Vandergrift to vote on ‘Quality of Life’ tickets next month
Vandergrift Council will vote next week on a “Quality of Life” ordinance that would allow the borough to ticket residents for code violations such as junked cars, high grass and other property violations.
Issuing a ticket instead of a citation wouldn’t require the involvement of a district judge, and could be a more efficient and less costly way to crack down on property violations, according to the ordinance and borough officials. The premise for the new ordinance is an increase in the number of property owners failing to maintain their land in the borough.
The ordinance applies to violations involving animals, property maintenance, public safety, public health, solid waste, streets and sidewalks.
Violators would be given a ticket for $25 for each code violation. A second violation would be $50, and failure to pay would increase the fine.
If the new ordinance is approved, it would go into effect immediately, according to borough Solicitor Larry Loperfito.
Originally, the ordinance allowed for residents who received a violation the option of appealing the citation to borough council. Councilman Peter Basile objected because multiple violators could cause council meetings to last an excessively long time.
Similar programs for property code violations have been successful in Springdale and elsewhere in Westmoreland County, Basile said.
Those who disagree with the citation still would have the option of filing for a hearing in front of the district judge just like a parking ticket, according to the ordinance.
Who: Vandergrift borough council
What: Vote on “Quality of Life” ordinance
When: 7 p.m., March 4
Where: Borough building, 109 Grant Ave.
Mary Ann Thomas is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Mary at 724-226-4691, firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter .