OSWEGO, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — City of Oswego Mayor Billy Barlow has proposed a new ordinance he is calling the “Nuisance Abatement Law” to target properties that consistently cause disturbances in residential neighborhoods.
Barlow’s proposal creates a Nuisance Abatement Committee comprised of the City Attorney, Chief of Police, and Director of Code Enforcement. The Committee would have the ability to revoke a rental permit or order the complete closure of a building if criminal convictions, frequent police investigations, persistent code violations, or consistent general disturbances are created.
The Nuisance Abatement Committee would be allowed to act on a property where there have been two criminal convictions within 12 months associated with a property or where activities that result in numerous police investigations happen within three months, along with other qualifying criteria.
If a property meets the criteria, the property owner and/or tenant would be entitled a hearing in front of the Committee before a ruling on suspension or revocation of permits or licenses is decided.
A suspension or revocation of permits or licenses could range from six months to one year.
The new law would replace a “points system” that is deemed outdated and ineffective at tracking problematic properties in neighborhoods. The “Nuisance Abatement Law” would hold both tenants and landlords accountable.
“The ‘Nuisance Abatement Law’ will be a great tool to curtail criminal or disruptive behavior in our neighborhoods. All too often, a single house on any given block can cause relentless disruption to several neighbors in the area. While our code enforcement and police department spends countless hours responding and reacting to this problematic behavior, it often takes too long or is too difficult to build a case that prompts an action to rectify a situation and offer relief to neighboring homeowners,” said Mayor Billy Barlow. “The ‘Nuisance Abatement Law’ will hold tenants accountable, put property owners on notice and give neighbors and law enforcement an opportunity to put a stop to disruptive and inconsiderate behavior. The proposed legislation puts a standardized process in place to take control of problematic and disruptive properties, offers possible relief for nearby homeowners, and will improve our neighborhoods.”
Mayor Barlow’s proposed law is similar to a law that has been recently passed and utilized in the City of Auburn.
The Common Council will consider the legislation during the Physical Services Committee meeting on Monday, June 15 at 6:30 p.m. The public can join by the City of Oswego YouTube channel.