City of Austin Performance Report 2015-16

Average Number of Days From When Nuisance Abatement Complaints are First Reported Until Non-Judicial Compliance

Measure Description
This measure is the average number of days from when nuisance abatement complaints are first reported until they are resolved through voluntary compliance, or before judicial or quasi-judicial action occurs. Nuisance violations include, but are not limited to, high weeds and grass and junk lots (accumulated junk and debris). This measure focuses on the total case processing time of Nuisance Abatement complaints. Total case processing time is the amount of time Austin Code inspectors take to respond and investigate plus the amount of time the owner takes to complete necessary actions for voluntary compliance. The department focuses on achieving voluntary compliance because it is important to provide professional customer service and adequate education of city codes by giving citizens the opportunity to correct code violations before the cases are escalated to non-voluntary enforcement. In addition, once informed of a nuisance abatement violation, most citizens are capable of correcting violation(s) with minimal effort, time or resources.
Calculation Method
This measure is calculated by dividing the total number of days between the date nuisance abatement complaints are received and the date when voluntary compliance occurs by the total number of nuisance abatement cases with voluntary compliance for the reporting period.
FY 2015-16 Results
The department’s target for FY 2015-16 was to gain voluntary compliance within an average of 25 days from when a nuisance abatement complaint is first reported. For FY 2015-16, there was an average of 60 days from when the complaint was first reported until voluntary compliance.
Assessment of Results
The number of nuisance abatement cases increased by 20% from 11,335 cases in FY 2014-15 to 13,658 cases in FY 2015-16. The increase in the number of cases can be attributed to another year of record rainfall, as well as an increase in the number of initiatives aimed to address known problem areas with high volumes of high weeds and grass and accumulated junk and debris. The target decreased in FY 2015-16 from 45 days to 25 days to better align with prior year actuals and current resources, while the actuals increased from 36 days in FY 2014-15 to 60 days. The average time from investigation until voluntary compliance is often impacted by the ability to contact property owners, particularly in the case of vacant lots. Although the timeframe for voluntary compliance has increased, the overall voluntary compliance rate for nuisance abatement cases has improved with an increase of 7% from 28% in FY 2014-15 to 35% in FY 2015-16.
Next Steps
Austin Code will continue to build relationships with neighborhoods to increase resident awareness of City code regarding nuisance violations. Through these code education efforts, Austin Code seeks to decrease the number of confirmed nuisance abatement code violations. A reduced number of confirmed nuisance abatement code violation cases should positively impact the total case processing time of nuisance abatement cases.
Contact Information
For more information contact Paul Tomasovic, Assistant Director, at (512) 974-1952.