City of Rochester, NY
Monroe County
By using eCode360 you agree to be legally bound by the Terms of Use. If you do not agree to the Terms of Use, please do not use eCode360.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Rochester City Council 9-8-1964; amended in its entirety 9-21-1993 by Ord. No. 93-314. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Board of Review — See Ch. 4.
Grievance procedure — See Ch. 9.
Building code — See Ch. 39.
Building construction: plumbing — See Ch. 40.
Demolition regulations — See Ch. 47A.
Fire prevention code — See Ch. 54.
Health and sanitation — See Ch. 59.
Littering — See Ch. 69.
Care of property — See Ch. 89.
Zoning — See Ch. 120.
[Amended 11-19-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-354]
Notwithstanding the availability of other remedies for enforcement of the provisions contained in the Property Conservation Code, Building Code, Plumbing Code, Fire Prevention Code, Zoning Code, Health Ordinance and Anti-Litter Ordinance of the City of Rochester,[1] and in any other state or local law, ordinance or regulation enforced by the Department, the following remedies and enforcement procedures as set forth in this chapter are made available to enforce the provisions of the aforesaid enumerated codes and laws and shall be deemed cumulative to other enforcement procedures and remedies.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Chs. 90, 39, 40, 54, 120, 59 and 69, respectively.
[Amended 11-19-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-355; 7-15-2008 by Ord. No. 2008-254; 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179]
A. 
Notwithstanding the powers of other City officials to enforce Code provisions, the Commissioner of Neighborhood and Business Development shall enforce the Refuse and Sanitation Codes, Streets Code, Property Conservation Code, Building Code, Plumbing Code, Electrical Code, Fire Prevention Code, Zoning Code, Health Ordinance and Anti-Litter Ordinance of the City of Rochester and any other state or local law, ordinance, rule or regulation enforced by the Department.
B. 
The Commissioner of Neighborhood and Business Development, in enforcing the provisions of the Refuse and Sanitation Codes, Streets Code, Property Conservation Code, Building Code, Plumbing Code, Electrical Code, Fire Prevention Code, Zoning Code, Health Ordinance and Anti-Litter Ordinance of the City of Rochester and any other state or local law, ordinance, rule or regulation enforced by the Department, shall have the power to enter, examine and inspect, or cause to be examined and inspected, and to investigate, or cause to be investigated, vacant lots, yards, courts and buildings in the City to determine which are in violation of any state or local law, ordinance, rule or regulation and/or threaten the safety, health, comfort and general welfare of the inhabitants of the City, and to seek warrants where such are constitutionally required.
C. 
The Commissioner of Neighborhood and Business Development may enforce violations in City Court or by bringing an action or special proceeding for injunctive relief in Supreme Court, and violations may be referred to the Municipal Code Violations Bureau as authorized in the Municipal Code.
[Amended 1-18-2000 by Ord. No. 2000-25; 11-19-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-355]
A. 
Any person who, having been served with a notice and order to remove any violation of either the Property Conservation Code, Building Code, Plumbing Code, Fire Prevention Code, Zoning Code, Health Ordinance or Anti-Litter Ordinance of the City of Rochester,[1] or any nuisance, fails to comply therewith within the time fixed by the Department, or who violates a section of the Municipal Code for which an immediate ticket may be given, shall:
(1) 
For violations returnable in City Court, be guilty of an offense, punishable, for each offense, by a fine not exceeding $500 or by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 15 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment; or
(2) 
For violations returnable in the Municipal Code Violations Bureau, the penalties shall be as set forth in § 13A-11 of the Municipal Code. Referral to the Municipal Code Violations Bureau shall not preclude subsequent referral of unabated violations to either City Court or State Supreme Court and, in said instances, the courts shall have concurrent jurisdiction.
[Amended 2-13-2007 by Ord. No. 2007-55]
Every day of such violation may be held to constitute a separate offense.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Chs. 90, 39, 40, 54, 120, 59 and 69, respectively.
B. 
An action or special proceeding may be brought in either City Court or State Supreme Court seeking the Court’s equity jurisdiction to enjoin and abate the continued violation of the Municipal Code and the costs of said proceeding.
[Amended 2-13-2007 by Ord. No. 2007-55]
C. 
Enforcement may be pursued against an owner, occupant, mortgagee or vendee in possession, operator, assignee of rents, receiver, executor, trustee, lessee, agent or any other person, firm or corporation directly or indirectly in control of the premises or part thereof, or any person, regardless of said person's relationship to the property, found to be violating any of the codes enforced under this chapter.
A. 
The term "nuisance" shall be held to embrace whatever is dangerous to human life or detrimental to health or welfare and shall include but not be limited to:
(1) 
A public nuisance as known at common law, statutory law and in equity jurisprudence.
(2) 
A building, structure, one-family dwelling, two-family dwelling, multiple dwelling, rooming house, commercial building, industrial building, storage building or vacant area, or any combination thereof, that is in violation of either the Property Conservation Code, Building Code, Plumbing Code, Fire Prevention Code, Zoning Code, Health Ordinance or Anti-Litter Ordinance of the City of Rochester or in violation of any other state or local law, ordinance or regulation.
[Amended 11-19-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-354]
(3) 
A building or structure which the Commissioner determines to be abandoned according to the following criteria:
[Amended 11-19-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-355; 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179]
(a) 
The building or structure must be unoccupied and, in addition, one or more of the following criteria applies:
[1] 
There are unpaid real property taxes, water or Pure Waters charges against the property.
[2] 
Junk or debris has accumulated on the property or in the building or structure.
[3] 
The building or structure has unsecured openings.
[4] 
There is evidence of rodent infestation.
B. 
All such nuisances are hereby declared to be unlawful.
[Amended 1-18-2000 by Ord. No. 2000-25; 6-18-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-179; 11-19-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-355]
A. 
When nuisance or violation is declared.
[Amended 7-15-2008 by Ord. No. 2008-254; 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179]
(1) 
Whenever the Department shall declare that a building or vacant area is a nuisance or is in violation of either the Property Conservation Code, Building Code, Plumbing Code, Fire Prevention Code, Zoning Code, Health Ordinance or Anti-Litter Ordinance of the City[1]  or of any other state or local law, ordinance or regulation enforced by NSC or the Department, it shall serve either:
(a) 
A notice and order in the manner prescribed by § 52-6 of this chapter, reciting the facts constituting such nuisance or violation, specifying in what respect the building or vacant area is a nuisance or in violation of either the Property Conservation Code, Building Code, Plumbing Code, Fire Prevention Code, Zoning Code, Health Ordinance or Anti-Litter Ordinance of the City or of any other state or local law, ordinance or regulation enforced by the Department and requiring the owner to remove such nuisance or violation within a specified period for compliance after service of such notice and order; or
(b) 
A ticket for such violation. A ticket shall have the same effect as a notice and order requiring immediate abatement of a nuisance or violation, in addition to subjecting the respondent to penalties for the violation.
Such notice and order or ticket shall provide that, if the owner fails to remove such nuisance or violation within such period for compliance so prescribed, the Department may remove or cause the removal of such nuisance or violation by cleansing, repairing or vacating or by taking such other corrective action deemed necessary and shall notify the owner and, in the case where the Department may cause the vacating of a building, all tenants, of the right to a meeting or hearing as hereinafter provided. Notwithstanding the requirements for a notice and order established in this section and elsewhere in this Municipal Code, immediate tickets may be issued for violations of the Fire Prevention Code which pose an immediate health or life safety threat as determined by the Fire Marshal, violations of the Property Conservation Code, Building Code, Plumbing Code or Zoning Code which pose an immediate health or life safety threat as determined by the Commissioner, or commercial activities conducted in violation of the Zoning Code, except that immediate tickets shall not be issued for sales of personal used items being conducted in accordance with the provisions of § 96-7A of the Municipal Code, or for the sale of homemade food or drinks at a residence by the owner or occupant thereof, provided that a commercial vending unit may not be used and the aggregate size of any table or tables or other display, preparation and storage areas shall not exceed four feet wide by eight feet long, or for sales by licensed solicitors at their own residences located on a street designated as a festival site, during the period of a festival.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Chs. 90, 39, 40, 54, 120, 59 and 69, respectively.
(2) 
Whenever the Commissioner causes a notice and order to be issued pursuant to this chapter requiring the owner to remedy existing nuisances or violations, the owner may request a meeting with the Commissioner or his or her designee. The meeting shall be held prior to the expiration of the period for compliance so prescribed. When a vacate order has been issued, the procedures set forth in § 52-5A(3) shall apply.
[Amended 12-15-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-409]
(3) 
Whenever the Commissioner has determined that an emergency exists and causes a vacate order to be issued pursuant to this chapter, the owner and/or the tenant may request a hearing before the Commissioner or his or her designee. The hearing shall be held within three business days of receiving a written demand for it. The rules of evidence prevailing in courts of record shall not be controlling in the hearings held pursuant to this chapter.
B. 
When nuisance or violation is not removed.
[Amended 7-15-2008 by Ord. No. 2008-254; 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179]
(1) 
If such nuisance or violation is not removed by the owner within the time prescribed after service of such notice and order or ticket, the Department may proceed with the removal of such nuisance or violation as provided in the notice and order or ticket or may cause the same to be done. Removal of a violation after service of a ticket shall not absolve the respondent of a violation that existed at or before the time the ticket was issued.
(2) 
If the owner or tenant or violator interferes in any way with or causes delay to the taking of corrective action by the City, the Department may commence a special proceeding or action in Rochester City Court or State Supreme Court to restrain such interference or delay. In addition to the owner, where the Department will cause such building to be vacated and sealed, all tenants shall be necessary parties to such proceeding or action.
[Amended 3-22-2011 by Ord. No. 2011-59]
C. 
When removal of nuisance or violation ordered.
(1) 
If the Department proceeds to execute a notice and order issued by it or by the court for the removal of a nuisance or violation, the Department may let contracts therefor. The cost of executing such notice and order or orders, whether or not carried out pursuant to court order, may be met from any appropriations made therefor or, if such appropriation has not been made or is insufficient, from the proceeds of the sale of obligations pursuant to the Local Finance Law. The Department shall keep a record of such notices and orders, together with the acts done and items of cost incurred in their execution.
[Amended 7-15-2008 by Ord. No. 2008-254; 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179; 12-15-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-409]
(2) 
The cost of executing such notice and order or orders for the removal of a nuisance or violation shall be assessed to the owner in the manner prescribed by the Charter and ordinances of the City of Rochester.
(3) 
Notwithstanding the foregoing and in addition to any other remedy available, the City may maintain an action against the owner to recover the cost of executing such notice and order or orders.
(4) 
The term "owner," as used in this section, shall include any person, firm or corporation directly or indirectly in control of a building or vacant area or part thereof.
D. 
When an immediate ticket is authorized to be issued for a violation, the ticket shall have the same effect as a notice and order requiring immediate abatement of a nuisance or violation, in addition to subjecting the respondent to penalties for the violation, and the owner and/or tenant or violator shall have all rights that are provided when a notice and order is issued and the City shall have all remedies that are provided when a notice and order is issued. Every day of such violation may be held to constitute a separate offense for which additional tickets may be issued and for which penalties shall increase. Removal of a violation after service of a ticket shall not absolve the respondent of a violation that existed at or before the time the ticket was issued.
[Amended 11-19-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-355; 7-15-2008 by Ord. No. 2008-254; 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179]
It shall be sufficient service of a notice and order issued by the Department if a copy thereof is served personally in accordance with the provisions of the Civil Practice Law and Rules, or sent by first class mail to either the person's tax mailing address, if the violation relates to a property or building and the owner is the person to be served, or otherwise to the person's last known address, or left with an agent or a person of suitable age and discretion at the place of violation or tax mailing address or last known address.
The provisions of this chapter shall not be deemed to modify or otherwise affect or be in substitution for any provision of any law or other provisions of the Municipal Code of the City of Rochester but shall be cumulative thereto.
Should any section, paragraph, sentence, clause or phrase in this chapter be declared unconstitutional or invalid for any reason, the remainder of the chapter shall not be affected thereby and shall remain in full force and effect, and to this end the provisions of this chapter are declared to be severable.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
COMMISSIONER
The Commissioner of Neighborhood and Business Development of the City of Rochester or his or her legally designated representative.
[Amended 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179]
DEPARTMENT
The Department of Neighborhood and Business Development of the City of Rochester.[1]
[Amended 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179]
EMERGENCY
The condition when a building or structure is an imminent danger to life, health or safety as a result of structural instability, fire or any other dangerous or hazardous situation or as a result of substantial violation of any code, ordinance or regulation enforced by the Department.[2]
[1]
Editor's Note: The former definition of "Director," added 11-19-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-355, as amended, which immediately followed this definition, was repealed 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179
[2]
Editor's Note: The former definition of "NET," added 11-19-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-355 and which immediately followed this definition, was repealed 7-15-2008 by Ord. No. 2008-254. The former definition of "NSC," added 7-15-2008 by Ord. No. 2008-254, which immediately followed the definition of "NET," was repealed 6-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-179.