Grass and Weed Code Violation

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Grass and Weed Code Violation

A grass and weed violation may be opened as a result of a citizen complaint or an inspector observing a violation while patrolling his or her area. A property, residential or commercial, is in violation of the City's grass and weed ordinance if grass is 9" or taller.

What properties can be cited with a Grass and Weed Code volation?

A violation can occur on any commercial or residential property within City limits that has grass or weeds that are over 9 inches.

What is the process for issuing a Grass and Weed Code Violation?

  • The inspector will verify if the grass and weeds are nine (9) inches or taller
    • If the grass is not yet 9" or taller, the inspector will close out the case as "no violation."
    • If the grass is 9" or taller, the inspector will mark it as "in violation" and a notice will be mailed to the property owner.
  • The property owner is asked to mow his/her property within 48 hours per City Ordinance 16-59.
  • The inspector will re-inspect the property after 10 days per Indiana Code 36-1-6-2.
    • If the grass has been mowed the inspector will close out the case as "completed by owner".
    • If the grass is still taller than 9", the inspector will send the violation to Venues, Parks & Arts for mowing.
  • After the grass is mowed, Code Enforcement will bill the owner for work performed and administrative costs PLUS issue an ordinance violation ticket.
    • If the owner fails to pay, they will be sent to collections for the invoice/violation ticket.

How do you report a Grass and Weed Code Violation

Please call 311 with details of the specific location.

What happens when a property is found in violation of the code?

Once an inspector cites an active violation, the property owner is sent a letter. They have 10 days to take care of the issue.  After the 10 day period the inspector will perform a re-inspection. If the issue has not been resolved, a City crew will mow the lot and the property owner will be sent a bill for the services.

How much does a Grass and Weed Code Violation cost?

There will be no costs unless the violation is sent to our crew for cleanup. The property owner will be charged for services rendered, administrative fees, and an ordinance violation ticket. Under South Bend Municipal Code Section 19-35, for every abatement completed by Venues, Parks & Arts, a $250 fine will be imposed.

If the property is under Continuous Enforcement, a different fee structure applies: 

  • First year under Continuous Enforcement = $250 per occurrence
  • Second year under Continuous Enforcement = $500 per occurrence


311 Process Notes

Please ask the caller how tall is the grass?  Neighbors with 1" grass complain about a neighbor with 4" grass.  This is not a violation.  The grass must be over 9" to cite.

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