Take care of your lawns, it’s the law


GALION — Here’s your chance to help make Galion a little more attractive to residents and visitors.

Actually, there are three opportunities to help.

All are pretty simple.

No. 1 — Take care of your lawn. Cut your grass and keep weeds and other vegetation under control.

That’s all you have to do.

Plus, it’s the law in Galion

Chapter 559.01 of the City Codified Ordinances outlines the requirements for the cutting of weeds and grass.

“Owners of parcels within the city limits that are three acres or less must keep weeds and grass cut and trimmed, including areas in the public right of way. ‘No owner shall permit weeds, grasses or other types of vegetation to grow or be upon such lots or lands at a height exceeding eight inches above the ground.’”

Property owners who fail to comply will be notified of the violation in writing and given five days to correct the issue. After that period if the violation still exists, the owner will be charged with a minor misdemeanor. Each day the violation continues shall be a separate offense.

When a property owner is non-compliant, the city will pay someone else to maintain the lawn and will charge the property owner. There also will be a penalty assessed equal to 25 percent of the costs and expenses incurred by the city.

In Ohio, minor misdemeanors may be punishable by a penalty of up to $150. Also, that fine can be assessed each day the violation is in effect.

This wording is directly from the city ordinance

559.01 CUTTING OF WEEDS AND GRASS REQUIRED.

(a) It is hereby determined that all weeds, grasses, and other types of vegetation growing or being upon lots or lands within the City as hereinafter described in subsection (b) at a height exceeding eight inches above the ground are a nuisance.

(b) No owner, lessee, agent, or tenant having charge of, or responsibility for, the maintenance of lots or lands of three acres or less within the City shall permit weeds, grasses or other types of vegetation to grow or be upon such lots or lands at a height exceeding eight inches above the ground.

(c) No owner, lessee, agent, or tenant having charge of, or responsibility for, the maintenance of lots or lands exceeding three acres within the City shall permit weeds, grasses, or other types of vegetation to grow or be upon the portion of such lots or lands which lies within twenty feet of a lot line adjacent to lots or lands upon which a residential or commercial building exists or lies within 100 feet of a public thoroughfare at a height of eight inches above the ground.

Provided, however, the prohibition contained in this subsection shall not apply to any parcels of land exceeding seven acres that are currently used or have been used within the last three years for agricultural purposes. As used in this section, the term “agricultural purposes” means farming; ranching; aquaculture; apiculture; horticulture; viticulture; animal husbandry, including, but not limited to, the care and raising of livestock, equine, and fur-bearing animals; poultry husbandry and the production of poultry and poultry products; dairy production; the production of field crops, tobacco, fruits, vegetables, nursery stock, ornamental shrubs, ornamental trees, flowers, sod, or mushrooms; timber; pasturage; any combination of the foregoing; the processing, drying, storage, and marketing of agricultural products when those activities are conducted in conjunction with, but are secondary to, such husbandry or production.

(d) Between March 1 and April 30 of each year, a Notice shall be published by the City in a newspaper of general circulation within the City generally describing the requirements of its citizens and landowners to cut weeds and grass.

No. 2 — If you see nuisance lawn violations in the city, you are encouraged to call the city’s Building and Zoning Department at 419-468-2642 and report the problem.

No. 3 — The city also is looking for individuals or businesses willing to take care of nuisance properties in the city. Any qualified person or business that would like to place a bid on mowing nuisance properties may submit bids to the City Building, 301 Harding Way East. The deadline to submit a bid is April 18 at 11 a.m.

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Staff report