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(A) No owner of any lot or parcel of land within the corporate limits shall refuse or fail to maintain any trees located in the tree lawn abutting his or her property so as to cause damage or create a safety hazard to a curb, sidewalk or utility so as to cause such trees to become dead, decayed or broken.
(B) If, upon inspection, the Director of Public Service finds that a tree in the tree lawn is causing damage to a curb, sidewalk or utility or is creating a safety hazard or finds that such a tree is dead, decayed or broken, the Director of Public Service shall mail to the property owner a notice directing the owner to remove the tree and the remaining tree stump in accordance with the standards established by the Engineering Department.
(C) Within 30 days from the receipt of this notice from the Director of Public Service, the property owner shall remove the tree and the remaining stump or hire a private contractor to remove them. If the tree and stump are not removed within this time period, the Director of Public Service shall remove them and mail an invoice to the property owner requesting payment for the cost incurred by the city to remove this tree and stump. If the property owner does not pay this invoice within 30 days after receiving it, the unpaid amount shall be certified to the County Auditor for collection the same as other taxes and assessments are collected. Such remedy shall be in addition to the penalty in division (E) below.
(D) TREE LAWN is defined as a strip of land within a street right-of-way separating a sidewalk from the curb or street pavement that is normally planted in grass and sometimes also with trees.
(E) Whoever violates or fails to comply with this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the third degree. A separate offense shall be deemed committed each day during or on which a violation occurs or continues. Punishment shall be as provided in § 698.02 of this code of ordinances.
(Ord. 86-1995, passed 7-10-1995; Ord. 137-1997, passed 7-28-1997; Ord. 143-2012, passed 9-10-2012)