Kenbridge staff remind residents of grass cutting ordinance

Published 8:00 am Thursday, June 8, 2023

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KENBRIDGE – If you live in the Town of Kenbridge, it’s time to keep your grass cut. Otherwise, the town will be forced to complete the maintenance at a cost to the property owner. The town’s grass cutting ordinance is being enforced, staff members say.

According to Kenbridge Town Manager Tony Matthews, this is not a new idea. Most municipalities have an ordinance concerning grass, hedges, yard growth, and basic cleanliness and ordinances are generally set up to aid in the welfare of the citizens.

“As we all know, living in town is different than living out of town in a rural setting,” Matthews said. “In town, one should respect their property and also their neighbors, as the homes are generally closer together and such things as line of sight, peace of mind from rodents and other animals, and general neighborhood appearance should all be taken into account.”

Matthews said property values are directly affected by the state of a property as well.

According to Matthews, too often properties are left to family members who either do not live in the area or don’t even realize they have inherited a piece of property. Then the property falls into disrepair.

To help combat such the grass ordinance is the first step to alerting the property owner that there is a standard of maintenance within town limits.

Matthews said that under normal instances, most people adhere to the ordinances very well. “Usually, it is a case of misunderstanding or just not knowing of an ordinance that causes communication to begin to bring a property into compliance,” Matthews said. “As a general rule of thumb, citizens should be made aware of ordinances before enforcement will take place.”

And that is just the case with the Town of Kenbridge.

Those who may be in violation of the grass-cutting ordinance will receive a letter stating the policy and the issue should be resolved within 15 days. If the issue is not resolved within the 15-day time period, the town will be forced to complete the maintenance at a cost to the property owner.

“As always, citizens call me at the office and I will be glad to discuss with property owners, the current ordinances and what it will take to bring their properties into compliance,” Matthews said. “ We can also supply a current copy of our ordinances to the citizen, or they can look them up on their own at our website under “town codes”.

The Town of Kenbridge’s current grass-cutting ordinance reads “Grass or weeds and other foreign growth on the vacant, developed or undeveloped property shall not exceed 12 inches in height. The owners of such vacant, developed, or undeveloped property in the town in violation of this section shall cut the grass, weeds, and other foreign growth on such property. (b)The town may, whenever the town manager deems it necessary, after reasonable notice, have such grass, weeds or other foreign growth cut by its agencies or employees, in which event, the cost and expenses thereof shall be chargeable to and paid by the owner of such property and may be collected by the town as taxes and levies are collected.”