The Pryor Times

Local News

June 27, 2013

Summer spike in code violations

Pryor residents could be in violation of a city code without realizing it. The summer months see an increase in code violations, outdoing the rest of the year by 50 to 1.

With the hiring of Doug Moore as city code enforcement officer and building inspector, the city is cracking down.

The fine for a public nuisance citation is $195 and the individual is given 10 days to come into compliance. After the 10 days has elapsed, if the violation has not been corrected the individual is fined $195 per day.

A full listing of Pryor city codes are available on the city website. The codes are broken down into categories and definitions are provided.

To begin, the definition of a nuisance is explained as unlawfully doing or failing to perform a duty which either annoys, injures or endangers the comfort, health or safety of others, offends decency, in any way renders other persons insecure in life or in the use of property. The definition is further defines a public and private nuisance, both of which are subject to the same fine.

The most common summer violation is grass and weeds.  Weeds in excess of 12 inches are a violation as are weeds that create a traffic or fire hazard.

Regardless of height, weeds and grass that harbor, conceal or invite accumulation or trash or refuse are a nuisance.  Grass and weeds that harbor rodents/vermin or give off an unpleasant odor are also a violation.  

Chapter 6 of the city code deals with junked or wrecked vehicles. The definition encompasses a wide range which includes “motor vehicles which are abandoned, dismantled, partially dismantled, wrecked, junked, inoperative or discarded.” It is then broken down into a list of five items, saying if a vehicle meeting the previous description does one or more of the following it is in violation: impedes traffic in the streets, reduces the value of private property, creates fire hazards, extend or aggravate urban blight or results in a serious hazard to the public health/safety/comfort, convenience and welfare of the residents of Pryor.

Also in regard to vehicles, any unattended motor vehicle, whether in operating condition or not,  without a current vehicle plate as required by law is a violation.

Also a violation is any structure or building which is dangerous to the public health or safety because of damage, decay or other condition. If mold is growing in a dilapidated structure it can be a health hazard, while other factors such as dry wood can create a fire hazard.

While littering is always unlawful, there are several trash/refuse codes of which many citizens are unaware.

Within city limits, all garbage consisting of waste and animal/vegetable matter which may attract flies, rodents or animals shall be placed in waterproof bags or wrapped in such a way as to prevent leakage of fluids. That trash shall then be placed or stored in suitable containers; a suitable container shall not be more than 32 gallons or less than 10 gallons in capacity. Oil or grease drums and paint cans will not be acceptable.

As children and teens are out of school for summer break the issue of city curfew becomes a higher priority. The city code reflects a different curfew for summer break than the one enforced during the school year. During the summer months the curfew for minors 14-years old or younger is 11 p.m. and midnight for minors 15 -17 years-old. There is a city code in place for cruising, or driving without a set destination.

Warm weather entices more residents to the public parks. It is necessary to note, however, that it is unlawful to walk an animal along the jogging path of a city park. It is also prohibited to swim/wade in a pond on city property, like the park, or to damage light poles, light bulbs, fixtures or property around the pond. Further, it is unlawful to play or practice golf at the city park.

There are a large number of codes concerning animals, specifically regarding registration tags and fees, rabies, other vaccinations, leashing requirements, animals at large, impounding and animal nuisances. In the instance of a cow, horse, sheep, goat or donkey, it is permitted to have one animal per 7,000 square feet of a pen or enclosure. Any violation thereof, whether multiple animals or insufficient area, is a code violation and will result in the $195 fine.


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