Ugly lawns costing Valley homeowners

PHOENIX - Don't like cleaning your yard or property? It could cost you.

The City of Phoenix is fining people and businesses $100 to $2,500 for letting weeds and other unsightly items take over their property.

"Due to the enormous rain we've had this past month, the weeds have just sprouted," Phoenix Neighborhood Preservation Inspector Winston Pierson said.

ABC15 took a ride with Pierson to see firsthand the jungles that are residents' yards, lawns, and property.

When the Neighborhood Services Department gets called to clean an area, it's never for just one or two ugly bushes. Often times the entire area has been overrun by weeds.

"I've seen some homes where the vegetation is three, four feet high," Pierson said.

The penalty for not complying with the city ordinance is not light. Aside from the $100 to $2,500 fines, you also have to appear in court. Other Valley cities have similar policies. Thankfully, the cities gives warnings first.

Pierson told ABC15 people don't always appreciate being told they have to pull their weeds.

"Maybe two, three weeks ago, a guy came out and he had a machete."

Pierson said the confrontation ended peacefully when police arrived and the man realized he was better off using the machete to clear his weeds.

"Like I say, you make a negative become a positive. That's what it's about."

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