Courch's Corner: Code compliance
October 29, 2020 | View PDF
To protect public health and community standards in District 4, my office works in partnership with Kern County Code Compliance to mitigate land use violations, public nuisances, and violations of property conditions.
Taking proactive measures to reduce safety hazards ensure our friends and neighbors have an equitable living standard. Kern County Code Compliance provides a uniform procedure for code enforcement that ensures all residents of Kern County are equally represented.
Supporting the Kern County Public Works Department develop techniques to obtain compliance with adopted regulations from the Board of Supervisors remains a priority of mine. We as a community must work together to safeguard the investments our community members make into their property and neighborhoods. Taking common sense approaches to bring properties in compliance with county ordinances preserve the appearance and property values of a neighborhood.
Code compliance officers enforce several regulations related to the Kern County Code of Ordinances. Examples of regulations enforced by KC Code Compliance include:
• Illegal dumping. (KC Solid Waste Code Violation § 8.28.080)
• Construction without building permits. ( KC Building Code Violation §17.08.03)
• Open and/or unsecured structure(s). (KC Housing Code Violation § 1001.4)
• Abandoned and/or inoperable vehicles. (KC Abandoned Vehicle Code Violation § 10.28.040)
• Operation of a business without land use approval (KC Zoning Code Violation § 19.02.060)
• Excessive storage of non-permitted, miscellaneous items. (KC Solid Waste Code Violation § 8.28.110)
• Structure has become an attractive nuisance to children and/or a harbor to vagrants. (KC Uniform Code for Abatement of Dangerous Buildings § 202)
Keep in mind that Kern County strives to gain cooperation and voluntary compliance from the community before code compliance officers take enforcement action.
After receiving a complaint or observing code violations, code compliance officers document the violation with a written report and photographs. Upon completion of the initial document the property owner is sent a personal notification describing the details of the code violation, time frame to correct the violation, and the enforcement actions taken if the violation is not mitigated. Upon receiving a courtesy letter from KC Code Compliance, the property owner has 14 days to abate violation. If the violation is not abated the property owner receives a 30-day Notice and Order to abate before the issuance of fines or abatement by contractors hired by the county.
Choosing not to comply with the 30-day Notice and Order will result in an initial fine of $250. If the pattern continues, the property owner will receive a second fine of $500 and a third fine of $1000. Please keep in mind that the administrative process for citations strives to gain compliance, not generate revenue. Also property owners have the right to appeal actions taken by Code Compliance with the Kern County Board of Supervisor. However, after a decision has been rendered by the Board, the property owner has 30 days to comply with the resolution approved by the Board of Supervisors. By working together we can protect public health.
Feel free to visit kernpublicworks.com/building-and-development/code-compliance/ to make a complaint online or call 661- 862-8603 to speak with Kern County Code Compliance. Also contact the District 4 office at 661-868-3680 or email us at [email protected] for any concern.