Code Compliance

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bozeman code compliance logoThe City of Bozeman's Code Compliance Officers address City and State ordinances and codes as they relate to the health, safety and general quality of life concerns of our residents, neighborhoods, and community.

Below are some of the most common issues handled by the Code Compliance Officers. Please call us at 406-582-2222 if you have any further concerns.

Abandoned Vehicles

According to the Bozeman Municipal Code (section 36.04.260E), no person may park a vehicle for longer than 48 consecutive hours on public property on a street, alley, or highway.

In order to start the "abandoned vehicle" process, the City of Bozeman parking division must first monitor the vehicle for at least 48 hours, then issue a citation for exceeding that time limit.

After that citation is issued, the parking division will monitor the vehicle for another period of time to verify that the vehicle has not moved. They will then forward the vehicle information to our code compliance officers, who will have it removed.

Branches Over Sidewalks

The limbs or branches of a tree or bush may not extend over any public sidewalk at a height of less than seven feet (section 16.04.010). Not only does this code keep our sidewalk accessible, it is also a safety issue, considering how unsafe it may be for an adult or a child to have to walk into the roadway to go around a blocked sidewalk.

Building Code Compliance

Due to the technical nature of dealing with compliance with building codes, this is handled by a separate code compliance officer.

Business Licenses

Chapter 12 of the Bozeman Municipal Code requires that businesses operating within the City obtain a yearly business license.

This generally includes all permanent and temporary businesses.

Each license is valid for a year and must be renewed by February 15 of the next calendar year.

Fence Concerns

Section 38.23.130 of the Bozeman Municipal Code describes the regulations regarding fences within the City of Bozeman. There are regulations regarding height, placement, construction, maintenance, and materials. Please refer to the code itself for the specifics regarding each category.

Graffiti Reporting and Information

In addition, we have volunteers that may be able to assist with contacting property owners, providing education and information, and helping to cover the graffiti.

Illegal Garbage Dumping

The Code Compliance Officers strive to improve the quality of life in Bozeman by handling complaints of illegal dumping. They deal with everything from dumped furniture to discarded pallets to piles of garbage.

After working to identify the property owners, they will ensure the items are removed.

Junk Vehicles On Private Property

According to the Bozeman Municipal Code, rusted, wrecked, junked, partially dismantled, or inoperative vehicles may not be left on private property for more than 72 hours.

This does not apply if the vehicle is enclosed or if it part of a legal and license business.

Noise Issues

Noise issues can include many different types of things. The noise issues typically handled by the Code Compliance Officers include such things as commercial vehicles routinely making too much noise, unreasonable building noise coming from a construction site, and ongoing noise at public events.

For noises due to such things as loud parties, please contact the Bozeman Police Department at 582-2000.

Nuisance Properties

In Bozeman, a "Public Nuisance" is generally defined as a building or structure that is unsafe or a hazard which creates a potential danger to life, property, or health. It can also include such things as attractive nuisances and buildings or places in such disrepair that other crimes end up occurring. Unsecured abandoned houses and properties with excessive garbage and/ or vehicles could fall into this category.

Generally, "public nuisances" in Bozeman are investigated as a part of an overall nuisance property. The code compliance officers will take an overall look at the condition of the property and evaluate the various "nuisance" components on the property before making a determination.

Permanent Sign Concerns

There are numerous regulations regarding permanent signage within the City of Bozeman. Most of these regulations are jointly handled by licensing staff, zoning staff, planning staff, building staff, and Code Compliance Officers.

Sidewalk Snow Removal

Bozeman Municipal Code states that every owner of land within the city fronting or abutting a paved sidewalk shall remove and clear away, or cause to be removed and cleared away, any snow and ice from that portion of the sidewalk.

All snow and ice must be removed from sidewalks in all business districts within the city by 9:00 a.m. of the next business day, by 12:00 noon of the next non-business day, or within four business hours after any snow or ice deposit, whichever period is shorter.

All snow and ice shall be removed from all other sidewalks within the City within the first 24 hours after any snow or ice deposit. Our code compliance officers spend considerable time notifying property owners of their duty to remove snow from sidewalks. If the property owner does not complete the chore, the Bozeman Municipal Code further allows the City to hire a contractor to complete the task, then charge the property owner.

Street Encroachment Issues

"Street encroachment" issues include things that block or impede a portion of a street, roadway, or alley, such as:

  • piles of gravel or dirt
  • basketball hoops
  • skateboard ramps
  • piles of firewood
  • construction materials
  • snow pushed onto the roadway from private property

Section 34.02.020. of the Bozeman Municipal Code states that streets, avenues, alleys and public places of the city, including sidewalks, shall at all times be kept free, clear and clean of all obstructions, debris, encumbrances and encroachments which hamper or interfere with the free and safe use thereof by the public.

Please be aware that, at times, a temporary permit is issued allowing for street encroachment.

Street Vision Issues

Section 38.24.110 of the Bozeman Municipal Code specifically spells out the requirements regarding "street vision triangles."

Essentially, a "vision triangle" is an area on each corner of an intersection that guarantees visibility for traffic approaching that intersection. Within that triangle, there can be nothing except one single stem tree above 30" high. Different types of streets have different sizes of triangle, so refer to the code for specific sizes.

Temporary Signs

There are various regulations regarding temporary signs within the City of Bozeman, as outlined by Bozeman Municipal Code section 38, article 28.040.

Temporary signs such as roof signs, fin signs, signs located in the public right of way, and sandwich boards (except in the downtown area) are generally not allowed in the City, but there are various exceptions.

Temporary signs such as banners, tethered balloons, and inflatable signs are allowed only in certain areas of town or with a temporary sign permit.

Additionally, signs and flyers may also not be attached to such items as power poles and street signs.

Our Code Compliance Officers will look into each complaint and verify the legality of the sign. Appropriate action will then be taken.

Other Issues

Our code compliance officers receive and handle a very wide variety of issues, includings some very unique ones that have never been reported before! If you have any kind of concern and feel it may be a code compliance issue, please contact us. We will work to resolve the situation or find out the answer to your particular concern

To contact our code compliance officers regarding any other issue, email or call us at 406-582-2222.