[Ord. No. 349, §1]
These regulations shall be known as the "Dangerous and Unsafe Structure Ordinance" of the city.
[Ord. No. 349, §2]
It is the purpose of this article to provide a just, equitable and practicable method for the repairing, vacation or demolition of buildings or structures which may endanger the life, limb, health, property, safety or welfare of the occupants of such buildings or the general public, and this article shall apply to all dangerous buildings, as herein defined, which are now in existence or which may hereafter exist in the city.
[Ord. No. 349, §3]
All buildings or structures which have any or all of the following defects shall be deemed "dangerous buildings".
Those whose interior walls or other vertical structural members lift, lean or buckle to such an extent that a plumb line passing through the center of gravity falls outside of the middle third of its base.
Those which, exclusive of the foundation, show thirty-three percent or more of damage or deterioration of the supporting member or members, or fifty percent of damage or deterioration of the nonsupporting enclosing or outside walls or covering.
Those which have improperly distributed loads upon the floors or roofs, or in which the same are overloaded or which have insufficient strength to be reasonably safe for the purpose used.
Those which have been damaged by fire, wind or other causes so as to become dangerous to life, safety or the general health and welfare of the occupants or the people of the city.
Those which are so dilapidated, decayed, unsafe, unsanitary or which so utterly fail to provide the amenities essential to decent living that they are unfit for human habitation, or are likely to cause sickness or disease, so as to work injury to the health, safety or welfare of those occupying such building.
Those having light, air and sanitation facilities which are inadequate to protect the health, safety or general welfare of human beings who live or may live herein.
Those having inadequate facilities for egress in case of fire or panic or those having insufficient stairways, elevators, fire escapes or other means of communication.
Those which have parts thereof which are so attached that they may fall or injure members of the public or property.
Those which because of their condition are unsafe, unsanitary or dangerous to the health, safety or general welfare of the people of this city.
[Ord. No. 349, §4]
All dangerous buildings within the terms of section 5-6 are hereby declared to be public nuisances and shall be repaired, vacated or demolished as provided herein.
[Ord. No. 349, §5]
The following standards shall be followed in substance by the building commissioner and the board of aldermen, in ordering repair, vacation or demolition of any dangerous building:
If the dangerous building can reasonably be repaired so that it will no longer exist in violation of the terms of this article, it shall be ordered repaired.
If the dangerous building is in such condition as to made it dangerous to the health, safety or general welfare of its occupants, it shall be ordered to be vacated and repaired.
In all cases where a building cannot be repaired so that it will no longer exist in violation of the terms of this article, it shall be demolished.
In all cases where a dangerous building is a fire hazard existing or erected in violation of the terms of this article or any ordinance of this city or statute of the state, it shall be repaired or demolished.
[Ord. No. 349, §6]
The building commissioner shall have the duty under this article to:
Inspect or cause to be inspected, as often as may be necessary, all residential, institutional, assembly, commercial, industrial, garage, special or miscellaneous occupancy buildings for the purpose of determining whether any conditions exist which render such places a dangerous building when he has reasonable grounds to believe that any such building is dangerous.
Inspect any building, wall or structure about which complaints are filed by any person to the effect that a building, wall or structure is or may be existing in violation of this article, and the building commissioner shall determine if there are reasonable grounds to believe that such building is dangerous.
Inspect any building, wall or structure reported by fire or police departments of this city as probably exiting in violation of this article.
Notify in writing, either by personal service or by certified mail, return receipt requested, or if service cannot be had by either of these modes of service, it may be had by publication for two successive weeks in a newspaper qualified to publish legal notices, the owner, occupant, lessee, mortgagee, agent and all other persons having an interest in said building as shown by the land records of the recorder of deeds of the county, of any building found by him to be a dangerous building within the standards set forth in section 5-6.
The notice required shall state that (1) the owner must repair, vacate and repair or vacate and demolish such building in accordance with the terms of the notice and this article; (2) the occupant or lessee must vacate such building or have it repaired in accordance with the notice and remain in possession; (3) the mortgagee, agent or other persons having an interest in such building as shown by the land records of the recorder of deeds of the county wherein the land is located, may, at his own risk, repair, vacate or demolish or have such work done; provided, that any person notified under this subsection to repair, vacate or demolish any building shall be given such reasonable time not exceeding thirty days to commence the required work unless in the judgment of the building commissioner it is determined to be necessary to extend such time to commence the work. A reasonable time for completion of such work shall be determined by the building commissioner.
The notice provided for in this section shall state a description of the building or structure deemed dangerous, a statement of the particulars which make the building or structure a dangerous building and an order requiring the designated work to be commenced within the time, or extension thereof, provided for in the above subsection.
Report in writing to the board of aldermen the noncompliance with any notice to vacate, repair or demolish.
Appear at all hearings conducted by the board of aldermen and testify as to the condition of dangerous buildings.
Immediately report to the board of aldermen concerning any building found by him to be inherently dangerous and which he determines to be a nuisance per se. By resolution, the board of aldermen may direct that such building be marked or posted with a written notice reading substantially as follows:
[Ord. No. 349 §7]
The board of aldermen shall have the power pursuant to this article to:
Supervise all inspections required by this Article, and cause the Building Commissioner to make inspections and perform all the duties required of him by this Article. Upon receiving a complaint or report from any source, that a dangerous building exists in the City, it shall cause an inspection to be made forthwith. If it deems it necessary to the performance of its duties and responsibilities imposed herein, it may request an inspection and report be made to it by any other City department or retain services of an expert whenever it deems such service necessary.
Upon receipt of a report of the Building Commissioner, give written notice either by personal service or by certified mail, return receipt requested, or by publication for two (2) successive weeks, in a newspaper qualified to publish legal notices, at least twenty-one (21) days in advance of a hearing date, to the owner, occupant, mortgagee, lessee, agent and all other persons having an interest in such building as shown by the land records of the Recorder of Deeds of the County wherein the land is located, to appear before it on the date specified in the notice to show cause why the building or structure reported to be a dangerous building should not be repaired, vacated or demolished in accordance with the statement of particulars set forth in the Building Commissioner's notice provided for herein.
Upon receipt of a report of the Building Commissioner and after having given the notice required, the Board of Aldermen shall hold a hearing and hear such testimony as the Building Commissioner and the owner, occupant, mortgagee, lessee or any other person having an interest in such building as shown by the land records of the Recorder of Deeds of the County wherein the land is located, shall offer relative to the dangerous building. A record of testimony at the hearing shall be made.
Make written findings of fact from the evidence offered at such hearing as to whether or not the building in question is a dangerous building within the terms of Section 5-6 hereof.
If the evidence supports a finding based upon competent and substantial evidence that the building or structure is a dangerous building, the Board of Aldermen shall issue an order based upon its findings of fact commanding the owner, occupant, mortgagee, lessee, agent or other persons having an interest in such building as shown by the land records of the County wherein the land is located, to repair, vacate or demolish any building found to be a dangerous building; provided, that any person so notified shall have the privilege of either repairing or vacating and repairing such building, if such repair will comply with the ordinances of this City or the owner or any person having any interest in such building as shown by the land records of the County wherein the land is located may vacate and demolish such dangerous building at his own risk to prevent the acquiring by the City of the lien against the land where the dangerous building stands. If the evidence does not support a finding that a building or structure is a dangerous building, no order shall be issued.
If the owner, occupant, mortgagee or lessee fails to comply with the order within thirty (30) days, the Board of Aldermen shall cause building or structure to be repaired, vacated or demolished as the facts may warrant; and the Board of Aldermen shall certify the charge for such repair, vacation or demolition to the City Clerk as a special assessment represented by a special tax bill against the real property affected; such tax bill shall be a lien upon such property and be enforced to the same extent and in the same manner as all other special tax bills. At the request of the taxpayer, this special tax bill may be paid in installments over a period of not more than ten (10) years; such assessment shall bear interest at the rate of eight percent (8%) per annum until paid.
[Ord. No. 349 §8]
Any owner, occupant, lessee, mortgagee, agent or any other person having an interest in a dangerous building as shown by the land records of the Recorder of Deeds of the County wherein the land is located, may, within thirty (30) days from the receipt of the order of the Board of Aldermen, appeal such decision to the Circuit Court of the County wherein the land is located, pursuant to the procedure established in Chapter 536 of the Revised Statutes of Missouri.
[Ord. No. 349 §9]
In cases where it reasonably appears that there is immediate danger to the health, life or safety of any person unless a dangerous building as defined herein is immediately repaired, vacated or demolished, the Building Commissioner shall report such facts to the Board of Aldermen, and the Board of Aldermen, by resolution, may cause the immediate boarding up of all openings, repair, vacation or demolition of such dangerous building. The costs of such emergency boarding up, repair, vacation or demolition of such dangerous building shall be collected in the same manner as provided in Section 5-10, Subsection (f).
[Ord. No. 349 §15]
This Article is enacted pursuant to authority granted in Section 67.400 et seq., of the Revised Statutes of Missouri, 1969.