City of Hazelwood, MO
St. Louis County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents

Section 220.010 Acts Constituting Public Nuisances Generally. [1]

[CC 1997 §20.1; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
Every act or thing done, made, permitted, allowed or continued on any property, public or private, by any person, his agent or servant, to the damage or injury of the inhabitants of this City shall be deemed a public nuisance, unless otherwise provided for by ordinance.
[1]
Cross Reference—As to height of weeds declared public nuisance, see §220.150.

Section 220.020 Public Nuisances Affecting Health Designated.

[CC 1997 §20.2; Ord. No. 293, 9-10-1958; Ord. No. 831, 4-7-1971; Ord. No. 1037-74, 4-3-1974; Ord. No. 1822-85, 7-17-1985; Ord. No. 2089-88, 8-3-1988; Ord. No. 2112-88, 11-19-1988; Ord. No. 2207-89, 10-18-1989; Ord. No. 2510-94, 2-16-1994; Ord. No. 3333-02 §1, 3-6-2002; Ord. No. 3790-06 §1, 9-20-2006]
A. 
The following are declared to be public nuisances affecting health and are prohibited:
1. 
All decayed or unwholesome food offered for sale to the public.
2. 
All diseased animals running at large.
3. 
All ponds or pools of stagnant water.
4. 
Carcasses of dead animals not buried or destroyed within twenty-four (24) hours after death.
5. 
Accumulations of manure, rubbish, garbage, refuse and human and industrial or noxious or offensive waste, except the normal storage on a farm of manure for agricultural purposes.
6. 
Privy vaults or garbage cans which are not fly-tight.
7. 
The pollution of any well, cistern, spring, underground water stream, lake canal or body of water by sewage or industrial wastes, or other substance harmful to human beings.
8. 
Dense smoke, noxious fumes, gas, soot or cinders in unreasonable quantities, or the presence of any gas, vapor, fume, smoke, dust or any other toxic substance on, in or emitted from the equipment of any premises in quantities sufficient to be toxic, harmful or injurious to the health of any employee or to any premises, occupant or to any other person.
9. 
Common drinking cups, roller towels, combs, brushes, or eating utensils in public or semi-public places not properly sanitized after use.
10. 
Any vehicle used for septic tank cleaning which does not meet the requirements as set forth in the County Code.
11. 
All infestations of flies, fleas, roaches, lice, ticks, rats, mice, fly maggots, mosquito larvae and hookworm larvae.
12. 
The keeping of animals or fowl, except in compliance with the provisions of Chapter 210, Animals and Fowl, of the Municipal Code of the City of Hazelwood, Missouri.
13. 
Unlicensed dumps.
14. 
All other acts, practices, conduct, business, occupations, callings, trades, uses of property and all other things detrimental or certain to be detrimental to the health of the inhabitants of the City.
15. 
The shining of artificial light onto public or private property as to be an annoyance, hurt, injury or inconvenience to other persons.
16. 
Buildings in such a state of disrepair as to affect the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Hazelwood.
17. 
Any accumulation on any premises or on any open lot of any lumber, boxes, barrels, bricks, stones or similar materials, unless the same shall be fully covered, in the rear yard and evenly piled or stacked either on racks elevated not less than twelve (12) inches above the ground or on a durably paved surface.
18. 
The presence of debris of any kind including, but not limited to, weed cuttings, cut and fallen trees and shrubs, rubbish and trash, rocks or bricks, tin, steel, parts of derelict cars or trucks, broken furniture, any flammable material which may endanger public safety, or any material which is unhealthy or unsafe.
19. 
Any accumulation or deposit of any vehicular and/or equipment parts, inoperable appliances, junk or material of any nature where said accumulation or deposit upon open ground would constitute an attractive nuisance danger to children and/or a possible breeding ground for vermin, rodents and other animals.
20. 
The presence on any property of any steel-jawed animal traps or similar devices, unless authorized by the Police Department.
21. 
The presence of any graffiti displayed on exterior surfaces of property. "Graffiti" is hereby defined as any word, phrase, motto, name, design, symbol or picture written, scribbled, painted, drawn, etched or scratched directly onto any portion of public property or onto an exterior surface on private property.
22. 
Any accumulation or storage of firewood in the front yard of any lot other than in a commercially manufactured decorative firewood rack on the front porch, or in a rear yard unless evenly piled or stacked either on open racks elevated not less than twelve (12) inches above the ground or on a durably paved surface.
23. 
The maintenance, storage or use of any furniture outside a fully enclosed structure, unless the furniture is designed and built for exterior use and to resist damage or deterioration by the elements; provided however, that furniture not designed for exterior use may be outside a fully enclosed structure while actually being used by residents or visitors.
24. 
Water or other liquid diverted from a sump pump which flows onto streets or sidewalks.
25. 
Ruts, grooves and/or channels in lawns and yards which a vehicle or other equipment has created.

Section 220.025 Graffiti and Graffiti Devices Prohibited — Responsibility For Damage Caused By Graffiti.

[Ord. No. 3790-06 §2, 9-20-2006]
A. 
As used in this Section, the word "graffiti" shall mean and refer to any word, phrase, motto, name, design, symbol or picture written, scribbled, painted, drawn, etched or scratched directly onto any portion of public property or onto an exterior surface on private property.
B. 
No person shall cause graffiti to be placed upon any public or private building, fence, wall, bridge, sidewalk, road, parking area, driveway or similar structure or surface, nor shall the owner thereof suffer the same to remain thereon.
C. 
No person under the age of twenty-one (21) years may be in possession of any spray paint or any container thereof nor any permanent or semi-permanent paint pens or similar device while in or upon any public or private road, sidewalk, parking area, driveway, park or premises unless the minor is accompanied by his or her parent or legal guardian.
D. 
Any person, and the parent or guardian (excluding foster parents) of any unemancipated minor under eighteen (18) years of age in their care and custody, found guilty of causing graffiti to be placed as prohibited in Subsection (B) above shall be liable for the payment of reasonable damages and the cost of removal of such graffiti, up to any amount not to exceed two thousand dollars ($2,000.00), payable to the owner of the property upon which the graffiti was placed. The liability of a parent or guardian under this Subsection shall be conditioned upon such parent or guardian being given written notice of the possible liability provided herein and being afforded an opportunity to be heard relative to such liability by the judge of the Municipal Court. The liability provided in this Subsection shall not be a bar to any action or proceeding against a person for violation of this Section or for damages nor, in the case of an unemancipated minor, for damages not paid by the parent or guardian.
E. 
In addition to the abatement provisions of this Chapter, any person found guilty of violating any provision of this Section may, upon conviction, be punished as provided in Section 100.130 of this Code of Ordinances.

Section 220.030 Issuance of Permits To Businesses Which May Cause Public Health Nuisances.

[CC 1997 §20.3; Ord. No. 293, 9-10-1958]
The Health Officer is authorized to issue permits to owners or operators of businesses when such comply with reasonable regulations for the conduct of such business and occupations to prevent the occurrence of public health nuisances which may include registration and statement of the methods or conditions to be employed in their operation or maintenance for food vending trucks, water hauling, septic tank cleaning and disposal of water, garbage, offal, and rubbish disposal and hauling, dumps, the business of keeping animals, fowl, or reptiles, except usual farm animals and fowl.

Section 220.040 Ordinances Not To Be Construed As Limiting Any Official's Power of Abatement.

[CC 1997 §20.4; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
Nothing in this Chapter or other ordinances relating to public nuisances or denominated by a particular ordinance as misdemeanors or prescribing penalties therefor shall be construed as limiting or interfering with the duties and powers of any City Official relative to the condemnation and abatement of any matter which in law constitutes a public nuisance.

Section 220.050 Inspections.

[CC 1997 §20.5; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
The Director of Public Works, Police Chief, Health Officer, Police Officers, and any officer, agent or employee of such officers are hereby authorized to enter and inspect all buildings and parts of buildings and other premises pursuant to lawful authority for the purpose of examining the sanitary condition thereof and for the discovery and abatement of public nuisances therein. If any public nuisance or unsanitary condition be found on such inspection, it shall be reported forthwith to the Health Officer or the Police Chief or the Director of Public Works.

Section 220.060 Failure To Abate Prohibited.

[CC 1997 §20.6; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
No owner, agent or occupant shall fail to abate a public nuisance after an order by the Police Chief or Health Officer to do so.

Section 220.070 Work To Abate Public Nuisances To Be Let By Contract.

[CC 1997 §20.7; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
Any work for abating public nuisances upon the order of the Police Chief shall be let by contract by the Director of Public Works with the approval of the City Council.

Section 220.080 Recovering of Expense of Abatement By Use of Civil Action.

[CC 1997 §20.8; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
Nothing in this Chapter shall be construed as abandoning or limiting the right of the City by civil action to recover the expense incurred in abating any public nuisance.

Section 220.090 Assessment of City's Expense in Abatement.

[CC 1997 §20.9; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
The cost to the City of abating any public nuisance shall be certified by the Director of Public Works to the Director of Finance, who shall cause a special tax bill to be prepared and assessed against the property on which the public nuisance is located and against the person guilty of causing or allowing such public nuisance to exist. This special tax bill shall be collected like other taxes and shall be a first (1st) lien on the property until paid.

Section 220.100 Investigation of Complaints Abatement Issuance of Summons.

[CC 1997 §20.10; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951; Ord. No. 3173-00 §2, 5-17-2000]
A. 
The Director of Public Works, upon complaint of any public nuisance, shall cause the same to be investigated by any of the officers named in this Chapter or may himself investigate such complaint.
B. 
If any public nuisance is discovered which is imminently dangerous to the health, safety and welfare of the inhabitants of the City, the Director of Public Works may cause the same to be abated without notice, and may use any suitable means of assistance for that purpose.
C. 
In any other case which does not represent an imminent danger to the health, safety and welfare of the inhabitants of the City, the Director of Public Works may issue a summons or issue notice to abate the nuisance.
D. 
The Building Enforcement Officer is hereby authorized to issue a summons to any person violating the terms of this Chapter, and thereafter such summons shall be prosecuted as all other violations of the Hazelwood City Code.
E. 
The Director of Public Works may proceed to abate the nuisance, but not until after the Police Chief or the Health Officer shall have given notice to the property owner, his agent or the occupant, of the conditions of the public nuisance complained of, and specifying the day, hour and place of a hearing to be held thereon. The hearing shall be held not less than five (5) days following the delivery of the notice. After such hearing, the Police Chief or Health Officer may declare the conditions to constitute a public nuisance and order their abatement. Any order of abatement shall fix a time for such abatement by the owner, his agent or occupant, and, if not complied within such time, the Director of Public Works may proceed to abate the public nuisance, using any suitable means or assistance for the purpose.

Section 220.110 Records of Proceedings in Abatement Cases.

[CC 1997 §20.11; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
The Police Chief or Health Officer shall keep a record of proceedings in cases of abatement of public nuisances ordered by either of them.

Section 220.120 Appearance of Interested Persons At Hearings.

[CC 1997 §20.12; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
At hearings before the Police Chief or Health Officer relating to the abatement of public nuisances, as provided for in this Chapter, the interested persons may appear in person, by attorney or may file an affidavit in their own behalf.

Section 220.130 Procedure When Public Nuisance Extends Over More Than One Piece of Property.

[CC 1997 §20.13; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
If any public nuisance abated by the Director of Public Works extends over the property of more than one (1) owner, over a plurality of City lots, or over a plurality of parts or parcels of land, the cost of abating such public nuisance shall be assessed in proportion to the amount of work or expense for each proportionate part of the entire work and the area. The special tax bills provided for in this Chapter shall be levied and collected accordingly. In determining who is the owner of any particular lot, plot or parcel of land, for the pro rata distribution of the assessment of the cost, each group of owners, as for instance in joint tenancy or tenancy in common, shall be deemed a single owner, in order to preserve to the City its lien against the particular lot, plot or parcel of land, under the special tax bill levied against such property.

Section 220.140 Right of Entry For Purposes of Abatement.

[CC 1997 §20.14; Ord. No. 47, 7-2-1951]
Any person employed or connected with the work of abatement of a public nuisance as provided for in this Chapter, and any agent or employee of such person, shall have the right of entry for that purpose into and upon any premises. Any interference with such entry or entry by any Police Officer or any of the City Officers referred to in this Chapter, for the purpose of sanitary inspection or the discovery or abatement of any public nuisance, is hereby prohibited.
[1]
Editor's Note—Ord. no. 3061-99 adopted May 5, 1999, repealed former Code sections 26.3, 26.4 and 26.5 which were set out herein as §220.150—220.170. The new provisions enacted are set out below at §220.150. Former Code §§220.150—220.170 derived from CC 1997 §§26.3—26.5; ord. no. 244, 10-7-57; ord. no. 309, 1-14-59; ord. no. 2218-89, 11-15-1989.

Section 220.150 Weeds or Rank Vegetation Growth.

[CC 1997 §26.3; Ord. No. 3061-99 §1, 5-5-1999; Ord. No. 3081-99 §§1—2, 7-21-1999; Ord. No. 3336-02 §1, 3-6-2002]
A. 
Definition. The word "weeds" as used herein shall include all rank vegetable growth which exhale unpleasant and noxious odors and high grasses which may conceal filthy deposits or vermin.
B. 
Prohibitions.
1. 
Except as provided in Subsection (C) of this Section, no person shall cause or permit any weeds or rank vegetation growth to attain a height in excess of eight (8) inches upon any property within the City, including the adjacent street right-of-way.
2. 
Except as provided in Subsection (C) of this Section, any owner, lessee or occupant of any lot, parcel of land, or land of any other description in the City who shall cause or permit any weeds or rank vegetation growth to attain a height in excess of eight (8) inches upon any property in the City, shall be deemed to have committed a public nuisance.
3. 
All weeds or rank vegetation growth, when cut down, shall be removed and disposed of in such a manner as not to create a nuisance.
C. 
Exceptions. With respect to any undeveloped property in excess of three (3) acres, this Section shall apply only to the portions of such property which are located within one hundred (100) feet of any street right-of-way or within one hundred (100) feet of any adjoining property. For purposes of this Section, "street" shall include all highways, streets and roads other than those highways commonly known as "interstate" highways.
D. 
Notice, Hearing And Special Tax Bills.
1. 
Notice/hearing. Whenever weeds or rank vegetation growth are allowed to grow on any portion of any property in violation of this Section, the Director of Public Works shall give a hearing after four (4) days' written notice thereof either personally or by United States mail to the owner(s) or his/her/their agent(s), or posting such notice on the premises.
2. 
Declaration of nuisance. If the evidence at such hearing supports such a finding, the Director of Public Works shall declare the weeds to be a nuisance and order the same to be abated within five (5) days.
3. 
Removal by City. If the weeds are not cut down and removed within the said five (5) days, the Director of Public Works shall have the weeds cut down and removed, and shall certify the costs of same to the Director of Finance.
4. 
Special tax bill.
a. 
The Director of Finance shall cause a special tax bill therefore against the property to be prepared and to be collected by the Collector, with other taxes assessed against the property. Each special tax bill shall be issued by the Director of Finance and delivered to the Collector on or before the first (1st) day of June of each year. Such tax bills if not paid when due shall bear interest at the rate of eight percent (8%) per annum.
b. 
As a part of the cost of removing such weeds or rank vegetation growth, each such special tax bill shall include a charge, to be determined by the Director of Finance, for inspecting the subject property, giving the requisite notice, and issuing and recording the special tax bill.
c. 
The special tax bill, from the date of its issuance, shall be a first (1st) lien on the property until paid and shall be prima facie evidence of the recitals therein and of its validity, and no mere clerical error or informality in the same, or in the proceedings leading up to the issuance, shall be a defense thereto.
E. 
Multiple Violations. If weeds or rank vegetation growth are allowed to grow on the same property in violation of this Section more than once during the same growing season, the Director of Public Works may:
1. 
Order the weeds or rank vegetation growth be abated within five (5) business days after notice is sent to or posted on the property. If the weeds and/or rank vegetation growth are not cut down and removed within the five (5) days, the Director of Public Works shall cause the weeds and/or rank vegetation growth cut down and removed and the cost of the same billed in the manner described in Subsection (D) above; or
2. 
Without further notification, cause the weeds and/or rank vegetation growth cut down and removed and the cost of the same billed in the manner described in Subsection (D) above.
F. 
Other Recourse. In addition to any other provision provided in this Section, any violation of this Section shall be punishable pursuant to Section 100.130 of this Code.