HAZLETON, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A warning Tuesday night to property owners in the City of Hazleton to keep your properties clean, or you could face hefty fines.

This comers as a recently passed “Quality of Life Ordinance” is now being enforced.

City officials say their mission is simple, to clean up neighborhoods and improve the quality of life. Violators of the ordinance can face fines from several hundred to several thousand dollars. 

This is an example of what city officials say is simply not acceptable and won’t be tolerated..  You can hardly see this home on Diamond Avenue because of overgrown trees.

“To make sure our properties are maintained the best way that they can and the ordinance basically stripped down days. Listen you know you can’t store certain things on your property. You can’t have your grass over a certain amount of inches, it’s just a way to keep the city looking its best,” said Gary Perna, Assistant to Mayor Jeff Cusat.

City Council passed the ordinance last week the measure is designed to put more pressure on those property owners to clean up their properties or they could face stiff penalties.  The city is responding to citizen complaints as well as looking for things such as high grass, abandoned vehicles, storage of trash, and animal waste.

“Our Code Enforcement officers will go out document what goes on then they will file citations with the Magistrate’s office. That doesn’t mean we won’t work with a property owner to correct the issue,” Perna stated.

Eyewitness News went to a home that is on the city’s radar because of the high grass and weeds in the backyard. The owner received a warning to clean up or face a court hearing and possible citations. The owner didn’t want to appear on camera.

Eyewitness News asked the homeowner for comment and when they plan on cleaning up and received this answer in return, “I’ll talk another time. I’m doing a few things,” the homeowner said. Eyewitness News asked, But you are going to clean it up? to which the homeowner responded, “Yeah by today, they gave me a day, that’s good.”

Victor Perez is President of the Dominican House of Hazleton. An organization that helps Latino immigrants adapt to their new home-He expressed concerns recently that some members of the Latino community may not understand the new ordinance in part because of a language barrier.

“We understand that due process explain that you can give opportunity to the person to fix the issue before bringing it to the court,” said Victor Perez-Pres. Dominican House of Hazleton.