Inspectors looking for overgrown lawns, other violations at Indianapolis homes

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (May 28, 2015)-- The Indianapolis Department of Code Enforcement has started its summer sweep to bust homeowners who aren't taking care of their yards.

Inspectors are hitting areas with the most complaints and repeat offenders to check for violations. If the grass and weeds stand taller than a foot, it is a violation of the City code and the property owner will receive a written warning with a five-day deadline to clean up the lawn.

If owners don't follow through, the City will send out a vendor that will mow the yard for them and then slap the owner with a $353 fine.

"We hate to do it, but it's something that needs to be done," said DCE Public Information Officer Dimitri Kyser.

The sweeps seem to be working.

According to DCE, the City found 17,211 violations and cut about 14,262 lawns. Those numbers dropped to 11,145 violations in 2014 and 10,865 lawns mowed.

Mowing your yard may not seem like a big deal, but Kyser said overgrown lawns can lead to illegal dumping, animal control issues, and even squatting.

"They'll take notice of that... nobody's tending to that property," said Kyser. "When your neighbors come out and they’re mowing their lawns and their taking pride in their home, you know they want their neighbors to do the same thing. You want to be a good neighbor.”

If you notice a neglected lawn, you can report it by calling the Mayor's Action Center at (317) 327-4MAC (4622). If you have received a violation notice, you can reach the department by calling the automated HW&G Help Line: at (317) 327-5577 or emailing  weedsquestions@indy.gov.