1325.13  ABANDONED STRUCTURES AND UNOCCUPIED LOTS.
   (a)   If any structure shall become abandoned for a period of more than ninety (90) days, such structure shall be presumed to be a nuisance affecting or endangering surrounding property values and to be detrimental to the public health, safety, convenience, comfort, property or general welfare of the community and shall be abated.  For the purpose of this section, “abandon” shall mean to give up occupancy in any structure with the intent of never again claiming occupancy in the same structure.
   (b)   Whenever the Director of Public Service or duly authorized representative, shall find that any structure has been abandoned, he or she shall give notice in the same manner as a service of summons in a civil case or by certified mail addressed to the owner of record of the premises at his or her last known address or to the address to which tax bills are sent, or by a combination of the foregoing methods, to abate such abandoned condition within thirty days either by placing the structure in operation in accordance with this section, by adapting and using the structure for another use permitted in the zoning district, or by razing the structure, removing all debris, signs, goods, supplies, and equipment, and filling depressions to the grade level of the lot, provided, however, that if the structure is used after the notice is given and remains in operation for ninety consecutive days, the provisions of this section shall not apply.
   (c)   Upon failure, neglect or refusal of any owner to comply with the notice to abate such abandonment, the Director of Public Service or duly authorized representative shall advise the Law Director of all the facts and the Law Director shall proceed to exercise on behalf of the City any remedy which shall then be available to it to secure an abatement of such abandonment, including any that pertains to the abatement of a public nuisance, and to recover any damages or enforce any penalties which may be recovered or imposed at the instance of the City, including all damages reasonable under Ohio R.C. 715.26 and 715.261.
   (d)   Unoccupied, empty or inoperative structures, whether or not abandoned, together with the lot upon which any such structure is located and with any other unoccupied or empty lot, shall be maintained in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.  Any such lot shall be provided with grass or other appropriate ground cover or landscaping material so as to assure absorption of rainfall and prevent erosion and rapid runoff of surface rubbish and weeds from the premises.  The parking of motor vehicles upon said premises shall be prohibited, and the Director of Public Service may order the owner of the premises to install fencing approved by the Director of Public Service which will be sufficient to block motor vehicles access to said property.
(Ord. 0-64-05.  Passed 12-5-05.)