Posts tagged “code of ordinances

SeeClickFix remains a valuable reporting tool

By Julie Caler, Code Enforcement Supervisor

See. Click. Fix.

It’s as easy as that for citizens to report code enforcement, public works, and other non-emergency issues to the City of College Station.

The online application allows anyone with internet access to report and easily track updates to their concerns.  It empowers you and your local government to take care of and improve our neighborhoods in a tangible and meaningful way.

SeeClickFix can be accessed through desktop computers, smartphones or other mobile devices. Better yet, it’s simple to use and creates a higher level of accountability through timely communication between you and your city.

How do you use it?

The most popular way to use SeeClickFix is with a smartphone or tablet. Mobile devices make it easy to take and submit photos, which help city staff quickly identify problems and determine how to resolve them as efficiently as possible. Go to your device’s app store for a free download. The system can also be accessed through the city’s mobile-friendly website.

Pinning or entering an exact address will help staff locate and resolve the issue in a timelier manner.  Remember, pictures say a thousand words so whenever possible, please provide a picture of your concern.  If you have specific questions, call Code Enforcement at 979-764-6363, and we will be happy to answer your questions.

In addition, problems phoned into Code Enforcement are entered into SeeClickFix, which allows us to count the numbers and types of reported cases accurately.

How does it work?

SeeClickFix incorporates code enforcement, public works, parks and even outside agencies such as the Texas Department of Transportation to address the issues you report. While code enforcement is the clearinghouse for SeeClickFix, we ensure the proper agency addresses your specific issue.

Sometimes we receive updates, and sometimes we don’t.  But we can always provide you with direct contact information if you have specific questions for that agency.

SeeClickFix is not a social media site but an online reporting work order system. That means posting personal information or vulgar or inappropriate language will cause your post to be flagged and removed.

Who responds and how?

The type of concern reported determines who responds. While most issues are directed to code enforcement, not all issues are code related. Most potholes, street lights/sign issues are sent to either Public Works or TxDOT, depending on the location. Issues concerning parks are sent to the Parks and Recreation Department and so on.

Each agency has procedures for responding to concerns on SCF, and while we may get updates from some agencies, we don’t get updates from them all.

Code Enforcement will respond to issues that are possible code violations. An officer will investigate, and if a violation is found, the officer will proceed with a code case in our tracking system.

Some cases take longer than others to resolve, such as junk vehicles or weeds and grass, but a typical case is resolved within 10 days.

SeeClickFix isn’t 911

SeeClickFix isn’t monitored 24/7, so don’t report public safety concerns such as suspicious persons, robberies, threats to life, etc. on. Always call 911 when a real emergency exists.

SeeClickFix has proven to be a valuable tool for our citizens and has helped the city become more efficient and effective at resolving everyday issues. We hope you will continue to use it when you see something that needs to be addressed.

Just go to seeclickfix.com/college-station to report an issue.

Keep seeing and clicking, and we’ll keep fixing!

 


0000018EPAbout the Blogger

Code Enforcement Supervisor Julie Caler has been with the City of College Station for almost two decades.


 

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Live Blog: Thursday’s city council meetings (Sept. 27)

(L-R): Bob Brick, Linda Harvell, Jerome Rektorik, Karl Mooney (mayor), John Nichols, Barry Moore, James Benham.

By Colin Killian, Public Communications Manager

Welcome to our live blog from the College Station City Council’s workshop and regular meetings on Thursday, Sept. 27. It’s not the official minutes.

The meetings can be watched live on Suddenlink channel 19 or online. An archive of previous council meetings is available on the website.

5:20 p.m.

The workshop has started. No action was taken out of executive session.

5:30 p.m.

Consent Agenda Discussion

The council will vote on items listed on the consent agenda during tonight’s regular meeting. Councilmembers pulled this consent item for workshop discussion:

  • Towing Ordinance: The proposed amendment would add any motor vehicle unlawfully parked or violating any city code may be towed at the owner’s or operator’s expense.

6:26 p.m.

Code Enforcement Ordinance Revisions

The council discussed possible amendments to city ordinances to provide more consistent code enforcement. Points of discussion include open storage, vegetation, right-of-way maintenance, abandoned shopping carts, and the parking or storing of recreational vehicles, trailers or trucks.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

6:38 p.m.

Mayor Karl Mooney adjourned the workshop after the council discussed its calendar and received committee reports. The regular meeting will start after a short break.

6:47 p.m.

The regular meeting has started.

6:50 p.m.

Proclamations

Mayor Mooney presented a proclamation for College Station firefighters’ “Fill the Boot” campaign to benefit the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

6:58 p.m.

Hear Visitors

Two people spoke during Hear Visitors when citizens might address the council on any item that doesn’t appear on the posted agenda.

  • James Benham recognized Marine Cpl. Richard Waller as part of the Fallen Heroes Memorial program. The 22-year-old Fort Worth native died April 7, 2006, while conducting combat operations in Al Anbar province, Iraq.
  • Justin Ikpo spoke about criminal behavior in his neighborhood.

7:00 p.m.

Consent Agenda

The council voted unanimously to approve these consent agenda items:

  • A BuyBoard contract purchase of $138,750 for traffic signal cabinets from Paradigm Traffic Systems Inc.
  • Renewal of a $230,000 Xpedient Mail contract for printing and mailing services.
  • The expenditure of funds for FY19 for items exempt from competitive bidding and other expenditures for inter-local contracts or fees mandated by state law that are greater than $100,000.
  • Adopted fees, rates and charges as provided by Chapter 2 of the city’s Code of Ordinances.
  • An increase the FY18 expenditure limit by $55,000 for a new FY 2018 expenditure limit of $145,000 for police uniforms, body armor and accessories from Miller Uniforms & Emblems.
  • Added language to city ordinances for towing unlawfully parked vehicles.
  • Amended city ordinances related to home solicitation.
  • A contract for the grant of federal HOME Investment Partnership Program Grant Community Housing Development Organization (CHDO) set-aside funds with Elder-Aid, Inc. in the amount of $200,000 for acquisition and rehabilitation of two dwelling units at 3416-3418 Normand to be used as affordable rental housing for income-eligible elderly households.
  • The $54,224.50 purchase of traffic signs, prefabricated signs and sign blanks from Vulcan Signs Inc. for and the $61,585 purchase of traffic sign hardware and posts from Dobie Supply.
  • An advance funding agreement with the State of Texas, acting through the Texas Department of Transportation, for the Cain/Deacon project.
  • Six master agreements for Real Estate Appraisal Services: Duff & Phelps, LLC; JLL Valuation & Advisory Services, LLC; Lowery Property Advisors, LLC; Paul Hornsby & Company; S.T. Lovett & Associates; Valbridge Property Advisors.
  • Amended the funding agreement with Experience Bryan College Station to increase the amount for FY18 by $194,423 for a total of $594,423 related to the CVB Grant Program.
  • The second reading on a non-exclusive pipeline franchise ordinance with Hawkwood Energy Midstream for pipeline facilities for transporting petroleum products and byproducts.
  • Amended the city’s Code of Ordinances regarding false alarm fees.
  • Amended the city’s Code of Ordinances regarding Fire Department and Planning and Development Services afterhours inspection fees.
  • Changes to guidelines for the city’s housing assistance program funded with grants from the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

 Council voted on this consent item separately and approved it unanimously:

  • FY19 premiums not to exceed $516,000 for excess liability and workers’ compensation insurance, property/boiler & machinery, commercial crime, EMT liability, auto property damage, cyber liability, unmanned aircraft liability and property, and special events policies.

7:08 p.m. 

FY18 Budget Amendment

After a public hearing, the council approved a $3.8 million amendment to the FY18 city budget. See pages 282-284 for a list of amended items.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

7:13 p.m. 

FY19 City Budget

The council unanimously approved the city budget for the 2018-19 fiscal year and ratified the increase in property tax revenue.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

7:20 p.m. 

FY19 Property Tax Rate

The council unanimously adopted a property tax rate of .505841 cents per $100 of assessed value for FY19, a .08341-cent increase from the FY18 rate.

Here’s the PowerPoint presentation:

7:22 p.m. 

BVSWMA Board Appointment

The council unanimously appointed Mayor Mooney to another term on the BVSWMA Board of Directors.

7:24 p.m.

The council discussed and reviewed future agenda items.

7:24 p.m.

Mayor Mooney adjourned the meeting. The council meets again on Thursday, Oct. 11.

 


About the Blogger

Colin Killian (@ColinKillian) has been with the City of College Station since 2010 after serving 23 years as associate media relations director for the Texas A&M Athletics Department. Killian has also worked as a reporter and editor for the Corpus Christi Caller-Times and Lewisville News. A native of Hobbs, N.M., he graduated from Texas Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism/political science.


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City launches improved Code of Ordinances website

By Adam Falco, Senior Assistant City Attorney

Navigating 1,500 pages of local ordinances has never been simple, even in the digital age. But starting today, the City of College Station has a new online system to make it easier for you to find the information you need.

The new website organizes the code into a logical and sequential order. Now you can do key word searches to find everything from chickens to the Dixie Chicken.

Last year, the City Secretary’s Office, city attorneys, city staff and a staff attorney at Municode reviewed the Code of Ordinances, removing conflicting or obsolete ordinances. We changed no other content.

MuniCode then reorganized – or recodified — the Code by matching the structure used by many other cities use across the country. The new streamlined Code is searchable by chapter, article, division, and section. The Unified Development Ordinance remains substantially the same and is an appendix.

The website also includes a searchable City Charter with a fee resolution that contains city fees, rates, and charges. Comparative tables are included to locate old section numbers and state law references.

The City Council approved the recodification on Aug. 10. As always, a hard copy of the Code of Ordinances is available at the City Secretary’s Office.

College Station Code of Ordinances

 

 


About the Blogger

Senior Assistant City Attorney Adam Falco has been with the City of College Station since 2007. He received his law degree from the Oklahoma City University School of Law in 2006 and earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and government from Texas A&M in 2003. Adam is a Houston native.


 

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4 ways to help curbside collections work to perfection

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By Julie Caler, Code Enforcement Supervisor

Let’s talk trash!  More specifically, how and when to dispose of it to avoid costly code violations.

1. Bag your trash.

How you dispose of your trash makes a difference. It may be easier to toss the items in the city-provided container, but that isn’t the way to go.  If you don’t bag your trash, it can fly all over your neighborhood when the garbage truck picks it up.

2. Use the right container.

Household trash NEVER goes in the blue recycling containers. That’s been a huge problem in recent months as residents grow accustomed to our Single-Stream Recycling program.

3. Know the collection schedule.

Many new residents don’t know when their trash, recyclables or bulky items are scheduled to be collected. To find out, call Public Works at 979-764-3690 or go to the Sanitation website. For the collection schedule, enter your street name and it will show your garbage day. If you go to the Single-Stream Recycling website, you can find your recycling week by clicking on the Collection Roster and looking for your street.

If you miss a collection day, call Public Works and ask to be put on the missed list. The Sanitation Division may not get to your container that day, but they will issue a work order to ensure your trash or bulky items get picked up.

You also should avoid placing bulky items out more than 48 hours before your scheduled collection.

4. Bring in your containers. 

Now that you know your collection day, you’ll need to remember to bring in your container in after it’s been collected. It may seem easier to leave the container at the curb so you won’t have to put it out every week, but that’s a code violation.

Some homeowners associations have deed restrictions requiring you to screen your container, but the city doesn’t. We don’t enforce deed restrictions, either, so please keep the container next to your house.

MyWaste App

The MyWaste app puts the sanitation schedule and other information at your fingertips. You can even set an alert to remind you of your trash day. Click here or go to your favorite app store to download.

It’s the responsibility of the Code Enforcement Division to work with you to help make College Station a healthy, safe and aesthetically pleasing place to live.  Please contact us at 979-764-6363 or codeenforcement@cstx.gov if you have questions.

 


0000018EPAbout the Author

Code Enforcement Supervisor Julie Caler has been with the City of College Station for 17 years.


 

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Why gorilla art is permissible but rooftop beds aren’t

By Julie Caler, Code Enforcement Supervisor

Outdoor living areas have become increasingly popular, especially as do-it-yourself projects. Lots of people enjoy larger and more functional backyard patios that are out of public view.

But the latest trend is to turn front yards and carports into outdoor living rooms complete with big-screen TVs, sectional couches, and coffee tables.

We even see an occasional bed on a roof.

bed on roof

(more…)


Moving out? Consider the options for your unwanted stuff

rolloff4

By Julie Caler, Code Enforcement Supervisor

The end of each semester means many Texas A&M and Blinn students are graduating and preparing to move out of their apartments and houses. As part of the process, they discover they no longer need much of what they’ve accumulated through their college years.

For the City of College Station’s Code Enforcement Division, that can lead to problems.

Many apartment complexes don’t always order the large rectangular trash containers in time to accommodate the high volume of discarded items. When this happens, the tenant sometimes resorts to finding inappropriate places to dump their unwanted items, including commercial dumpsters behind businesses.

You may not realize that constitutes theft of service or illegal dumping, which are violations of city ordinance. After all, someone else is paying for service at that location. If we can track down the culprit, we’ll issue a costly citation that graduates certainly don’t need to deal with right now.

We’ve discovered that many of the discarded items could be recycled or reused. With that in mind, here’s a solution you may not have considered: Instead of illegally dumping your reusable stuff in someone else’s bin, how about donating it to your favorite charity?

Here’s a short list of local organizations that will accept household items, including furniture and food:

Brazos Valley Council on Alcohol and Substance Abuse
Accepts most household items.
405 West 28th St., Bryan (979-823-5300)

Brazos Valley Food Bank
Food donations may be dropped off weekdays from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
1514 Shiloh Ave., Bryan (979-779-3663)

Grace Bible Church’s The Big Giveaway
Accepts household items and furniture.
701 Anderson St., College Station (979-695-2000, ext. 111)

A&M Church of Christ’s iHouse Market
Accepts household items and furniture.
Contact ihouseaggieland@gmail.com to arrange pick-up or drop-off.

Project Unity
Accepts household items and furniture.
1400 Beck St., Bryan (979-774-6788)

Twin City Mission
Call 979-822-7511 to schedule pick-up of large items.
Drop-off Locations:
>> Second Chance 1, 803 Wellborn Road, College Station
>> Second Chance 2, 3808 Old College, Bryan
>> Alice’s Attic, 424 North Main, Bryan (979-822-2979)
Accepts household items and furniture.

St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church
Accepts household items and furniture.
Contact ddkingau@gmail.com or 979-739-5582 to arrange drop-off or pick-up.

If you live in a residential single-family neighborhood, you can either put your items on the curb on your designated bulk day or take them to the Twin Oaks Landfill, which offers a free dumping service with your utility bill.

If you live in an apartment, you should dispose of your items in the roll-off bin provided by your complex. You also have the option to take them to the landfill.

Because of the additional volume of discarded items, it may take our hard-working sanitation workers longer than normal to complete their collection routes. We appreciate your patience!

For questions about Code Enforcement, call 979-764-6363 or visit us at cstx.gov/codeenforcement. For questions about sanitation services, call 979-764-3690.

 


0000018EPAbout the Author

Code Enforcement Supervisor Julie Caler has been with the City of College Station for 17 years.

Previous blogs by Julie Caler


 

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