Town of Geneva, NY
Ontario County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Geneva 10-10-2007 by L.L. No. 1-2007. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Unsafe buildings — See Ch. 68.
Solid waste — See Ch. 132.
This chapter shall be known as the "Junk Storage Law."
The Town Board hereby declares that a clean, wholesome and attractive environment is of vital importance to the continued general welfare of its citizens, and that the deposit, accumulation or maintenance of junk, regardless of quantity, is hereby prohibited anywhere within sight of persons lawfully traveling the public highways or within sight of neighboring property. By adoption of this chapter the Town declares its intent to preserve and promote a reasonable quality of environment and aesthetics and to prohibit actions and conduct that tend to depreciate not only the property on which said junk is located but also the property of other persons in the neighborhood and the community generally.
A. 
The Town has other local laws or ordinances which address property maintenance, such as the Unsafe Buildings Law (Chapter 68) and the Solid Waste Law (Chapter 132). This section clarifies how this chapter relates to those laws.
B. 
The provisions of this chapter shall apply in addition to the provisions of any other local law or ordinance adopted by the Town. Where there is a conflict, the more restrictive provision shall apply.
As used in this chapter, the following words shall have the following definitions:
GARBAGE
All putrescible animal and vegetable waste resulting from growing, processing, marketing and preparation of food items, including containers in which said items are packaged.
JUNK
Worn-out or discarded material of little or no value, including, but not limited to, junk appliances, junk furniture, junk mobile homes, junk motor vehicles, or garbage, rubbish and debris.
OUTDOOR STORAGE
The placing, maintaining, storing, depositing, or keeping of or causing or permitting another person or entity to place, maintain, store, deposit or keep garbage, junk, rubbish, clutter, litter or debris in a place other than in a structure with a roof and that is fully enclosed on all sides.
RUBBISH, CLUTTER, LITTER and DEBRIS
Ordinary household or commercial trash such as paper and paper products, barrels, cartons, boxes, cardboard, cans, glass, metals, machinery, plastics, rubber, crates, furniture, rugs, clothing, rags, mattresses, blankets, cigarettes, tires, lumber, brick, stone and other building materials no longer intended or in condition for ordinary use, and any and all tangible personal property no longer intended or in condition for ordinary and customary use.
A. 
The outdoor storage of any garbage, junk, clutter, litter or debris upon private property within the Town of Geneva is hereby prohibited.
B. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to use a bus, uninhabited mobile home, truck, truck trailer, horse trailer, semitrailer, tank truck, or similar vehicles or units for the storage of any garbage, junk, clutter, litter or debris on any premises. Exceptions shall be made for the temporary use of such vehicles or units for construction purposes for periods of less than 90 days, or when actively used in connection with active farming or agricultural operations.
This chapter shall not apply to the storage or placement on the premises of the following materials:
A. 
Wood intended for consumption in a wood-burning stove, furnace or fireplace located in a building on the premises.
B. 
Lawn or yard or garden ornaments and implements.
C. 
Lawn and patio furniture.
D. 
Operable farm, garden and yard machinery and apparatus used on the premises.
E. 
Standing fences.
F. 
Hoses and sprinklers used for watering lawns or gardens.
G. 
Storage or placement and accumulation of materials in connection with a commercial operation duly conducted on the premises where such storage, placement and accumulation is expressly permitted by the laws of the municipality.
H. 
Construction materials and equipment used for the construction or renovation of a building on the premises for which a building permit has been issued.
This chapter shall be enforced by the Town of Geneva Code Enforcement Officer. Said person shall have the authority to enforce the provisions of this chapter and to inspect premises within the municipality as necessary for said enforcement.
Any person may file a complaint with the Town of Geneva Code Enforcement Officer that a violation of this chapter may have taken place. The Town of Geneva Code Enforcement Officer shall properly record and investigate any such complaint. The Town of Geneva Code Enforcement Officer may also investigate any alleged violation that he or she has reason to believe has occurred or is occurring.
If the Town of Geneva Code Enforcement Officer finds that a violation of this chapter has occurred, he or she shall mail or personally serve a written notice to comply on the owner or occupant of the violating property, which said notice to comply shall contain the following information:
A. 
The name of the owner or occupant to whom the notice shall be addressed.
B. 
The location of the premises involved in the violation.
C. 
A statement of the facts which are alleged to violate this chapter.
D. 
A demand that the garbage, junk, clutter, litter or debris be removed or placed so as to be in compliance with this chapter within a specified number of days after the service or mailing of the notice.
E. 
A statement that a failure to comply with the demand may result in prosecution and/or abatement by the Town, as permitted by this chapter.
F. 
A copy of this chapter.
A. 
The Town of Geneva Code Enforcement Officer is hereby authorized, pursuant to Criminal Procedure Law § 150.20(3), to issue an appearance ticket to any person whom the Town of Geneva Code Enforcement Officer has reason to believe has violated this chapter, and shall cause such person to appear before the Municipal Justice.
B. 
Upon the failure of an owner, tenant or occupant with notice to comply to correct and cure a violation of this chapter, the governing board may hold a public hearing to determine whether the violation constitutes a public nuisance requiring abatement by the municipality. The public hearing shall be held upon notice posted conspicuously on the subject property. The notice shall also be sent to the last-known address of the property owner, as it appears on the current assessment records of the municipality, by certified mail, return receipt requested, or served on the owner by personal service. Posting and service of such notice shall not be less than 15 calendar days, exclusive of the date of service, prior to the date of the public hearing. The notice shall:
(1) 
Identify the premises as the same appears on the current assessment roll;
(2) 
Contain a statement of the conditions on the property deemed upon inspection to constitute a public nuisance;
(3) 
Contain a demand that the condition or conditions constituting the public nuisance be immediately abated or removed before the date of the hearing specified in the notice;
(4) 
Contain a statement that failure or refusal to comply within the period specified may result in a duly authorized officer, agent or employee of the municipality entering upon the property and abating or removing the public nuisance; and
(5) 
Contain a statement that the cost and expense of such abatement or removal shall be the responsibility of the owner, tenant or occupant, and, without limitation on the municipality's potential remedies to recoup its expenses, such cost and expense shall be assessed against the described property on the next Town tax bill and shall constitute a lien thereon to be collected in the same manner and at the same time as other Town charges.
C. 
Where the Town Board finds, based on substantial evidence in the public hearing record, that the violation or violations amount to a public nuisance requiring abatement by the municipality, the governing board may cause the abatement or removal of the public nuisance. The abatement or removal may be performed by the Town of Geneva or by its designee or agent, including a private contractor lawfully engaged and authorized by the municipality. The governing board shall ascertain the cost of removal and assess such expense against the record owner of the property. The expense so assessed shall constitute a lien and charge on the real property on which it is levied until paid or otherwise satisfied or discharged and shall be collected in the same manner and at the same time as other Town charges. The foregoing shall not be construed as a limitation on the municipality's potential remedies to recover its costs.
D. 
The removal of any nuisance by the municipality's agents shall not operate to excuse such owner, tenant or occupant from properly maintaining the premises as required by this chapter. Such owner, tenant or occupant shall, in addition to the remedies provided herein, be subject to any other penalties provided for by this chapter.
Any person who is found guilty of violating this chapter shall be subject to penalties as provided in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article III.