DALLAS -- The Dallas City Council approved a "chronic nuisance property" ordinance Feb. 19, creating a process to address owners who condone repeated law or code violations on or near their properties.
A chronic nuisance property is defined by the ordinance as any property upon which three or more "nuisance activities" are committed within a 60-day period. That includes acts committed within 200 feet of the property by an individual associated with it -- owners, customers, employees or guests, for example.
Nuisance activities include any criminal activity or code violations.
The ordinance allows city officials to declare nuisance properties and work with property owners to resolve the situation. If an agreement can't be found, the ordinance also gives the city the right to take the owner to court, impose fines, or temporarily close the property.
Dallas City Manager Ron Foggin said the city didn't have a particular property in mind when considering the ordinance, but wanted to have the option available if needed in the future.
"We were looking for opportunities to take stronger action against those who refuse to comply with code regulations," Foggin said.