22 - Property Maintenance Ordinance - Germantown

Ordinance #22
Property Maintenance Ordinance - Germantown

10.065 Property Maintenance Code (Cr. Ord. #38-87).

(1) Title. This section shall be know as "The Property Maintenance Code," and may be referred to in this section as "this code."

(2) Findings and declaration of Policy. It is hereby found and declared that there exist, in the Village, structures used for residential and nonresidential use which are, or may become in the future, substandard with respect to structure, equipment or maintenance or , further, that such conditions, including, but not limited to, structural deterioration, lack of maintenance and appearance of exterior of premises, infestation and existence of fire hazards constitute a menace to the health, safety, morals, welfare and reasonable comfort of the citizens of the Village. It is further found and declared that, by reason of lack of maintenance and because of progressive deterioration, certain properties have the further effect of creating blighting conditions and initiating slums, and that if the same are not curtailed and removed, these conditions will grow and spread and will necessitate the expenditure of large amounts of public funds to correct and eliminate such conditions, that that k by reason of timely regulations and restrictions contained in this code, the desirability and amenities of residential and nonresidential uses and neighborhoods may be enhanced and the public health, safety and welfare protected and fostered.

(3) purpose. The purpose of this code is to protect the public health, safety, morals and welfare by establishing minimum standards governing the maintenance, appearance and condition of residential and nonresidential premises; to fix certain responsibilities and duties upon owners and operators and distinct and separate responsibilities and duties upon occupants; to authorize and establish procedures for the inspection of residential and nonresidential premises; and to provide for the repair, demolition or vacation of premises unfit for human habitation, occupancy or use.

(4) Definitions. The following words and terms, wherever used herein or referred to in this code, shall have the respective meanings assigned to them unless a different meaning clearly appears from the context:

(a) Deterioration (Am. Ord. #23-97). The condition of a building or part thereof characterized by holes, breaks, rot, crumbling, peeling, rusting or other evidence of physical decay or neglect, lack of maintenance or excessive use. all exterior wood and composition surfaces shall be properly protected from the elements and against decay by paint, stain or other protective coating and applied in a workmanlike manner.

(b) Elements. Any element, whether created by nature or by man, which, with reasonable foreseeability could carry liter from one place to another. Elements shall include, but not be limited to, air current, rain, water current and animals.

(c) Exposed to Public View. Any premises, or any part thereof, or any building, or any part thereof, which may be viewed by the public.

(d) Exterior of the Premises. Open space on the premises outside of any building thereon.

(e) Extermination. The control and elimination of insects, rodents and vermin.

(f) Garbage. Decayed and decomposed animal and vegetable waste resulting form the handling, preemption, cooking and consumption of food. (See also Refuse and Rubbish)

(g) Infestation. The presence of insects, rodents, vermin or other pests on the premises which constitute a health hazard.

(h) Litter. Includes any uncontainerized man-made or man-used waste which, if deposited within the Village otherwise than in a litter receptacle, tends to create a danger to public health, safety and welfare or to impair the environment of the citizens of the Village. Litter may include, but is not limited to, any garbage, trash, refuse, confetti, debris, grass clippings or other lawn or garden waste, newspaper, magazine, glass, metal, plastic or paper container or other construction material, motor vehicle part, furniture, oil, carcass of a dead animal or nauseous or offensive matter of any kind or any object likely to injure any person or create a traffic hazard.

(I) Mixed Occupancy. Any building containing one or more dwelling units or rooming units and also having a portion thereof devoted to nondwelling uses or used as a hotel.

(j) Nuisance. 1. Any public nuisance, as defined by statute of this chapter. 2. Physical conditions dangerous to human life or detrimental to health of persons on or near the premises where the conditions exist.

(k) Operator. Any person who has charge, care of control of a dwelling or premises, or part thereof, whether with or without the knowledge and consent of the owner.

(l) Owner any person who, alone or jointly or severally with others, shall have legal or equitable title to any premises, with or without accompanying actual possession thereof. Any person who is a lessee subletting or reassigning any part or all of any dwelling or dwelling unit shall be deemed to be a co-owner with the lessor and shall have joint responsibility over the owner with the lessor and shall have joint responsibility over the portion of the premises sublet or assigned by said lessee.

(m) Park. A public or private park, reservation, playground, beach, recreation center or any public park private area devoted to active or passive recreation or any other area under the supervision of the Village.

(n) Parking lot. Any private or public property with provisions for parking vehicles to which the public is invited or which the public is permitted to use or which is visible form any public place or private premises.

(o) Premises. A lot, plot or parcel of land, including the buildings or structures thereon.

(p) Private Premises. Any dwelling house, building or other structure designed to be used, either wholly or in part, for private residential purposes, whether inhabited or temporarily or continuously uninhabited or vacant, and shall include any yard, grounds, walk, driveway, porch, steps, vestibule, mailbox or other structure belonging or appurtenant to such dwelling house, building or other structure.

(q) Public Place. All streets, boulevards, avenues, lanes, alleys or other public ways and parks, squares, plazas, grounds and buildings frequented by the general public, whether publicly or privately owned.

(r) Refuse. All decayed and decomposed solid waste, except body wastes, including, but not limited to, garbage, rubbish, ashes, dead animals, abandoned automobiles and solid wastes. (See also Garbage and Rubbish)

(s) Rubbish. Solid wastes consisting of both combustible and non combustible wastes, such as paper, wrappings, cigarettes, cardboard, tin cans, yard clippings, leaves, wood, glass, bedding, crockery and similar materials. (See also Garbage and Refuse)

(5) Applicability. Every residential, nonresidential or mixed occupancy building and the land on which it is situated, used or intended to be used for dwelling, mobile home park, commercial, business or industrial occupancy shall comply with the provisions of this code, whether or not such building shall have been constructed, altered or repaired before or after the enactment of this code.

(6) Duties and Responsibilities of Owners and Operators.

(a) Maintenance of Exterior of Premises. The exterior of the premises and all structures thereon shall be kept free of all nuisances and any hazards to the safety of the occupant, pedestrians and other persons utilizing the premises, and free of unsanitary conditions, and any of the foregoing shall be promptly removed and abated by the owner or operator. It shall be the duty of the owner or operator to keep the premises free of hazards which include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Refuse, such as brush, weeds, broken glass, stumps, obnoxious growths, filth, garbage, trash and debris.

2. Natural growth, such as dead and dying trees and limbs or other natural growth which, by reason of rotting or deteriorating conditions or storm damage, constitute a hazard to persons in the vicinity. Trees shall be kept pruned and trimmed to prevent such conditions.

3. Overhangs, such as loose and other hanging objects which, by reason of location above ground level, constitute a danger of falling on the persons in the vicinity.

4. Sources of infestation.

5. The exterior of the premises, the exterior of structures and the condition of accessory structures shall be maintained so that the appearance of the premises and structures shall not constitute a blighting factor.

(b) Storage of Commercial and Industrial Material. There shall not be stored or used at location visible form the sidewalk, street or other public areas, equipment and materials relating to commercial or industrial use unless permitted under ch. 17 of this Code for the premises.

(c) General Maintenance. The exterior of every commercial structure of accessory structure, except accessory farm structures, including fences or enclosures, shall be maintained in good repair. The same shall be maintained free of broken glass, loose shingles, crumbing stone or brick, excessive peeling paint, loose boards or other conditions reflective of deterioration or inadequate maintenance to the end that the property itself may be preserved, safety and fire hazards eliminated and adjoining properties protected from blighting influences.

(7) Litter Control.

(a) Litter Collections and Storage Area. Every owner, occupant or lessee of a building used for residential, business or commercial purposes shall maintain litter collection and storage areas in a clan condition and insure that all litter is properly containerized. Failure to so maintain clan litter collection and storage areas shall constitute a violation of this subsection.

(b) Duty to Collect Litter Before it is Carried From the premises. all litter that is subject to movement by the elements shall be secured by the owner of the premises where it is found before the litter is allowed to be removed from the premises by the elements.

(c) Neglected Premises Visible to the Public. It shall be the duty of any person owning or controlling any premises, including vacant lots visible from any public place or private premises, to maintain such premises in a reasonable clean and orderly manner. It shall be a validation of this subsection to abandon, neglect or disregard the condition or appearance of any premises so as to permit it o accumulate litter.

(d) Areas Around Business Premises. The owner or person in control of any public place, including, but not limited to, restaurants, shopping centers, fast food outlets, stores, hotels, motels, industrial establishments, office buildings, apartment buildings, housing projects, gas stations and hospital and clinics shall at all times keep the premises clean of all litter and shall take measures, including daily cleanup of the premises, to prevent litter form being carried by the elements to adjoining premises. It shall be a violation oft this subsection to abandon, neglect or disregard to the condition or appearance of such premises so as to permit it to accumulate litter.

(e) Loading and Unloading Docks. The person owning, operating or in control f loading or unloading dock shall at all times maintain the dock area free of litter in such a manner that litter will be prevented from being carried from the premises by the elements.

(f) construction sites. The property owners and the prime contractors in charge of any construction site shall maintain the construction site in such a manner that litter will be prevented from being carried form the premises by the elements. All litter from construction activities or any related activities shall be picked up at the end of each work day and place in containers which will prevent litter from being carried from the premises by the elements.

(g) Maintaining Sidewalks and Alleys. Persons owning, occupying or in control of any premises shall keep the sidewalks and alleys adjacent thereto free of litter. Owners or occupants shall sweep or rinse off the sidewalks abutting their premises as often as may be required to keep the walk reasonable free form dirt, paper and waste. This paragraph shall not apply to sidewalks maintained by the Village as provided in sec. 8.09(1)(a)

(h) Abandoned Garbage. Is shall be unlawful for any person who is in control of any premises upon which is located or on whose behalf three is maintained any container of refuse, waste or garbage, which has been containerized in accordance with a contract for its removal, to allow that refuse, waste or garbage to remain uncollected for longer than 7 days or, in any case, until after that refuse, waste or garbage creates any condition which is offensive to persons upon any private premises or public place.

(i) Animal Excreta (Am. Ord. #45-92).

1. Allowing discharge regulated. it is unlawful for any owner, keeper or walker of any dog, Philippine pot-bellied pig or cat to have his dog, pot-bellied pig or cat discharge such animal's excreta upon any public or private property within the Village other than the property of the owner of such dog, pot-bellied pig or cat if such owner, keeper or walker does not immediately thereafter remove and clean up such animal's excreta from the public or private property.

2. Carrying Feces Scoop Required. No person shall walk a dog or pot-bellied pig beyond the limits of his own property without carrying or having in his possession scoop, bag or other items designed t pick up and remove dog feces; and, further, it is unlawful for any person to dispose of the dog or pt-bellied pig feces on public or private property other than his own.

3. exception. This subsection shall not apply to blind persons having control of guide dogs.

(7a) Lawn and Yard Maintenance (Cr. Ord. #29-94).

(a) Definitions. The terms used herein are defined as follows.

1. Turf Grass. Grass commonly used in regularly cut lawns or play areas such as, but not limited to, blue grass, fescue and rye grass blends.

2. Natural Lawn. Any land managed to preserve or restore native Wisconsin grasses and forbes, native trees, shrubs, wildflowers and aquatic plants.

(b) General Requirements. Except as provided in par. (c) below, the owner or occupant of any lot or parcel in the Village which is 5 acres or less in area shall install and maintain landscaping, plantings and other decorative surface treatments, including turf grass, so as to present an attractive appearance in all court and yard areas in accordance with generally accepted landscaping practices in southeastern Wisconsin. Lawns shall be maintained to a height not to exceed 12 inches. Plantings shall be maintained so as not to present hazards to adjoining properties or to persons or vehicles traveling on public ways and shall be maintained so as to enhance the appearance and value of the property on which located and thereby the appearance and value of the neighborhood and the Village.

(c) Natural Lawn Exception; Registration and Fee. Any owner or occupant of a lot or parcel subject to par. (b) above and desiring a natural lawn may register for a natural lawn, as defined in par. (a)2. above, where grasses and forbes exceed 12 inches in height with the Village Weed Commissioner, provided that such plantings meet the requirements of this subsection.

(d) Maintenance of Setbacks and Drainage Swales. A 10 foot setback on any street frontage and a 5 foot side and rear setback of all natural lawns shall be maintained in accordance with par. (b) above. In addition, all drainage swales shall be free of plantings and maintained in accordance with par. (b) above. Adjacent neighbors may agree to waive setbacks for encroachment on setbacks outside drainage swales; such waivers shall be in writing and filed with the Weed Commissioner. In addition, a 5% area exclusive of the setback area shall be left open for maintained paths. The setback area shall have a height of no more than 12 inches, excluding trees and shrubs.

(9e) Weeds and Plants Prohibited. The owners and occupants of all natural lawns shall destroy all of the following weeds and plants:

1. Canada thistle and all other thistle varieties

1. Leafy spurge

3. Field bindweed (Creeping Jenny)

4. Purple Loosestrife

5. Multiflora rose

6. Burdock

7. Ragweed

8. Garlic mustard

9. All weeds enumerated in Sec. 66.955 and 66.96, Wis. Stats.

10. Turf grass, except in setback areas and designated paths.

(f) Review and Approval of Land Management Plans. The Weed Commissioner shall review the list of all registered properties within 30 days of the submittal and notify in writing the owner of occupant of any noncompliance of this subsection. The person receiving such notice of noncompliance shall comply with the requirements of this subsection within 10 days of such notifications.

(g) Enforcement. In the event any previously approved natural lawn fails to comply with the requirements of this subsection, such premises shall be deemed a nuisance under this chapter and the Weed Commissioner may order the nuisance abated within 7 days pursuant to sec. 10.08 of this chapter.

(h) Appeal. Any person aggrieved by the written determination of the Weed Commissioner to revoke such registration or to abate a nuisance thereto may file a written appeal within 7 days of receiving such written determination with the Health, Education and Welfare Committee. The appeal shall state the reasons for reviewing the determination of the Weed Commissioner. After giving a Class I notice, the Committee shall hold a hearing and decide the matter within a reasonable time. The Committee may reverse, affirm or modify the determination of the Weed Commissioner and issue an order accordingly.

(8) Enforcement. This section shall be enforced by the Building Inspector. In addition, the Police Chief shall enforce sub. (7) above.

(9) Penalty. Any person who violates, disobeys, neglects or refuses to comply with any of the provisions of this section shall be subject to a forfeiture as provided in sec. 25.04 of this Code.