Caroline County, MD
 
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
The Department shall make routine inspections of public roads, shoulders, easements, rights-of-way and drainages of the County and shall report and take corrective action in response to any obstructions, damages, and/or unsafe conditions. The Department shall be guided by generally accepted road and safety standards in determining that an obstruction, damage, unsafe condition, or discharge exists.
(1) 
Obstructions. No person shall deliberately place, maintain or cause an obstruction of a public road, shoulder, easement, right-of-way or drainage of the County. The County has the right to remove any and all obstructions in the public road, shoulder, easement, right-of-way or drainage of a public road without prior notice.
(2) 
Damages. Any person who damages in any way any portion of a public road, shoulder, easement, right-of-way or drainage of the County shall promptly repair the damage as directed by the Department of Public Works upon notice from the Director and/or his or her designee. The notice shall describe the damage, set forth the corrective action required and the manner in and time within which the corrective action should be performed and include a statement advising the person of the right to appeal.
(3) 
Unsafe condition. Any person who creates any unsafe condition within any portion of a public road, shoulder, easement, right-of-way or drainage of the County shall promptly correct the unsafe condition as directed by the Department of Public Works upon notice from the Director and/or his or her designee.
(4) 
Discharge. No person shall engage in a deliberate act that results in the discharge of stormwater, wastewater, sewerage, sump pump outflow, or other discharges into, upon, or over any County road that threatens the structure of the road or impedes safe travel on the road. Any person creating or allowing such a discharge shall promptly abate the discharge as directed by the Department of Public Works upon notice from the Director and/or his or her designee. The notice shall describe the discharge, set forth the corrective action required and the manner in and time within which the corrective action should be performed and include a statement advising the person of the right to appeal. An individual shall not be held responsible for drainage damage which occurs during a declared state of emergency or which occurs despite compliance with Chapter 158 of this Code.
B. 
The Director shall serve formal notice required by this section in accordance with Chapter 92 of the Code. Time requirements in this Article shall be counted from the date of notice.
C. 
Nothing in this Article shall be interpreted to read that the County is asserting any rights of condemnation of real property. Grain and vegetable crops and fruit crops not grown on trees, which are grown on adjacent lands in accordance with best management practices, shall not be determined to be depriving the public of safe access and transit nor adversely affecting public safety.
In the event a person fails to remove obstructions, repair damages, correct unsafe conditions or stop discharges from, on, over or to County roads or rights-of-way within the timeframe required by Chapter 92 of the Code, the Director and/or his or her designee shall be authorized to remove the obstructions, repair the damages, correct the unsafe conditions or abate the discharge. The cost of any such actions shall be billed to the responsible persons. The Director and/or County Attorney also shall be authorized to issue civil citations for violations of this Article.
If the person so notified and charged fails to pay the cost of removal and/or repair within the timeframe required by Chapter 92 of the Code and the person is the owner of property within Caroline County, Maryland, the Director shall certify to the County Comptroller of Caroline County the name of the owner of the property and the cost of the removal and/or repair, together with overhead and administrative expenses. This total amount shall be levied, collected and enforced in the same manner as County real property taxes and shall have the same priority rights, bear the same interest and penalties and shall constitute a lien on the real property so assessed and be treated the same as County real property taxes.
A. 
Appeal. A person aggrieved by the terms and conditions of a notice and/or citation issued pursuant to this Article may apply to the County Commissioners for a hearing and shall be given the opportunity to be heard. At the hearing the Commissioners may revise, alter, affirm or rescind the terms and conditions of the notice and/or citation.
B. 
Hearing. A person who desires a hearing under this section shall notify the County Chief of Staff, in writing, of his or her desire for a hearing within 15 calendar days from the date upon which he or she receives a notice or citation.
C. 
Stay. Upon receipt of a written request for a hearing, the County shall refrain from taking any action which would otherwise be authorized under this Article. A person who requests a hearing may not be charged for any repair, removal, improvement, alteration or other work until after a hearing and then only if, in the opinion of the County Commissioners, the charges are justified under the circumstances.
D. 
Finding. Upon a finding by the County Commissioners that charges are justified under the circumstances, a person shall be provided 60 calendar days from the date of the finding within which to pay the charges. On application to the County, the County may provide for payment of charges by installment payments.
E. 
Failure to pay. If a person fails to pay charges which have been found to be justified within 60 calendar days from the date of the finding and if the person is the owner of property within Caroline County, Maryland, the Director shall certify to the County Comptroller of Caroline County the name of the owner of the property and the cost of the removal or repair of the obstruction, together with overhead and administrative expenses including the cost of enforcement. This total amount shall be levied, collected and enforced in the same manner as County real property taxes and shall have the same priority rights, bear the same interest and penalties and shall constitute a lien on the real property so assessed and shall be treated the same as County real property taxes.