MANCHESTER – The township’s Code Enforcement has been issuing ‘courtesy notices’ to inform residents that they need to clean up an issue, but they are not in risk of being fined just yet.
“In the last week I’ve gotten several complaints about code enforcement so I wanted to address it with the council,” Mayor Ken Palmer said during a recent Township Council meeting. “You may have seen some pictures on Facebook about those complaints.”
He said when he saw those photos he spoke to the township’s code enforcement officer and looked back at the last two or three weeks of complaints. He said the code enforcement officer had started a program focusing on infractions and things that need to be attended to.
“He started in Pine Lake but will be doing the same across the township. He’s gotten through two thirds of Pine Lake to date and he’s been taking pictures of things he sees that are unsightly and code violations. He’s not issuing warnings. He is not issuing citations or fines. He is issuing what is called a courtesy notice which just says ‘We took a look and saw something that is an issue,’” the mayor said.
Mayor Palmer said about 100 of those courtesy notices have been issued so far. “I went back and took a look at just about every one of his 400 pictures and I can tell you that out of those 400 pictures there was about 395 that really showed clear violations.”
“This is a way for us to tighten things up. He’s not only doing it for the residents but when he is driving by and sees things like branches or trees that are blocking stop signs, blocking things that are important for traffic sight triangles, he’s alerting the DPW (Department of Public Works) and they are going out and taking care of it.” Mayor Palmer added.
“While I know it is a kick in the pants to some, it really is something saying ‘We see an issue. We’d like you to take a look at it.’ He’s putting a time date on it as to when he’d like to see it remedied but he’s very easy to work with,” the mayor said.
Mayor Palmer assured residents that if anyone needs an extra week or so to take care of an issue identified in the courtesy notice “he is certainly allowing it.”
The mayor stressed to the council and residents during the meeting that Code Enforcement had not issued any violation notices or fines.
Mayor Palmer said, “everyone has been issued a courtesy notice. It is something I support. I think when you drive around Pine Lake and you see extra cars on front yards or when you see an actual boat in the trees and piles of rubbish…that these are things that actually need to be taken care of.”
Council President Sam Fusaro said, “all the council is with you on this one.”