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Frequently Asked Questions

    ​Typically, a property is placed on the program after an inspector identifies a potential fire hazard on the premises.  Fire Departments, Code Enforcement, Public Works and other public agencies also submit complaints to the County's Consumer & Environmental Protection Agency - Weed Abatement Program..

    ​Property Owners are required to maintain the minimum fire safety standards throughout their inspection window.  Inspection Deadlines indicate the start of the inspection window.  All areas of the County are required to maintain the standards until October 31st, every year.

    Inspection Deadlines:

    March 1st = Campbell, Santa Clara, Milpitas and Undeveloped Parcels in San Jose

     

    April 1st = Unincorporated County Areas.

     

    April 15th = West Valley (Los Gatos, Monte Sereno & Saratoga

     

    April 30th = Cupertino, Los Altos Hills & Palo Alto

     

    May 1st = Morgan Hill

     

    May 15th = Gilroy

     

    E-mail to REQUEST an Extension, prior to the assigned deadline.

    County Assessor Office Data combined with Clerk Recorder Information is accessed by Inspectors to identify parcel boundaries or other property concerns.

    If the Minimum Fire Safety Standards (MFSS) are met by the given deadline and maintained through the fire season, the only fee incurred will be the initial inspection fee. 

    2020 Fee Schedule:  

    Initial inspection = $101,

    First Administrative Fee (Failed Inspection / Work Order Processing) = $582,

    Second Administrative Fee (Contractor Invoice Processing) = $984. 

    In addition to the County fees, 100% of the contractor invoice will be transferred to the parcel owner as the contractor fee.​​

    The county contractor will use either one of, or a combination of discing, mowing, or hand crew weed whacking to complete abatement.  The county contractor does not and will not use any type of spray to control or eradicate any hazards.​

    Property owners are responsible for preventing fire hazards on their property.  If the MFSS have been met, but further work is necessary, the owner will receive an on program letter indicating that further work is needed prior to the county contractor performing the work.  We will also attempt to contact the owner by phone at the number listed on their Return Reply Form.  If the MFSS have not been met, a green 15 day notice postcard will be sent as a courtesy prior to any abatement.  The 15 day notice and/or on program letter are sent to the legal address on file with the Tax Assessor’s office.  It is the owner’s responsibility to keep this information current. If you have moved or recently sold your property, it is recommended that you check the address on file where your tax bill is sent.

    Inspectors photograph the conditions of each parcel that work is ordered on.  The county contractor takes a photo before and after each job to document what the parcel looked like before and after he performed the work.  The photos are stored in our database as part of the parcel’s program record.

    ​Weed Abatement contractors can be found in the yellow pages under “weed control services” or “discing services”.  You may have the county contractor perform the necessary work.  The prices are included with your initial program packed you received in December.  You can also refer to the Documents section of our website and download a copy of the list we have compiled.  The contractors listed are not specifically recommended or endorsed by the county, but listed as a convenience from research and property owner referrals.

    ​Grazing animals do not absolve you of your responsibilities to provide a fire safe condition on your property.  You will need to check with our office to determine if grazing is adequate or if additional work is required.

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