[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Town of Snow Hill 2-9-1970 as Ord. No. 80. Amendments noted where applicable.]
All buildings or structures within the Town of Snow Hill which are unsafe, unsanitary or not provided with adequate egress or which constitute a fire hazard or are otherwise dangerous to human life or which in relation to existing use constitute a hazard to safety or health by reason of inadequate maintenance, dilapidation, obsolescence or abandonment are severally, in contemplation of this section, unsafe buildings. All such unsafe buildings are hereby declared illegal and shall be abated by repair and rehabilitation or by demolition in accordance with the following procedure:
Whenever the Council shall find any building or structure or portion thereof to be unsafe, as defined in this section, it shall give the owner, agent or person in control of such building or structure written notice stating the defects thereof. This notice shall require the owner within a stated time either to complete specified repairs or improvements or to demolish and remove the building or structure or portion thereof. A copy of such notice shall also be posted on the premises in addition to the notice, if any, required by Subsection B below.
If necessary, such notice shall also require the building, structure or portion thereof to be vacated forthwith and not reoccupied until the specified repairs and improvements are completed, inspected and approved by the Code Enforcement Officer then serving under Chapter 200, Zoning. The Code Enforcement Officer shall cause to be posted at each entrance to such building a notice as follows: "THIS BUILDING IS UNSAFE AND ITS USE OR OCCUPANCY HAS BEEN PROHIBITED BY THE MAYOR AND COUNCIL OF SNOW HILL." Such notice shall remain posted until the required repairs are made or demolition is completed. It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation or their agents or other servants to remove such notice without written permission of the Code Enforcement Officer or for any person to enter the building except for the purpose of making the required repairs or of demolishing the same.
The owner of the property shall have the right, except in cases of emergency, to appear before the Council at a time and place specified in the notice to show cause why he should not comply with the requirements of the notice. If the right hereby provided for shall be exercised by the owner, the Council may, after affording the owner an opportunity to be heard, confirm, set aside or modify its original notice and order.
In case the owner, agent or person in control cannot be found within the stated time limit or, as such owner, agent or person in control, shall fail, neglect or refuse to comply with notice to repair, rehabilitate or to demolish and remove said building or structure or portion thereof as ordered, the Code Enforcement Officer, after having ascertained the costs, shall cause such building or structure or portion thereof to be demolished, secured or to remain vacant.
In case of an emergency involving imminent danger to human life or health, the Council shall promptly order the Code Enforcement Officer to cause such building, structure or portion thereof to be made safe or removed. For this purpose, he may at once enter such structure or land on which it stands or abutting land or structures with such assistance and at such costs as he may deem necessary. He may vacate adjacent structures or protect the public by appropriate fencing or such other means as may be necessary and for this purpose may close a public or private way.
The costs of any such work ordered by the Code Enforcement Officer pursuant to §§ 60-3 and 60-4, unless paid in full by the property owner within thirty (30) days after the same is billed by the Town Treasurer, shall constitute a lien on the property and shall draw interest from and after said thirty (30) days at the rate of one-half of one percent (1/2 of 1%) per month or fraction thereof, and the cost thereof, if not paid, shall be added to the next annual tax bill of each such owner, and the Town Treasurer shall not accept payment for or receipt said tax bill unless the amount so assessed against said owner, with interest thereon, is included in the amount paid.
[Added 10-13-1992 by Ord. No. 1992-7]
In the event that the owner is required to demolish and remove the building or structure or portion thereof, the owner shall execute a release, waiver and indemnification agreement prepared by the Town of Snow Hill. Said agreement shall waive and release any and all claims pertaining to the demolition by the owner against the Town of Snow Hill and the Snow Hill Fire Department and shall require the owner to indemnify the Town of Snow Hill and the Snow Hill Fire Department against any and all liability for any damage to other property upon or outside the building or structure or portion thereof deemed to be unsafe; any property or premises adjacent to said property; or any other premises damaged in any way by said demolition, regardless of whether the liability or damage is by reason of any carelessness or negligence of the employees or agents of the Town of Snow Hill or the Snow Hill Fire Department or otherwise.