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Norwalk City Council Moves Forward With Vacant Properties Ordinance

The City Council approved the first reading of what would become an enforceable ordinance against property owners of vacant properties

Norwalk Amends Vacant 

Properties Ordinance 

Norwalk, CA – On Tuesday, April 19, 2022, the Norwalk City Council was presented with an ordinance that amends the Norwalk municipal code to include standards for boarding, fencing, and maintaining vacant properties. The ordinance would also amend standards for foreclosed and abandoned properties.

Back in 2013, the City Council adopted an ordinance to establish registration, maintenance, and security requirements for vacant property that is abandoned and subject to foreclosure proceedings.

The amendment did not provide standards for the city to monitor, maintain and manage undeveloped or vacant sites that are not in default or foreclosure. It also does not specify any standards for boarding, screening, or enforcing on-site security on such properties. The new ordinance would help mitigate enforcement issues for city staff.

“This is a big step in holding property owners accountable for not properly maintaining vacant properties,” stated Mayor Rick Ramirez, “Several residents have voiced their concerns about this topic and the City Council wants to ensure the health, safety, and welfare of residents and the community.”

Vacant properties, buildings, and structures that are not yet distressed create similar public nuisance conditions that lower property values, create aesthetic decay, loss of character, and/or discourages potential buyers from purchasing adjacent properties.

The proposed ordinance will now move to a second reading at a future City Council meeting.