On a warm May morning, William Wharton – armed with pen, paper and camera phone – paces the sidewalks of the Wilshire Condominiums on E. Ponce de Leon Avenue. His eyes run up, down and around the building structures, looking for any number of code violations that could pose dangers to residents or visitors to the condo complex.
“It is our goal to address any property maintenance issues that could cause a blight on the community,” explains Wharton, the Code Enforcement Manager for the City of Tucker. These issues could “present a safety or structural hazard, or encourage insect or rodent infestations.”
Wharton, along with Code Enforcement Officer James Duncan, are conducting the first of two sweeps this year that will target multi-family housing developments in Tucker. At Wilshire, they find issues with roofs, gutters, fences and paint, not to mention overgrown weeds and accumulated rubbish.
Whether it’s this kind of proactive enforcement or just the day-to-day responding to resident complaints, Wharton says the mission remains the same.
“The goal of the inspection is to provide for the general health, safety and welfare of the citizens of the City of Tucker.”
Tucker’s Code Enforcement team appears in court on the third Wednesday of each month to report to a judge on different code enforcement citations they’ve written. These appearances will generally result in fines for the offenders, yet Wharton says the goal is to never go to court.
“The responsible party will be given a time frame to complete the necessary repairs or fixes,” he says, adding “extensions may also be granted.” At Wilshire, ownership of the condo complex was notified and now has the opportunity to remedy the violations before any fines are levied.
Code Enforcement is not, nor is it ever expected to be, a revenue generator for the City. Instead, Wharton and his team are out on the streets and in the neighborhoods each day trying to protect property values and keep the people of Tucker safe.
If you have a Code Enforcement complaint, you can call City Hall at (470) 273-3093 or email email@example.com.