[Adopted 6-16-2014 by Ord. No. 2014-05; amended in its entirety 4-20-2015 by Ord. No. 2015-02]
Editor's Note: Ord. No. 2014-05 was adopted as an emergency ordinance, with a one-year expiration. Said ordinance was substantially readopted to make such provisions permanent 4-20-2015 by Ord. No. 2015-02.
Intent. Various nuisances, Town Code violations and municipal infractions may be defined and prohibited in this and other chapters and sections of this code, and it is the intent of the Town Council in enacting this article to make it supplemental to those other chapters and sections where nuisances are defined; by defining in this article certain code violations and municipal infractions as nuisances; and by granting the Town and its officials with supplemental powers pursuant to the provisions of this article relating to the abatement of nuisances and procedures for the abatement of nuisances in those instances where other methods and procedures for abatement are provided. This article shall be administered and enforced by the Mayor, designated Code Enforcement Officers and other staff or officials designated by the Mayor or Town Council.
Nuisances generally prohibited. It shall be unlawful for any person to cause, harbor, commit or maintain or to suffer to be caused, harbored, committed or maintained any public nuisance, as defined by the Statutes or the Common Law of this State or as defined by this article and chapter or other ordinance of the Town of North Brentwood, at any place or property within the Town.
Persons in possession, occupants, tenants, and/or legal owners of real property creating nuisances described in this article shall be held legally responsible for their creation, propagation or continuation and shall be required to comply with all provisions required herein.
The nuisances described in this article or elsewhere in this Code shall not be construed as exclusive, and any act of commission or omission and any condition allowed to exist which constitutes a public nuisance by Statute or Common Law of the State, when committed, omitted or existing within the Town of North Brentwood, is hereby declared to constitute a nuisance.
Except when stated otherwise herein, whenever any words and phrases used in this article are not defined herein but are expressly defined elsewhere in this Code or state law, such as the regulation of the operation of vehicles found in the State Transportation Article, any such definition therein shall be deemed to apply to such words and phrases used in this article.
The following acts or omissions when committed or conditions when existing within the Town of North Brentwood are hereby defined and declared to be or constitute public nuisances:
The depositing or allowing of irrigation, storm, waste or other water to run off onto or within any street, alley, or other public place, or to cause annoyance, damage, or hazard to any user of the street, alley, or other public place.
The depositing or allowing of foul, filthy or offensive material or refuse, or any unclean or unsanitary condition in any street, alley, park or driveway, lot, building or property within the Town which is or which may constitute a nuisance or menace to life and health.
Allowing or causing any building or structure to have any windows, doors or exterior openings closed by extrinsic devices (e.g., boards or plywood), giving the building or structure the appearance that it is not occupied or used for any use allowed by the County Zoning Code at the particular location.
Maintaining or allowing graffiti to exist for more than 72 hours on a nonresidential property or fixtures, or seven calendar days on a residential property or fixture.
Outdoor storage of lawn equipment, construction and rental equipment, trailer-mounted pressure washers, wood chippers, and other trailer-mounted equipment, unless the property is allowed by the County Zoning Code to be used for commercial purposes.
Whether found on surfaced parking areas or not as described in § 315-6 of this Code, the parking or leaving standing of any commercial vehicle, as defined in § 315-8, Parking of commercial and recreational vehicles on streets prohibited, of this Code, upon any private property used for residential purposes that may be seen from any public street or publicly owned property, except while actually loading or unloading such vehicle for a period of less than two hours, unless:
An oral or written permit therefor shall have been obtained from the Mayor, which permit shall be issued only for good cause and for a period not exceeding 72 hours; or
A written permit for a period longer than 72 hours shall have been granted by the Council, which permit shall be granted only for a good cause and after paying a fee as prescribed by resolution of the Council.
Inspections. It shall be the duty of the Mayor, Code Enforcement Officer or other staff or official designated to cause inspections to be made from time to time of all portions of the Town to determine whether any condition exists or activity is being practiced which constitutes a nuisance; and he or she shall cause an investigation to be made upon complaint made by any responsible person.
Right of entry. The Mayor, Code Enforcement Officer or other staff or official designated shall have the right to enter upon private premises for the purposes specified in this section upon compliance with all applicable provisions of law, including the issuance of an administrative warrant. Unless it appears probable that advance warning would defeat the purpose of such entry, occupants of premises to be entered shall be given reasonable notice in advance, and, in any case, it shall be unlawful for any owner or occupant to prevent such entry which is sought to be made in compliance with law.
Except as stated otherwise in this article, violations of this article shall be considered a municipal infraction subject to the procedures found in Chapter 1, Article II, of this Code and Title 6 of the Local Government Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland. Notwithstanding any other provision of this code to the contrary, violators of this article shall be liable for a fine of $200 for each offense.
In addition to any other fine, penalty, or remedy prescribed herein, a violator may be required to remove or restore, within three days of the date of notification of the violation by issuance of a citation, any condition, circumstances, act or omission constituting the basis of the violation. Upon expiration of such three days, each additional day during which that person shall not have so removed, abated or restored the same, shall constitute a further and separate violation subject to such fine.
After obtaining a judgment and/or abatement order from a court of competent jurisdiction, the Town may correct or abate any such condition or discrepancy at the violator's expense and thereafter, as applicable, certify any costs thereof to the County Finance Office to be collected in the same manner as municipal taxes.
Whenever any violation of this article causes a condition, the continued existence of which constitutes an immediate threat to the public health, safety or welfare or to the environment, the Town may summarily and without prior notice abate the condition. Notice of such abatement, including the reason for it, shall be given to the person responsible for the violation as soon as reasonably possible after the abatement. No right of action shall lie against the Town or its agents, officers, or employees for actions reasonably taken to prevent or cure any such immediate threats, but neither shall the Town be entitled to recover any costs incurred for summary abatement, unless actual notice of same or a municipal infraction citation is duly delivered or served upon the person responsible for the violation.
Any violation of this article or nuisance that involves or includes in its subject matter a vehicle of any kind, and is further subject to an abatement order as described in Subsection C, may be removed or abated by the Mayor or his designee by towing and impoundment in the same or similar manner as vehicles towed and impounded pursuant to § 315-12 of this Code.
Nothing in this article shall be construed to prohibit or prevent the Town from pursuing or obtaining any other form of legal relief or abatement available under the law, including but not limited to injunctive or declaratory relief in a court of competent jurisdiction in this state.