The Dalles City Council is getting serious on graffiti. Previously, graffiti was dealt with under the nuisance ordinance, but Monday night the city passed an ordinance dealing strictly with graffiti. Under the new ordinance, property owners in The Dalles who discover their property has been defaced have 48 hours to report it to the police and five days from the report to get it cleaned up. If someone else notices the damage and reports it to the city, they will notify the owner by registered mail, and they have five days from receipt of the notice. Fortunately, there’s help. Wasco Youth Services uses juvenile offenders to clean up graffiti, and the City of The Dalles budgets $13,650 a year to pay for the supplies. All this is done at no cost to the property owner. Those who are notified by the city and don’t take advantage of the opportunity or clean up the graffiti on their own could be subject to a fine of up to $500. That caused council member Darcy Long-Curtiss to complain the ordinance could penalize the victim rather than the perpetrator. But city planning director Steve Harris said that the ordinance was drafted after studying those of eight other cities and that if left in place, graffiti attracts more graffiti.
In the end, the ordinance was passed