Public Nuisance Abatement

Posted by Anonymous

I have a copy of the most recent draft of the Public Nuisance Abatement ordinance.

Here are the point tallies:

The following violations shall be assigned a point value of six (6) points:

 Article 220 of the Penal Law – Controlled Substances Offenses;

 Article 221 of the Penal Law – Offenses involving Marijuana;

 Article 225 of the Penal Law – Gambling Offenses;

 Article 230 of the Penal Law – Prostitution Offenses;

 Sections 265.40, 160.45, 165.50, 165.52 and 165.54 of the Penal Law – Criminal Possession of Stolen Property;

 Sections 65 or 82 of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Law;

 Article 265 of the Penal Law – Firearms and other Dangerous Weapons;

 Sections 260.20 and 260.21 of the Penal Law – Unlawfully Dealing with a Child;

 Article 263 of the Penal Law – Sexual Performance by a Child;

 Section 240.36 of the Penal Law-Loitering in the first degree.

(New York Penal Law Section 240.36 Loitering in the first degree - A person is guilty of loitering in the first degree when he loiters or remains in any place with one or more persons for the purpose of unlawfully using or possessing a controlled substance, as defined in section 220.00 of this chapter.

 Section 240.20 of the Penal Law- Disorderly conduct.

(New York Penal Law Section 240.20 Disorderly conduct- A person is guilty of disorderly conduct when, with intent to cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or recklessly creating a risk thereof:
1. He engages in fighting or in violent, tumultuous or threatening behavior; or
2. He makes unreasonable noise; or
3. In a public place, he uses abusive or obscene language, or makes an obscene gesture; or
4. Without lawful authority, he disturbs any lawful assembly or meeting of persons; or
5. He obstructs vehicular or pedestrian traffic; or
6. He congregates with other persons in a public place and refuses to comply with a lawful order of the police to disperse; or
7. He creates a hazardous or physically offensive condition by any act which serves no legitimate purpose.)
The following violations shall be assigned a point value of four (4) points:
 Section 415-a of the Vehicle and Traffic Law – Vehicle Dismantlers;

 Section 175.10 of the Penal Law – Falsifying Business Records;

 Sections 170.65 and 170.70 of the Penal Law – Forgery of and Illegal Possession of a Vehicle Identification Number;

 Possession, use, sale, or offer for sale, of any alcoholic beverage in violation of Article 18 of the Tax Law, or of any cigarette or tobacco products in violation of Article 20 of the Tax Law;

 Article 178 of the Penal Law – Criminal Diversion of Prescription Medications and Prescriptions;

 Section 147 of the Social Services Law – Food Stamp Program Fraud;

 Operating a business during hours which the business is required to be closed pursuant to Chapter 375 of the Municipal Code, Zoning.

 Chapter 136 of the Code of the City of Lockport, the property maintenance code.

 Chapter 142 of the Code of the City of Lockport, Rental Housing.

 Chapter 125 of the Code of the City of Lockport, Noise.

 Chapter 55-7 of the Code of the City of Lockport, regarding dogs running at large.

 Chapter 55-8 of the Code of the City of Lockport, regarding dog waste
The following violations shall be assigned a point value of three (3) points:
 Chapter 113-4 of the Code of the City of Lockport, Collection and Disposal of garbage

 Chapter 113-7 of the Code of the City of Lockport, Collection Procedure for garbage

 Chapter 113-8 of the Code of the City of Lockport, Receptacles and Storage of garbage

 Chapter 158-17a- of the Code of the City of Lockport, Cleaning of Sidewalks (snow and ice)

 Chapter 159-21a(2) of the Code of the City of Lockport, Removal of brush, grass and weeds

 Chapter 181-4 of the Code of the City of Lockport, Abandoned Vehicles
The scoring:
“Public nuisance” – (1) For purposes of this Article, a public nuisance shall be deemed to exist whenever through violations of any of the following provisions resulting from separate incidents predicated at events, circumstances or activities occurring on the premises, twelve (12) or more points are accumulated within a period of six (6) months, or eighteen (18) or more points within a period of twelve (12) months, in accordance with the following point system. Where more than one (1) violation occurs during a single incident, the total points for the incident shall be the highest point value assigned to any single violation.

As for who the proposed judges are:
“Nuisance Abatement Board” – The Board shall consist of the Aldermen of the City of Lockport whose charge is to “aid in maintaining peace and good order” as defined in Chapter C-59 of the “Charter of the City of Lockport”.
The notice:
Prior to the issuance of an order by the Nuisance Abatement Board, pursuant to this article, the Nuisance Abatement Board shall give notice and opportunity for a hearing to the owner, and any other person directly or indirectly in control of the premises wherein the public nuisance is being conducted, maintained or permitted.



Rocketboy said...

The only things I would debate is that the landscaping issues (snow removal, grass cutting, etc) should solely be the duty of the landlord.

But if this goes through, it will help to increase the quality of life of homeowners.

Anonymous said...

I think putting the alderman on the board is a great idea! Our council members too often are unaware of the goings on in their wards. This would hold them accountable also.

Anonymous said...

Having owned property once myself, I have a problem with putting all the responsibility on the property owner. NYS law favors the tenant and if they don't want to leave it can take months and a lot of $ to evict them. The ordinance should be written to control the tenant not punish the property owner.

Anonymous said...

It'll only take a few violations before landlords start realizing that they need to be a little more selective(which they CAN be)and then maybe there is hope for the city. Otherwise any dreams for the City of Lockport are doomed! Stop using the law as an excuse, it can be done.

If we bring back neighborhoods (which will increase housing values in many of these crime ridden neighborhoods) then the tax burden can be spread out more fairly too. There is no neighborhood in our city that isn't touched by this problem some way or another!

Why do we decent law abiding,tax paying, citizens have to be burdened with having to deal with landlords' irresponsibility? You call them and tell them what's going on and in most cases their answer is, CALL THE POLICE! I realize this is not all situations, but unfortunately it has become the norm.

Ideally, what would be nice to see is people who's purpose it is to be a nuisance(for whatever reason), decide Lockport isn't worth it and move on somewhere else. Then maybe more decent people would truly be interested in living here.

Unfortunately,I think this may be our only hope!

Rocketboy said...

7:20 Anon.. As I've stated before, this law does need to make sure that landlords are being stood behind when it comes to a city-enforced eviction.

But as it's a city-enforced eviction, I would firmly believe that "Lockport has deemed it Illegal for you to live in a building that I've rented to you" would be enough of a legal case.

Anonymous said...

1) Housing Visions claimed they could remove people in 3 days. Find out how they did it and incorporate it.
2) The city should provide a clause that landlords can (must?) place in lease agrements to make the eviction process as simple as possible. Once the nuisance notice goes up on the building the tenants will know they have 30 days unless the lanloard is granted a reversal from the board.
3) The process will effect tenants. If they get evicted through this process, there should be no landlord that would want to rent to them after. If they do it is at the landloards own risk.
4) eLockport should have a page for landlords (in addition to many other "should have" pages.
5) There needs to be some control for abuse of the system. Seeing that no convictions are needed, I'd think there would need to be some type of protection from baseless "personal vandettas" against neighbors.

Anonymous said...

MJ - thats baloney, someone can not be evicted in three days in NY state. After a three day notice a landlord can petition the court to evict someone who owes rent. When someone violates the terms of a lease they can be evicted also. The big IF though is if a tenant refuses to leave after they get notice, you then have to go to court to evict them. Court must be scheduled 5-12 days later plus the sheriff must wait 3 days after that to evict. Sure, you can scare someone out with a 3 day notice but most tenants know to ignore that and wait for court.
Also, CHECK OUT THE FEES this lawyer who's info i pasted here charges for evictions at the bottom of this.

Eviction is a Legal Process. The landlord CANNOT just call the police and have a tenant evicted because he wants the tenant out. The tenant has the right to due process.

There are two (2) types of evictions:

1) Non-payment
2) Holdover

A nonpayment eviction is an eviction for nonpayment of rent. Under New York State Law, a landlord seeking to evict a tenant for non-payment must first give the tenant a chance to pay, by giving the tenant a three-day notice in writing, stating that the tenant has three days to pay all the rent in full or the tenancy will be terminated.

A Holdover eviction is an eviction for remaining on the premises after the lease has expired or remaining on the premises after receiving notice that the lease has been terminated because of a breach of the lease agreement or after receiving notice that the landlord is terminating a month to month tenancy.

Regardless of the type of eviction, the procedure is mostly the same and begins when the tenancy is terminated. In a non-payment case the eviction can start after the three (3) day notice is given and no payment is made in three (3) days. The act of non-payment terminates the tenancy. The holdover eviction can start as soon as the tenancy is terminated because of breach, or after the expiration of the notice period in a month to month tenancy.

Once the tenancy is considered to be terminated the landlord may file in court for eviction. The landlord CANNOT go directly to the sheriff. The landlord must get a court order first. To get the court order, the landlord files a petition and obtains a hearing date. The hearing date MUST be no less than FIVE DAYS from the date of service of the petition on the tenant. The hearing date is required to be scheduled between five (5) and twelve (12) days after the tenant is served with the petition.

The hearing is a summary proceeding. If the judge finds that the tenancy is terminated because of non-payment or for holdover the judge will sign a warrant of eviction. The landlord may also obtain a money judgment for the arrears due in rent if personal service was made or if the tenant makes a personal appearance in court.

Once the warrant is signed by the judge the landlord will then need to submit the warrant to the sheriff. The sheriff must give seventy-two (72) hours notice to the tenant before enforcing it.

court at a later date.

Landlords beware. The landlord tenant law in New York is heavily weighted in favor of the tenant. There are strict procedural rules and if the tenant shows up to court with the back rent money he will not be evicted for non-payment.
I charge $650.00 plus costs for an eviction in the City of Buffalo and $550.00 plus costs for an eviction in the suburbs located in Erie County and the City of Lackawanna and the City of Tonawanda. Costs usually total about $100.00, for process service and filing fees.

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much for the information. Sorry for the delay as I though I had already responded to this.

Seems like the whole process could be wrapped up in in 4->6 weeks for a breach of contract by violating this law?

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