April showers bring on the weeds

Dandelions

Dandelions

If the weeds in your yard are out of control, don’t be surprised if you receive a warning letter from the Lovell Police Dept. asking you to clean up your yard. It’s the law in Lovell that property owners and residents must control weeds on their property, and the Lovell Police Department is already gently reminding residents of their responsibility to comply by serving written notice to those who don’t.  Lovell Police Chief Nick Lewis said most comply when they receive the 14-day warning notice. The few who don’t pay the price of a costly citation.

The town’s weed and junk ordinance, which is numbered 675, states that “It shall be the duty of every person, whether owner, lessee or renter of any vacant lot, building or premises, drive-ins, dwelling houses, apartments, tenements or other establishments at all times to maintain their premises including the alley adjacent to said premises and including areas between the curb and property line in a clean, orderly condition, free of any unsightly growth of weeds.”

Lovell Police Chief Nick Lewis said awareness on the part of community members regarding the ordinance has more people asking him and his officers to look at certain properties that are not in compliance.

“This has been a very wet spring and now that the hot weather is here, people need to especially stay on top of weeds or they will quickly get out of control,” said Lewis.

Though most comply, he said some properties have had recurring issues over weeds getting too high and their lot being somewhat disorderly. A number of warning letters have already been issued, in many cases to repeat offenders.

If a property is reported as being unsightly, a police officer will personally verify the complaint, then deliver a written letter to the person residing at the address asking them to comply with the ordinance. In cases where the property is vacant, a notice is delivered to the owner by certified mail. If the party served does not comply within 14 days, a citation is issued and they must answer to a judge. According to Lewis, most people comply and very few citations have been written. Lewis said quite a few warning letters have been issued over the past few weeks and, so far, most have complied.

By Patti Carpenter

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