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Friday, Jun 22, 2018
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Plant City officials want expanded authority over abandoned golf course

PLANT CITY — City code enforcers are recommending toughening the city’s public nuisance law so they can require mowing of virtually all of a shuttered golf course.

Among other provisions, property owners would be required to keep grass and underbrush no taller than 10 inches within 200 feet of any building, park or street. There are a few exceptions, such as for agriculture.

The 200-foot requirement would, in effect, force mowing of all but the widest parts of The Hills golf course in Walden Lake because it is surrounded by homes and roads.

The city now regulates the height of grass and underbrush within 100 feet of the nearest yard.

Assistant City Manager Bill McDaniel said the owners of the course, Visions Golf LLC, have cooperated in meeting city codes by mowing and taking down dead trees. But the law governing public nuisances needs more teeth — and not just for Walden Lake, he said.

“This would be beneficial for us throughout the city, not just on the golf course,” said McDaniel, who oversees the code enforcement department.

The proposal also would tighten regulations not necessarily related to Walden Lake, including those regarding fences around swimming pools and garbage on private property.

City commissioners will have a first reading of the ordinance at a meeting beginning at 7:30 p.m. April 28, with a public hearing and final vote at a meeting beginning at 7:30 p.m. May 12.

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