[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Athens 8-3-1976 by L.L. No. 12-1976 (Ch. 84 of the 1976 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
The outdoor storage of abandoned, junked, discarded and unlicensed motor vehicles upon privately owned properties within the Village of Athens is dangerous, unsightly and a detriment to the preservation of public health, the protection of property and the safety and welfare of the residents of the Village of Athens. The outdoor storage of abandoned, junked, discarded and unlicensed motor vehicles upon privately owned properties within the Village of Athens constitutes an attractive nuisance to children and a peril to their safety. Such storage constitutes a threat to the safety and welfare of the residents of the Village of Athens since the fuel tanks frequently contain gasoline or gasoline fumes and may be subject to explosion in case of fire. Such storage depreciates the value of neighboring properties and is unsightly and discourages the orderly, progressive development of the Village of Athens. The control of the outdoor storage of abandoned, junked, discarded and unlicensed motor vehicles upon privately owned properties within the Village of Athens is therefore regulated for the preservation of the public health, safety and welfare of the residents of the Village of Athens.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- The intent of the owner of a motor vehicle not to use the motor vehicle on the public highways. The intent of the owner of the motor vehicle may be determined by the physical condition of the motor vehicle, the statements of the owner of the motor vehicle, the length of time since the motor vehicle was last used on the public highway and whether the motor vehicle is licensed or unlicensed. With respect to motor vehicles not required to be licensed or motor vehicles not customarily used on the public highway, the intent of the owner may be determined by the physical condition of the motor vehicle, the length of time since it was last used for the purposes intended and the statements of the owner.
- Any motor vehicle which the owner thereof does not intend to recover possession thereof, or any motor vehicle to which ownership cannot be reasonably determined with due inquiry.
- Any motor vehicle in such condition as to cost more to repair in order to place such motor vehicle in operating condition than the value of the motor vehicle at any given time.
- MOTOR VEHICLE
- Every vehicle operated or driven or capable of being driven or operated upon a public highway by any power other than muscular power, which includes electric power obtained from overhead trolley wires and includes vehicles operated upon rails, and such vehicles as are run only upon rails or tracks. For the purposes of this chapter, "motor vehicles" shall include tractors used exclusively for agricultural purposes, self-propelled combines, self-propelled corn- and hay-harvesting machines and self-propelled caterpillar or crawler-type equipment, and shall also include motorcycles, omnibuses and house trailers.
- OWNER OF MOTOR VEHICLE
- A person having property in or title to a motor vehicle. The term includes a person entitled to the use and possession of a vehicle subject to a security interest in another person, and also includes any lessee or bailee of a motor vehicle having the use thereof under lease or otherwise.
- OWNER OF PRIVATE PROPERTY
- Includes the legal owner, contract purchaser, a tenant, lessee, occupant, undertenant, receiver or assignee of premises or property located within the Village of Athens.
- Includes all parcels of real property situate in the Village of Athens, whether occupied or vacant, irrespective of size or topography.
- UNLICENSED MOTOR VEHICLE
- Any motor vehicle which has not been licensed with the proper authorities for a period of at least 30 days from the expiration of the last valid licensing, with the exception of those motor vehicles in the possession of authorized used car dealers or garagemen for the purpose of sale or repair.
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation, either as owner, occupant, lessee, agent, tenant or otherwise of any private property within the Village of Athens, to store or deposit or cause or permit to be stored or deposited an abandoned, junked, discarded or unlicensed motor vehicle or vehicles upon any private land within the corporate limits of the Village of Athens.
If the provisions of the foregoing section are violated, the Village Code Enforcement Officer shall serve written notice, either personally or by mail, upon the owner, occupant or person having charge of any such private property to comply with the provisions of this chapter. The Village Code Enforcement Officer may determine ownership of any parcel of land within the Village of Athens from the then-current tax rolls of the Village of Athens and may serve written notice upon such owner by mailing such notice by regular mail to the owner at the address listed in the then-current tax rolls. In the event the Village Code Enforcement Officer cannot determine the owner or address of the owner of a parcel of land within the Village of Athens, the Village Code Enforcement Officer may serve written notice by publishing said written notice in the official newspaper of the Village of Athens for two consecutive weeks. The notice shall be in substantially the following form:
To the owner, occupant or person having charge of land within the Village of Athens known as: ..................
Notice is hereby given that an abandoned, junked, discarded or unlicensed motor vehicle has been stored or deposited on the above-described property in the Village of Athens. This automobile must be removed within 10 days from the date of this notice.
In the event this notice is served upon you by publication, the automobile must be removed within 24 days from the first date of publication of this notice. In case you fail or refuse to comply with this notice on or before the expiration of the said 10 days from the date of this notice, or before the expiration of the said 24 days from the date of this notice in the event it is served upon you by publication, you are hereby summoned to appear before the Town Justice of the Town of Athens on .................. to show cause why the Village of Athens, acting through its duly authorized agents, servants, officers and employees, should not enter upon your land and remove the said motor vehicle and cause it to be destroyed. In the event the Town Justice of the Town of Athens orders the aforementioned motor vehicle to be removed and destroyed, the expense incurred by the Village of Athens will be assessed against the above-described property and shall constitute a lien thereon and be collected as provided by law.
Village Code Enforcement Officer
[Added 10-13-1993 by L.L. No. 11-1993]
The following conditions are hereby excluded from the definitions of this chapter. This shall include:
Unlicensed vehicles in operating condition stored by or for the owner while the owner is:
Seasonal vehicles or machinery during their off season if kept in a location not visible from any road, street, highway or sidewalk when practicable; otherwise, the same must be stored in a neat and orderly fashion off public streets.
Licensed vehicles or machinery used on the premises for the purpose of conducting a business or industry, and the same must be stored in a neat and orderly fashion off public streets.
Operable vehicles stored by a licensed auto dealership in a commercial or industrial district and stored in a neat and orderly fashion.
An existing New York State licensed motor vehicle and/or automobile repair shop.