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Find Out How the Code Enforcement Process Works

Reporting & Inspection

Citizens may call Community & Development Services (CDS) at (270) 887-4285 or report properties online.  CDS also proactively sweeps the city to identify buildings and lots in violation of the city’s property codes.  Making inspection rounds on a daily basis, CDS performs detailed inspections of building exteriors and lot conditions of all properties reported or suspected to be in violation of city codes. 

For Grass, Trash & Weed Complaints:If an active code violation case does not already exist for a reported property, CDS creates a case in Gov Pilot, the city’s parcel-based case management system, and schedules an inspection.  For first time offenders, CDS may issue Notices of Violation to PVA-listed property owners requiring owners to remedy violations within 7 days.  Forrepeat offenders,after inspection, CDS will issue Citations to PVA-listed property owners requiring owners to request a hearing in writing or pay a fine within 7 days.  Upon owners’ failure to respond, CDS will send property lists to Public Works for abatement.  Our target timeframe from a grass, trash, and weed complaint to inspection is 14 days.

For Basic Property Maintenance Code Complaints: If an active code violation case does not already exist for a reported property, CDS creates a case in Gov Pilot, the city’s parcel-based case management system, and schedules an inspection.  For first time offenders, CDS then may issue Notices of Violation to PVA-listed property owners requiring owners to remedy violations or notify CDS of their abatement work plan within 7 days.  Those failing to respond within 7 days will be issued at Citation.  Our target timeframe from a property maintenance complaint to inspection is 14 days.

For Unsafe Structure Complaints: If an active code violation case does not already exist for a reported property, CDS creates a case in Gov Pilot, the city’s parcel-based case management system, and schedules an inspection.  After an inspection is completed and violations have been documented, CDS will issue a Notice of Violation.  The PVA-listed property owners will have 1 week to sign a consent.  If there is no response, the PVA-listed property owners will be notified of a hearing.  Our target timeframe from an unsafe structure complaint and creation of a case to inspection is 14 days.

Notice of Hearings

If a property owner does not request a hearing in writing within 7 days of the date a Citation is issued, that results in a default Final Order being issued.  This means the property owner is found to have waived the right to a hearing or an appeal, and the determination that a violation was committed will be considered final.

For Grass, Trash & Weed Complaints: When a hearing has been requested, a hearing date and time is set within 30 to 45 days from the issuance of a Citation, and notice of the hearing is sent to the requesting party via regular and certified mail.  View information on upcoming hearings here.

For Basic Property Maintenance Code Complaints: When a hearing has been requested, a hearing date and time is set within 30 to 45 days from the issuance of a Citation, and notice of the hearing is sent to the requesting party via regular and certified mail.  View information on upcoming hearings here.

For Unsafe Structure Complaints: The property address, case number, and the date and time of hearing are posted in the Kentucky New Era.  Property owners who sign consents to demolition will avoid a hearing and only be charged costs for demolition but no additional fines. 

Hearings & Judgement

On the day of the hearing, the Code Enforcement Board will make a determination as to whether or not a violation existed at the time the Citation was issued.  Property owners have the opportunity to appear before the Code Enforcement Board and may bring photographs or printed evidence from the date of issuance indicating a Citation was issued in error.  CDS inspections and photographs will be used as evidence of violations.  Hearing costs and fines may be issued to property owners even if violations have been corrected prior to the hearing.

If an owner cannot attend his or her hearing, they may appoint a representative to appear on their behalf and are advised to seek professional legal counsel.  In the event an owner fails to appear at the hearing, a default judgement will be entered, upholding the Citation.

Appeals of Code Enforcement Board decisions must be made to District Court within 30 days after a Final Order is issued.  After Code Enforcement Board judgement, Final Orders are sent to the city’s License & Revenue Office for billing.  Copies of the Final Orders along with Code Violation Invoices are mailed within 2 days of the Board decision.

Lot Clearing/Abatement/Demolition

The city may remedy violations by cutting lots with high grass or weeds, demolishing structures, and otherwise removing unsafe conditions.  Costs associated with assessed Code Enforcement Board fees or fines and abatement action on the part of the city or its contractors will be assessed as liens against the property. 

For Grass, Trash & Weed Complaints: Our target timeframe from receipt of Notice to Proceed to abatement is 14 days.

For Basic Property Maintenance Complaints: Our target timeframe from receipt of Notice to Proceed to abatement is 30 days. 

For Unsafe Structure Complaints: Unsafe structures may be selected by the Code Enforcement Board for demolition.  Our target timeframe from creation of a case to abatement is 3 to 6 months. 

Liens/Foreclosures

If a property owner is issued a Citation or invoiced property abatement costs and they do not make arrangements to pay these costs within 14 days of their issuance, then the outstanding amount may be assessed as a lien against the property.  All liens will accumulate at an interest rate established by ordinance until the lien is paid. The assessment of a lien against a property does not automatically change its ownership to the city.  Therefore, property owners maintain ownership of their properties and remain responsible for their maintenance.  

In the event a lien is placed on the property, the property cannot be sold or transferred without paying the full lien amount.  In the event of a bank foreclosure, the property will be sold at a judicial sale and the sales proceeds will pay the liens on the property.  The city may also initiate a foreclosure on the city’s lien under the same procedure.