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Crescent Issues Steep Fines for Property Maintenance Violations

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Dozens in the small city of Crescent are facing pricey fines for their yards and clutter. Neglecting your lawn there can cost you 250 bucks. Dozens in the small city of Crescent are facing pricey fines for their yards and clutter. Neglecting your lawn there can cost you 250 bucks.
CRESCENT, Oklahoma -

The city of Crescent is cracking down on homeowners who aren't maintaining their property. Officials are ticketing folks with overgrown yards, and some residents don't like it.

Dozens in the small city of Crescent are facing pricey fines for their yards and clutter. Neglecting your lawn there can cost you 250 bucks.

Some residents say it's unfair because they weren't issued a warning, and they think the city is going too far.

"They're going all over town writing tickets," Marcia Jones said.

Jones got one of those tickets. A code enforcement officer said her yard was overgrown. Her family just inherited this home after he aunt passed away.

"He waited until 3 days until my aunt passed away for the ticket to be issued, then it was given to me September 5th," Jones said.

She isn't alone. Laveda West lives on the other side of town, and she's gotten five tickets. One was for clutter. She says officers were referring to her kids bikes in the yard.

"I'm tired. I'm done," West said.

She's facing more than $1,000 in fines. Both women say they've been working to get their yards back in shape. But Jones thinks it's unfair she was never given a warning before she got a $250 ticket.

"I would like a 10 day notice," Jones said.

Crescent officials declined an on camera interview, but City Manager Ed Stanton says the city isn't responsible for issuing warnings to people about maintaining their property. He says the laws have always been on the books, but now they're actively enforcing them.

It's part of their efforts to clean up the city.

The city manager says he gave residents fair warning, making courtesy calls and taking the cleanup campaign to the local paper. Officials say they'll work out payment plans for the fines when homeowners show up at municipal court.

The confusion about a 10-day notice refers to the city's ability to clean up people's property. The city manager says it isn't in the budget to do that.

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