New Cincy plan to reduce neighborhood blight

Mar 6, 2015

A house on Rosement Ave. in Price Hill that would be targeted under the city's new proposal to reduce neighborhood blight.
Credit Provided/City of Cincinnati

Cincinnati Council could vote in a few weeks on a proposal that would let the city do a better job with litter and weed enforcement in the city's neighborhoods.  

Mayor John Cranley announced the plan Friday in Price Hill after a task force spent several months developing it.

"A vast majority of homeowners and residents work diligently to beautify their communities," Cranley said in a statement. "Unfortunately, there are some absentee landlords who cause real problems for them.  Those landlords don't keep their yards cut and clean of junk, which harms the quality of life and can lessen the property values of an entire street.”

Litter and trash near a home on Rosemont Avenue that Cincinnati officials are using as an example to enhance blight removal efforts.
Credit Provided/City of Cincinnati

Provisions in Mayor Cranley’s proposal, called the private lot abatement program, include:

  • Reducing the height requirement required for citing overgrown weeds from 10 inches to 6 inches.
  • Increasing the fines and fees for overgrown weeds and litter for repeat offenders, ranging from $500 to $2,500.
  • Empowering community partners, such as community councils, to abate weed and litter violations on behalf of the City of Cincinnati.  The cost of such action will be owed by the lot owners.
  • Pursuing unpaid fines and fees by using property liens and court judgments against repeat offenders.
  • Using modern technology to more efficiently cite and track owners who do not maintain their properties.

Cranley said the city wants to increase its abatement activity.  The goal is to clean 1,000 lots per year.  Right now the city does about 350 per year. 

The city has received more than 27,000 complaints about blight since 2012.