Wednesday, June 10, 2009

City of Milwaukee is extorting me.

Looks like I may go to battle with the city after the notice I received yesterday. In the mail was a notice telling me I owed the City of Milwaukee $25.00 for an inspection. I didn't ask for any inspection. What could this be for? Weed inspection. It was for the notice I had saying I had weeds that were too tall.

Ok, I did need to cut the grass but it was kind of tough considering it had rained that week (Monday was Memorial Day) and I was camping that weekend. Some time on either that Friday or Saturday I got a notice taped to my door informing me I needed to take care of it.

And I did. Case closed.

Or so I thought. This notice does not specify what the inspection is for. Is it to inspect my property to make sure I took care of everything? Was it for the initial inspection? I am not paying anything until I have answers. Better yet, they say you can appeal this but only after you fill out a form and pay the $25.

I had gotten one of these in the past. If you didn't take care of it the city came by and did and billed you for it on your taxes. My mower was busted at the time so I let them do it. But there was no random inspection fee attached.

This really pisses me off. The city thinks they can extort money from home owners because of what they deem to be a violation. Again, what inspection is the fee for? If it is for the first one then technically wouldn't everyone in the city be getting them? In order to find houses that need to be cleaned up you would have to look at all of them. You cannot single anyone out. If the fee is for them to come out and verify the yards has been taken care of then why would I pay that? Wouldn't the be out to follow up and check other houses in the neighborhood? It is a racket I tell ya!

The worst part is the city themselves do not keep their own property in line with their code. I know of boulevards that have grown over a bit. Are they fining themselves?

I plan to call up and speak with someone tonight. I did yesterday but everyone was gone for the day. The person I spoke to mention that he had another call from a taxpayer complaining about the same thing. So the city is hustling other innocent people.

Bottom line is I want to know their methodology for these inspections. It better be covered. I want to know how they determine if supposed weeds are too long. Do they take out a tape measure and record it? Do they take pictures? Or do they just eyeball it? What documentation do they have? Is there a description of my yards stating where the problems are? There should be so I don't have to guess what areas concern them. I want proof that my yard was in violation before anything gets paid.


SirFWALGMan said...

That is retarded. It is your land right? Your house? If you want a jungle then who the hell are they to say you can not have one? Assholes.

Anonymous said...

I think the law says that if your grass is over 9 inches tall it is a violation and an initial fine of $25. If you don't cut it they'll do it for you and charge another $50 + a possible $50 re-inspection fee.
Most likely a neighbor complained or they were doing work in your neighborhood and noticed your urban prarie.

StB said...

It was definately not over 9 inches. They haven't done this in the past. The process seems arbitrary.

I wouldn't be shocked if the neighborhood busy body would be making calls like this.

AletaR said...

I thought that when you get the notice you have a time period to correct the issue and if not are fined. If that's not the way it is then purple house guy off of Howard Avenue must have a crap load of fines.

Radish said...

Good to see Milwaukee has no real problems, leaving them resources and budget to devote to measuring

Anonymous said...

Same thing happened to me after getting a different notice and taking care of it immediately. My email to the alderman must have pissed them off enough to come back and nit pick.

It's true, you can't fight city hall. But you can definitely call in anonymous complaints about their own houses. >:)