FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
No. The City Attorney’s Office represents the city of Pasadena as a municipal entity. This office does not give legal advice to or represent individual citizens, or represent them in private legal disputes.
A “nuisance” is defined as: “Anything which is injurious to health, including, but not limited to, the illegal sale of controlled substances, or is indecent or offensive to the senses, or an obstruction to the free use of property, so as to interfere with the comfortable enjoyment of life or property, or unlawfully obstructs the free passage or use, in the customary manner, of any navigable lake, or river, bay, stream, canal, or basin, or any public park, square, street, or highway, is a nuisance.”
A “public nuisance” is defined as follows: “A public nuisance is one which affects at the same time an entire community or neighborhood, or any considerable number of persons, although the extent of the annoyance or damage inflicted upon individuals may be unequal.”
A “private nuisance” is generally considered to be something that affects a single individual or a number of individuals with regard to a private right not enjoyed by the public at large.
Various City departments and divisions may investigate allegations of public nuisance, depending on the nature of the issue, including Enforcement Services, Building Safety, Public Works, Fire and Police. These City departments will then work with the City Attorney’s office to protect the public health, safety and welfare of the community by taking legal action where warranted. The City Attorney’s office does not become involved in private nuisances, in which case the parties should seek private counsel.
Make contact with the responsible person.
Describe your perception of the problem. Discuss how the problem affects you and possible solutions. Most people want to be good neighbors and are cooperative once the issue is brought to their attention.
If you are not able to resolve the issue by discussing the matter with the responsible person, report the violation to City Enforcement Services, or Police Department, depending on the nature of the violation.
Attend Neighborhood Watch or Homeowner’s Association Meetings.
Get involved with solving the problem. Your participation in these types of organizations not only helps out your neighborhood, but also allows you to make a contribution to the overall health of the City.