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Enforcement reflects the community

Original post made on Jul 14, 2017

More than perhaps any other City Hall program, code enforcement is a custom-built operation that mirrors its community.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, July 14, 2017, 12:00 AM

Comments (7)

13 people like this
Posted by Exceptional?
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jul 14, 2017 at 12:21 am

It's truly dismal when the press can write, "For code enforcement, the Sand Hill case was an exceptional success story." Sand Hill has been out of compliance for over two years. During that time, it announced Andronico's and Lucky's were negotiating to come and then both fell through. Who knows if the latest little grocery store will or not. It's not clear that the public benefit clause the city is enforcing will even hold up in court.

And that's a "success story." God have pity on all the other cases in Palo Alto where developers aren't doing what they promised.

6 people like this
Posted by NeedMore
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 14, 2017 at 9:08 am

We need much more code enforcement - it takes years for violators to be fined and the same people can have an issue at another property and the City starts over. Repeat violators should not be given extra time with fining starting immediately. It is time the City gets serious about enforcement so that the development community doesn't treat it as a cost of doing business.

Currently a rational person would simply ignore the code and pay the small fine IF and when it might occur a few years down the road. The amount of money involved far outweighs a fine in most cases (Edgewood might be an exception but we're talking about a huge corporation in that case).

I hope the community will take these articles as a chance to start reporting more violations using the 311 App. Things like businesses running out of homes, illegal office complexes in retail locations, illegal signage, encroachments on to public easements for private use, noise, etc.

I'm aware of several hotels running in residential neighborhoods and will be reporting them.

7 people like this
Posted by Please enforce code
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Jul 14, 2017 at 10:37 am

Palo Alto is going to be overrun by developers and businesses unless we abide by our residential policies, which are enforced in code. Silicon Valley seems to have this obnoxious principle of "Go ahead, ask for forgiveness later", which has to stop, since code violations can be very time-consuming to undo. Let's put more effort into enforcing the policies that are already on the books, and making sure that our City is resident-first going forward.

6 people like this
Posted by Stronger Code Enforcement Needed
a resident of Community Center
on Jul 14, 2017 at 4:01 pm

Sand Hill Edgewood Plaza was a sucess because the citizens went to city council. Our code enforcement needs teeth so a massive citizen effort is not required to get our existing munipal codes enforced. I

2 people like this
Posted by Jerry
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 14, 2017 at 4:22 pm

When Palo Alto starts to actually enforce the gas-powered leaf blower ban, I will start to believe that our codes actually matter. The way to tell that codes are not going to be enforced is to see if the code words "complaint based" are part of the original passage of the bill by our city council. Why should we have to complain to have our codes enforced?

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Posted by Marie
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 15, 2017 at 5:04 pm

Marie is a registered user.

Actually, I've seen some improvement in the enforcement of the gas-powered leaf blower ban. I've gotten calls back from the police, and police have checked out the complaint. Unfortunately, the offenders rarely wait around. I have warned neighboring owners and gardeners that I will report them. This does seem to help but sadly, sometimes means strained relations with said neighbors and gardeners. I wish the police when patrolling would proactively warn offenders when seeing them on their rounds. I don't want to be the bad guy, but these leaf blowers are loud and really degrade air quality.

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Posted by Jerry
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 15, 2017 at 9:00 pm

Marie, I appreciate your efforts! I have done the same thing. I got the same results as you. Yes, the police on patrol should just write tickets when they see violations...the problem will be over within a month. However, I think you are a bit naïve, because the code was written as "complaint based", and this means there was never any intention to enforce it. Our city council just gets through sticky issues by papering over them...been going on for decades.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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