3-4-335  Action to enforce payment.
   A.   If a person fails to pay an assessment that has become final pursuant to Section 3-4-330(C), then the department may institute an action in the Department of Administrative Hearings to obtain a determination that the assessee has violated the ordinance that gave rise to the assessment and that the assessment is a debt due and owing to the city that may be enforced pursuant to Section 3-4-345 of this Code.
   B.   Prior to instituting an action pursuant to subsection A of this section, the department shall provide notice to the assessee which shall state: (1) the amount of the final assessment, including a description of any tax, interest, penalties or nontax debt due, and (2) that an administrative law officer appointed by the department of administrative hearings may issue a determination that the assessee has violated the ordinance giving rise to the assessment and that the assessment is a debt due and owing the city that may be enforced pursuant to Section 3-4-345.
   C.   If the assessee elects to contest the action, the assessee must file a written request with the Department of Administrative Hearings to schedule a hearing within 30 days of the date of the notice required by subsection B of this section, or within 30 days of the date of the order striking or dismissing a protest as referenced in Section 3-4-330(G), where applicable. If the assessee fails to file a written request for a hearing within the 30-day period, the assessee shall be deemed to have waived the opportunity for a hearing and an administrative law officer of the Department of Administrative Hearings shall enter a decision finding that the assessment at issue is a final assessment, and that the final assessment may be enforced pursuant to Section 3-4-345 of this Code. The protesting party shall be given written notice of the decision and final assessment.
   D.   At any hearing held pursuant to subsection C of this section, the department shall present a copy of the final assessment. The respondent’s defenses shall be limited to whether and to what extent the final assessment has been paid, whether the respondent is in fact the assessee and whether the respondent was afforded proper notice of the assessment before it became final. The respondent shall not be entitled to raise any defenses related to the respondent’s liability for the unpaid tax which gave rise to the final assessment.
   E.   After the conclusion of a hearing held pursuant to subsection C of this section, the administrative law officer shall make a final determination as to whether the respondent has violated the ordinance giving rise to the final assessment and whether the respondent has a debt due and owing the city.
      1.   If the administrative law officer finds that the respondent was not afforded proper notice of the assessment, then the administrative law officer shall afford the respondent 35 days to file a protest of the assessment with the Department of Administrative Hearings.
         a.   If the respondent files a timely protest, then the administrative law officer shall schedule and conduct a hearing consistent with Section 3-4-340 of this Code.
         b.   If the respondent fails to file a timely protest, then the administrative law officer shall prepare a final decision finding that the assessment at issue is a final assessment, and that the final assessment may be enforced pursuant to Section 3-4-345 of this Code. The respondent shall be given written notice of the decision and final assessment.
      2.   If the administrative law officer finds that the respondent was afforded proper notice of the assessment, but was not afforded proper notice of the respondent’s right to file a protest within an additional 30 days in accordance with the requirements of Section 3-4-330(C), then the administrative law officer shall afford the respondent 30 days to file a protest in accordance with the requirements of Section 3-4-330(C).
         a.   If the respondent files a timely protest in accordance with the requirements of Section 3-4-330(C), then the administrative law officer shall schedule and conduct a hearing consistent with Section 3-4-340 of this Code.
         b.   If the respondent fails to file a timely protest in accordance with the requirements of Section 3-4-330(C), then the administrative law officer shall prepare a final decision finding that the assessment at issue is a final assessment, and that the final assessment may be enforced pursuant to Section 3-4-345 of this Code. The respondent shall be given written notice of the decision and final assessment.
   F.   Nothing in this section shall prevent the city from seeking any remedy through the use of any court proceeding or other means authorized by applicable law, including an action to enforce payment of any tax, interest, penalties or nontax debt.
(Added Coun. J. 4-29-98, p. 66564, § 2; Amend Coun. J. 12-15-99, p. 21529, § 8; Amend Coun. J. 4-22-09, p. 58303; Amend Coun. J. 11-14-18, p. 90308, Art. IV, § 1)