Village of South Jacksonville Passes Major Updates to Inoperable Vehicles Ordinance

By Benjamin Cox on March 13, 2024 at 1:56pm

The Village of South Jacksonville Board of Trustees added some “teeth” into a previous ordinance to help the village’s code enforcement office cite people for inoperable vehicles.

There have been several complaints over the last two years from village residents about inoperable vehicles, trailers, and boats being parked on the village’s streets or in yards causing hazards or just simply causing the village to look unruly.

Village Police Chief Eric Hansell says the new ordinance eliminates vague language from the previous ordinance and provides steps to get owners to come into compliance: “The previous ordinance was about one paragraph long, and it didn’t really provide a definition of what an inoperable, unlicensed vehicle was. It also allowed a 30-day window for removal of that vehicle. When you give somebody 30 days usually they take a lot longer than that to get it done. What we did [for the update] was looked at several different ordinances – one from the City of Jacksonville, other communities that were about our size. We looked at what we liked in the ordinances and what we didn’t like, and re-wrote the ordinance to fit us. The typical time frame in the ordinances that we researched were 3-7 days for the time frame to rectify any issues. We opted to go with a 14-day time frame. Two weeks, we feel, is a reasonable amount of time for someone to get a vehicle either up to code or moved to an area of storage as outlined in our ordinance.”

Hansell says that the new ordinance also updated several definitions of what an inoperable, unlicensed vehicle is and the proper storage for those types of vehicles. Hansell says boats and derelict trailers have also been added to the list in the ordinance: “If you have 3-4 derelict trailers or a derelict horse trailer, those are some of the issues we will have to deal with that aren’t necessarily a motor vehicle but it falls under the Motor Vehicle Code, as far as a definition of a non-motorized vehicle and the storage of it.”

Any violations of the ordinance is fined not less than $250 and not more than $750 for each violation. Each day after the 14 day time frame will be considered a separate violation.