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|Juror introduces measure to clamp down on overgrown property|
The Ouachita Parish Police Jury will consider strengthening its current ordinance dealing with overgrown grass and weeds in established residential areas in the parish.
Police juror Charles Jackson introduced a measure to amend the parish's current ordinance regulating overgrown grass and weeds in "clearly residential areas outside recognized subdivisions."
The matter was addressed during the police jury's regular meeting.
The proposed ordinance would "extend the authority of the police jury to compel property owners to cut grass and obnoxious weeds" not only on properties within recognized subdivisions but also include properties "in a clearly established residential area on a state highway or parish road."
This ordinance would only apply to unincorporated areas of the parish.
If the ordinance is approved by the police jury at a jury meeting in the future, residents who fail to cut overgrown grass and weeds will be sent a letter requiring the property owner to comply. If the landowner does not cut his or her grass and weeds within 15 days of receiving the letter, the police jury will have the property mowed and charge the landowner for the work.
Jackson asked parish attorney Jay Mitchell to rework the wording of the proposed ordinance before it is brought before the jury for final action.
"I've become aware of some concerns in the wording, so if we can look at ways to tighten it down a little bit, perhaps by looking at the way properties are assessed for ad valorem taxes, and perhaps excluding properties assessed for agricultural or open land use," Jackson said. "The concern is in some of the more rural areas, we don't want to just arbitrarily have people being forced to mow their fields."
A public hearing will be held at a future meeting before the police jury makes a decision on the matter.