Some violations of City ordinances are criminal violations, which are punished through the criminal justice system (see Criminal Prosecution). The nuisance ordinance includes provisions that allow the City to ensure that the problem is corrected.
The nuisance ordinance permits the City to abate a wide variety of property nuisances, including any thing or condition on a property which is a fire hazard, a violation of the Fire Code, a health hazard, a violation of any health or sanitation law, or any other type of hazard.
Reporting a Nuisance
To notify the City about a nuisance, call the DSI - Complaint Office at (651) 266-8989, who will then contact the correct department.
Once a department is notified of a nuisance, and it is determined that the complaint is in violation of the ordinance, that department follows through until the problem is taken care of. The department sends an inspector to look at the problem and, if a violation exists, orders are issued to the property owner to deal with the problem. The department's order includes a notice of possible penalties for noncompliance.
If the owner does not comply, the City will either issue a citation, or will perform a summary abatement of the nuisance. The City will reinspect the problem until it is solved. If it is solved, the file is closed until and unless the City is notified of another problem.
You can learn whether an appeal has been filed by calling the department that conducted the inspection (DSI, the City Clerk, or Board of Zoning Appeals). To find out where an appeal is being heard, call the Legislative Hearing Officer at (651) 266-8575.
Filing an Appeal
The owner may appeal if he or she does not agree with the order in the following situations:
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- Code violation orders may be appealed to the Legislative Hearing Officer, who can support or reverse the inspector's order, subject to City Council review.
- Summary abatement orders and assessments can be appealed to the Legislative Hearing Officer, subject to City Council review.
- Newsracks, License, and Pedestrian Safety Crossing Area appeals are made to the Legislative Hearing Officer.
- Zoning violation orders can be appealed to the Board of Zoning Appeals, and their decisions can be appealed to the City Council.