Nuisance Abatement Ordinance

ORDINANCE 2015-9

Rescinding Ordinance 2009-12 Entitled “Chronic Nuisance Properties,” and Adopting an Ordinance in Conjunction with Superseding Third Class City Code, 53 P.S. §37701-A, et seq., Nuisance Abatement, Enacted March 19, 2014

WHEREAS, Third Class City Code, 53 P.S. §37701-A, et seq., Nuisance Abatement, enacted March 19, 2014, supersedes Hazleton City Ordinance 2009-12 entitled “Chronic Nuisance Properties”; and

WHEREAS, Third Class City Code, 53 P.S. §37701-A, et seq., Nuisance Abatement, requires an ordinance in conjunction with same to define and fully comply with said statute.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT HEREBY ORDAINED AND ENACTED by the Council of the City of Hazleton as follows:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Ordinance may be cited as “Nuisance Abatement.”

SECTION 2. PURPOSE.

A. Hazleton Ordinance 2009-12 entitled “Chronic Nuisance Properties” has been superseded by the Third Class City Code, 53 P.S. §37701-A, et seq., Nuisance Abatement, and said statute requires an ordinance in conjunction with same to define and fully comply with said statute, which is the purpose of this Ordinance.

B. Also, nuisance properties present grave health, safety, welfare, and financial concerns, where the persons responsible for such properties have failed to take corrective action to abate the nuisance condition. Nuisance properties have a tremendous negative impact upon the quality of life, safety, and health of the neighborhoods where they are located. This section is enacted to supplement and further define Third Class City Code, 53 P.S. §37701-A, et seq., Nuisance Abatement, in order to ameliorate those conditions which exist on nuisance properties, and hold accountable the property owners of nuisance properties for those conditions.

SECTION 3. DEFINITIONS.

All definitions in the Third Class City Code, 53 P.S. §37701-A, et seq., Definitions attached hereto are incorporated by reference herein (along with §§37702-A through 37712-A, the balance of said Nuisance Abatement statute).


SECTION 4. REPORT AND INVESTIGATION OF PUBLIC NUISANCE.

In conjunction with §37702-A of the statute, Report and Investigation of Public Nuisance, the Hazleton City Office of Code Enforcement shall receive reports of a possible nuisance. In conjunction with §37702-A(b), Hazleton City Code Enforcement shall establish written criteria for investigating said reports made to it for the purpose of determining the existence of a public nuisance.

SECTION 5. SUMMARY ABATEMENT.

In conjunction with §37703-A of the statute, Summary Abatement, the City of Hazleton expressly adopts the power to utilize summary abatement of public nuisance, pursuant to the procedure set forth therein.

SECTION 6. PRIOR NOTICE OF ABATEMENT.

In conjunction with §37704-A of the statute, Prior Notice of Abatement, the City of Hazleton expressly adopts the power to abate a public nuisance with prior notice as provided within said section.

SECTION 7. APPEAL AFTER NOTICE; HEARING.

Pursuant to §37706-A(a), Appeal After Notice; Hearing, the following procedure is ordained pursuant to which an owner of the property who has been served with a prior notice of abatement of a public nuisance pursuant to §37704-A(b)(1) or (2) may request and have a timely hearing before Hazleton City Council on the question of whether a public nuisance in fact exists:

A. The owner of the property who has been served with prior notice of abatement of public nuisance, as set forth above, may request a hearing before Hazleton City Council via written correspondence requesting same and addressed to Hazleton City Code Enforcement with said appeal right specified in the prior notice of abatement of a public nuisance.

B. Said hearing request must be received by Hazleton City Code Enforcement within thirty (30) days of the date of the notice, or within an extension of that period, granted in writing, by Hazleton City Code Enforcement.

C. Said hearing before Hazleton City Council shall be scheduled and heard in a timely manner.

SECTION 8. NOTICE OF ASSESSMENT; APPEAL OF CHARGES.

A. The Hazleton City Administrator is ordained to be the individual charged with assessing and providing notice of all charges incurred by the City in abating a public nuisance, pursuant to the provisions of §37710-A(a) of the statute, Notice of Assessment.

B. The City of Hazleton ordains that Hazleton City Code Enforcement shall make a determination in writing within thirty (30) days of its receipt of any timely filed objection to a Notice of Assessment, pursuant to §37710-A, Procedure, of the Statute, and promptly notify the owner of said determination in writing, including appeal rights herein. The owner may appeal said determination by sending an appeal request to Hazleton City Code Enforcement and received by same within thirty (30) days of the date of its determination, with said appeal to be heard by Hazleton City Council. Said appeal shall be promptly scheduled and heard by Hazleton City Council. Hazleton City Council shall make the final administrative decision with the City, pursuant to §37710-A(e), Final Administrative Decision, of the statute.

SECTION 9. EFFECT AND SEVERABILITY.

A. Ordinance 2009-12 is hereby repealed in its entirety.

B. Any other ordinances inconsistent herewith are hereby repealed.

C. If any portion of this Ordinance, or its application to any person or circumstances, is held invalid or unconstitutional, the validity of the Ordinance as a whole or any other portion thereof or the application of the provisions to other persons or circumstances is not affected.

D. This Ordinance shall become effective immediately upon passage and approval in the manner prescribed by law.

ORDAINED AND ENACTED by Council this 7th day of April, 2015.

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