By JB Clark
SALTILLO – The city of Saltillo will crack down on overgrown lots this summer.
The city’s Board of Aldermen voted Tuesday to give Saltillo Mayor Rex Smith the authority to call public hearings with a board vote, a move that will speed up the process of dealing with overgrown yards and lots.
Brian Grissom, building and zoning administrator for Saltillo, said he has gotten many complaints from residents who live near overgrown lots.
“We’re seeing a lot of snakes, that’s been the biggest complaint we’ve gotten so far,” he said. “The overgrown grass attracts pests and rodents and those rodents are followed by snakes.”
Property owners could face a $300 bill or up to $1,500 in the form of a tax lien if a yard is left neglected and the city has to mow.
A notice will be staked on any lot where grass reaches more than 18 inches deep and a letter will be mailed to the owner of the property.
Once the notice is posted, the owner will have 14 days to have the grass cut. On the 15th day, if the problem hasn’t been resolved, the property owner will be given the opportunity to go before the Board of Aldermen in a public hearing and explain why the grass wasn’t cut.
The board can grant an extension or vote to have the lawn taken care of by the city.
If the lawn is mowed by the city, the owner will be billed $300 for the cost of mowing the lawn. If the bill is not paid within 30 days, the property owner can have a tax lien of up to $1,500 placed against his or her property.
Grissom said many of the properties they are having trouble with are foreclosed and abandoned properties.