[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Two Rivers (Title 9, Ch. 7, of the 1981 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- AUTHORIZED OFFICIAL
- An individual designated by the Chief of Police to exercise the authority of this chapter.
- ENFORCEMENT ACTION
- Arrest or the issuance of a citation.
- NUISANCE ACTIVITY
- Any of the following activities, behaviors or conduct occurring on a premises:
- A. An act of harassment, as defined in § 947.013, Wis. Stats.
- B. Disorderly conduct, as defined in § 947.01, Wis. Stats., and/or Title 9 of this Two Rivers Municipal Code.
- C. Battery, substantial battery, and aggravated battery, as defined in § 940.19, Wis. Stats.
- D. Lewd and lascivious behavior, as defined in § 944.20 Wis. Stats.
- E. Prostitution, as defined in § 944.30, Wis. Stats.
- F. Theft, as defined in § 943.20, Wis. Stats.
- G. Receiving stolen property, as defined in § 943.34, Wis. Stats.
- H. Arson, as defined in § 943.02, Wis. Stats.
- I. Possession, manufacture, delivery of a controlled substance or related offenses, as defined in Ch. 961, Wis. Stats.
- J. Gambling, as defined in § 945.02, Wis. Stats.
- K. Animal violations, as defined in Chapter 6-5 of this Code.
- L. Trespassing, as defined in §§ 943.13 and 943.14, Wis. Stats., by the occupants, tenants or owners of one premises onto another premises.
- M. Weapons violations as defined in Title 9, Two Rivers Municipal Code.
- N. Noise violations, as defined in Title 9, Two Rivers Municipal Code.
- O. The presence of any person engaged in a violation of any curfew ordinance as set forth in Title 9, Two Rivers Municipal Code.
- P. The presence of any person engaged in a violation of any truancy ordinance as set forth in Title 9, Two Rivers Municipal Code.
- R. The execution of arrest or search warrants at a particular location.
- S. Alcohol violations, as defined in Title 6, Two Rivers Municipal Code, and § 125.07, Wis. Stats.
- T. Obstructing or resisting an officer, as defined in § 946.41, Wis. Stats.
- U. The violation of any ordinance set forth in Chapter 8-4 of Title 8 of the Two Rivers Municipal Code, entitled "Abandoned Vehicles," or of any ordinance set forth in Chapter 9-6 of Title 9 of the Two Rivers Municipal Code, entitled "Public Nuisances."
- V. The violation of § 9-3-4 of the Two Rivers Municipal Code regarding destruction of noxious weeds and regulation of lawns and weeds.
- Any person who alone or jointly or severally with others is the legally recorded holder of the title, with or without actual possession thereof, or who has charge, care or control of any dwelling or dwelling unit as an owner. The term "owner" under this chapter shall also include the legally recorded holder of a land contract vendee interest, but shall not include the holder of a land contract vendor interest.
- Any lot, plot, or parcel of land, and buildings thereon.
No person or entity shall operate, maintain, or allow to be maintained any premises within the City of Two Rivers that has been deemed to be a chronic nuisance as defined by this chapter.
Whenever the Chief of Police determines that three or more nuisance activities resulting in enforcement action have occurred at a premises during a twelve-month period, the Chief may notify the premises owner, in writing, that the subject location has been deemed a chronic nuisance. In calculating the requisite nuisance activity, the Chief may count separate qualifying nuisance incidents resulting in enforcement action occurring on the same day (as long as they are distinct in time) or different days. The following shall not be considered nuisance activities subject to this chapter except as expressly provided:
Activities that were reported to the Police or other City departments by the premises owner or on-site premises manager shall not be included as nuisance activities.
Section 968.075, Wis. Stats., broadly defines "domestic abuse." Therefore, in reaching a determination that a premises is a chronic nuisance premises, activities included as nuisance activities should not be included unless the incidents have been reviewed by the Chief of Police and the City Attorney and a determination is made that, based upon the specific facts of each incident, the activities should be deemed nuisance activities. In determining whether to include such activities, the Chief of Police and office of the City Attorney shall consider the strong public policy in favor of domestic victims reporting alleged abuses, and this chapter shall not operate to discourage such reports.
[Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Title 1, General Provisions, Ch. 1-1, Art. III)]
The chronic nuisance premises notice (CNP notice) shall be deemed delivered if sent either by first-class mail to the premises owner's last-known address of record as identified by the records of the City Assessor or delivered in person to the premises owner. If the premises owner cannot be located, the notice shall be deemed to be properly delivered if a copy of such notice is prominently posted at the premises owner's usual place of abode, delivered to a competent member of the owner's family at least 14 years of age or older currently residing there and who shall be informed of the contents of the CNP notice. The CNP notice shall contain the following information:
Street address, parcel number or a legal description sufficient to identify the premises.
A concise statement, including a description of the relevant activities supporting the determination that the premises is a chronic nuisance premises.
A statement that the owner shall immediately notify the authorized official of any change in address to ensure receipt of future notices.
A statement that the actual costs of future enforcement may be assessed as a special charge against the premises.
A statement that the owner shall, within 10 days of the date the CNP notice is mailed, contact the authorized official and schedule a meeting with that official to develop a written action plan to abate the nuisance, or notify the official, in writing, of the intention to appeal.
A statement that the premises owner shall at all times comply with the fair housing requirements.
A statement that the premises owner, in addition to actual abatement costs, may be subject to a forfeiture action with a penalty of not less than $200 nor more than $5,000 for each day a chronic nuisance is allowed to continue.
Premises owners shall be counseled regarding nuisance abatement methods and strategies and shall be encouraged to submit a comprehensive nuisance abatement action plan that considers alternatives to eviction in situations where eviction is not the sole remedy available to abate the nuisance activity or is not available as a remedy. The plan is acceptable if it can reasonably be expected to result in abatement of the nuisance activities described in the CNP notice within 60 days.
If the owner responds to the CNP notice and with a written action plan to abate the nuisance, the authorized official may accept, reject or work with the owner to modify the action plan. If the premises owner meets with the authorized official and presents an acceptable abatement action plan and implements the terms of the action plan, the authorized official will delay further enforcement of this chapter, including cost recovery.
If the premises owner ceases to cooperate with the efforts to abate the nuisance activities, the authorized official may reinstitute enforcement of this chapter and the premises owner shall be sent a letter advising of the change in status. This letter will document the authorized official's efforts to contact and/or obtain cooperation of the owner. The owner shall be required to respond to such change in status letter within 10 days.
A person shall be deemed to have violated this chapter or failed to comply with provisions of this chapter if any of the following conditions have been met:
A premises owner has failed to respond to the CNP notice;
An action plan submitted has not been completed;
Failure by the premises owner to respond to a change of status letter within 10 days as directed; or
Enforcement action for additional nuisance activity has occurred at premises for which notice has been issued pursuant to § 9-7-3A and this enforcement action has occurred not less than 15 days after the CNP notice has been issued.
[Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Title 1, General Provisions, Ch. 1-1, Art. III)]
A chronic nuisance premises shall be deemed abated when no enforcement action to address nuisance activities occurs and no police, building, health or fire inspection cases are generated for a period of six consecutive months; or a period of six consecutive months from the date of compliance with the action plan.
Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as prohibiting the abatement of public nuisances by the City or its officials in accordance with the Municipal Code or laws of the State of Wisconsin.
An appeal of the determination that a premises is a chronic nuisance premises or of the costs of enforcement assessed by the Finance Department must be submitted, in writing, to the City Council. Such notice of appeal shall be submitted not more than 10 days following notice to the owner that a premises has been determined to be a chronic nuisance. The City Council or its designee shall then schedule and hold a hearing on such appeal upon reasonable notice to the appellant. The appellant may be represented by counsel at such hearing at the appellant's expense. The appellant and the City shall be entitled to submit testimony, witnesses and documentation to the City Council or its designee at such hearing. The City Council or its designee shall issue a written decision on the appeal within 30 days of the hearing.
This chapter may be enforced by injunction where injunctive relief is available by state statute.
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter will be subject to a forfeiture of not less than $200 nor more than $5,000, plus court costs, and shall be assessed the costs of enforcement of this chapter in full or part. Such costs shall be billed to the premises owner by invoice sent by regular mail and must be paid within 30 days of the date on the invoice. Any unpaid invoice shall result in a $100 administrative fee and a lien on such premises that may be assessed and collected as a special charge pursuant to § 66.0627, Wis. Stats.
Each subsequent incident of enforcement action for nuisance activity after a premises has been deemed to be a chronic nuisance premises shall constitute a separate offense and penalties will continue to be assessed until the nuisance is abated.
If, after the receipt of a billing notice from the Finance Department, the premises owner develops an acceptable action plan and implements the plan, the authorized official may suspend further enforcement of this chapter. The premises owner shall remain responsible for any enforcement costs incurred prior to the premises owner's submitting an action plan, including the administrative fee. If the premises owner ceases to cooperate with the efforts to abate the nuisance activities after a suspension of costs, enforcement costs will be reinstated and immediately due. The owner shall be notified, in writing, by the Finance Department of any suspension or reinstatement of enforcement costs.
The provisions of any part of this chapter are severable. If any provision or subsection hereof or the application thereof to any person or circumstances is held invalid, the other provisions, subsections and applications of such chapter to other persons or circumstances shall not be affected thereby. It is declared to be the intent of this chapter that the same would have been adopted had such invalid provisions, if any, not been included herein.