§ 95.009  ABATEMENT OF PUBLIC NUISANCES NOT OTHERWISE SPECIFICALLY ADDRESSED IN THIS SUBCHAPTER OR IN ANY OTHER SECTION OF THE CODE OF ORDINANCES.
   (A)   Graffiti. See § 95.008.
   (B)   Inspection of premises. Whenever a complaint is made to the Mayor or Board of Public Works and Safety (often referred to as the “Board” in this chapter) that a public nuisance exists or has existed within the city or whenever a public officer of the city determines that a public nuisance may exist or has existed within the city, a city official designated by the Mayor or the Board (often referred to as the “inspection officer”) shall inspect or cause to be inspected the premises and shall make a written report of his or her findings to the Mayor. Whenever practicable, the inspection officer shall cause photographs to be made of the premises and shall file the same in the office of the Clerk-Treasurer.
   (B)   Notice; abatement.
      (1)   Notice to owner - immediate danger. If the inspection officer determines that a public nuisance exists on private or public property and that there is a great and immediate danger to the public health, safety, peace, morals or decency, the Mayor or Board may direct the Chief of Police, or an officer of the Police Department, to serve a notice on the owner, or, if the owner cannot be found, on the occupant or person causing, permitting or maintaining such nuisance. The Chief of Police may also be directed to post a sign prominently on said real estate, which sign shall give notice of the existence of a nuisance on said real estate and request the owner, or anyone having knowledge of the whereabouts of the owner, to contact the Board. Such notice shall direct the owner, occupant or person causing, permitting or maintaining such nuisance to abate or remove such nuisance within 24 hours and shall state that unless such nuisance is so abated, the city will cause the same to be abated and will charge the cost thereof to the owner, occupant or person causing, permitting or maintaining the same, as the case may be. The owner, in such notice, shall be provided an opportunity to be heard before the Board in the event the owner disputes the determination of the inspection officer.
      (2)   Notice to owner - no immediate danger. If the inspection officer determines that a public nuisance exists on private or public property that does not present an immediate danger to the public health, safety, peace, morals or decency, the Mayor or Board may direct the Chief of Police, or an officer of the Police Department, to serve a notice on the owner or direct the Clerk to serve notice by mail as permitted under I.C. l-l-7-l(b), or, if the owner cannot be found, on the occupant or person causing, permitting or maintaining such nuisance. The Chief of Police may also be directed to post a sign prominently on said real estate, which sign shall give notice of the existence of a nuisance on said real estate and request the owner, or anyone having knowledge of the whereabouts of the owner, to contact the Board. Such notice shall direct the owner, occupant or person causing, permitting or maintaining such nuisance to abate or remove such nuisance within a time, not less than ten days, from receipt of the notice and that, if the owner fails to do so, the Board shall itself abate the nuisance upon the expiration of the time period specified in the notice and hold a lien against the real estate for the costs involved. In establishing the time within which the owner must abate the nuisance as provided in this section, the Board shall take into consideration the nature of the nuisance, the ease or difficulty with which such nuisance may be abated, and the harm, or threatened harm, resulting from the nuisance. The owner, in such notice, shall be provided an opportunity to be heard before the Board in the event the owner disputes the deterrnination of the inspection officer.
      (3)   Abatement by city or by court action. If the nuisance is not abated within the time provided or if the owner, occupant or person causing the nuisance cannot be found, the Mayor or Board, or their designee, may cause the abatement or removal of such public nuisance. In the alternative, if the inspection officer determines that a public nuisance exists on private premises but that the nature of such nuisance is not such as to threaten great and immediate danger to the public health, safety, peace, morals or decency, such officer may file a written report of the officer’s findings with the Mayor or Board, who may determine that an action to abate such nuisance should be commenced in the name of the city. The city may seek court costs and attorney’s fees as a result of having to bring such an action.
(Ord. 2014-26, passed 12-9-2014; Am. Ord. 2016-19, passed 11-22-2016)
Statutory Reference:
   City Attorney authorized to bring action to abate or enjoin nuisance, I.C. 32-30-6-7