City Council FAQs

  1. Is there an Ordinance against barking dogs?
  2. Is there a Leash Law?
  3. Is there a Pooper Scooper Law?
  4. Is Door to Door Solicitation Allowed?
  5. What are the City Ordinances for Disturbing the Peace?
  6. Where can I place a garage sale sign?
  7. Where can a Realtor place an open house sign?
  8. What is the City Ordinance for removing snow on sidewalks?
  9. Who is responsible for repairing sidewalks?
  10. Can I plant a tree within the tree lawn?
  11. What is the City Ordinance for Storage of Junk Vehicles?
  12. How do I obtain a public record?
  13. What is the City’s Public Records Policy?

Is there an Ordinance against barking dogs?

Codified Ordinance Section 618.07 states,

(a) No person shall keep or harbor any dog which, by barking, howling or yelping, causes inconvenience, annoyance or alarm to another person. Any person who allows any such dog to habitually remain or be lodged or fed within any dwelling, building, yard or enclosure, which such person occupies or owns, shall be considered to be harboring such dog. (Ord. 91-91. Passed 7-8-91.)

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Is there a Leash Law?

Codified Ordinance Section 618.01(b) states,

(b) No person who is the owner of or in charge or control of a dog or cat shall permit or allow, by any means or in any manner, such dog or cat to go or remain upon any public street or ground within the City, except when accompanied by a responsible person and upon a leash, or under such control as to prevent such dog or cat from entering private property or from chasing or attacking any person, animal or vehicle.  (Ord. 152-84.  Passed 11-12-84.)

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Is there a Pooper Scooper Law?

Codified Ordinance 660.03 states,

(b) No person shall, without lawful authority, place or dispose of in any manner, or cause to be placed or disposed of in any manner, upon any public real property or upon the real property of another, any paper, trash, garbage, waste, rubbish, refuse, junk, animal excrement or any substance or material which is or may become noxious, offensive, injurious or dangerous to the public health, safety or welfare. (Ord. 153-92. Passed 10-12-92.)

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Is Door to Door Solicitation Allowed?

Codified Ordinance 840.10 states,

a) License Required; Fee.

(1) No person shall act as a door-to-door salesperson in interstate/intrastate commerce in the City, calling at residences or places of business without the invitation or previous consent of the owners or occupants thereof, without first having secured from the Safety Director or his or her designated representative a license therefor. The fee for such license shall be as follows: A. For one day: $ 5.00 B. For one week: 10.00 C. For one year: 60.00

(2) No peddler shall sell or offer for sale in the City any goods, merchandise or services without first having secured from the Safety Director or his or her designated representative a license therefor. The fee for such license shall be as follows: Fee Nature of Operation Week Month Year Truck or other street vehicle $10.00 $15.00 $60.00 Pushcart 5.00 15.00 60.00 Carried door to door 5.00 15.00 60.00

(3) All fees collected shall be paid into the General Revenue Fund.
(b) License Application; Contents.

An application for a license for a door-to-door salesperson in interstate/intrastate commerce or for a peddler shall be made upon a form provided by the Safety Director or his or her designated representative. Each application shall contain, among other information, the name, address and telephone number of the applicant; the name, address and telephone number of his or her employer, if any; the nature of the goods or services for which he or she will take orders or which will be offered for sale; the proposed method of operation in the City; and such other information as the Safety Director may require. A separate license shall be required for each individual salesperson or peddler even though there may be a single employer. No person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor involving moral turpitude or of a felony shall be issued a license as a door-to-door salesperson in interstate/intrastate commerce or as a peddler. Each applicant shall submit to fingerprinting for identification purposes. (Ord. 53-98. Passed 3-23-98.)

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What are the City Ordinances for Disturbing the Peace?

Codified Ordinance, Chapter 648 Peace Disturbances

648.01 Riot.
648.02 Failure to disperse.
648.03 Justifiable use of force to suppress riot.
648.04 Disorderly conduct.
648.05 Disturbing a lawful meeting.
648.06 Misconduct at an emergency.
648.07 Inducing panic.
648.08 Making false alarms.
648.09 Disturbing the peace.
648.10 Inciting to violence.

http://www.amlegal.com/nxt/gateway.dll/Ohio/avonlake/partsix-generaloffensescode/chapter648peacedisturbances?f=templates$fn=altmain-nf.htm$q=648%20$x=server$3.0#LPHit1

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Where can I place a garage sale sign?

Codified Ordinance Chapter 610 states

610.01 ADVERTISING ON PRIVATE PROPERTY.

(a) No person shall stick or post any advertisement, poster, sign, handbill or placard or any kind upon any building, vehicle, tree, post, fence, billboard or other structure or thing that is the private property of another without the permission of the occupant or owner of the same. No person shall paint, mark, write, print, impress or in any manner attach any notice, advertisement, name of any commodity or thing, trade mark, symbol or figure of any kind upon anything that is the property of another without first obtaining the permission of the owner of such thing on which he or she desires to place such notice, advertisement, name, mark, symbol or figure. (Ord. 1233. Passed 11-24-58.)

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor and shall be subject to the penalty provided in Section 698.02. (Ord. 94-74. Passed 6-10-74.) 610.02

610.02 ADVERTISING ON PUBLIC PROPERTY.

(a) No person shall stick, post or attach any advertisement, poster, sign, handbill or placard of any kind upon any telegraph, telephone, railway or electric light pole within the City or upon any public building, vehicle, voting booth, flagging, curb, tree lawn, walk, step, stone or sidewalk. No person shall write, print, impress or in any manner attach any notice or advertisement of any kind upon any public building, voting booth, flagging, curb, tree lawn, step, stone or sidewalk that is the property of the Municipality, within the street lines of the Municipality or over which the Municipality or Council has the care, custody or control, except such as may be required by the laws of the State or upon written permission of the Mayor for a period not to exceed 60 days. (Ord. 63-76. Passed 5-10-76.)

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor and shall be subject to the penalty provided in Section 698.02. (Ord. 94-74. Passed 6-10-74.)

IMPOUNDMENT OF SIGNS. Any sign displayed in violation of any of the provisions of this chapter or Chapter 1262 of these Codified Ordinances shall be seized and held at the City police station. Notice shall be sent by certified mail to the occupant of the premises from which a sign is removed advising of such removal and that the sign shall be returned to the owner upon payment of a storage charge as set forth in Chapter 208 of the Administration Code – the General Fee Schedule, and that a sign not claimed within two weeks from the date of such notice shall be destroyed. (Ord. 24-90. Passed 2-12-90.)

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Where can a Realtor place an open house sign?

Codified Ordinance 610.04 states,

(a) No sign, either permanent or temporary, shall be placed at the intersection of two or more streets in the area contained between the paved portion of the street and the sidewalk or right-of-way line, except that a sign with the word “open” and a directional arrow may be displayed between the hours of 1:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. City time. Only one such sign may be placed on each side of any intersection for the purpose of directing traffic in one direction. If two or more homes are being held open for inspection on the same street, only one such sign may be displayed.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor and shall be subject to the penalty provided in Section 698.02. (Ord. 63-76. Passed 5-10-76.)

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What is the City Ordinance for removing snow on sidewalks?

Codified Ordinance 412.08 states,

(a) No person removing snow from any driveway or sidewalk within the City shall deposit the same on the pavement or sidewalk of any public street or on any tree lawn in any public street, except the tree lawn immediately in front of the premises from which the snow is removed.

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor and shall be subject to the penalty provided in Section 408.01. (Ord. 72-99. Passed 4-12-99.)

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Who is responsible for repairing sidewalks?

Codified Ordinance 660.05 states,

(a) Cleaning and Repairing Sidewalks.
(1) No owner of any lot or land abutting upon any street or highway shall refuse, fail or neglect to repair or keep in repair the sidewalk in front of such lot or land after due notice ordering the repair of such sidewalk.

(2) If the owner or person having charge of such land fails to comply with such notice, Council shall cause the sidewalk to be repaired. All expenses and labor costs incurred shall, when approved by Council, be paid out of Municipal funds not otherwise appropriated. Council shall make a written return to the County Auditor of its action, with a statement of the charges for the services, the amount paid for labor, the fees of the officers serving such notices and a proper description of the premises. Such amounts, when allowed, shall be entered upon the tax duplicate and be a lien upon such lands from and after the date of the entry and be collected as other taxes and returned to the Municipality with the General Fund.

(b) Encumbrances on Streets and Sidewalks. No person shall encumber any street or sidewalk or, being the owner, occupant or person having care of any building or lot of land bordering on any street or sidewalk, permit the same to be encumbered with barrels, boxes, cans, articles or substances of any kind, so as to interfere with the free and unobstructed use thereof.

(c) Injurious Materials on Sidewalks and Playgrounds. No person shall place or knowingly drop upon any part of a sidewalk or playground any tacks, bottles, wire, glass, nails or other articles which may damage property of another or injure any person or animal traveling along or upon such sidewalk or playground.

(d) Protecting Sidewalks. In the transportation of any goods, materials or equipment across any sidewalk in the Municipality, efficient temporary planking shall be used to protect such sidewalks from breakage and such temporary planking shall be removed at the close of each working day and the surface of the sidewalk immediately cleaned and left in a passable condition.

(e) Defacing Sidewalk Pavement. No person shall walk on, or allow any animal upon, or injure or deface in any way, any soft or newly laid sidewalk pavement.

(f) Sidewalk Sales or Displays. No person shall use any street or sidewalk area, including the lateral strip area between the street and sidewalk, for the display or sale of merchandise or for any advertising display.

(g) Sidewalk Openings. No person shall allow any cellar or trap door, coal chute or elevator or lift opening in any sidewalk to remain open without providing suitable safeguards to protect and warn pedestrian traffic of the dangerous condition.

(h) Obstructions; Nuisances. No owner of any lot or land abutting upon a sidewalk located within a City street or roadway right-of-way shall fail to keep such sidewalk free from snow, any nuisance or any obstruction.

(i) Penalty. Whoever violates any of the provisions of this section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor. A separate offense shall be deemed committed each day during or on which a violation occurs or continues. The penalty shall be as provided in Section 698.02. (Ord. 239-87. Passed 11-9-87.)

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Can I plant a tree within the tree lawn?

Codified Ordinance 1018.11 states,

No person shall deposit, place, store or maintain upon any public place of the City, any stone, brick, sand, concrete or other materials which may impede the free passage of water, air or fertilizer to the roots of any tree growing therein, except by written permit of the Municipal Arborist. (Ord. 199-94. Passed 10-24-94.)

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What is the City Ordinance for Storage of Junk Vehicles?

Codified Ordinance 660.07 states,

(a) No person shall place, maintain or store, or permit to be placed, maintained or stored, for more than 15 days, any motor vehicle, chassis or part or remains of a motor vehicle, in a disabled condition, upon any lot or land in the City, unless the same is within a completely enclosed building or garage. As used in this section, “disabled” means a condition in which the vehicle cannot be operated on public streets under its own power in compliance with statutory or ordinance requirements. The 15-day grace period allowed in this section shall not be granted in the case of a repeat or habitual offender under this section. (Ord. 102-77. Passed 8-22-77.)

(b) Whoever violates this section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor for a first offense, a misdemeanor of the fourth degree for a second offense and a misdemeanor of the third degree for any subsequent offense. The penalty shall be as provided in Section 698.02.

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How do I obtain a public record?

PUBLIC RECORDS POLICY

The City of Avon Lake acknowledges that it maintains many records that are used in the administration and operation of the City of Avon Lake. The records maintained by the City of Avon Lake and the ability to access them are a means to provide trust between the public and the City of Avon Lake. The City of Avon Lake maintains its records in a manner which allows the City of Avon Lake to provide the general public prompt inspection of the public’s records, and copies of these records within a reasonable amount of time during its regular business hours from 8 A.M. to 4:30 P.M., except for the following departments:

Fire Department 7:00 A.M. – 3:00 P.M.
Police Department 8:00 A.M. – 4:00 P.M.

The City of Avon Lake has a public records policy and a Schedule of Records Retention (RC-2). Please consult with one of our employees and they will provide you with a copy.

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What is the City’s Public Records Policy?

CITY OF AVON LAKE PUBLIC RECORDS POLICY

Introduction:

It is the policy of the City of Avon Lake that openness leads to a better informed citizenry, which leads to better government and better public policy. It is the policy of the City of Avon Lake to strictly adhere to the State’s Public Records Act. All exemptions to openness are to be construed in their narrowest sense and any denial of public records in response to a valid request must be accompanied by an explanation, including legal authority, as outlined in the Ohio Revised Code. If the request is in writing, the explanation must also be in writing.

Section 1. Public Records

The City of Avon Lake, in accordance with the Ohio Revised Code, defines records as including the following: Any document – paper, electronic (including, but not limited to, e-mail), or other format – that is created or received by, or comes under the jurisdiction of a public office that documents the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, operations, or other activities of the office. All records of the City of Avon Lake are public unless they are specifically exempt from disclosure under the Ohio Revised Code.

Section 1.1

It is the policy of the City of Avon Lake that, as required by Ohio law, records will be organized and maintained so that they are readily available for inspection and copying. Record retention schedules are to be updated regularly and posted prominently.

Section 2. Record Requests

Each request for public records should be evaluated for a response using the following guidelines:

Section 2.1

Although no specific language is required to make a request, the requester must at least identify the records requested with sufficient clarity to allow the public office to identify, retrieve, and review the records. If it is not clear which records are being sought, the records custodian must contact the requester for clarification, and should assist the requester in revising the request by informing the requester of the manner in which the office keeps its records.

Section 2.2

The requester does not have to put a records request in writing, and does not have to provide his or her identity or the intended use of the requested public record.

Section 2.3

Public records are to be available for inspection during regular business hours, defined as 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding Saturday, Sunday, and holidays except for the following departments: Police 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Fire 7:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Public records must be made available for inspection promptly. Copies of public records must be made available within a reasonable period of time. “Prompt” and “reasonable” take into account the volume of records requested; the proximity of the location where the records are stored; and the necessity for any legal review of the records requested.

Section 2.4

Each request should be evaluated for an estimated length of time required to gather the records. Routine requests for records should be satisfied immediately if feasible to do so. Routine requests include, but are not limited to, meeting minutes (both in draft and final form), budgets, salary information, forms and applications, personnel rosters, etc. If fewer than 20 pages of copies are requested or if the records are readily available in an electronic format that can be e-mailed or downloaded easily, these should be made as quickly as the equipment allows. All requests for public records must either be satisfied (see Section 2.4) or be acknowledged in writing within three business days following receipt of the request. If a request is deemed significantly beyond “routine” such as seeking a voluminous number of copies or requiring extensive research, the acknowledgement must include the following:

Section 2.4a – An estimated number of business days it will take to satisfy the request.

Section 2.4b – An estimated cost if copies are requested.

Section 2.4c – Any items within the request that may be exempt from disclosure.

Section 2.5 Any denial of public records requested must include an explanation, including legal authority. If portions of a record are public and portions are exempt, the exempt portions are to be redacted and the rest released. If there are redactions, each redaction must be accompanied by a supporting explanation, including legal authority.

Section 3. Cost for Public Records

Those seeking public records will be charged only for the actual cost of making copies according to Avon Lake Codified Ordinance Section 208, Fee Schedule. Requesters may ask that documents be mailed to them. They will be charged the actual cost of the postage and mailing supplies.

Section 4. E-Mail

Documents in electronic mail format are records as defined by the Ohio Revised Code when their content relates to the business of the office. E-mail is to be treated in the same fashion as records in other formats and should follow the same retention schedules.

Section 4.1

Records in private e-mail accounts used to conduct public business are subject to disclosure, and all employees or representatives of the City of Avon Lake are instructed to retain their e-mails that relate to public business (see Section 1 Public Records) and to copy them to their business e-mail accounts and/or to the office’s records custodian.

Section 4.2

The records custodian is to treat the e-mails from private accounts as records of the public office, filing them in the appropriate way, retaining them per established schedules and making them available for inspection and copying in accordance with the Public Records Act.

Section 5.

Failure to Respond to a Public Records Request The City of Avon Lake recognizes the legal and non-legal consequences of failure to properly respond to a public records request. In addition to the distrust in government that failure to comply may cause, the City of Avon Lake’s failure to comply with a request may result in a court ordering the City of Avon Lake to comply with the law and to pay the requester attorney’s fees and damages.

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