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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Orange Targets Hoarders With New Law

Posted By on Thu, Feb 23, 2012 at 10:59 AM

Either a hoarders kitchen, or a close-up of a skin rash.
  • Either a hoarder's kitchen, or a close-up of a skin rash.

Good thing your Great Aunt Alberta and her massive collection of baby rattles don't reside within the boundaries of Orange Village. In that sleepy little slice of suburbia on the East Side, the city council this week decided to tweak the code book in order to classify hoarding as a criminal offense.

The Sun News reports
city leaders are carefully toeing the line, saying the ordinance doesn't single out “hoarders” per se, but just might still maybe apply to “hoarders”, you know. Something like that. Hoarding, it's important to remember, is classified by medical professionals as a mental illness whereby an individual collects a ridiculous amount of weird crap in order to end up on a A&E reality show.

The fine print of Orange's ordinance targets “unsafe dwellings and structures,” and gives the city the legal muscle to force inhabitants to clean up their properties. If not, structures may be razed.

An uninhabitable dwelling is defined as a place with excessive garbage and refuse inside; beds and tubs containing items making it impossible to sleep or bathe in them; unusable kitchens with cluttered stoves and sinks; large amounts of combustible materials blocking paths and radiators; no working plumbing or heating/cooling appliances; human or animal waste; insect or rodent infestation; unkempt pets; broken windows and doors; standing water inside and/or insufficient waterproofing.

Inhabitants will get a heads up from the city if they're in violation. Non-compliance could even mean jail time.

Those who do not comply with the ordinance can be found guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree on the first offense, and guilty of a third-degree misdemeanor on the second and subsequent offenses. Continued failure to comply can result in jail time.

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