The Las Vegas City Council sent a message this week that it does not tolerate slumlords who abandon their properties. At Wednesday’s City Council meeting the council voted to slap three property owners with $500-a-day civil penalties for abandoned and neglected rental properties that are creating blighted conditions in a Las Vegas neighborhood. The property owners of 6216, 6241 and 6225 Bellota Drive have ignored multiple Code Enforcement Notice and Orders for nearly half a year.
The properties are located in a focused cleanup area where the city, the Southern Nevada Health District and Metro Police are joining forces to reduce crime and improve living conditions. The City Council plans to use the full weight of civil penalties on neglectful property owners until they either clean up their sites or relinquish them so people in need can be housed.
The council approved the measure to add daily civil penalties in 2005 as a way to control the issue of neglected properties that destabilize neighborhoods by attracting vandalism and other crime.
The surge in foreclosures is adding to a glut of abandoned and neglected properties that are having a negative impact on neighborhoods. Ensuring that property owners, including banks, maintain their property is part of the city’s strategy to address the growing foreclosure issue.
Property codes are in place to ensure residents have a safe place to live. Violators who ignore code violation notices face a progression of re-inspection fees and penalties.
• First failed inspection - No fee assessed.
• Second failed inspection - $120.
• Third failed inspection - $180 and $150 civil penalty.
• Fourth failed inspection - $180 and $300 civil penalty.
• Fifth and subsequent failed inspection - $180 and $500 civil penalty; if commercial $1,000 civil penalty fee (civil penalties may be assessed daily at the discretion of the council).
The daily civil fee is determined at the discretion of the Las Vegas City Council.
Additionally, violators who repeatedly disregard the notices and refuse to correct the problems may be subject to civil or even criminal prosecution.
Code inspections are performed by the Neighborhood Services Department on a citizen complaint basis. To report code violations, citizens can visit the city’s Web site at www.lasvegasnevada.gov or call the Neighborhood Services hotline at 229-6615, 24-hours-a-day.