[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Brutus 12-11-2006 by L.L. No. 5-2006; amended in its entirety 7-8-2013 by L.L. No. 2-2013. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
Recycling — See Ch. 102.
The purpose of this chapter shall be to protect and promote the health, safety and welfare of the people of the Town of Brutus insofar as they are affected by the occupancy and maintenance of structures, equipment and exterior property and to prevent the gradual encroachment of blight, deterioration, unsightliness and property devaluation. All residential and nonresidential structures and premises within the Town of Brutus, whether improved or vacant, shall be maintained in conformity with the requirements, prohibitions and storage regulation provisions of this chapter.
For the purposes of this chapter, the following words, phrases and terms and their derivations shall have the meanings given herein. When not inconsistent with the context, words used in the present tense include the future, words used in the plural number include the singular, words used in the singular number include the plural and words in the masculine include the feminine. The word "shall" is always mandatory and not merely directory.
- ABANDONED AUTOMOBILES
- A motor vehicle, as defined herein, no longer in condition for use for which it was intended.
- AUTHORIZED PRIVATE RECEPTACLE
- A litter storage and collection receptacle of steel, aluminum or plastic of ten- to thirty-gallons capacity with tight cover, or larger steel container with closed lid.
- Uncultivated woody shrubs and immature trees.
- Putrescible animal and vegetable wastes resulting from handling, preparation, cooking and consumption of food.
- Herbaceous ornamental plants intended to be periodically cut close to the ground for the establishment of a lawn or ground covering. Grass may also be used for ground covering or the establishment of drainage swales, flood routes or water detention or retention basins.
- Garbage, refuse and rubbish, as defined herein, and all other waste materials which, if thrown or deposited as herein prohibited, tends to create a danger to public health, safety and welfare and tends to create blight.
- MOTOR VEHICLE
- The term "motor vehicle" includes all vehicles as defined by NYS Vehicle and Traffic Law § 125. The term "motor vehicle" shall also include all-terrain vehicles as defined by NYS Vehicle and Traffic Law § 2281 and snowmobiles as defined by NYS Vehicle and Traffic Law § 2221.
- NUISANCE MATERIALS
- Materials and objects that are not waste and are not considered garbage, litter, refuse or rubbish under this chapter but which nevertheless pose a nuisance, blight or danger to public health, safety or welfare by virtue of their accumulation or scattering in publicly visible exterior locations such as lawns and porches for extended periods of time, i.e., more than 30 days. Nuisance materials may include, but are not limited to, such items as furniture, children’s or pet’s toys, cookware, building materials (in the absence of an active building permit), appliances and clothing/fabric.
- A park, playground, recreation center or any other public area in the Town, owned by the Town and devoted to active or passive recreation.
- Any person, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company or organization of any kind.
- PRIVATE PREMISES
- Any house, building or other structure not owned or operated by the Town, whether inhabited or temporarily or continuously uninhabited or temporarily or continuously uninhabited or vacant, including any yard, ground, parking lot, walk, driveway, porch steps, vestibule or mailbox belonging or appurtenant to such house, building or other structure.
- PUBLIC PLACE
- Any and all streets, highway rights-of-way, sidewalks or other public ways and any and all public or quasi-public parks, spaces, grounds and buildings, including school grounds.
- All putrescible and nonputrescible solid waste except body waste, including garbage; rubbish; ashes, incinerator residue; street cleanings; offal, dead animals; abandoned automobiles and any parts thereof; agricultural wastes, excluding usable agricultural equipment; commercial wastes; industrial wastes and construction and demolition debris, including commercial and industrial equipment having no value other than scrap metal. Also, unused and/or abandoned mobile homes and recreation vehicles with accessories.
- Nonputrescible and solid wastes consisting of both combustible and noncombustible wastes, such as but not limited to paper wrappings, cardboard, tin cans, wood, glass, bedding and crockery.
- The Town of Brutus.
- Wild, useless, poisonous or noxious and generally undesirable plants growing in random and inappropriate locations.
Litter and/or nuisance materials in public places; placement in receptacles.
No person shall throw or deposit litter and/or nuisance materials in or upon any street, highway right-of-way or other public place within the Town, except in public receptacles or in authorized private receptacles for collection. No person shall throw or deposit litter and/or nuisance materials in any private receptacle which he does not own without the consent of the owner thereof.
Persons placing litter and/or nuisance materials in public receptacles or in authorized private receptacles shall do so in such a manner as to prevent it from being carried or deposited by the elements upon any street, sidewalk or other public place upon private property.
No person shall sweep into or deposit in any gutter, street, highway right-of-way or other public place within the Town the accumulation of litter and/or nuisance materials from any building or lot or from any public or private sidewalk or driveway.
No person shall sweep into, throw, deposit or cause to be deposited in any gutter, street, highway right-of-way or other public place within the Town any accumulation of dirt, mud, stone or combination thereof. The owner of the property, the lessee of property and, as the case may be, the operator of any business thereon, including the business of building construction, shall take all steps necessary to prevent dirt, mud and stone from being deposited in any gutter, street, highway right-of-way or other public place by any person, vehicle or natural means such as but not limited to erosion and runoff from said property. Nothing contained in this subsection shall be construed as prohibiting the use in a reasonable manner of sand or stone for the purpose of reducing the hazard of, or providing traction on, snow, ice or sleet.
Litter and/or nuisance materials from vehicles.
No person shall throw or deposit litter and/or nuisance materials from any vehicle upon any street or other public place within the Town or upon private property.
No person shall drive or move any truck or other vehicle within the Town unless such vehicle is so constructed or loaded as to prevent any load, contents or litter and/or nuisance materials from being blown or deposited upon any street or other public place or private property.
Litter and/or nuisance materials in parks, rivers and streams.
No person shall throw or deposit litter and/or nuisance materials in any park within the Town except in public receptacles and in such a manner that the litter and/or nuisance materials will be prevented from being carried or deposited by the elements upon any part of the park or upon any street or other public or private place. Where public receptacles are not provided, all such litter and/or nuisance materials shall be carried away from the park by the person responsible for its presence and properly disposed of elsewhere as provided herein.
No person shall throw or deposit litter and/or nuisance materials in any pond, river, stream or any other body of water in a park or elsewhere within the Town.
Litter and/or nuisance materials on private property.
No person shall throw or deposit litter and/or nuisance materials on any private property within the Town, whether owned by such person or not and whether occupied or vacant, except that the owner or person in control of private property may maintain authorized private receptacles for collection in such a manner that litter and/or nuisance materials will be prevented from being carried or deposited by the elements upon any street, highway right-of-way, sidewalk or other public place or upon private property.
No person, as owner, occupant, lessee or agent, or in any capacity, shall store, deposit, place, maintain or cause or permit to be stored, deposited, placed or maintained outdoors on any private property, including but not limited to mobile home parks within the Town, any abandoned, junked, discarded, wholly or partially dismantled, unlicensed or unregistered motor vehicle, any abandoned, discarded, wholly or partially dismantled mobile homes, rubbish or debris upon any private property within the Town. This chapter shall not apply to rubbish or debris temporarily stored or placed in a container for collection or disposal.
Brush, grass and weed control.
The owner or occupant of property shall ensure that all brush, grass and/or weeds are cut or trimmed to avoid the development of places for the accumulation of blowing litter, dumping of litter or nuisance materials, rodent harborage or infestation, criminal activity or places which constitute a blighting or unsightly influence on the neighborhood. Any trees, brush or portions thereof which are hazardous to persons or property must be trimmed or removed to eliminate the hazard.
No grass or weeds in excess of 10 inches shall be allowed in residentially zoned neighborhoods. Farm properties and open or wooded lands are not required to be mowed.
Generally. No garbage or refuse shall be stored or accumulated on any premises within the Town of Brutus except as permitted by this chapter.
Accumulation of garbage and refuse except for collection. No person shall allow accumulation of garbage or refuse upon the premises owned or occupied by him, except for the purpose of being collected, and no garbage or refuse shall be burned in an open fire or in a metal basket, can or drum in any part of the Town except containers for the burning of paper, provided said burning is not in violation of any law of the State of New York or County of Cayuga.
Required number and type of receptacles. Every person who is an owner, lessee or occupant of any residence, building, premises or place of business within the Town shall provide, or cause to be provided, and at all times keep suitable and sufficient authorized private receptacles for receiving and containing garbage or refuse that may accumulate or be used upon said premises. No such receptacle shall be kept near any public place longer than may be necessary for the removal of the contents thereof. All receptacles used for the reception of garbage or refuse shall be provided with proper covers and such receptacles shall at all times be securely closed and watertight.
No person shall maintain or cause to be maintained, on any premises, a 1 1/2 cubic yard or larger receptacle for garbage or refuse, commonly known as a dumpster, unless at all times said receptacle meets the following requirements:
The receptacle owner's name must be clearly displayed on the receptacle in lettering no smaller than four inches and no longer than six inches;
The receptacle must be adequately painted in a solid color and kept free of rust;
The receptacle must display reflectors or reflectorized taped;
The area around the receptacle must be kept free of debris and spillage;
The receptacle top must be closed securely except when garbage or refuse is actually being deposited in the receptacle; and
The receptacle must be watertight and free of leakage.
The requirements of Subsections D(1)(e) and D(1)(f) above shall not apply to receptacles which are used exclusively for the following purposes:
Inspection. Whenever it shall appear that the provisions of this chapter as amended are violated, the Code Enforcement Officer shall make an inspection of the property involved and shall prepare a written report of the conditions found, which report shall be filed with the Town Board.
Notice of violation.
If conditions existing on the inspected property violate the provisions of this chapter, the Code Enforcement Officer shall serve or cause to be served a written notice of such violation, referred to hereinafter as a notice of violation, either personally or by certified mail, upon the owner or owner's agent as well as upon the lessee or occupant of said property.
Said notice shall contain substantially the following: the name of the owner, lessee or occupant of the property; the address or location of the property, the identification of the property as the same appears on the current assessment roll, a statement of the conditions on the property deemed upon inspection to be in violation of this chapter; a demand that the litter, nuisance materials, motor vehicle or abandoned, discarded, wholly or partially dismantled mobile home determined to be in violation of this chapter be removed from the property on or before 10 days after the service or mailing of such notice; a statement that a failure or refusal to comply with the provisions of this chapter and the notice given pursuant thereto within the time specified may result in a duly authorized officer, agent or employee of the Town entering upon the property and removing such litter, nuisance materials, motor vehicle or abandoned, discarded, wholly or partially dismantled mobile home and causing the same to be disposed of or otherwise destroyed, and that the cost and expense of such removal and disposal or destruction shall be assessed against the described property and shall constitute a lien thereon to be collected as provided by law.
Said notice shall also contain the date, time, and location at which the Town Board will conduct a public hearing to determine whether the conditions upon the subject property constitute a public nuisance. Said notice shall state that the property owner, his/her agent, lessee or occupant is entitled to be heard at such hearing and present evidence or testimony. The date of such public hearing must be at least 10 days after service or mailing of the notice of violation. Notice of the public hearing shall be published in a paper of general circulation in the Town at least five days prior to the date of the public hearing.
Nothing contained herein shall require notice as a prerequisite to the issuance of a summons or appearance ticket for a violation of any of the provisions of this chapter.
Second inspection and report. On or before the date of the public hearing and prior to commencement of the public hearing the Code Enforcement Officer shall conduct a second inspection of the property and file a written report of the conditions deemed in violation of this chapter found thereon with the Town Board. Such inspection shall be conducted as close to the date of the public hearing as practicable.
Declaration of public nuisance and remediation.
At the close of the public hearing, the Town Board may determine that the conditions upon the subject property which violate this chapter constitute a public nuisance.
Upon a determination by the Town Board that conditions upon the property constitute a public nuisance, the Town Board is empowered to authorize officers, agents or employees of the Town Board to enter onto the property to remove any vehicle, abandoned, discarded, wholly or partially dismantled mobile homes, rubbish or debris stored, deposited, placed or maintained in violation of this chapter and dispose of or otherwise destroy same. Any costs and expenses incurred by the Town when acting pursuant to this chapter to abate a public nuisance shall be assessed against the property involved and shall constitute a lien thereon.
Where the full amount due the Town is not paid within 30 days after abatement of the public nuisance by the Town, then and in that case, the Town Clerk shall cause to be recorded in the Town record a sworn statement showing the cost and expense incurred for the work, the date the work was done and the location of the property on which said work was done. The recordation of such sworn statement shall constitute a lien and privilege on the property and shall remain in full force and effect for the amount due in principal and interest, plus costs of court, if any, for collection, until final payment has been made. Said costs and expenses shall be collected in the manner fixed by law for the collection of taxes, and further, shall be subject to a delinquent penalty of 10% in the event that the same is not paid in full on or before the date the tax bill upon which said charge appears becomes delinquent. Sworn statements recorded in accordance with the provisions hereof shall be prima facie evidence that all legal formalities have been complied with and that the work has been done properly and satisfactorily and shall be full notice to every person concerned that the amount of the statement, plus interest, constitutes a charge against the property designated or described in the statement and that the same is due and collectible as provided by law.
Nothing in this chapter shall prohibit a municipality from entering onto private property to remove any motor vehicle, appliance, rubbish or debris whenever there exists an imminent threat to the life or safety of persons. Municipal authority pursuant to this section may only be exercised where there is a dire necessity to protect life and safety. Any municipal action taken pursuant to this section must be reasonably calculated to alleviate or prevent the crisis condition and must be limited to those actions necessary to eliminate the emergency situation.
A property owner shall be given notice and an opportunity to be heard prior to any costs and expenses incurred pursuant to this section being placed on the property's tax bill.
Any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be punished, upon conviction in Town Justice Court, by a fine not exceeding $500 for a first offense. Conviction for a second offense, committed within five years of the first offense, is punishable by a fine not exceeding $750. Conviction for a third or subsequent offense, committed within five years of the first offense, is punishable by a fine not exceeding $1,000. Each day of continued violation of this chapter, after the initial written notice thereof, shall constitute a separate additional violation without additional subsequent notice(s) having to be provided by the Town.
Instead of or in addition to the aforementioned remedy, the Town may institute an action or proceeding, including the seeking of injunctive relief, to compel compliance with or prevent violation of this chapter.
Instead of or in addition to the aforementioned remedies, the Town may impose a civil penalty not exceeding $100 upon any person who violates any provision of this chapter or who shall omit, neglect or refuse to do any act required thereby. When a violation of any of the provisions is continuous, each day thereof shall constitute a separate and distinct violation subjecting the offender to an additional civil penalty without additional subsequent notice(s) having to be provided by the Town.
The imposition of penalties for any violation of this chapter shall not excuse the violation nor permit it to continue. The application of the above penalties or prosecution for a violation of any provision of this chapter shall not prevent the enforced removal of conditions prohibited thereby. The expenses of the Town in enforcing such removal, including legal fees, may be chargeable, in addition to the criminal and civil penalties, in accordance with § 80-5 of this chapter.
Repeat or subsequent offenses occurring within the same calendar year shall be corrected by the Town in the same manner without notice to the owner having control of the property. After initial notification, such owner having control of the property will be presumed to have been given sufficient notice of violation of this chapter for the duration of the calendar year.