Huntington Town Hall is located at 100 Main St. in...

Huntington Town Hall is located at 100 Main St. in Huntington. Credit: Carl Corry

Town of Huntington officials are looking to amend town code to streamline and speed up the procedure to eradicate graffiti.

A public hearing has been set for June 9 to add three sections to the code: the definition of a graffiti-blight property; the creation of a graffiti-blight property inventory list; and set registration fees, the annual fee imposed upon properties that are listed on the graffiti-blight property inventory list.

The amended code would require that hate-speech graffiti -- anything that indicates bias or hatred of a person's race, color, religion, disability, sexual orientation, national origin or ancestry -- must be removed within three days of the issuance of a notice of violation.

All other graffiti must be removed within 10 days as the code now states.

After the three or 10 days, the owner will be notified in writing two other times about the violation before the town commences cleanup.

If the town has to clean the property, the owner will be charged a $250 administrative fee and the cost of the removal.

If the fee is not paid within 30 days, the town will place the property on the graffiti-blight property list, which will contain properties that have repeatedly failed to remove graffiti within a designated time.

Landing on the graffiti-blight property inventory list will cost residential property owners $2,500 and commercial properties $5,000. All fees will be attached to the tax bill of the property.

The town's code enforcement officers will assess the graffiti and the general services department will handle clean up.

Town board member Susan Berland said property owners who are the victims of vandalism will be able to work with the town to avoid getting on the graffiti-blight property inventory list by presenting the proper documents, such as a police report.

"The intention is not to fine people but to expedite the removal process," said Berland, sponsor of the public hearing resolution, said.

The meeting starts at 7 p.m. at Town Hall, 100 Main St.

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