Stricter rules to cut down on tall grass in Petersburg

PETERSBURG, VA (WWBT) - Stricter rules are now in place to help cut down on overgrown grass and weeds in Petersburg. City council voted to tighten regulations.

Resident, Leticia Chaffin calls the overgrown grass next door to her home a health hazard.

"It's a disaster. My grass is cut. My neighbor's grass is cut, but to the right of me no one has cut that grass, it's a problem. You got rodents running around - spider webs. It's ridiculous," said Chaffin.

The city agrees and has made multiple changes to the law.

After receiving a warning that you're in violation you have less time to correct the problem.

"As oppose to having ten days to rectify the situation you now have 48 hours and its now under the city managers control and not the health department which is run by the state," said Petersburg City spokeswoman, Joanne Williams.

Under the stricter rules grass taller than 12 inches is a violation --  before it was 14 inches.

City leaders say the changes are necessary.

"You ride through the city and you see lots of weeds and grass as tall as you and I. It leads to more blight," said Williams.

If the property owner doesn't comply with the new rules the city will send a crew to cut the grass.

"The cost of that will be applied to the real estate bill on that piece of property," said Williams.

Resident, Charles Stamford is happy to hear about the changes. He mows his lawn twice a week. He hopes the stricter guidelines will help clean-up the city.

"I like a nice clean safe neighborhood so when you ride pass it looks good -- not abandoned," said Stamford.

The city is encouraging folks to contact code compliance  to report excessively tall grass in Petersburg. The number is 733-2410.

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