City Hall

Speaking of the City's Graffiti Ordinance ...

Well, maybe you weren't. But the city council's Quality of Life Committee is right about now, because, as it turns out, the city's graffiti ordinance is, in some spots, in conflict with recently enacted state law dealing with graffiti removal. As in: State law demands owners adios-mofo that tag within 15 days of being notified; Dallas City Code allows for a full three weeks before penalties kick in. The state also has two outs the city doesn't allow: A property owner isn't responsible for the graffiti if it's "located on transportation infrastructure," and the state says don't do nothin' if removing the graffiti "would create a hazard for the person doing the removal." Good to know.

But here's the biggest conflict of them all:

Under the new State Law a city may not issue a graffiti violation notice unless the city has offered to remove the graffiti free of charge, and the owner has refused the offer. The City Ordinance does not state the removal service offered by the City is free of charge.
And why not ...? Anyway. The City Attorney's got some rewriting to do. In the meantime, I give you this: On the drive home last night, heading west on Walnut Hill Lane just past Marsh, I espied this fresh work of art plainly visible to anyone with eyes wide open. Offered in case you need, oh, a Valentine's Day card, let's say. The 7-year-old who lives in my house has already wondered: But what does it mean?

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Robert Wilonsky
Contact: Robert Wilonsky

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