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September 3, 2013

Break from city nuisance code enforcement coming to an end

DUNCAN — Those with yards in Duncan have been given a break from hard code enforcement during the summer because of rapid vegetation growth, but that soon will not be the case.

The City of Duncan Code Enforcement Department has announced in a press release it will begin to increase enforcement efforts related to several nuisance ordinances in the city Code of Ordinance. Most of the selected codes relate to keeping streets and sidewalks clean of vegetation and trash.

“It’s really going to start picking up in a couple of weeks,” said Dana Schoening, director of community development for the City of Duncan. “These particular ordinances have been reviewed as a result of recent issues identified where grass and vegetation continues to overhang street curbs and accumulate in street gutters.”

Three codes the department will be focusing on are Section 8-107: Responsibility to trim trees and vegetation, Section 14-107: Unlawful to deposit trash upon streets or sidewalks, and Section 14-120: Duty to keep sidewalk and gutter clean. Enforcing these codes will help the city with both appearance and preventing street damage, the release said.

“On streets without curbs, grass and vegetation growth has grown into the pavement and has lifted pavement in many places, deteriorating the street,” Schoening said in the release.

“When grass and vegetation accumulates in the street, it can damage the street and have a negative effect on the overall aesthetics and image of the City of Duncan.”

The intended goal for increased enforcement of the ordinances is to eliminate the negative effects caused by overgrown vegetation and grass. As a first step, violators will receive a door hanger on their door as a reminder to property owners and occupants of their responsibility in complying with the codes.

“If compliance becomes an issue, the Code Enforcement Department will go to the extent of official public notification of violations,” said Schoening in the release.

“(The department) will begin issuing contracts to private contractors to remove grass and vegetation growth over the curbs, in the street pavement and accumulation in the street gutters.”

Costs of these types of removal will be passed to the property owner. Citations may also be issued if the property is not taken care of by the owner or occupant. Compliance of the codes is a property owner and occupant responsibility, Schoening said.

“The city is seeking to partner with the citizens to provide for good functioning streets and improved community image by taking care of property maintenance at an appropriate level,” he said.

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Deral Knight of Rockport, Texas, won the Best In Show Award for his 1959 Chevy Corvette, which he first bought for his wife and then later restored to its current mint condition. Knight is a former Duncan resident.

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