Unsightly weeds on your property could cost you

Created: 08/01/2014 5:33 PM
By: Stuart Dyson, KOB Eyewitness News 4

The rainfall New Mexico has been getting is helping to ease the drought, but there are a few downsides to it. One of them is a weed invasion and we’re talking about weed with a street value of zero, or even a negative number. They’re popping up all over the Albuquerque metro area, and if they pop up on your property – they’re illegal!

After four years of drought it’s easy to forget how obnoxious and unsightly weeds are when they start sprouting in the summer rainy season. If they’re on your property and they’re more than four inches high or four inches in diameter, they’re against the law and you’ve got a violation on your hands. If the city takes you to court you could be looking at fines that start at $300, but the city enforcement people would rather not go that way.

“We will notify folks and give them 14 days, two weeks, to comply,” said City Planning Department Enforcement Director Brennon Williams. “We come back after that and if they’ve made progress and if they’re making a good faith effort, then we’ll continue to work with them.”

We found plenty of weeds in a short cruise through the neighborhoods around Downtown, including some on city property, like a median strip on Central Avenue and the old vacant firehouse on 47th St. City Weed & Litter workers will take care of that. Meanwhile, though weed complaints are coming in at a clip of about 70 to 80 per day, and will soon probably escalate to about 200 a day.

“Other than diehard baseball fans, I’m probably one of the few guys that doesn’t like to see it rain,” Williams said. “That’s simply because the call volume increases like crazy.”

So look out, the weed war starts now. If they find you in violation you’ll get a legal notice in the mail.

Meanwhile, more good news from the rainy season: city officials say they’re watering parks and golf courses far less frequently, at a savings of about $250,000 last month.

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