Starke County Commissioners Approve Second Reading on Environmental Public Nuisances Ordinance

The Starke County Commissioners passed an ordinance on second reading that outlines the rules, regulations and violations pertaining to environmental public nuisances.

The proposed ordinance states that if a private property owner is found to have any accumulation of trash, junk, debris, building materials, chemicals, tires, inoperable vehicles or equipment that is deemed a public nuisance may be in violation of the ordinance.  The same goes for an owner’s lack of action to tend to standing or parking of vehicles that are deemed a public nuisance.

Complaints will be investigated by the enforcement officer who will make a determination to be presented to the owner who has a minimum of 10 days to take care of the violation.  The officer will inspect the area and if it is found to be successfully abated, no further action is required.  However, the officer may include statement that future occurrences may prompt action.

If the owner is not successful in complying with clean-up requests, the county may take action to clear the property with the homeowner incurring the cost of clean-up.

Further, if fines are assessed, the first violation could be no more than $2,500 and no more than $7,500 for a second or subsequent violation of the ordinance.

The private property owner may object to the violation to be heard before the Starke County Plan Commission.

A public hearing will be held prior to the adoption of this ordinance.