Panolian Editorial

Published 12:00 am Friday, April 24, 2009

Fines for junk begin May 1, grace to end

In Batesville we are fast moving out of “Clean-Up, Fix-Up” month as April nears its end.

During April city officials had declared a moratorium on fines for junk ordinance violations. During May the code enforcement officer will be writing tickets. The fines are hefty.

The most obvious targets for the crackdown will be junk cars and old appliances sitting in yards.

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What really makes us wonder about the collective intelligence of our city is that an officer has to go out carrying the threat of a fine to make residents clean up their unsightly messes. We have to make people do what they should have done in the first place on their own and without threat of legal recourse.

Sadly, we’ve seen that we can’t rely on that. The city has made dumpsters available through the end of Batesville. They are in the the old Panola Mills parking lot on Van Voris from 9 to 5 on Saturday and from 1 to 5 on Sunday. Junk dealers are buying scrap metal — the cars and appliances especially — and plenty of people will haul it to the scrapyard.

So when the code officer starts writing tickets May 1, don’t start whining about, “I’ll do what I damn well please on my own property.”  Translated that means, “I’m too lazy to clean this place so I’m going to rant about private property rights and change the subject.”

We don’t want to hear it. Your trashy-looking place makes us all look trashy. That’s especially true if we don’t do anything about it. So code inspector will be their on our behalf and with our support starting May 1.