- Community Development
- Code Compliance
The City of Gainesville employs three Code Enforcement Officers. These officers work to maintain the integrity and safety of commercial and residential property in Gainesville, and conduct various inspections on a daily basis.
Note *Unlawful garage sale signs and other types of signs are impounded by Code Enforcement Officers.
City of Gainesville Code Enforcement goals are:
- Prevent the development of hazardous conditions.
- Prevent deterioration of buildings.
- Protect the environment and preserve the aesthetic character of neighborhoods.
- Secure the health, safety and welfare of those living in Gainesville
Animal control complaints are handled by Animal Control Officers assigned to the Police Department. Phone Number 940-668-7777.
COMMON CODE VIOLATIONS
- Household furniture stored on porches or in the yard
- Appliances on porches or in the yard
- Swimming pools not properly covered or fenced
- Vehicles (including trailers and RVs) parked in the yard
- General maintenance of structures (paint, siding, roofs, etc.)
- Trash, debris, junk, rubbish, and garbage stored in the yard, on porches, or on trailers parked on the premises
- Inoperable and/or junked motor vehicles
- Dead trees
- High grass and weeds
When Officers observe a property maintenance or public nuisance violation, the first step is usually a courtesy notice. Courtesy notices come in many forms such as a yellow door hanger, a note received through the mail, or a conversation with one of the Code Officers. Violations should be corrected within ten days of receiving a courtesy notice.
**If you are having trouble correcting the problem within ten days, please give us a call at 940-668-5749 to discuss.
Once the ten days have passed, an Officer will conduct a follow-up inspection. If the problem persists, the case will progress to a formal violation.
A violation notice will be posted on the premises and a letter will be mailed to the occupant and owner. The violation must be abated within ten days.
If, after the follow-up inspection, the problem persists, the case will be forwarded to the municipal court for a summons to be issued or to the Building and Standards Commission for an abatement order.
**If the case progresses to municipal court or the Building and Standards Commission, fines and/or civil penalties up to $2000 per day may be imposed.
high grass and weeds
High grass and weeds are both a property maintenance issue as well as a public nuisance violation. As such, cases for high grass and weeds are processed a bit differently than the other property maintenance or public nuisance violations.
If the violation has not been remedied ten days after the the courtesy or violation notice, the City has the authority to enter the property, cut the grass, and bill you for the cost. Non-payment will result in a lien being placed on your property.
On properties where the grass has grown to 48" (4 feet) in height, the City has the authority to immediately enter the premises and cut the grass without providing notice to the property owner.
This also applies to properties that are "repeat offenders." Repeat offenders are those properties with two or more high grass violations within a 12-month period.
Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 342. City of Gainesville Code of Ordinances, Part II, Chapter 5, Article I, Section 5-11, Ordinance 1401-12-2016 and Chapter 8, Article II, Division 2, Ordinance 1093-7-2005.
code enforcement process
how a case begins
Code Enforcement cases can begin in a number of different ways. City Code Enforcement Officers have designated areas they patrol on a weekly basis. However, complaints are often called into the Department by a citizen. Complaints may remain anonymous or they may leave a name and number so they can be contacted in the future. To call in a complaint, please call (940) 668-4799.
general outline of case progression
Case progression can vary depending upon the nature of the violation or a number of variables.
- A complaint is received by the Department.
- An inspection is performed to verify that a violation exists on the property.
- The property owner is then notified that a violation(s) exists and is given a reasonable period of time in which to correct the violation(s).
- A follow-up inspection is performed to verify that the violation(s) has been corrected.
- If compliance has not been achieved, a hearing notice to appear before the Building and Standards Commission will be issued.
- Once a hearing notice has been presented, the case is turned over to the Building and Standards Commission. The Commission will hear the case and may issue an order for compliance. Additionally, the Board has the authority to issue a civil penalty to the responsible party.
- If compliance is not achieved, violation(s) will be abated by the City and a lien in the amount equal to time, labor, and administrative fees will be filed against the property.