City of Wildwood, MO
St. Louis County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Ord. No. 1200 §1, 9-12-2005]
As used in this Article, the following words shall have the meanings as set out herein:
CITY
The City of Wildwood, Missouri, or its duly authorized agents.
CUSTODIAN
The owner or occupant of any private real property on which a nuisance vehicle is situated.
JUNK
Any metal, glass, paper, rags, wood, machinery, parts, cloth or other waste or discarded material of any nature or substance whatsoever, or scrap or salvage materials.
NUISANCE VEHICLE
Any vehicle which:
1. 
Is not registered or is improperly registered with the State of Missouri,
2. 
Has been inoperable on public property for more than forty-eight (48) hours, or
3. 
Is in such a state of repair as to be inoperable, except for those vehicles located on the premises of:
a. 
A duly licensed automobile repair or sales business,
b. 
A duly licensed automobile junking yard,
c. 
A private property owner for a period of time not to exceed thirty (30) days for the purpose of making repairs, or
d. 
Is completely enclosed within a locked building or locked fenced area and is not visible from adjacent public or private property.
The term "nuisance vehicle" shall also be construed as referring to junk as defined herein.
PERSON
Any person, firm, partnership, co-partnership, corporation or other organization of any kind.
PROPERTY
Any land owned by the City or located within the City limits, not including streets and highways.
STREET OR HIGHWAY
The entire area between the boundary lines of every publicly maintained right-of-way, when any part thereof is open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel.
VEHICLE
Any self-propelled device designed to travel on, in or above the ground or water by use of wheels, treads, runners, tracks, slides or propellers including, but not limited to, automobiles, trucks, trailers, motorcycles, tractors, buggies, wagons, boats or any part thereof.
[Ord. No. 1200 §1, 9-12-2005]
A. 
Any nuisance vehicle, part thereof or junk which is located on any property, street or highway and any vehicle, part thereof or junk that:
1. 
Presents a hazard to children or the public,
2. 
Is not completely enclosed within a locked building or locked fenced area and is visible from adjacent public or private property,
3. 
Harbors tall or rank grass, weeds or other vegetation,
4. 
Creates a fire or safety hazard, or
5. 
Affords a breeding place or nesting place for mosquitoes, flies, rodents, rats or other vermin, is hereby declared to be a nuisance vehicle affecting the public health, safety and/or welfare.
[Ord. No. 1200 §1, 9-12-2005]
No person shall cause, permit or maintain such a nuisance, nor shall any person fail or refuse to abate or remove such a nuisance within the term required by the City as provided in this Article. Each day of violation shall be deemed a separate offense. Nothing herein shall prohibit the City or Police Department from towing, removing or otherwise responding to abandoned vehicles and property, either simultaneously or alternatively, under the provisions of Section 210.290 of Chapter 210 "Offenses".
[Ord. No. 1200 §1, 9-12-2005]
A. 
Upon proper notice and an opportunity to be heard, the owner of the nuisance vehicle and the owner or occupant of any private property whereon the nuisance vehicle is situated (i.e., the custodian of the nuisance vehicle) shall be jointly and individually liable for its removal, disposition and/or storage. In such event, the owner of the nuisance vehicle and the owner or occupant of any private property whereon the nuisance vehicle is situated shall be jointly and individually liable for expenses incurred.
B. 
The City shall cause written notice to be served upon the owner of the nuisance vehicle, if ascertainable, and upon the custodian. The notice shall state:
1. 
The nuisance vehicle is deemed to be a nuisance pursuant to this Article,
2. 
The nuisance shall be abated within five (5) days from the date of such notice,
3. 
The owner or custodian has a right to a hearing with representation by counsel contesting the existence of such nuisance, and
4. 
Upon failure to either abate the nuisance vehicle or request a hearing within five (5) days from the date of the notice, the City shall undertake the removal and/or disposition of the nuisance vehicle and all costs relating thereto shall be levied against the owner and/or custodian.
Notice shall be effected by:
1.
Attaching a copy of same to the nuisance vehicle,
2.
Posting a copy of same at the private property on which the nuisance vehicle is situated, and
3.
Mailing, by certified mail or certificate of mailing, a copy of the notice to the owner, if ascertainable, and the custodian at the custodian's last known address according to the St. Louis County Assessor's roles.
C. 
If the owner or custodian fails to either abate the nuisance vehicle or request a hearing within the five (5) day compliance period, the City shall have the authority to enter upon the property where the nuisance is located and removed it from the premises. Timely request for a hearing, however, shall stay the compliance period until such time as a final determination has been made pending the review process provided in Section 215.310 hereof, plus any additional time allotted by the City to abate the nuisance after such determination. It shall be unlawful for any person to interfere with, hinder or refuse to allow the City to enter upon private property for the purpose of removing the nuisance in as provided herein.
D. 
Within seventy-two (72) hours of the removal of a nuisance vehicle from private property, the City shall give notice to the owner thereof, if ascertainable, the custodian, if any, and the Missouri Director of Revenue, if applicable, the property in question was impounded and stored for violation in this Article. The notice shall describe the property, give the location where the property is stored and state the owner and custodian shall be charged with the costs of removal and storage.
[Ord. No. 1200 §1, 9-12-2005]
A. 
The registered owner, or such owner's duly authorized agent, of any vehicle or nuisance vehicle either towed or to be towed in accordance with this Article and the custodian, if applicable, may file with the City Clerk a written request for a hearing. The request must be filed within the period of compliance, or in the event of an emergency tow, the owner must file a request within five (5) days after notification of the tow in accordance with the previous Section.
B. 
The hearing shall be held within forty-eight (48) hours of the hearing request before the City Administrator. Formal rules of evidence shall not apply; however, the parties shall have the right to counsel and to present evidence, confront and cross-examine witnesses, and receive a written decision based upon the facts provided at the hearing.
C. 
A public hearing shall be held by the City to determine the following:
1. 
The question of the existence of circumstances warranting an emergency tow in accordance with this Article (in order to determine liability for costs of removal, etc.); or
2. 
The question as to whether there are reasonable grounds to believe that an ordinance or Statute is violated by the position of the vehicle in question.
D. 
If the City Administrator is satisfied there are reasonable grounds to believe that a violation exists, he/she shall order the vehicle's removal. The City Administrator may impose such conditions and take such other actions, as deemed appropriate, under the circumstances to carry out the purpose of this Article and may delay the time for the removal of the vehicle if, in his/her opinion, the circumstances justify it. In the alternative, the City Administrator shall enter an order allowing such vehicle to remain if he/she finds no violation or nuisance. The costs of removal, storage and advertising expenses, if any, shall be charged against the City or the owner and/or custodian of the vehicle as deemed appropriate by the City Administrator.
[Ord. No. 1200 §1, 9-12-2005]
A. 
The City may remove, cause to be removed and stored any vehicle or junk in accordance with the provisions of this Article. With regard to any vehicle, the City shall contract with a service station, towing operator, salvage dealer or motor vehicle repair shop as chosen by the City Council. Such vehicles shall be placed in a garage, towing service facility, auto repair shop or other place designated or maintained by the chosen agent.
B. 
Neither the City, its designated law enforcement and towing agents, nor anyone having custody of any vehicle under this Article shall be liable for any damage to any such vehicle occasioned by a removal other than damages occasioned by negligence or by willful or wanton acts or omissions, except as provided by Section 304.155 et seq., RSMo.
C. 
The owner of any vehicle removed, as provided herein, shall be responsible for payment of all reasonable charges for towing and storage of such vehicle, except if the vehicle has been reported as stolen or taken without the consent of the owner, the owner shall be responsible only for the storage of such vehicle for any period after five (5) business days after receiving notice of removal provided by the Missouri Director of Revenue pursuant to Section 304.155, RSMo.
D. 
Upon the towing of any vehicle under this Article, the City shall make an inquiry with the National Crime Information Center and any statewide Missouri law enforcement computer system to determine if the vehicle has been reported as stolen. The Department shall submit a report to the Missouri Director of Revenue within five (5) working days of the towing of the vehicle. Such report shall include the following:
1. 
The year, model, make and vehicle identification number of the vehicle;
2. 
A description of any damage to the vehicle noted by the Wildwood Police Department;
3. 
The license number;
4. 
The storage location of the towed vehicle;
5. 
The name and address of the tower;
6. 
The date of the authorization to tow the vehicle; and
7. 
The date of the inquiry of the National Crime Information Center and any statewide Missouri law enforcement computer system to determine if the vehicle had been stolen.
E. 
The owner of any such vehicle or the holder of a valid security interest thereon, which is in default, may reclaim it from the service station, towing operator, salvage dealer or motor vehicle repair shop upon proof of ownership or valid security interest, which is in default, and upon payment of all reasonable charges for the towing and storage of the vehicle.
F. 
Any person who removes any such vehicle at the direction of the City, as provided herein, shall have a lien for all reasonable charges for the towing and storage of the vehicle, until possession of the vehicle is voluntarily relinquished to the owner of the vehicle, or to the holder of a valid security interest thereon, which is in default. Such lien shall be enforced in the following manner:
1. 
The lienholder in possession shall request the City to make inquiry with the National Crime Information Center and any statewide Missouri law enforcement computer system to determine if the vehicle had been reported stolen and in whose name the vehicle is registered;
2. 
The lienholder in possession shall notify by registered mail, postage prepaid, the owner, if known, and any lienholders of record, at their last known addresses, that application for a certificate of title will be made unless the owner or lienholder of record makes satisfactory arrangements with the person holding the vehicle for payment of towing and storage within thirty (30) days of the mailing of the notice. This notice shall be supplied by the use of a form designed and provided by the Missouri Director of Revenue;
3. 
Thirty (30) days after the notification form has been mailed and the vehicle is unredeemed and no satisfactory arrangement has been made with the lienholder in possession for continued storage, the lienholder in possession may apply to the Missouri Director of Revenue for a certificate of title, if the towed vehicle is titled in Missouri. The application shall be accompanied by:
a. 
The original or a conformed or photostatic copy of the City's written report authorizing the tow;
b. 
An affidavit of the lienholder in possession that he/she has been in possession of the towed vehicle for thirty (30) days and the owner has failed to make arrangements for payment of towing and storage charges;
c. 
A copy of the receipt indicating that the owner or lienholder of record has received the notice required by Subsection (F)(2) of this Section;
d. 
An inspection certificate shall be completed by the City on a form provided by the Missouri Department of Revenue. If the Police Officer who authorized the tow is not available to inspect the vehicle and complete the certificate, the department may designate another officer to inspect the vehicle and complete the form. The inspection shall be made at least thirty (30) days after the date of towing. The inspection certificate shall be dated to reflect the date of the inspection; and
e. 
Any fee as may be provided by Missouri Statute.
G. 
If a certificate of ownership has not been previously issued in Missouri on the towed vehicle, the lienholder in possession of the vehicle shall obtain ownership verification from the State in which the vehicle was last registered or titled, if known. If the lienholder is unable to determine the last known State of issuance of certificate of ownership or registration, he/she shall request ownership verification through any available nationwide network of vehicle records and shall notify the last owner of record and lienholder. The lienholder, upon notification of the last owner and any lienholder of record, shall comply with Subsection (F) of this Section before a certificate of ownership is issued.
H. 
Towing operators, service stations, salvage dealers or motor vehicle repair shops who tow or store vehicles according to this Section shall keep a record for three (3) years on each vehicle towed and not reclaimed by the owner of the vehicle. Such record shall contain a copy of the City's authorization to tow, copies of all correspondence with the Missouri Department of Revenue concerning the vehicle and information concerning the final disposition of the possession of the vehicle.
I. 
Personal property found within a vehicle, except items affixed to the vehicle, shall be considered and treated as lost property.
J. 
Any other provision of this Section notwithstanding, when the City sells any vehicle or nuisance vehicle in accordance with the terms of this Section, the City may transfer ownership by means of a bill of sale signed by the City Clerk and sealed with the official City Seal. Such bill of sale shall contain the make and model of the vehicle, the complete vehicle identification number and the odometer reading of the vehicle and shall be lawful proof of ownership for any dealer registered under the provisions of Sections 301.218 or 301.251, RSMo., or for any other person. Any dealer or other person purchasing such a vehicle from the City shall apply within thirty (30) days of purchase for a certificate of ownership as provided in Section 301.190, RSMo., or for a junking certificate as provided in Section 301.227, RSMo.
K. 
The owner of any vehicle seized under the provisions of this Section may redeem the vehicle at any time during the normal business hours after the vehicle's removal, but prior to the sale or destruction of the vehicle upon proof of ownership and payment to the City Clerk or the City Clerk's designee of such sum, as may be determined and fixed by the City, for the actual and reasonable expense of removal, storage and advertising expenses, if any.
[Ord. No. 1200 §1, 9-12-2005]
In addition to the remedial provisions set forth in this Article and in order to protect, promote and preserve the public health and safety, no person shall cause, permit or maintain the existence of a nuisance vehicle or shall fail or refuse to abate or remove a nuisance vehicle within the time required by this Section. Each day that a nuisance vehicle shall be maintained constitutes a separate offense. Any person found guilty of violating this Section shall be punished as provided in Section 100.140 of this Code. As a condition to any probation granted, the Municipal Judge may order such person to reimburse the City for its costs incurred in removing and storing the offensive property.