As we go through what seems to be a rainy season, lawn mowing has become more frequent and so does the possibility of debris.
That is why city officials in Iowa Park have made some changes to the yard waste ordinance.
Before residents were only required to mow their lawn and nothing was stated regarding the grass clippings, now after many complaints from residents, city officials in Iowa Park are taking a stand and say safety is the top priority.
As of last Monday, Iowa Park residents are being encouraged to be good stewards ensuring all debris and grass clippings from mowing their lawns remain on their property rather than in the road.
“There are a few property owners who have consistently blown their grass out into the street and onto the sidewalks and the city has never had much leverage to deal with those,” Iowa Park City Manager Jerry Flemming said.
While this is an aesthetic problem, the major concern with city officials is the hazard this can be for motorcyclists and the drainage systems.
“We’ve been working with the county and the state and property owners to make sure that when the waterfalls that we have a place for the water to go,” Flemming said. “When you get a lot of vegetative debris in the streets, it can sometimes block that water and potentially flood out other properties.”
That is why Iowa Park Code Enforcer Greg Polly drafted the ordinance and presented to the city council that passed the ordinance last Monday, that now makes it illegal for residents to leave their grass clippings in the street.
“We’re not trying to be mean, we’re just trying to keep the city clean and keep it safe,” Polly said.
This has proven effective in other cities such as Burkburnett and Wichita Falls.
“We actually have not ever cited anybody specifically with a ticket when it comes to illicit discharge,” Public Works Deputy Director Teresa Rose said.
City officials are hoping residents do their part in addressing the environmental problems in the city.
First offenders will receive a notice and upon a second notice, they will be required to appear in the municipal court where they could be fined anywhere between $500 and $2000.