Cleaning of troubled properties in the city of Carlsbad continues to be a major concern as authorities dealt with a two-year increase in orders.
Jeff Patterson, director of planning, engineering and regulatory affairs for the city of Carlsbad, said the Carlsbad City Council has passed 29 resolutions in 2022 requiring property owners to clear weeds and debris. In 2021, there will be 13 cases.
He credits the increase in the City of Carlsbad’s personnel, stronger property confiscation efforts, and the support of city councilors and administrators to the higher numbers.
Patterson said he hopes an impeachment order will be issued in 2023 as the city of Carlsbad continues to enforce the law passed nearly 50 years ago.
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“I am confident they will make it a priority.
“I don’t think the city’s priorities will change,” she added.
Madrid Boyea said city law limits the growth of weeds to 12 inches in height on the City of Carlsbad property.
Patterson said the city will use every means available to contact property owners regarding cleaning abandoned properties.
“The first response is usually through code enforcement when they identify a property that is out of compliance. ‘ he said.
Patterson said that if contact has not been established, the planning department will ask the building inspector and the Fire Chief of the City of Carlsbad Fire Department to prepare notes and reports on the property.
“They put together a report detailing the extent of the hazard and fire (hazard) and how it could spread to (other) property, then combined those reports and sent them to the legal department. he said.
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Patterson said Madrid Boya’s office has sent letters to property owners indicating that the city council may take reprehensible action.
“They usually get a 30-day period to tell them the council has passed a resolution. The resolution will be sent to the property owner and posted on the property,” he said.
Patterson said the city will hire contractors to clean up if property owners don’t comply within 30 days.
Madrid Boya said the city often makes exceptions for the elderly and disabled who need help.
She said the city council has shown compassion to property owners and granted extensions.
Tall weeds are a safety issue for Carlsbad’s population
Patterson says weeds over 12 inches tall create problems for Carlsbad commuters trying to keep track of traffic flow.
“It can also prevent people walking on the street from turning corners and seeing oncoming traffic,” he said.
Patterson said the weeds are a fire hazard as the vegetation dries out in the fall and winter during the summer rainy season.
“When they dry out, they start uprooting and moving from land to land and can spread to other lands in case of fire,” he said.
Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway said residents have a responsibility to keep their communities clean and weed-free.
“In addition to landscaping issues, considering mosquitoes and other hazards, this becomes a safety issue. I am grateful,” he said.
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Toxic weeds pose a serious threat to the environment and economy
According to the New Mexico State University School of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (NMSU ACES), Eddy County is home to nearly 20 noxious weed species.
Native plants have a hard time competing with weeds, which can spread rapidly and harm ecosystems, read the NMSU ACES website.
According to NMSU ACES, weeds can cause displacement of native flora and fauna, increased fire hazard and soil erosion, increased flood severity, soil salinity and reduced water quality.
Weeds have a serious economic impact on agricultural and rangelands, reducing crop yields, reducing feed availability for grazing animals, and reducing livestock populations.
According to the New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA), noxious weeds are the second largest threat to endangered native plant species in New Mexico.
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You can contact Mike Smith at 575-628-5546 or by email at MSmith@currentargus.com. @ArgusMichae on Twitter.