[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Lenox as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 5-10-2006 by L.L. No. 1-2006]
This article shall be known as the "Commercial, Residential and Mixed-Occupancy Property Maintenance Code of the Town of Lenox."
This article provides basic and uniform standards governing the condition, occupancy and maintenance of commercial, residential and mixed-occupancy premises for the purpose of establishing reasonable safeguards for the safety, health and welfare of the occupants of such premises, adjoining properties and the general public and the enforcement of the New York State Property Maintenance Code.
[Amended 8-14-2017 by L.L. No. 8-2017]
This section shall incorporate the standards found in the Property Maintenance Code of New York State, which shall be referred to in this chapter as the "State Code." On January 1, 2003, the Property Maintenance Code of New York State, based on the 2000 International Property Maintenance Codes, became effective as part of the New York State Uniform Fire Prevention Building Code of New York. This new eight-volume series of building codes applies to all buildings in New York State outside of New York City and as amended and renamed. Under Section 106 of the State Code, violations of the State Code shall be dealt with as provided for in local law.
Weeds. All premises and immediate exterior property shall be maintained free from weeds or plant growth in excess of five inches (127 mm). All noxious weeds shall be prohibited. Weeds shall be defined as all grasses, annual plants and vegetation, other than trees or shrubs; provided, however, that this term shall not include cultivated flowers and gardens. (NOTE: This section shall supersede the 2016 Chapter 8 IPMC Section 302.4 amendment to the 2015 IPMC.)
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ACCESSORY STRUCTURE
- A structure, the use of which is incidental to that of a premises and which is located on the same lot.
- COMMERCIAL PREMISES
- A building or combination of buildings and the lot on which the same is located, used wholly or in part for commercial purposes, including but not limited to offices, places of public assembly, shopping centers, entertainment centers, restaurants, supermarkets, retail stores, service businesses, wholesale stores, warehouses, manufacturing or fabrication plants, assembly plants, gasoline stations and their accessory structures.
- MIXED OCCUPANCY
- Occupancy of a lot in part for commercial use and in part for other than commercial use, and their accessory structures.
- The owner of a parcel of real property as shown on the latest tax assessment roll of the Town Assessor.
- RESIDENTIAL PREMISES
- A building or combination of buildings and the lot on which the same is located, used wholly for residential purposes and their accessory structures.
All commercial, residential and mixed-occupancy premises shall be maintained in conformity with the provisions of this article.
All owners of commercial premises shall file and keep updated a form with the Town's Building Official, which form shall contain the name, address and telephone number of the owner's current representative to be contacted in the event of emergency or violation of this article.
The Building Official and/or authorized agent for the Town of Lenox are jointly and severally designated as the administrators and shall secure compliance with the applicable standards of this article.
The Building Official shall designate such assistants and inspectors as are necessary to effectively carry out enforcement of this article.
The Building Official shall be charged with the duty of administrating the applicable standards of this article.
It shall be the duty of the Building Official:
To inspect and to cause inspection to be made of commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises within the scope of the applicable standards, as necessary.
Inspectors shall be authorized and have the right, in performance of their duties, to enter any commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises for purposes of inspection or any other reason necessary to administer or secure compliance with this article.
Owners, agents, operators, occupants and tenants shall be responsible for providing access to all parts of the commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises within their control to inspectors acting in performance of their duties.
To investigate and to cause an investigation of all complaints of alleged violations of this article. The Building Official shall keep records of all complaints received, inspections made and violations found regarding commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises regulated by this article.
To issue notices of abatement under this article.
To issue notices of violation of this article and to order, in writing, the remedy of all conditions found to exist in or on any commercial, residential and mixed-occupancy premises, and accessory structures thereon, in violation of the provisions of this article and to state in the notice of violation a thirty-day limit for compliance, except in an emergency where conditions render the commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises unsafe for occupancy and/or unsafe to adjoining properties and/or the general public, in which event there shall be a forty-eight-hour limit for compliance therewith and, where necessary, to order the vacating of the premises found unfit for occupancy.
Owners of commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises shall be responsible for compliance with the provisions of this article.
In the event that an owner of an occupied or unoccupied commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises shall fail to maintain the same as required under this article, the Building Official or his authorized agent may, in lieu of or in addition to written violation, serve written abatement notice on the owner and the owner's representative and may cause such work to be undertaken by or on behalf of the Town of Lenox pursuant to the procedures set forth in § 96-14 of this article.
A notice of violation may be served on the owner as follows:
By delivering to and leaving a copy thereof with a person on the commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises of reasonable age and discretion and by mailing copies thereof by both regular mail and certified mail, return receipt requested, to the owner at the owner's address as shown on the latest assessment roll of the Town Assessor; or
By posting a copy in a conspicuous place on the exterior of a structure on the commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises and by mailing copies thereof by both regular mail and certified mail, return receipt requested, to the owner at the owner's address as shown on the latest assessment roll of the Town Assessor.
A single service of violating § 60-3A shall be sufficient notice for future violations of § 60-3A throughout the remainder of that year's growing season.
[Added 8-14-2017 by L.L. No. 8-2017]
Every person or entity who shall fail to comply with a notice of violation issued by the Building Official within the compliance period stated in said notice shall be guilty of a violation of this article and shall be subject to the penalties provided herein.
Each and every day that a violation of this article exists following expiration of the compliance period stated in a notice of violation shall constitute a separate violation of chapter.
The penalty for each and every violation of this article shall be a fine of not less than $500 and not more than $1,000 or imprisonment for a period not exceeding 15 days, or both such fine and imprisonment.
In the event that an owner of an occupied or unoccupied commercial, residential, and mixed-occupancy premises shall fail to maintain the same as required under this article, the Building Official may, in lieu of written violation and/or abatement notice, bring a proceeding in the Town of Lenox Court to compel compliance with this article.
In the event that any owner of any occupied or unoccupied lot or piece of land or any part thereof within the Town of Lenox shall fail to maintain or repair the same as required by this article and/or by Town ordinance, such owner may, in addition to or in lieu of other remedies, be served an abatement notice by certified mail to his or her last known address or place of residence, if known, and, if not known, then to the address shown upon the records of the Town Assessor's office for the mailing of tax bills. In the case of a corporate owner, the notice shall be sent to the agent or a principal of the corporation as shown in the records of the Town Assessor's office or, if not so shown, then to the address shown upon the records of the Town Assessor for the mailing of tax bills and, if not so shown, then to the Secretary of State designated as agent for the service of process in the State of New York.
The abatement notice shall specify the provisions of the article and/or Town ordinance deemed to have been violated, require the owner to correct the condition within 10 days, and provide that if the owner fails to do so, the Town of Lenox shall cause the required work or repair to be made and assess a lien against the property for the cost of the work or repair together with an additional ten-percent administrative fee for costs of inspection and other incidental costs associated with abating the condition. The notice shall advise the owner of the right to a hearing, obtained by written request to the Town of Lenox Town Board within the time specified for compliance by the notice. The notice shall specify the provisions of the article and/or Town ordinance deemed to have been violated and the right to a hearing obtained by written request to the Town Clerk within 10 days of the date of the notice. If the Town or its authorized agent determines that an immediate emergency exists, the Town may undertake or cause to be undertaken such work or repair prior to the expiration of the ten-day notice period.
A violation of § 60-3A shall be corrected within 10 days of the first service of notice. Future violations of § 60-3A, in the same growing season, shall be corrected immediately.
[Added 8-14-2017 by L.L. No. 8-2017]
Should such owner fail to comply with the abatement notice, the Town may cause the work or repair to be made by entering contracts therefor and making payment out of available funds, except that, if the Town determines that an emergency exists, the Building Official may order the work or repair to be made by or on behalf of the Town. The Town shall keep records of the cost of such work.
Should the work or repair be performed by or on behalf of the Town after notice has been given pursuant to this article and the owner's time for compliance has run out, the Town of Lenox shall advise the owner, in writing, of the cost of such work or repair, together with an additional 10% for the administrative fee for costs of inspection and other incidental costs associated with abating the condition, and subsequent thereto, the owner shall have the right to request a hearing to challenge the cost of such work or repair within 10 days of said notice. The cost of the work or repair as finally determined together with the administrative fee and all incidental costs shall be assessed as a lien against the affected property. Notice shall be given to the Town Clerk specifying the property affected by lot and block numbers as the same appear on the Official Tax Assessment Map of the Town of Lenox, together with the costs incurred in undertaking such work or repair together with an additional ten-percent administrative fee for costs of inspection and other incidental costs associated with abating the condition, and from the hour of filing, the amount of the charges specified in said notice to the Town Clerk shall be a lien upon the property affected thereby. A copy of this notice shall be served by certified mail upon the owner of the affected property, in the manner specified in Subsection A above. The costs specified, if not paid by or on behalf of the owner within 30 days of notice, shall be added to and collected with the subsequent Town property tax levy, and shall bear interest and be enforced as provided by law for other Town taxes.
No action for damages may be maintained against the Town or its agents by reason of its failure to comply with any of the provisions of this section.