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Legislation #: 910534 Introduction Date: 5/2/1991
Type: Ordinance Effective Date: 5/26/1991
Sponsor: None
Title: Amending Chapter 20, Code of General Ordinances of Kansas City, Missouri, commonly referred to as the Property Maintenance Code, by repealing Sections 20.67 and 20.127 and adopting in lieu thereof two new sections of like number and subject matter that would eliminate the building permit requirement before openings in a vacant building can be boarded.

Legislation History
DateMinutesDescription
5/16/1991

Waive Charter Requirements City Council

5/9/1991

Waive Charter Requirements City Council

5/2/1991

Prepare to Introduce

5/2/1991

Referred Plans And Zoning Committee

5/8/1991

Do Pass

5/9/1991

Assigned to Third Read Calendar

5/16/1991

Passed


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ORDINANCE NO. 910534

 

Amending Chapter 20, Code of General Ordinances of Kansas City, Missouri, commonly referred to as the Property Maintenance Code, by repealing Sections 20.67 and 20.127 and adopting in lieu thereof two new sections of like number and subject matter that would eliminate the building permit requirement before openings in a vacant building can be boarded.

 

BE IT ORDAINED BY THE COUNCIL OF KANSAS CITY:

 

Section 1. That Chapter 20, Code of General Ordinances of Kansas City, Missouri, commonly referred to as the Property Maintenance Code is hereby amended by repealing Sections 20.67 and 20.127 and enacting two new sections to read as follows:

 

Section 20.67. Temporary closing of buildings.

 

All buildings and structures which are temporarily closed shall be closed and kept closed (until the building or structure complies with the building code and property maintenance code, or is demolished) in accordance with these standards:

 

(1) All exterior openings are to be closed.

 

(2) Materials missing or broken shall be replaced by similar construction or may be replaced by solid wood

construction of exterior grade plywood at least one-half

inch thick.

 

(3) Materials approved by the director may be used which provide equivalent protection to the building from those

attempting to gain entrance.

 

(4) Any materials used to close openings in exterior walls of open buildings shall be neatly installed in a manner

substantially in accordance with recognized levels of

workmanship for the building construction industry.

 

(5) All plywood shall be painted with two (2) coats of exterior paint.

 

(6) The building or structure shall be baited for roaches and rodents.

 

(7) The roof shall be made watertight.

 

(8) All loose and hanging exterior parts shall be removed.

 

(9) All debris from the interior and exterior of the premises shall be removed.

 

No building temporarily closed shall remain vacant and unrepaired for more than one hundred fifty (150) days.

 

In the event a building, temporarily closed as the result of an order of vacation by the director, remains closed in excess of one hundred fifty (150) days, a dangerous building case shall be initiated against the structure to determine whether the structure should be demolished.

 

Section 20.127. Dangerous Buildings or Structures.

 

(a) Dangerous Buildings Defined: All buildings or

structures, portions or parts of a building or remains of a building or structure which may have any of the defects enumerated herein or in the Building Code shall be deemed a dangerous building and a nuisance provided that such conditions or defects exist to the extent that they are detrimental to the life, health, property, safety or welfare of the public, or its occupants are endangered:

 

 

(1) Whenever the exterior walls or other vertical

structural members list, lean or buckle to such an

extent that a plumb line passing through the center

of gravity does not fall inside the middle one-

third of the base.

 

(2) Whenever any portion thereof has wracked, warped,

buckled or settled to such an extent that walls or

other structural portions have materially less

resistance to winds or snow than is required in the

case of similar new construction.

 

(3) Whenever the building or structure, or any portion

thereof, because of dilapidation, deterioration,

decay, vandalism or faulty construction or the

removal, movement or instability of any portion of

the ground necessary for the purpose of supporting

such building or the deterioration, decay or

inadequacy of its foundation or any other cause is

likely to partially or completely collapse.

 

(4) Whenever the building or structure, exclusive of the

foundation, shows substantial damage or

deterioration of the supporting or nonsupporting

members, or enclosing or outside walls or wall

coverings.

 

(5) Whenever the building or structure has improperly

distributed loads upon the floors or roofs, or in

which the same are overloaded or which have

insufficient strength to be reasonably safe for the

purpose used.

 

(6) Whenever any portion thereof has been damaged by

fire, earthquake, tornado, wind, flood, vandals or

any other cause, to such an extent that the

structural strength or stability thereof is

materially less than it was before such catastrophe

or damage and is less than the minimum requirements

of the building code for similar new construction.

 

(7) Whenever a door, aisle, passageway, stairway, fire

escape or other means of egress is not of

sufficient width or size, or is damaged,

dilapidated, obstructed or otherwise unusable, or

so arranged so as not to provide safe and adequate

means of egress in case of fire or panic.

 

(8) Whenever any portion or member or appurtenance

thereof (e.g., porch, chimney, signs) is likely to

fail, or to become detached or dislodged, or to

collapse and thereby injure persons or damage

property.

 

(9) Whenever any building or structure has any portion,

member or appurtenance, or ornamentation on the

exterior thereof which is not of sufficient

strength or stability, or is not so anchored,

attached or fastened in place so as to be capable

of safely resisting wind pressure, or snow or other

loads.

 

(10) Whenever the building or structure, because of

inadequate maintenance, dilapidation, decay,

damage, faulty construction or arrangement, trash,

filth, inadequate light, air ventilation or

sanitation facilities, or otherwise is determined

to be unsafe, unsanitary, unfit for human

habitation, or in such a condition that it is

likely to cause sickness or disease.

 

(11) Whenever for any reason the building or structure,

or any portion thereof, is manifestly unsafe for

the purpose for which it is being used.

 

(12) Whenever the building or structure or land it

occupies exists or is maintained in violation of

any specific requirement or prohibition applicable

to such building or structure or land provided by

this article or other applicable laws or ordinances

of this state or city relating to the condition,

use, location, maintenance of the building,

structures or land.

 

(13) Whenever the building or structure has become an

attractive nuisance to children or is open to

unauthorized or unlawful entry.

 

(14) Whenever the building or structure because of

obsolescence, dilapidated condition, deterioration,

damage, trash and debris, unsafe exits, lack of

sufficient fire-resistive construction, unsafe

electrical wiring, gas connections, or heating

apparatus, previous fires or any other cause is

determined to be a fire hazard or is a fire hazard

under chapter 14, Code of General Ordinances.

 

(15) Whenever the electrical system is totally or

partially damaged, destroyed, removed or otherwise

made inoperable, unsafe or hazardous.

 

(16) Whenever the plumbing system is totally or partially

damaged, destroyed, removed or otherwise made

inoperable or unsanitary.

 

(17) Whenever the mechanical system or any portion of the

mechanical system is totally or partially damaged,

destroyed, removed or otherwise made inoperable or

unsafe.

 

(18) Whenever the building or structure, because of

obsolescence, dilapidated condition, deterioration

or damage, is detrimental to the sale, loan or

taxable values of surrounding properties or which

renders such surrounding properties uninsurable or

which constitutes a blighting influence upon the

neighborhood or which constitutes an eyesore so as

to deprive owners or occupants of neighboring

property of the beneficial use and enjoyment of

their premises or which presents an appearance

which is offensive to persons of ordinary

sensibilities.

 

(19) Whenever the building or structure is in such

condition as to constitute a public nuisance known

to the common law or in equity jurisprudence.

 

(20) Whenever any portion of a building or structure

remains on a site when construction or demolition

work is abandoned.

 

(b) Dangerous Buildings, Nuisance: Any building or

structure found to be a dangerous building is hereby declared to be a public nuisance.

 

(c) Party Defined: The owner, occupant, lessee,

mortgagee, agent or any person having an interest in a building or structure, as shown by the land records of the recorder of deeds or director of records of the county wherein the land is located.

 

(d) Standards for Vacation, Repair or Demolition: In

any case where a building or structure is found to be a dangerous building, the following standards shall be used by the director of neighborhood and community services in ordering vacation, repair or demolition.

 

(1) If the dangerous building is in such condition as

to make it dangerous to the health, morals, safety

or general welfare of the public or the occupants,

it shall be ordered vacated.

 

(2) If the dangerous building can reasonably be repaired

so that it will no longer exist in violation of the

terms of this article or the building code, it

shall be ordered repaired. An order to repair may

include a requirement to close and secure any or

all exterior openings.

 

(3) In any case where a dangerous building is damaged,

decayed or deteriorated to a degree that it is not

feasible to rehabilitate such building or is not

structurally safe, the building or any portion

thereof shall be ordered demolished.

 

(4) If the evidence does not support a finding that the

building or structure is a dangerous building, no

order shall be issued.

 

(e) Duties of the Inspectors: The inspectors' duties

shall include but not be limited to the following. The inspectors shall:

 

(1) Inspect any building or portion thereof or any

structure which is or may be existing in violation

of this article or the building code.

 

(2) Report to the director of neighborhood and

community services all buildings, structures or

portions thereof deemed to be an emergency as

defined in section 20.129.

 

(3) Except in emergency cases, report buildings to the

director of neighborhood and community services and

notify in writing all parties of any building or

structure which, in the opinion of the inspector,

is considered to be a dangerous building. The

notice which shall be a "declaration of nuisance"

as contemplated by RSMo 67.410(3) shall include a

statement that the owner and all other interested

parties shall have a right and duty to obtain a

building permit or permit for demolition from the

director of codes administration and to start

repair or demolition with ten (10) days after

receipt of such notice. The notice shall be served

by personal service or by certified mail with

return receipt requested. If service cannot be had

by either of these modes of service, then service

may be had by publication. Where service is had by

publication as permitted by RSMo 67.410(3), a

courtesy notice which shall include the text sent

to the newspaper for publication shall be posted on

the dangerous building by the inspector; but if

such courtesy notice is altered, defaced or

removed, there shall be no duty to replace or renew

such courtesy notice which constitutes and shall be

construed to be notice in addition to that required

by state law.

 

(4) Report to the director of neighborhood and community

services any noncompliance with the notice.

 

(5) Appear and testify at all hearings conducted by the

director of neighborhood and community services.

 

(6) Authorize issuance of building permits after

sufficient information has been received, including

plans and specifications deemed necessary and a

schedule of repairs approved by the inspector.

 

(7) Issue a stop order to the owner or anyone doing or

causing work of any kind in a building which has

been determined by an inspector to be a dangerous

building when no active building, or demolition

permit exists, or when work done is contrary to the

provisions of this article or the building code.

 

(f) Duties of the Director of Neighborhood and Community

Services: Except in case of emergency, the director of neighborhood and community services' duties shall include but not be limited to the following. The director of neighborhood and community services shall:

 

(1) Cause an inspection to be made of any building or

structure upon receiving a complaint that it is a

dangerous building. If the director deems it

necessary to the performance of duties and

responsibilities imposed herein, the director may

request that an inspection and report be made to

the director by the city engineer, the city

architect, the department of codes administration,

the fire department, the police department, the

health department, or by any other city department,

or may contract for services of an expert whenever

the director deems such services necessary.

 

(2) Upon failure of any interested party to commence

work of reconditioning or demolition of any

building or structure within the time specified in

the notice provided for by section 20.127(e)(3),

and to proceed continuously with such work without

unnecessary delay, the director of neighborhood and

community services shall cause a date for hearing

to be established and direct the inspector to give

at least twenty-one (21) days' written notice of

such hearing to all parties having an interest in

such building or structure which has been the

subject of a notice pursuant to section

20.127(e)(3). The written notice of hearing shall

include a statement that the parties may be

represented by attorneys, and should be prepared to

present witnesses on their behalf and to offer

testimony as to why the building or structure

should or should not be declared a dangerous

building and shall be served by regular United

States mail or by personal service and by posting

the notice on the building or structure described

in the notice. Once valid service of notice of

hearing is made, no subsequent notice of

continuance of a hearing is required except as is

announced on any docket call including such matter

or during any docketed hearing on such matter.

 

(3) Hold such a public hearing and consider such

evidence as the inspector, owner or other parties

or persons may offer concerning the building or

structure.

 

(4) Following such public hearing, make written findings

of fact as to whether the building or structure in

question is a dangerous building and a public

nuisance.

 

(5) Issue an order based upon the findings of fact,

ordering the owner or other parties to vacate,

repair or demolish such building or structure if

found to be a dangerous building. The order shall

be served by regular United States mail or by

personal service. If the party to whom such order

is addressed cannot be found after diligent effort

to do so, service may be made upon such party by

posting the order on the building or structure

described in the order.

 

(6) Cause a building or structure which has been

determined to be a dangerous building to be

vacated, repaired or demolished as ordered or have

the dangerous building temporarily boarded when

ordered repaired or when necessary to protect

citizens prior to demolition, if the owner or

parties fail to comply with the order to vacate,

demolish or repair within thirty (30) days of the

findings of fact and order calling for such

vacation, repair or demolition. The director of

neighborhood and community services shall certify

the charge for such vacation, repair, demolition or

boarding to the director of finance as a special

assessment represented by a special tax bill

against the real property affected except when

federal funds are being used which are subject to a

prohibition of recovery by a special assessment

process. The proof of such exception shall be the

burden of any person asserting it. The charge for

demolition of any building or structure or the

abatement of any public nuisance abatable pursuant

to this article shall be collectible by a special

tax bill which shall include the actual cost of

repair, demolition, water service cut, boarding and

all other necessary security measures and a cost of

administering the provisions of this program as set

by the City Council. The tax bill from date of its

issuance shall be deemed a personal debt against

the property owner and shall also be a lien on the

property until paid. At the request of the

taxpayer, the tax bill may be paid in installments

over a period of not more than ten (10) years.

Should any such installment become delinquent, the

whole unpaid amount shall become due.

 

(g) Permits:

 

(1) Except for the temporary closing of a building, a

permit shall be obtained prior to doing any work

on a building or structure for which a

determination by an inspector has been made that it

is a dangerous building. The director of

neighborhood and community services shall report

all dangerous buildings to the director of codes

administration. Before the director of codes

administration issues a permit on a dangerous

building, the director of neighborhood and

community services must certify that the proposed

work will eliminate the condition rendering the

structure a dangerous building. A copy of such

permit shall be forwarded to the director of

neighborhood and community services upon issuance.

The work required to be done pursuant to permit

must commence immediately, or as soon as practical

after securing the permit. With respect to

dangerous buildings, the provisions of this

paragraph will supersede any conflicting ordinance

provisions.

 

(2) It shall be unlawful for any person to salvage or

cause or allow any other person to salvage a

building which has been ordered demolished without

first obtaining the authorization of the director

of neighborhood and community services.

 

(h) Certificate of a Dangerous Building:

 

(1) After a building has been determined to be a

dangerous building by the director of neighborhood

and community services, a "Certificate of Existence

of Dangerous Building" will be filed and recorded

in the office of the recorder of deeds or director

of records of the county wherein the land is

located. Such certificate shall set forth the

address and description of the premises upon which

such dangerous building is located, and a

certification that such building thereon is

dangerous within the provisions of section 20.127

of the Code of General Ordinances of Kansas City,

Missouri, and that the owner thereof has been given

proper notice and ordered to repair or demolish

such building. Such certification shall be made

and signed by the director of neighborhood and

community services.

 

(2) The recording of a "Certificate of Existence of a

Dangerous Building" shall place persons purchasing

such property subsequent to such recording on

notice that such property has been declared a

dangerous building and ordered repaired or

demolished. The act of subsequent purchase shall

not delay the processing or cause a delay in such

matter and shall be an exception to the time

requirements of the notices provided herein.

 

(3) Upon application and after verification that the

order of the director of neighborhood and community

services to vacate, repair or demolish a dangerous

building has been complied with, the director of

neighborhood and community services shall issue to

the applicant a "Release of Certificate of

Existence of Dangerous Building" which is in such

form that it may be filed with and recorded by the

office of recorder of deeds or director of records

of the county wherein the land is located stating

that the dangerous condition has been abated.

 

(i) Posting Notice on Building:

 

(1) A notice of the dangerous condition of a building

shall be posted on any building determined by an

inspector to be a dangerous building. The notice

shall contain the words, "Warning, Dangerous

Building, DO NOT ENTER", followed by text

authorized by the director of neighborhood and

community services.

 

(2) Any person removing such sign shall be guilty of a

misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall be

punished as set forth in section 20.131.

 

(j) Duties of the City Attorney: The city attorney's

duties shall include but not be limited to the following:

 

(1) Within the proper exercise of discretion, prosecute

all persons failing to comply with the terms of the

notices and the orders provided for herein.

 

(2) When requested, appear at hearings before the

director of neighborhood and community services in

regard to "dangerous buildings".

 

(3) Within the proper exercise of discretion, bring suit

to collect all municipal liens, assessments or

costs incurred by the director of neighborhood and

community services in causing "dangerous buildings"

to be vacated, repaired or demolished.

 

(4) Take such other legal action as is necessary to

carry out the terms and provisions of this article.

 

(k) Failure to Comply:

 

(1) Any owner of a dangerous building who shall fail to

comply with an order of the director of

neighborhood and community services to vacate,

repair or demolish said building or who fails to

proceed continuously to vacate, repair or demolish

the building without unnecessary delay shall be

guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof

shall be punishable as set forth in section 20.131.

 

(2) The party in actual or constructive possession, or

one who has a legal duty to act for a party, who

fails to comply with an order of the director of

neighborhood and community services to vacate,

repair or demolish a dangerous building shall be

guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall

be punished as set forth in section 20.131.

 

(3) Any person failing to immediately vacate a building

upon the verbal or written order of the director of

neighborhood and community services in cases of

emergency pursuant to section 20.129 shall be

guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall

be punished as set forth in section 20.131.

 

(4) Any person who hinders, threatens or interferes with

an inspector, contractor or any person working for

a contractor having a permit to demolish a

dangerous building shall be guilty of a misdemeanor

and upon conviction shall be punished as set forth

in section 20.131.

 

(l) Certificate of Occupancy: It shall be unlawful for

any person to enter, occupy, use, remain in or permit or cause any other person to enter, occupy, use or remain in any building or structure which has been ordered vacated by the director of neighborhood and community services, unless such entry and use is for the purpose of repair or demolition, until such building or structure has been inspected by the director of neighborhood and community services and a certificate of occupancy has been issued. Such certificate will be issued by the director of neighborhood and community services only when it has been determined that the building is no longer a dangerous building and is safe and fit for human occupancy.

 

(m) Closing of Buildings: All buildings which are to

be closed or boarded shall be closed or boarded and kept closed or boarded in accordance with the following standards and requirements:

 

(1) The department of neighborhood and community

services shall be responsible for making necessary

inspections.

 

(2) All exterior openings are to be closed.

 

(3) Materials missing or broken shall be replaced by

similar construction or may be replaced by solid

wood construction of exterior grade plywood at

least one-half inch thick or by equivalent

materials approved by the director of neighborhood

and community services.

 

(4) Any material used to close openings in exterior

walls of open buildings shall be installed in a

workmanlike manner in accordance with recognized

standards of the construction industry.

 

(5) All plywood shall be protected against weathering

with two (2) coats of exterior paint.

 

(6) Bait for roaches and rodents will be safely

distributed to eliminate such pests.

 

(7) The roof must be watertight.

 

(8) All loose and hanging exterior parts shall be

removed.

 

(9) All debris shall be removed from the interior and

exterior of the premises and brush and weeds will

be cut and removed.

 

(10) Maintain the property in accordance with the

requirements of this chapter and chapter 25 of the

Code of General Ordinances and other applicable

ordinances.

 

_____________________________________________

 

 

Approved as to form and legality:

 

 

 

_________________________________

Assistant City Attorney