City officials tackling nuisance properties - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

City officials tackling nuisance properties

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This home at 624 North 8th Street is on the city's radar for tall grass. This home at 624 North 8th Street is on the city's radar for tall grass.
Residents say rodents and insects are attracted to the tall grass. Residents say rodents and insects are attracted to the tall grass.
Resident mows her lawn during the day. Resident mows her lawn during the day.
Dead grass lays on the grown after city crews cut the grass after a nuisance complaint. Dead grass lays on the grown after city crews cut the grass after a nuisance complaint.
QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -

Have you ever had a neighbor that just won't mow their yard? It's a big problem in Quincy and now city officials are cracking down.

"We have enough of a reputation around here in this neighborhood," Tracy Marlow, who lives on the north side of Quincy, said. 

She and other neighbors near 624 North 8th Street say the abandoned home is an eyesore. They want it gone. 

"It just makes it look like the whole neighborhood doesn't care to make it nice," Marlow added.

Out of control grass isn't just an eyesore for neighbors, it also attracts unwanted guests. 

"We hear about rodents," Director of Inspection and Enforcement Michael Seaver said. "We'll get complaints of snakes, cats and possums or things like that."

Seaver also said abandoned properties aren't the only offenders. 

"The Office of Inspection will receive around 800 complaints a year and the majority of them, this time of year, involve tall grass," Seaver explained.

City officials know, sometimes people just don't have a way to mow their grass. Some residents say, those are the times good neighbors need to step up. 

"It would be a blessing for a person to help the next person out and the other person would appreciate it greatly," Ryan Stanton said. "Especially if they have no way to get their yard cut."

That's exactly what some residents, like Marlow, say they're already doing.

"We know the house is empty and we might as well go ahead and mow," Marlow explained. "We're already mowing."

Seaver feels the city and other residents shouldn't have to handle negligent homeowners, but knows not doing so impacts the residents.

"It impedes their ability to enjoy their property," Seaver added. "Take care of the work yourself because it's not going to be inexpensive for the city to do it."

City workers say each inspector deals with around eight properties per day. If you have a property you would like the city to look into, you can call the Planning & Development office at 217-228-4515.

The city handles complaints by sending an inspector out to verify the grass is over 10 inches which is city ordinance. The city then sends a notice to the property owner, who has four days to take care of it. If they don't take care of it, the city will mow and bill the owner at least $120. If it's not paid, the city can put a lien against the home or garnish the property owner's income taxes.

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