapter, including but not limited to the taking of specimens of weeds or other materials, general inspection, and the performance of eradication or control work. (Ord. 82-25 § 9, 1982).

 

5.32.080 Fees for performance of enforcement.
 The City Council shall by resolution fix the fee or fees to be charged by the city to any owner in the event that the city performs any eradication, destruction, or removal services pursuant to the provisions of this Chapter. (Ord. 82-25 § 10, 1982).