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City to enforce code requiring residents to maintain weeds

Aug 23, 2013 - By Alejandra Silva, Staff Writer

City staff proposed to the council that they enforce the current code because it would be "consistent and fair"

The city of Riverton is targeting pesty weeds that may be lurking on the sidewalks of resident's homes.

In a discussion Tuesday at the regular city council meeting, council members agreed that it's necessary to enforce the current city ordinance that says it's the homeowner's responsibility "to cut or dig and destroy and remove all weeds and dead trees upon such property upon the streets and alleys within the curblines in front of, or abutting, such property."

Recently, staff realized that city personnel were cutting and spraying weeds over the past years in only some streets in Riverton. City staff proposed to the council that they enforce the current code because it would be "consistent and fair" but also offered other suggestions.

City administrator Steven Weaver explained that the city could decide to continue the same practice of maintaining Main Street, Federal Boulevard, Pershing Avenue and Sunset Drive. Or the city could instead maintain Main Street and Federal Boulevard only, or the arterials and all collector streets or all the sidewalks in the city.

The council discussed the fairness of each option and agreed that enforcing what was already written in code would be best.

"We spent about $2,400 in the last couple months, weed cutting and spraying on these particular streets -- that equals to about 80 hours of man power," Weaver said city staff estimated.

Council member Todd Smith mentioned that it would be good for the city to spend more time maintaining property owned by the city because they have discussed in the past that those streets are lacking in proper care.

"Perhaps we could use our money and our manpower on our resources as opposed to private property." Smith said.

Weaver suggested to the council they go more into detail in an ordinance on the removal of weeds in the alleys because he said, some of those are "the worst weed areas around."

"I would ask for the citizenry of Riverton to consider the fact that they have neighbors," council member Richard Gard said.

He added that property owners should take pride in how their property looks and help the community look nice.

The council agreed several locations in the city, including Rein Park and the bike path need more weed control as well.

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