City of St. Charles, MO
St. Charles County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
Cross References—As to tow trucks, §§645.170 et seq.
[R.O. 2009 §90.01; CC 1981 §18-385; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998; Ord. No. 04-223, 9-10-2004]
For the purposes of this Chapter, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.
ABANDONED, WRECKED, DISMANTLED OR INOPERATIVE VEHICLE
Any vehicle which does not possess an engine or has one (1) or more flat or missing tires or otherwise is incapable of being operated for want of a major component of the vehicle shall be deemed an abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle. Any vehicle missing significant body parts such as the hood, fender, cab, door or trunk lid may be deemed to be abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative. Any vehicle which is located on public property, on a public street or alley or on private property and which does not have lawfully affixed thereto an unexpired license plate and a current motor vehicle safety inspection certificate shall be deemed an abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle.
PRIVATE PROPERTY
Any real property within the City which is privately owned and which is not public property.
PUBLIC PROPERTY
Any street, highway, alley or alleyway, which shall include the entire width between the boundary lines of every way publicly maintained for the purpose of vehicular travel, and shall mean any other publicly-owned property or facility.
VEHICLE
A machine propelled or pushed or pulled by power other than human power designed to travel along the ground or in water by use of wheels, treads, runners or slides and transport persons or property or pull machinery and shall include, without limitation, automobiles, trucks, trailers, motorcycles, motorbikes, motor scooters, tractors, go-carts, golf carts, campers, buggy and wagons, recreational and camping trailers, boats, boats on a trailer, camper shells, cargo/enclosed trailers, race car trailers, equipment trailers, car haulers, concession/specialty trailers, motorcycle-ATV-snowmobile trailers and landscape trailers.
[R.O. 2009 §90.02; CC 1981 §18-386; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998; Ord. No. 04-223, 9-10-2004; Ord. No. 06-342, 12-20-2006]
A. 
No person shall park, store, leave or permit the parking, storing or leaving of any vehicle which is in violation of any provision of City Code or abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative, whether attended or not, upon any public or private property within the City. The presence of a vehicle in violation of City Code or an abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle on public or private property is declared a public nuisance in violation of this Chapter and may be abated in accordance with the provisions of this Chapter.
B. 
This Section shall not apply to:
1. 
Any vehicle enclosed within a building on private property or stored behind a solid fence of not less than six (6) feet in height at a legally conforming business operating in the appropriate business zone. A tarpaulin, tent or other similar temporary structure shall not be deemed to satisfy the requirements of this Section.
2. 
Property operated as any service station, automobile repair shop, body repair shop, tow truck operator or auto, truck or trailer business enterprise lawfully licensed by the City and properly operated in the appropriate business zone pursuant to the zoning laws of the City; provided the vehicle is not located on said property outside of a building for more than thirty (30) days. In the event a vehicle is located on said property outside of a building for more than thirty (30) days, then the notice procedures stated in Section 375.050(D) shall apply.
3. 
Any vehicle that is in working order and in an operable condition, whether or not the vehicle displays a current Missouri license plate, upon which the owner or occupant of the private property where the vehicle is located has obtained or has initiated the process to obtain a mechanic's lien. Upon the request of the Director of Community Development or his/her representative, the owner or occupant of the property where the vehicle is located shall be required to provide written documentation to verify that a mechanic's lien has either been obtained or has been applied for. Copies of said documentation must be kept on the dashboard of the vehicle for ready inspection by Department of Community Development personnel. In the event said documentation is not provided, the notice procedures stated in Section 375.050(D) shall apply.
C. 
Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions, the parking, storing or leaving of not more than one (1) vehicle which does not have lawfully affixed thereto an unexpired license plate and a current motor vehicle safety inspection certificate, but is otherwise operable, shall be permitted upon private real property only by the owner of the real property or the person in charge of the private real property and shall only be located within a building or located in the rear yard on a paved driveway or paved parking area. In a mobile home park as defined in Section 400.050, it shall be unlawful to park, store or leave a motor vehicle which does not have a current license plate and safety inspection sticker if one is required.
[Ord. No. 15-299 §1, 12-15-2015]
D. 
As used throughout this Chapter, the terms "operable condition" and "working order" shall be defined as a vehicle that will start and operate under its own power. The term "occupant of the private property" shall include a tenant or manager of the business legally operating on the property.
[1]
Cross References—As to penalty, §100.150; as to junk dealers, ch. 625.
[R.O. 2009 §90.03; CC 1981 §18-387; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998; Ord. No. 04-223, 9-10-2004]
A. 
In the case of an abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle or a vehicle otherwise in violation of City Code being present upon private property, the Chief of Police shall cause to be served a notice in writing upon the occupant of the land where the nuisance exists or in the case where there is no occupant, then upon the owner of the property or the owner's agent stating the existence of the nuisance and requesting its removal in the time specified in this Chapter.
B. 
In the case of an abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle or a vehicle otherwise in violation of City Code being present upon public property, the Chief of Police shall cause to be served a notice in writing securely attached upon the vehicle, giving notice of the existence of the nuisance and requesting its removal in the time specified in this Chapter. A notice shall be sent to the registered owner of the vehicle.
[R.O. 2009 §90.04; CC 1981 §18-388; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998; Ord. No. 04-223, 9-10-2004]
A. 
Upon proper notice and opportunity to be heard, the owner of the abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle or a vehicle otherwise in violation of City Code and the owner or occupant of the private property on which the same is located, either or all of them, shall be responsible for its removal. In the event of removal and disposition by the City, the owner or occupant of the private property where same is located shall be liable for the expenses incurred. Where the vehicle to be removed is upon public property, the registered owner of the vehicle shall be responsible for removal expenses.
B. 
The vehicle shall be removed to a location where it will no longer be classified as an abandoned vehicle or a vehicle otherwise in violation of City Code, will be enclosed within a building on private property or will be moved to the property of an automobile repair shop, body repair shop, junk yard, tow-truck operator or auto, truck or trailer business enterprise lawfully licensed by the City and properly operated in the appropriate business zone pursuant to the zoning laws of the City. Removal of the vehicle to another location on the streets or on private property while it is still an abandoned vehicle or a vehicle otherwise in violation of City Code shall constitute a separate offense. If proper notice has been given prior to the move of the vehicle to the new location in violation of this Section, no new notice shall be required for removal of the vehicle in accordance with Section 375.070.
[R.O. 2009 §90.05; CC 1981 §§18-389—18-390; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998; Ord. No. 06-342, 12-20-2006]
A. 
Notice Procedure. The Chief of Police or the Chief's designee shall give notice of removal to the owner or occupant of the private property where the vehicle is located. The notice shall be posted, at least forty-eight (48) hours before the time of towing, in a conspicuous place upon the private property on which the vehicle is located and duplicate copies shall be delivered, at least forty-eight (48) hours before the time of towing, by hand delivery or certified mail to the owner or occupant of the private property at the last known address. Where the vehicle to be removed is upon public property, a notice shall be securely affixed to the vehicle.
B. 
Content Of Notice. The notice shall direct removal and the notice shall advise that upon failure to comply with the notice to remove within forty-eight (48) hours may result in a citation for violation of the City Code for each day the vehicle remains and that upon failure to comply with the notice to remove within forty-eight (48) hours, the Chief of Police or the Chief's designee may undertake such removal at the cost of the registered owner of the vehicle.
C. 
A vehicle may be towed and summons may be issued without a notice if, previously:
1. 
A notice has been issued for the same vehicle on the same property; or
2. 
The owner or occupant of the property has been issued a notice concerning any abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle on the property; or
3. 
A proper notice has been issued for the vehicle at another location within the City.
D. 
A vehicle located on property described in Section 375.020(B)(2) for more than thirty (30) days shall be subject to the following procedure:
1. 
Notice procedure. The Chief of Police or the Chief's designee shall give notice of removal to the owner or occupant of the property where the vehicle is located and to the registered owner of the vehicle. The notice shall be posted in a conspicuous place upon the property on which the vehicle is located, affixed to the vehicle and duplicate copy mailed by certified mail to the owner or occupant of the property at the last known address of the owner or occupant and to the registered owner of the vehicle.
2. 
Content of notice. The notice shall direct removal of the vehicle within thirty (30) days from the date of the notice. The notice shall further state that upon failure to comply with the notice of removal, the Chief of Police or the Chief's designee may undertake the removal of the vehicle at the cost of the owner or occupant of the property or at the cost of the registered owner of the vehicle. Prior to the expiration of the thirty (30) day period for removal, the owner or occupant of the property on which the vehicle is located or the registered owner of the vehicle may request an extension from the Director of Community Development. Such request shall be in writing on a form provided by the Community Development Department and include an explanation for why additional time is needed for the removal of the vehicle. The Director of Community Development may grant one (1) extension of not more than thirty (30) days. Upon expiration of the thirty (30) day extension, if the property is not in compliance with the Chapter, the vehicle may be removed.
[R.O. 2009 §90.06; CC 1981 §§18-391—18-392; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998; Ord. No. 06-342, 12-20-2006]
A. 
Request For Hearing. The persons to whom the notices are directed may file a written request for hearing before the Chief of Police or the Chief's designee within the forty-eight (48) hour period of compliance prescribed in Section 375.050(A).
B. 
Procedure For Hearing.
1. 
The hearing shall be held as soon as practicable after the filing of the request and notice shall be sent to the persons requesting the hearing at least ten (10) days in advance of the hearing.
2. 
At any such hearing the City and the persons to whom the notices have been directed may introduce such evidence and call such witnesses as either party deems necessary. The Chief of Police or the Chief's designee shall conduct the hearing and his/her decision affirming or failing to find a nuisance shall be in writing and include findings of fact and conclusions of law.
[R.O. 2009 §90.07; CC 1981 §18-393; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998; Ord. No. 04-223, 9-10-2004; Ord. No. 06-342, 12-20-2006]
A. 
If the violation described in the notice has not been remedied within the forty-eight (48) hour period of compliance or in the event that the nuisance has been affirmed by the Chief of Police or the Chief's designee, thereafter the Chief of Police or the Chief's designee may take possession of the abandoned, wrecked, dismantled or inoperative vehicle and remove it from the public or private property. It shall be unlawful for any person to interfere with, hinder or refuse to allow such person or persons to enter upon private property for the purpose of removing a vehicle under the provisions of this Chapter.
B. 
For the purposes of this Section, the violation described in the notice shall not be considered to be remedied if the vehicle has merely been moved to another location on the streets or on private property while it is still an abandoned vehicle or a vehicle otherwise in violation of City Code, unless:
1. 
It is enclosed within a building on private property, or
2. 
It is moved to the property of an automobile repair shop, body repair shop, junk yard, tow-truck operator or auto, truck or trailer business enterprise lawfully licensed by the City and properly operated in the appropriate business zone pursuant to the zoning laws of the City; provided the vehicle is not located on said property outside of a building for more than thirty (30) days.
[R.O. 2009 §90.08; CC 1981 §18-394; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998; Ord. No. 06-342, 12-20-2006]
A. 
A report indicating the storage location of the vehicle shall be submitted by the Chief of Police to the Director of Revenue of the State.
B. 
Within forty-eight (48) hours of the removal of such vehicle, the Chief of Police shall give notice to the registered owner of the vehicle, if known, to any holder of a security interest in the vehicle and to the owner or occupant of the private property from which the vehicle was removed, that the vehicle has been impounded and stored for violation of this Chapter. This notice shall be sent by certified mail and give the location of the storage of the vehicle.
[R.O. 2009 §90.09; CC 1981 §18-395; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998]
A. 
The Chief of Police or the Chief's designee may sell the vehicle at public auction if it is unclaimed for at least sixty (60) days after the removal of the vehicle, after posting public notices for at least ten (10) days at the storage location and publication of the notice in a daily newspaper, as defined in Sections 493.045 through 493.050, RSMo., of the County of St. Charles. In addition, if the vehicle was upon private property, then there shall be a posting of notices at the place of removal for at least ten (10) days. The notice shall include a description of the vehicle, including any identifying marks or numbers, the date and place it was found and the time and place of the public auction.
B. 
The proceeds of the sale shall be used first (1st) to pay the person who towed the vehicle at the request of the Chief of Police or the Chief's designee a sum of money (not to exceed the bid contract price) that will reasonably compensate the person for the towing service performed; second (2nd) the person who stores the vehicle the sum of two dollars ($2.00) per day for each day or fraction thereof the vehicle was stored; the balance of the proceeds, if any, shall be turned over to the Director of Finance and the same shall be added to the City's general revenue funds.
[R.O. 2009 §90.10; CC 1981 §18-396; Ord. No. 98-126, 3-9-1998]
A. 
The owner of any vehicle seized under the provisions of this Chapter or the holder of a valid security interest thereon which is in default, may redeem such vehicle at any time after its removal but prior to the sale thereof upon proof of ownership and payment to the Chief of Police or the Chief's designee a sum as may be determined for the actual expense of removal and storage and any preliminary sale advertising expenses.
B. 
The owner of any vehicle seized under the provisions of this Chapter, or the holder of a valid security interest thereon which is in default, may request a hearing before the Chief of Police or the Chief's designee to determine the actual expenses of removal and storage. Upon request of the hearing, the vehicle may be released upon proof of ownership or the holding of a valid security interest thereon which is in default and upon posting of a bond equal to the accrued removal and storage expenses as may be submitted by the towing and storage contractor. The Chief of Police or the Chief's designee shall then hold a hearing within ten (10) days to determine the actual expenses of removal and storage and this determined amount shall be assessed against the owner or holder of a valid security interest thereon which is in default.