Independent Staff Report
WEST HOLLYWOOD — The city Code Compliance Division works to maintain neighborhood livability by recognizing diverse and competing interests and working to find balance.
The code enforcement team is responsible for enforcing all provisions of the city’s laws and ordinances, as governed by the West Hollywood Municipal Code, and it actively addresses community concerns about a variety of regulated issues.
To respond to an uptick in feedback about three specific concerns, the city’s code enforcement team is increasing outreach to residents and performing proactive inspections regarding leaf blowers, trash and recycling bins and overgrown parkways or hedges.
Electric leaf-blowers are the only leaf-blowers permitted in the city. The use of gas-powered leaf-blowers by residents or gardeners is prohibited and a violation may result in a fine ranging from $100 to $500 with a $50 administrative fee applied.
Leaving trash and recycling bins next to the curb indefinitely is prohibited. Bins may only be placed at the curb after 5:30 p.m. the day before collection; they must be at the curb by 6 a.m. on collection day and removed by 8 p.m. on collection day. Violations may result in a fine ranging from $250 to $1,000, with a $50 administrative fee applied.
Vegetation that is not cut back and extends into the sidewalk or street areas causes an obstruction for pedestrians and vehicles. More importantly, this prevents and/or hinders pedestrians who use a wheelchair or a walker from properly accessing sidewalk areas. Allowing vegetation to protrude into sidewalks and streets is a violation and may result in a fine ranging from $250 to $1,000, with a $50 administrative fee applied.
The city’s code enforcement team will be distributing warning notices in English and Spanish about leaf-blowers, trash bins and overgrown hedges to hand out to residents and to gardeners when a violation is observed. As part of an expanded effort, the city also will provide informational notices to its contracted parking enforcement and block-by-block personnel who may observe these types of issues in residential neighborhoods.
Property owners in residential neighborhoods are responsible for maintaining parkways and keeping hedges trimmed so they do not become overgrown and impact pedestrian walkways. The parkway is the strip of land between the street and the walkway; the parkway and walkway, together, make up the sidewalk, which is part of the public right-of-way.
In West Hollywood, property owners are responsible for maintaining parkway plantings, except for street trees, which are maintained by the city. The city’s parkway design guide helps residents with information about choosing and maintaining plantings.
As a garden-maintenance reminder, the city has adopted a resolution urging community members to cease using pesticides containing glyphosate (the broad-spectrum systemic herbicide and crop desiccant in products such as Roundup) on their properties. In addition, the city is encouraging residents to voluntarily reduce water use to help preserve the region’s water storage reserves in response to extreme drought conditions impacting California.
The city’s code enforcement team actively addresses a range of other residential neighborhood concerns, such as noise, property maintenance, vacant properties, construction, zoning (short-term rentals and land use activities), and impediments in the public right-of-way (sidewalk, parkway, alley, or street). Community members who may have concerns are encouraged to reach out to the city’s code enforcement team by submitting a service request, which is a first step in investigating potential violations of the municipal code.
The primary goal of code enforcement is to gain voluntary compliance so that residents better understand their responsibilities in maintaining their properties and preserving quality of life.
Community members may also call the city’s code enforcement line at (323) 848-6516.