Dirty Dozen Violations


Morgantown Code Enforcement Department stays busy, issuing permits for construction and remodeling, reviewing construction and electrical documents, and performing inspections based on permitted work. It uses the 2012 International Property Maintenance Code to monitor all:
  • Commercial buildings
  • Existing structures-residential homes
  • Fences
  • Retaining walls safe for residents
  • Sidewalks
  • Storage buildings

12 Most Violated Codes

Code Enforcement does see its share of violations. Officers from the department compiled a Dirty Dozen list that outlines the top 12 most violated Property Maintenance Codes.

Read over the list below to make sure you don't end up with a notice on your door!

#1 Trash

This becomes a problem when it is found blowing around on sidewalks, in the streets, and in yards.

City Ordinance 523.03: Place litter (solid waste or recyclables) in containers so as to prevent it from being carried or deposited by the elements or passers by upon any street, sidewalk, public place, or upon private property.
Trash Can

#2 Grass & Weeds

IPMC 2012 Code section 302.4: All premises and exterior property shall be maintained free from weeds or plant growth in excess of 10 inches. This is necessary to prevent rodent shelter and pollen dust problems.
Grass and Weeds

#3 Premise Identification

This refers to a visible address on any residence or business. This provides an easy way for rescue crews to keep you safe, and for the delivery guy to get you your meal while it's still hot!

IPMC 2012 Code section 304.3: House numbers are to be 4 inches high and 0.5 inches wide. Easily legible numbers are essential for rapid response of emergency personnel.
Premise ID

#4 Cracked / Broken Windows

Windows must be correctly, and visibly, fixed the correct way. (i.e. not using duct tape, cardboard, plastic, etc.)

IPMC 2012 Code Section 304.13.1: All glazing material shall be maintained free from cracks and holes. Broken windows can admit wind, moisture, and insects, which could result in potential hazard to occupants.
Broken Windows

#5 Graffiti

No matter how pleasing it is to the eye, unauthorized tagging and overnight art projects are not permitted.

IPMC 2012 Code Section 302.9: No person shall deface private or public property by placing any markings, carvings, or graffiti. This is an eyesore and reduces property values and degradation of the structure and also interferes with the structure’s ability to repel rain and snow.

#6 Inoperable / Abandoned Vehicles

Haven’t moved your car in a while? Don’t have a place to store a car that doesn’t work?

IPMC 2012 Code Section 302.8: No inoperative or unlicensed motor vehicle shall be parked, kept, or stored on any premise. No vehicle shall be disassembled, or in disrepair, or in the process of being stripped, dismantled, or in the process of being painted. These vehicles are unsightly, provide harborage for rodents, and are an unattractive nuisance.
I or A Vehicles

#7 Smoke Detectors

No matter how annoying the beeping gets, these devices are meant to save your life. They should not be tampered with.

IPMC 2012 Code Section 704.2: Smoke detectors are required in every room used for sleeping purposes on the ceiling or wall outside of each sleeping area in the immediate vicinity of bedrooms. Smoke detectors improve a sleeping occupant the ability to respond and exit to safety.

#8 Ground Fault Circuit Interupter (GFCI Outlets)

2014 National Electric Code: GFCI outlets are required in bathrooms, kitchens, basements, garages, and all outside receptacles. When these devices sense a low amperage draw, they de-energize the circuit and the person in contact with the device will not receive an electrical shock.
GFCI Outlets

#9 Dryer Ducts

International Residential Code 2009: Dryer duct shall be independent of all other systems. Duct shall be terminated outside of the building. Exhaust duct shall have a smooth interior finish constructed of metal with a minimum wall thickness of .016 inches and 4 inches in diameter. Duct shall be supported at 4 foot intervals. Transition duct shall be listed and labeled and be of a single length of a maximum of 8 feet. The maximum length of the exhaust duct shall be 25 feet.
Dryer Duct

#10 Paint

Quality, not just the color, matters when it comes to paint!

IPMC 2012 Code Section 304.2: All exteriors surfaces, including, but not limited to, doors, door and window frames, cornices, porches, trim, balconies, decks, fences, and storage buildings shall be protected from the elements by painting or other protective covering or treatment. These coverings protect the surfaces from rot and decay helping to eliminate blight within the community.

#11 Deadbolt Door Lock

IPMC 2012 Code Section 304.18.1: Doors providing access to a dwelling unit, rooming unit, or housekeeping unit that is rented, leased, or let, shall be equipped with a deadbolt lock designed to be operable from the side from which egress is to be made without the use of keys. The proper installation of locking hardware to secure an entry doorway is essential.
Deadbolt Door Lock

#12 Toters / Garbage Cans

City ordinance 1139.11: Solid waste and recycling container may be placed at their pick-up site no earlier than 6 p.m. on the day before the scheduled day of collection. This eliminates the container from sitting on the sidewalk creating possibilities of accidents or litter.