Vacant Property Registration

Codified ordinance 1375.03


   (a)    The owner shall register with the Building Department not later than ninety (90) days after any building located in an area zoned for, or abutting an area zoned for, residential or commercial use in the City becomes a vacant building or not later than thirty (30) days of being notified by the Building Department of the requirement to register based on evidence of vacancy, whichever event first occurs.
   (b)    The registration shall be submitted on forms provided by the Building Department and shall include the following information supplied by the owner:
      (1)   The name and address of the owner or owners;
      (2)    If the owner does not reside in Trumbull County or within ten miles of Niles City limits, the name and address of any third party who the owner has entered into a contract or agreement for property management. By designating an authorized agent under the provisions of this section, the owner is consenting that the third party is authorized to receive any and all notices relating to the property and conformance of any and all ordinances;
      (3)    The names and addresses of all known lien holders and all other parties with an ownership interest in the building;
      (4)   A telephone number where a responsible party can be reached at all times during business and non-business hours; and
      (5)    A vacant building plan as described in division (c) of this section.
   (c)    The owner shall submit a vacant building plan, which must meet the approval of the Building Inspector. The plan, at a minimum, must contain information from one of the following three choices:
      (1)    If the building is to be demolished, a demolition plan indicating the proposed time frame for demolition which includes starting within thirty (30) days of acceptance of the proposed demolition timeline and does not exceed sixty (60) days in accordance with the Ohio Building Code; or
      (2)    If the building is to remain vacant, a plan for the ensuring the building is secured along with the procedure that will be used to maintain the property, and a statement of the reasons why the building will be left vacant (e.g., building is for sale, etc.); or
      (3)    If the building is to be returned to appropriate occupancy or use, a rehabilitation plan for the building and grounds. The rehabilitation plan shall not exceed twelve (12) months from the time they obtain permits, unless the Building Inspector grants an extension upon receipt of a written statement from the owner detailing the reasons for the extension. Any repairs, improvements or alterations to the property must comply with any applicable zoning, housing, historic preservation, or building codes, and the property must be secured during the rehabilitation.
   (d)    All applicable laws and codes shall be complied with by the owner. The owner shall notify the Building Inspector of any changes in information of their vacant building registration within 30 days of the change. If the plan or timetable for the vacant building is revised in any way, the revision(s) must be in writing and must meet the approval of the Building Commissioner.
   (e)    The owner and subsequent owners shall keep the building secured and safe and the building and grounds properly maintained in accordance with all applicable Codes.
   (f)    A new owner(s) shall register or re-register the vacant building with the Building Inspector within thirty (30) days of any transfer of an ownership interest in the vacant building if the building continues to remain vacant after transfer. The new owner(s) shall comply with the approved plan and timetable submitted by the previous owner until any proposed changes are submitted and meet the approval of the Building Inspector.
   (g)    The failure of the owner of the vacant building to obtain a deed for the property or to file the deed with the County Recorder shall not excuse the property owner from registering the property.
   (h)    Failure of the owner or any subsequent owners to maintain the building and premises that result in remedial action taken by the City shall be grounds for revocation of the approved plan and shall be subject to any applicable penalties provided by the law.
   (i)    The Building Inspector shall include in the file any property specific written statements from community organizations, other interested parties, or citizens regarding the history, problems, status, or blighting influence of a vacant building.
   (j)   The registration and all associated processes must be completed in its entirety annually for as long the property remains vacant.
(Ord. 67-17.  Passed 11-1-17.)