The City of Barberton is a wonderful place to live, run a business, and spend time outside. I do not think that anyone could deny my previous statement however there are issues in our neighborhoods that must be taken more seriously.
According to the oxford dictionary, a nuisance is defined as “a person, thing, or circumstance causing inconvenience or annoyance.”.
Nuisances within our city bring down home values, stress neighborhoods, lower the quality of life, and even in two recent cases, caused residents to move out of the City of Barberton. They are not welcome here but somehow they seem to be tolerated. After investigating the current process, I have determined our process of handling troublesome areas comes with our hands being tied or a lack of law to follow through.
On Oct 11, 2021, I presented and motioned for a simple proposal to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of handling nuisance properties by adjusting how nuisances are calculated. This is a very simple yet effective change to the law and will provide more “teeth” when holding nuisances properties accountable.
Why Is This Important?
Currently, properties that have more than 3 qualifying violations/calls to them within a calendar year can be cited as a nuisance. Once this happens, the City can start addressing the issue appropriately. This can be a problem when a property is a nuisance year-round and then on January 1 any previous nuisance violations become null and void leaving the City to start over and drop all progress to address the nuisance.
An example would be a nuisance to the neighborhood having 3 qualifying incidents as a nuisance and the city is finally able to do something about it, then on Jan 1, the 3 qualifying incidents are no longer eligible due to the way the law is written. The calls reset on Jan 1 and the City and neighborhood must wait even longer to handle the issue.
What I Have Proposed
I proposed to use a true and accurate 365 days from the earliest qualifying nuisance incident.
An example would be if a nuisance report is run on 1234 Applewood Dr on Oct 12, 2021, the city can then use Oct 12, 2019, as the first qualifying day to calculate reports regardless of the calendar year.
We have to start taking the health of our neighborhoods more seriously and we have to provide the proper tools to do so. This proposal is a perfect example of common sense, no bacon added, change that makes the process more effective.
The legislation has been called to the floor at this time and will be read for the full 3 readings and called without an emergency.
I appreciate any and all feedback or thoughts about the proposal.