Baker City tables controversial nuisance-property ordinance

BAKER CITY, Ore. (AP) — The Baker City Council took no action this week on a proposed ordinance that would allow the city to seek court orders blocking access to problem properties — including by the owner.

The Baker City Herald reports the proposal put forth by the police chief has generated controversy in the eastern Oregon city.

The ordinance defines a chronic disorderly property as one that has been the site of multiple arrests, or violations of the city’s animal and property maintenance regulations. If the court granted an order, access to the properties would be cut off from three months to a year.

Police Chief Wyn Lohner says the proposal is based on a nearly identical one in Springfield, and gives property owners a chance to fix problems before courts are involved.

Opponents told councilors the ordinance would target elderly and disabled residents who have trouble maintaining their property.