Moberly Enforces New Yard Abatement System

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MOBERLY - The City of Moberly implemented a new yard abatement system a few weeks ago. The system aims to make the process of punishing violators quicker.

"Timing was an issue. People would see the weeds grow really tall and complain. We had to send out notices, identify the property owners, send out the notifications, give them a certain amount of time to show up, and wait to get them to court. If at that time it wasn't abated, we would go out and mow the grass. At that time the neighbors had probably seen the grass growing up that height, and waiting for up to two months to get it abated," Moberly Public Works Director Tom Sanders said.

If the grass grows 10 inches, residents are given a 72 hour violation. They have 72 hours to mow the grass or the city mows it for them.

The residents pay a minimum $75 fine for the city's service.

Under the old system residents got a ticket in the mail, had to come to court, and pay an $84 fine. If the yard had not been mowed by the court date, then the city would mow it for an additional cost.
Public Works said this system saves a lot of time.

Public Works abates at least 50 yards per week, but 90 percent of these yards belong to people who aren't actually living there at the moment.

Moberly neighbors like the new system.

"This grass here was horrible. The city came in and took care of it. Nobody lives here. It doesn't get taken care of. And I'm all for the 72 hours, get it done, and get it over with," said Moberly resident Russell Roberts.