CODE ENFORCEMENT BOARD

§ 32.275 DEFINITIONS.

For the purpose of this subchapter, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.

CODE ENFORCEMENT BOARD. An administrative body created and acting under the authority of the Local Government Code Enforcement Board Act.

CODE ENFORCEMENT OFFICER. A metro police officer, safety officer, citation officer or other public law enforcement officer with the authority to issue a citation.

ORDINANCE. An official action of a local government body, which is a regulation of a general and permanent nature and enforceable as a local law and shall include any provision of a code of ordinances adopted by the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government Council which embodies all or part of an ordinance.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.276 CREATION AND MEMBERSHIP.

There is hereby created pursuant to KRS 65.8801 to 65.8839 within the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government, a Code Enforcement Board which shall be composed of three members, all of whom shall be residents of the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government for a period of at least one year prior to the creation of the Board and shall reside there throughout the term in office.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.277 POWERS.

(A) The Code Enforcement Board shall have the power to issue remedial orders and impose civil fines as a method of enforcing Louisville/ Jefferson County Metro Government ordinances when a violation of the ordinance has been classified as a civil offense.

(B) The Code Enforcement Board shall not have the authority to enforce any ordinance the violation of which constitutes a criminal offense under any provision of the Kentucky Revised Statutes, including specifically, any provision of the Kentucky Penal Code or any moving motor vehicle offense.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.278 APPOINTMENT OF MEMBERS; TERM OF OFFICE; REMOVAL FROM OFFICE; OATH; COMPENSATION; AND ALTERNATE MEMBERS.

(A) Members of the Code Enforcement Board shall be appointed by the Mayor of the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government, subject to the approval of the Council.

(B) The initial appointment to a three member Code Enforcement Board shall be as follows:

(1) One member appointed to a one-year term;

(2) One member appointed to a two-year term; and

(3) One member appointed to a three-year term.

All subsequent appointments shall be for a term of three years. A member may be reappointed, subject to the approval of the Council.

(C) The Mayor may appoint, subject to the approval of the Council, two alternate members to serve on the Code Enforcement Board in the absence of regular members. Alternate members shall meet all of the qualifications and shall be subject to all of the requirements that apply in regular members of the Code Enforcement Board.

(D) Any vacancy on the board shall be filled by the Mayor, subject to approval of the Council within 60 days of vacancy. If the vacancy is not filled within that time period, the remaining Code Enforcement Board members shall fill the vacancy.

(E) A code board member may be removed from office by the Mayor for misconduct, inefficiency, or willful neglect of duty. The Mayor must submit a written statement to the member and the Council setting forth the reasons for removal.

(F) All members of the Code Enforcement Board must, before entering upon the duties of their office, take the oath of office prescribed by Section 228 of the Kentucky Constitution.

(G) Members of the Code Enforcement Board may be reimbursed for actual expenses and may be compensated no greater than $100 per meeting.

(H) No member of the Code Enforcement Board may hold any elected or non-elected office, paid or unpaid, or any position of employment with the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.279 ORGANIZATION OF BOARD; MEETINGS AND QUORUM.

(A) The board shall annually elect a chair from among its members. The chairman shall be presiding officer and a full voting member of the board.

(B) The Code Enforcement Board shall meet no less than once a month and as many times a month as may be necessary to conduct the business of the board.

(C) All meetings and hearings of the Code Enforcement Board shall be held in accordance with the requirements of KRS 65.8815(5) and the Kentucky Open Meetings Act.

(D) The affirmative vote of a majority of a quorum of the board shall be necessary for any official action to be taken.

(E) Minutes shall be kept for all proceedings of the Code Enforcement Board and the vote of each member on any issue decided by the board shall be recorded in the minutes.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.280 CONFLICT OF INTEREST.

Any member of the Code Enforcement Board who has any direct or indirect financial or personal interest in any matter to be decided, shall disclose the nature of the interest and shall disqualify himself/herself from voting on the matter in which he/she has an interest and shall not be counted for purposes of establishing a quorum.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.281 JURISDICTION.

The Code Enforcement Board shall have jurisdiction to enforce and shall enforce those city ordinances and code provisions, which specifically provide for code board enforcement or which contain provisions for the imposition of civil penalties.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.282 POWERS OF THE CODE ENFORCEMENT BOARD.

The Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government Code Enforcement Board shall have the following powers and duties:

(A) To adopt rules and regulations to govern its operations and the conduct of its hearings;

(B) To conduct hearings to determine if there has been a violation of an ordinance over which it has jurisdiction;

(C) To subpoena alleged violators, witnesses and evidence to its hearings. Subpoenas issued by the Code Enforcement Board may be served by any Code Enforcement Officer;

(D) To take testimony under oath. The chairman shall have the authority to administer oaths for the purpose of taking testimony;

(E) To make findings of fact and issue orders necessary to remedy any violation of a City Ordinance or code provision, which the board is authorized to enforce;

(F) To impose civil fines, as authorized, on any person found to have violated an ordinance over which the board has jurisdiction; and

(G) To impose enforcement costs against violators.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.283 ENFORCEMENT PROCEEDINGS.

The following requirements shall govern all enforcement proceedings before the board:

(A) Enforcement proceedings before the Code Enforcement Board shall only be initiated by the issuance of a citation by a Code Enforcement Officer;

(B) When a Code Enforcement Officer, based upon personal observation or investigation, has reasonable cause to believe that a person has committed a violation of a Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government ordinance, the Officer is authorized to issue a citation to the offender. When authorized by ordinance, a Code Enforcement Officer may, in lieu of immediately issuing a citation, give notice that a violation shall be remedied within a specified period of time. Such notice shall include a statement that if the problem is not remedied, the Metro Government shall issue a citation. If the person to whom the notice given fails or refuses to remedy the violation within the time specified, the Code Enforcement Officer is authorized to issue a citation;

(C) The citation issued by the Code Enforcement Officer shall contain the following information:

(1) The date and time of issuance;

(2) The name and address of the person to whom the citation is issued;

(3) The date and time the offense was committed;

(4) The facts constituting the offense;

(5) The section of the code or the number of the ordinance violated;

(6) The name of the Code Enforcement Officer;

(7) The civil fine that will be imposed for the violation if the person does not contest the citation;

(8) The maximum civil fine that may be imposed if the person elects to contest the citation;

(9) The procedure for the person to follow in order to pay the civil fine or to contest the citation; and

(10) A statement that if the person fails to pay the civil fine set forth in the citation or contest the citation, within the time allowed, the person shall be deemed to have waived the right to a hearing before the Code Enforcement Board to contest the citation and that the determination that the violation was committed shall be final.

(D) After issuing a citation to an alleged violator, the Code Enforcement Officer shall notify the Code Enforcement Board by delivering the citation to the administrative official designated by ordinance or by the Board;

(E) The person to whom the citation is issued shall respond to the citation within seven days of the date of issuance by either paying the civil fine or requesting, in writing, a hearing before the Code Enforcement Board to contest the citation. If the person fails to respond to the citation within seven days, the person shall be deemed to have waived the right to a hearing and the determination that a violation was committed shall be considered final and the civil fine and any other remedial measures set forth in the citation shall be imposed; and

(F) If the alleged violator does not contest the citation within the time prescribed, the violation will be deemed to have been committed and the civil fine and any other remedial measures set forth in the citation shall be imposed.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003; Lou. Metro Am. Ord. No. 163-2004, approved 10-28-2004; Lou. Metro Am. Ord. No. 170-2005, approved 10-31-2005)

§ 32.284 HEARING; NOTICE; AND FINAL ORDER.

(A) When a hearing has been requested, the Code Enforcement Board shall schedule a hearing. The hearing shall be conducted within 30 days of the request, unless the requester wants or agrees to a continuance not to exceed 14 days.

(B) Not less than seven days before the date of the hearing, the Code Enforcement Board shall notify the requester of the date, time, and place of the hearing. The notice may be given by first class mail to the address listed by the requester in his or her appeal request; by personal delivery; or by leaving the notice at the person's usual place of residence with any individual residing therein who is 18 years of age or older and who is informed of the contents of the notice. However, if the whereabouts of the requester are unknown and cannot be ascertained by a Code Enforcement Officer in the exercise of reasonable diligence, the notice is properly served if copies of the notice are posted in a conspicuous place on the premises in which an alleged violation has occurred.

(C) Any person requesting a hearing before the Code Enforcement Board who fails to appear at the time and place set for the hearing shall be deemed to have waived the right to a hearing to contest the citation and the determination that a violation was committed shall be final. The Code Enforcement Board shall enter a final order determining the violation was committed and shall impose the civil fine set forth in the citation or provide orders for compliance or prohibitions as may be authorized by law. A copy of the final order shall be served upon the person guilty of the violation.

(D) All testimony shall be taken under oath and recorded. Testimony shall be taken from the Code Enforcement Officer, the alleged violator, and any witnesses to the violation offered by the Code Enforcement Officer or alleged violator. Formal rules of evidence shall not apply, but fundamental due process shall be observed and shall govern the proceedings.

(E) The Code Enforcement Board shall, based on the evidence, determine whether a violation was committed. If it determines that no violation was committed, an order dismissing the citation shall be entered. If it determines that a violation was committed, an order shall be issued upholding the citation and either imposing a fine up to the maximum authorized by this or other ordinances or requiring the offender to remedy a continuing violation, or both.

(F) Every final order of the Code Enforcement Board shall be reduced to writing, which shall include the date the order was issued. A copy shall be furnished to the person named in the citation. If the person named in the citation is not present when the final order is issued, the order shall be delivered in accordance with the procedures set forth in subsection (B) above.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003; Lou. Metro Am. Ord. No. 170-2005, approved 10-31-2005)

§ 32.285 LEGAL COUNSEL.

Each case before the Code Enforcement Board shall be presented by an attorney selected by the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government or by a Code Enforcement Officer for the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government. The Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government attorney may either be counsel to the Code Enforcement Board or may present cases before the Code Enforcement Board, but in no case serve in both capacities.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.286 APPEALS; FINAL JUDGMENT.

(A) An appeal from any final order of the Code Enforcement Board may be made to the Jefferson County District Court within 30 days of the date the order is issued. The appeal shall be initiated by the filing of a complaint and a copy of the Code Enforcement Board's order in the same manner as any civil action under the Kentucky Rules of Civil Procedure.

(B) If no appeal from a final order of the Code Enforcement Board is filed within the time period set in subsection (A) above, the Code Enforcement Board's order shall be deemed final for all purposes.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.287 ORDINANCE FINE SCHEDULE.

Violations of ordinances that are enforced by the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government Code Enforcement Board shall be subject to the civil fines set in the ordinance establishing a violation.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.288 LIEN; FINES; CHARGES AND FEES.

(A) The Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government shall possess a lien on property owned by the person found by a final non-appealable order of the Code Enforcement Board, or by a final judgment of the Court, to have committed a violation of a Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government ordinance, for all fines assessed for the violation and for all charges and fees incurred by the city in connection with the enforcement of this subchapter.

(B) The lien shall be recorded in the office of the County Clerk. The lien shall be notice to all persons from the time of its recording and shall bear interest at 18% per annum.

(C) The lien shall take precedence over all other subsequent liens, except state, county, school board, and city taxes, and may be enforced by judicial proceedings.

(D) In addition to the remedy prescribed in subsection (A), the person found to have committed the violation shall be personally responsible for the amount of all fines assessed for the violation and for all charges and fees incurred by the city in connection with the enforcement of this subchapter. The city may bring a civil action against the person and shall have the same remedies as provided for the recovery of a debt.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003; Lou. Metro Am. Ord. No. 163-2004, approved 10-28-2004)

§ 32.289 ADDITIONAL JURISDICTION OF CODE ENFORCEMENT BOARD.

(A) The Code Enforcement Board shall also have jurisdiction to hear appeals from booking fees imposed by Metro Government Corrections pursuant to KRS 441.265. When exercising this jurisdiction, the Code Enforcement Board is the final decision maker. The Board does not have subpoena power and it may not impose administrative costs on an appellant. The only issue before the Board will be whether the fee was appropriately imposed on the appellant.

(B) The Code Enforcement Board may adopt rules, procedures and appellate time frames to address this additional responsibility.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.290 SEVERABILITY.

The provisions of this subchapter shall be considered severable. If any provision of this subchapter is found to be invalid, that finding shall not necessarily invalidate the entire subchapter.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 229-2003, approved 12-19-2003)

§ 32.291 IMMEDIATE ACTION.

Nothing in this subchapter shall prohibit the Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government from taking immediate action to remedy a violation of its ordinances when there is reason to believe that the violation presents a serious threat to the public health, safety and welfare, or if in the absence of immediate action, the effects of the violation will be irreparable or irreversible.

(Lou. Metro Ord. No. 163-2004, approved 10-28-2004)