Code enforcement crackdown in Richland

Code enforcement crackdown in Richland »Play Video

RICHLAND, Wash. - "We just do our best to kinda keep up with the work flow," said code enforcement officer Jason Montgomery.

With the number of calls pouring into the Richland Code Enforcement Complaint Line, that's no easy task. From tall weeds, to unkept lawns to junk on neighbor's driveways, officers have their hands full.
Their biggest complaints? Houses that are all but been abandoned.

Neighbor Tina White said, "I've had other neighbors complain so I've called the city of Richland to find out what the heck's going on."

Only two full-time officers cover the whole city of Richland, so responding takes time.

The added calls are adding to the workload. Sixty-five more complaints registered so far this year over the same time last year.
Those calls that required action also jumped by 18 percent.

It's not just tall grass and weeds that code enforcement is interested in cleaning out, they're also paying close attention to vehicles left on the side of the road.

Especially vehicles that seem to be in pieces and not running.

Officers are pounding the pavement and keeping tabs. If a boat, trailer or camper has been sitting longer than 5 days a warning will be issued.

Jason Montgomery continues, "There's some times people don't understand why the ordinances exist, but they're there and we have to enforce them so we just do it as politely as we can."

Neighbors like Tina White stand behind the officers but want more action.

"I'm frustrated about it, but there's nothing more I can do. I can bug them all the time, but, you know," she said.

They'll do their best to juggle calls while clearing the streets.

Officers say they rely on you to be their eyes and ears. A fix might not happen overnight.

To file code enforcement complaint visit their website here.