[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Rockwood 9-7-2005 by Ord. No. 425. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Blight — See Ch. 36.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 176.
Weed cutting fee — See Ch. A276.
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. 261, Weeds, adopted 10-15-1997 by Ord. No. 357, as amended.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- NOXIOUS GRASS
- Grass grown to a length in excess of 10 inches.
- NOXIOUS WEEDS
- All weeds, including but not limited to Canadian thistle and other thistle, milkweed, wild carrots, ox-eye daisies, ragweed, goldenrod, burdock, dandelion, purple loosestrife, Queen Ann's lace or weeds of any variety which are found growing or standing in excess of 10 inches in height and any poisonous variety of weed such as poison ivy, poison sumac, poison oak at any height; and any other plant which, by resolution of City Council or state law, is declared a common nuisance.
It shall be unlawful for any owner, occupant, agent or person having control of management of any land, either occupied or vacant, within the City to allow either noxious grass or noxious weeds as defined in § 261-1 to grow on their property or any portion thereof, except:
On portions of undeveloped land behind wooded tree lines;
On portions of vacant, unsubdivided land more than 25 feet from the public sidewalk or public street;
On portions of undeveloped lands of a subdivision less than 60% developed lying more than 25 feet from the public sidewalk or street;
Portions of any property, public or private, allowed by the City to remain in its natural state for natural habitat and/or conservation purposes.
The owner, occupant, agent or person having control over the management of the land on which the noxious weeds are found growing shall destroy the noxious weeds regardless of their height before the noxious weed reaches seed-bearing state in order to prevent their regrowth and spread. The owner, occupant, agent or person having control of the management of the property shall not burn the weeds as a means of destroying them under this section.
The enforcing officer and/or his authorized representatives shall be granted free access to and from any land for the purpose of investigation whether violations of this chapter exist, and for the work necessary to accomplish the abatement of any violation hereof found to exist. No person shall obstruct or prevent such work. Such authorized representatives after performing these duties in a prudent manner shall not be liable for suit in any action of trespass therefor, and shall be defended in any action arising therefrom, by the City Attorney until the final disposition of the proceedings.
Upon observing a violation of the provisions of this chapter upon any property not under the control or ownership of the City of Rockwood, County of Wayne, or the State of Michigan, the City shall issue a notice to abate to the owner shown as the taxpayer on the City Assessor's records. The notice shall be served by first class mail to the address shown on the Assessor's records. Failure to receive such notice shall not be a defense to any action by the City to collect abatement costs, administrative costs or impose penalties authorized by § 261-9. The notice to abate shall inform the owner:
Of the nature of the violation.
Of the time within which the violation must be abated, being not less than three days nor more than 15 days from the date of the notice.
That the City may act to abate the violation if it is not abated by the owner.
That the cost of abatement by the City, plus an administrative fee, shall be a personal debt of the owner which may be assessed as a lien against the property until paid.
Upon failure of a property owner to abate a violation as ordered in a notice to abate, the City shall post the land upon which the violation has occurred that:
The City shall enter upon the property and abate the violation using its own City personnel; or
Order a vendor or other authorized provider to abate the cited conditions and shall pay for such service when completed properly.
The City shall prosecute any owner who refuses access to the cited property for purposes of abatement.
Where fences, crops or other valuable property interfere with or prevent the assigned employees from proceeding to destroy noxious grass, poisonous or injurious weeds on any tract, part or parcel of land, the owner, occupant and/or agent of the owner of such land may be notified by the enforcing officer in writing to destroy such weeds within 10 working days. If the notice is not complied with within the stated time, the owner, occupant and/or agent for the owner shall be in violation of this Code. At his discretion, the enforcing officer may petition any court having jurisdiction for an order directing the assigned employees to enter such property and destroy the poisonous or injurious weeds by whatever means are necessary, without liability for damage which may occur to the property as a result of such action.
The City Council shall designate the enforcing officer, inspectors and employees who shall enforce the provisions of this chapter.
If City employees enter upon the land and destroy such weeds or growth by spraying, cutting, or by other such acceptable methods, the expense thereof shall be a charge upon the occupant or occupants of the premises or the owner thereof as the Council may determine and may be sued for and recovered in the name of the City or may be charged against the owner or owners of the premises and the Council may cause the expense of same to be levied and assessed on the premises and the same shall become a lien on the land and collected as a single lot assessment in accordance with the charter. Any failure to give the written notice herein required shall not constitute a defense to any action to enforce the provisions of this section.
The sites may charge an administrative fee for the enforcement of this chapter in an amount set from time to time by City Council.