SLO City Council votes to outlaw odors

April 1, 2015
Mayor Jan Marx

Mayor Jan Marx

By KAREN VELIE

The San Luis Obispo City Council voted 3-2 Tuesday to enact an ordinance that allows the city to prosecute people who allow foul odors to creep across their property lines for a misdemeanor.

During public comment, a handful of people asked the council to vote against the ordinance, calling it vague and poorly assembled. In addition, speakers said it was unfair, unenforceable, and could be used indiscriminately.

Several speakers questioned how the ordinance would be enforced when residents share property lines at apartment complexes and duplexes. No one from the public spoke in favor of the ordinance.

Last year, the city had several complaints about an undesirable scent emanating from a medical marijuana grow in the backyard of a San Luis Obispo home. When the council failed to adopt a proposed medical marijuana ban, staff responded by drafting the foul odor ordinance. An ordinance that includes an exemption for all city owned properties.

On Tuesday, when asked how many odor complaints the city has received in the past, Community Development Director Derek Johnson said there had been two.

As a result of the new odor ordinance, city code enforcers are mandated to respond to odor complaints. If a property owner receives three verified complaints from neighboring property owners, code enforcers can issue citations to the property owner.

Mayor Jan Marx, Councilman John Ashbaugh and Councilwoman Carlyn Christianson, two of whom are attorneys and one of whom is married to an attorney, voted in favor of the “odor nuisance” ordinance at Tuesday’s council meeting. Councilmen Dan Carpenter and Dan Rivoire cast the two dissenting votes.

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62 Comments

  1. smile4thecamera says:

    This story made me laugh and realize that SLO is getting even more hoity-toity than it already was.

    (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
  2. hijinks2 says:

    Well, maybe they can start over at City Hall – the corruption at the City is so deep that it stinks from top to bottom. They just hired an idiot to help out with finance who was fired from the City of Carmel for misuse of public funds amongst other things. Well, in SLOtown it is okay for low-life City employees to “Get a little on the Side” as numerous articles on CalCoast have revealed. What ever happened to that low-life that was getting a little on the side. I hear he has his personal nine hole golf course and spends all his days in the back ruff.

    Here is the complaint – the corruption at City hall stinks – so complaint # 1,

    (12) 14 Total Votes - 13 up - 1 down
  3. obispan says:

    City-owned property exempt? Pray tell why. Can we grow pot there?

    (10) 12 Total Votes - 11 up - 1 down

Comments are closed.