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Public info meeting set for Wednesday on Statesboro’s proposed new property maintenance code

Statesboro’s city government will hold a public information meeting 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 18, about the proposed adoption of a new property maintenance code.

The meeting, to be held in the council chambers at City Hall, was scheduled earlier and a notice issued by the city Friday. It is intended to address questions and solicit feedback from property owners.

Planning and Development Director Kathleen Field and her department plan to propose the adoption of a new property maintenance code – in other words rules for how homes, business locations and other  properties must be  maintained for safety and appearance – to the mayor and council in  January.

If approved, the 2015 International Property Maintenance Code, with some local specifications potentially added, would replace Statesboro’s “nuisances” ordinance, which the city’s code compliance team currently uses to issue notices of code violations.

“The city’s current code lacks specificity,” Field said in the city’s announcement. “The proposed maintenance code would provide much more detailed guidance for our code compliance officers and provide property owners with clearly outlined standards for their properties.”

The lack of details limits in the nuisance ordinance limits the ability of code compliance officers to make a case in the Statesboro Municipal Court and does not give adequate guidance to property owners, she said.

But if the new code is adopted, the compliance officers will be able to provide a detailed report to potential violators, allowing them to make changes, or eventually provide detailed lists of violations to the court if necessary, Field has told the elected officials.

The Georgia Department of Community Affairs has accepted the International Property Maintenance Code for adoption by local governments. It would not replace Statesboro’s existing building code, only the nuisance ordinance as a compliance and enforcement tool. Citation procedures would remain the same as those already in use, city officials have said.

Cities in Georgia currently using this code include Augusta, Garden City, Smyrna, Snellville, Valdosta, John’s Creek and Hapeville. 

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