Residents Up To Their Waists in Weeds

By Mark Bullock - bio | email

Montgomery, AL (WSFA) - Everyone wants to live in a clean and cared for neighborhood. But some Montgomery homeowners say they feel their subdivision is being neglected.

Residents of Ridgecrest, off South Court Street, are complaining about overgrown weeds. Some are more than 6-feet high.

Mary Jackson says she's embarrassed when her friends come to visit.

"It really makes our neighborhood look bad," she said.

Jackson lives across the street from a vacant log, where she says the weeds haven't been cut in more than a year.

"It devalues the property," said community activist William Boyd.

Boyd took the residents' complaints to the city, which is required by law to cut overgrown weeds that are higher than 12 inches.

"More than 60 houses in this area are in violation of the weed ordinance," Boyd said.

The city routinely cuts weeds all over town. But it's the property owner who foots the bill, along with a $150 administrative fee.

It's never a speedy process. The city must send two letters to the property owner, who in turn, must appear before the city council. The council must then hire a contractor to do the work. It often takes up to two months.

But city officials admit the process is taking even longer in Ridgecrest because the inspector for that area is no longer on the job. It makes residents feel as though their complaints are going unanswered.

"You can't even walk down the sidewalk anymore because the grass has overlapped the inside of the sidewalk," said resident Fred Sutton.

Boyd says his next step is to appeal to the city council at its next meeting. Until then, the weeds continue to grow.