Leavenworth weeding out bad property owners with hefty bills - KCTV5

Leavenworth weeding out bad property owners with hefty bills

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LEAVENWORTH, KS (KCTV) -

The City of Leavenworth is trying to weed out bad home and property owners by making them pay up if the city has come in and cut their grass for them.

And repeat offenders are getting hefty bills.

Leavenworth city code requires all residents to mow and maintain their ‘weeds and vegetation' below 12 inches.

Many of the yards are vacant and the homes are unoccupied but people like Mark Robison's neighbor are being charged.

"She moved out about a year ago and the house has been vacant since then," said Robison.

Robison's neighbor was charged $1,043.82 for two visits from the city in 2013. The home on Ohio Street, like nearly 100 others in Leavenworth, have until Aug. 12 to pay their bill.

Some think the bills are too high especially for those struggling financially.

"How can you justify $500 for someone mowing your yard when you can have a kid down the street do it for $30?" Robison asked.

Yontz Lawn Care was doing work in Leavenworth on Monday. Their workers are much cheaper than if the city takes care of your grass and weed issues and then sends you a bill.

City Clerk Karen Logan said administration fees are what makes the city's bills so high.

"It is $100 for the first offense, $250 for the second, and then the third offense jumps to $500 plus the mowing fee and every one after that plus mowing fees," said Logan.

If residents do not pay their bill by next week, a city ordinance will apply the cost to each offender's property taxes.

Logan said upset property owners should contact their city commissioner.

If residents are physically or financially unable to maintain their property, there are other options. The clerk's office asks for anyone in that situation to contact them.

For more information including to find out if your property has been mowed by the city, click here.

Reporting by KCTV5's Josh Marshall.

Copyright 2014 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.

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