Urbana, OH, renews efforts for adherence to its vacant property registration ordinance

Urbana, OH: The City has renewed its efforts in 2019 to get its vacant property registration ordinance progressing forward, and with owners responding; after the ordinance was passed in Oct. 2017 and early steps taken in 2018, for its application.

The ordinance stipulates owners of properties have either 90 days from time of vacancy, or 30 days from time of notification of a property qualifying as “vacant,” to register and provide current contact information for the property, with the City.

The City planned to send letters out to owners of vacant properties in late March 2019, in a statement from Zoning Officer Adam Moore in the Daily Caller; which means (per the ordinance) the 30-day window for owner’s receiving letters of notice to complete registration is near to expiration.

The fee for registration for a vacant property is $200 for the first, and each subsequent year will double the previous year's fee amount, capping at the 5-year vacancy fee of $3,200 and maintaining that fee cost for all subsequent years of vacancy.

Inspections for vacant properties adhere to the following schedule:
  (a)    Vacant buildings will be subject to an exterior inspection at least twice per year to ensure the compliance with property maintenance codes.
   (b)    Vacant buildings will be subject to both an interior and an exterior inspection at the start of each registration period (new and renewal) and when a registration is terminated by the property owner.
   (c)    Vacant buildings will be subject to both an interior and an exterior inspection upon acquisition of the property by a new owner.
   (d)    Any inspection that is to take place within 30 days of a previous inspection may or may not be conducted at the discretion of the Director of Administration or his duly designated representative.

Failure to register in a timely manner, provide access for inspections, keep information up to date, or maintain the property to City Code can result in monetary penalties, as well as be found guilty of a minor misdemeanor; with each day a violation occurs constituting a separate offense.




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