Representatives from three Bella Vista entities will begin meeting to develop a plan to address common aesthetic and property complaints reported in the community.
The group, which will consist of representatives from the Bella Vista Village Property Owners Association, the City of Bella Vista and the Architectural Control Committee, will discuss the need for the city to adopt additional nuisance ordinances and will consider establishing a hotline where all aesthetic and property complaints are reported and then funneled to the appropriate party.
The association's Board of Directors, the Bella Vista City Council and Buddy Vernetti from the ACC had an initial meeting Thursday. During that meeting, General Manager Tommy Bailey gave a presentation of some of the common complaints the association receives, including tarps on roofs, overgrown yards and residential businesses.
Bella Vista Mayor Frank Anderson said the city currently has four separate nuisance ordinances. The ordinances address parking, noise, unsanitary and unsightly conditions and signs. Anderson also explained the process for enforcing ordinances, which includes two letters sent to the violator, a citation and a court appearance. The city has one code enforcement officer, who sent more than 1,560 violation letters last year. Anderson said 93 percent of the violations are resolved following the first letter.
The ACC is responsible for enforcing the village's Protective Covenants on aesthetics. However, the association's governing documents are dated and call for covenant violators to have their membership privileges suspended for 30 days, which is not effective. The ACC's only other option is to pursue a lawsuit, which is costly, and the ACC's revenue is down due to the recession.
As a 501(c)(4), the association is unable to use its resources to improve private property without jeopardizing its nonprofit status, Board Chairman Charlie Teal said.
Bailey said, at a previous Board work session, it seems the best option is for the city to adopt some ordinances regarding aesthetics, which it currently does not have.
In May, the Board directed Bailey to meet with the ACC and the city to discuss stricter enforcement for violators of unkempt yards and homes in disrepair. The action was a result of numerous complaints from members and Realtors about the conditions of many Bella Vista homes and yards.