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Boardman adding violation fees to tax bill

Maintenance liens getting tacked on to property taxes

BOARDMAN — Fees associated with property violations in Boardman will be added to property tax bills.

A resolution was approved during the township trustees meeting this week that allows the measure.

Liens for property maintenance are rare, with usually about five cases per year, said Krista Beniston, zoning director.

This year, there were only three violations filed, as the courts largely were closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Beniston noted.

Violations are issued when property owners are not in compliance with zoning codes. The cases then go to court and if they are found guilty and still don’t take action, a lien is proposed, Beniston said.

The fees will be imposed on this year’s taxes when the billing cycle goes out next spring, Beniston said.

Funds collected through property violations go into the general fund, which is from where funding for the zoning department comes.

Earlier this year, Beniston said zoning department staff have been collecting data on vacancies and housing conditions.

Beniston said according to a 2016 survey, there were about 400 vacant properties, with 36 rated as in poor condition.

Citations are not being distributed as a result of the process.

Using an app, LandGrid, zoning staff are going neighborhood by neighborhood to inspect the parcels.

Zoning employees usually have a bright vest or shirt identifying that they are from the township, and always have identification, Beniston said.

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