§ 92.021  WEEDS.
   (A)   Weeds to be removed.
      (1)   Weeds and other rank vegetation growing upon any real estate in the city are declared a nuisance.
      (2)   It shall be unlawful for any person to allow or permit any weeds or other rank vegetation to be or remain upon any property owned, leased, occupied by or under the control of such person located within the city.
      (3)   Any poison ivy, ragweed, thistle, poison oak or any growth of grass or weed, excluding agricultural crops or commodities or plants grown for recognized agricultural uses such as erosion or pest control, in excess of nine inches in height shall be considered as weeds or other rank vegetation.
(Prior Code, § 93.04)
   (B)   Failure of owner to remove.
      (1)   The city hereby adopts I.C. 36-7-10-3.
      (2)   (a)   Upon the failure of any owner, lessee or occupant of real estate to cut or remove the weeds as provided for above, the city’s Clerk-Treasurer, or his or her designated deputy for that purpose, may demand that the weeds or other rank vegetation be cut or removed within five days. The demand shall be served upon the owner, lessee or occupant by either of the following methods:
            1.   Delivery by registered or certified mail to the owner, lessee or occupant, at the address last shown on the city records, of a written notice of violation of this section; or
            2.   Posting in a visible place upon the premises a notice of violation of this section and sending, by first class mail, to the owner, lessee or occupant, at the address last shown on the city records, a written notice of violation of this section.
         (b)   The city’s Clerk-Treasurer, or his or her designated deputy for that purpose, may, but shall not be required to, provide such additional notice as he or she may determine appropriate under the circumstances.
      (3)   If the owner, lessee or occupant of real estate fails to cut or remove the weeds or other rank vegetation within the time demanded, the city may remove the vegetation.
      (4)   Upon cutting or removal of the weeds or other rank vegetation by the city, the city’s Clerk-Treasurer shall make a certified statement of the actual cost incurred by the city in such removal, which certified statement shall include administrative expenses. The certified statement shall be delivered to the owner, lessee or occupant of the real estate by registered mail. If the owner, lessee or occupant fails to pay the amount certified on the statement within ten days after receipt of the statement, a certified copy of the statement shall be filed in the office of the Auditor of the county, and the amount contained thereon shall be added to the tax duplicate of the property affected by the work.
(Prior Code, § 93.05)
   (C)   Exemptions. The Board of Public Works and Safety may authorize an exemption to the provisions of division (B) above upon application of any person; provided that, the Board of Public Works and Safety finds that the exemption is sought for cultivated land in commercial, domestic, agricultural or horticultural use or as a natural developed forest and which does not create a health or safety hazard or does not otherwise create a nuisance.
(Prior Code, § 93.08)
   (D)   Administrative expense.
      (1)   The administrative expense fee shall be charged to the owner of property as identified by public records held by the County Recorder or Assessor’s offices when the city incurs costs to abate an ordinance violation; and
      (2)   The amount of the administrative expense fee shall be equal to the cost of recording and releasing a lien on the property, and the estimated time spent by the Code Enforcement Officer and the City Clerk-Treasurer’s office in processing the ticket and the lien. The estimate for the cost to write the ticket, provide the homeowner with notice, process the ticket, track the accounting, record the lien and release the lien is estimated at two and one-half hours. The average hourly rate of city employees performing these tasks is $19 per hour, for total labor costs of approximately $47.50. Additionally, the costs to record and release a lien are $25, for total expenses of $72.50. Accordingly, the administrative expense fee shall be set at $70.
(Ord. G-88-14, passed 9-13-1988; Ord. G-94-8, passed 10-25-1994; Ord. G-97-13, passed 7-8-1997; Res. R-09-03, passed 7-7-2009; Res. R-15-01, passed 8-4-2015)  Penalty, see § 92.999