Dothan city leaders clear another hurdle toward changing abatement process

Published: Feb. 18, 2020 at 2:09 PM CST
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If you have ever lived near an overgrown property, you know what an eyesore it can be.

That’s why the Dothan City Commission is taking steps to change the abatement process.

Right now, it can take several weeks to get an overgrown property cleaned up, but on Tuesday morning, city leaders cleared another hurdle which would make the abatement process cheaper and faster to complete.

The measure still has to be approved by the state legislature and signed by the governor, but with nearly two dozen nuisance properties around the city, Dothan’s planning director said the change is necessary.

“When weeds and grass get very tall they become a fire hazard,” said Todd McDonald.

“They become a harbor for rodents and insects and snakes, as well as potential fire hazards. So, that's why the law allows the city to abate these as a public nuisance in the first place, to address the health concerns that arise from tall weeds and grass,” McDonald said.

McDonald said last year alone, the city received more than 400 complaints about overgrown properties.