(a) It is unlawful for any person to create, aggravate, or allow the existence of a public health nuisance.
(b) The department may immediately and thoroughly investigate any suspected public health nuisance upon receiving a complaint of its existence or when there is probable cause to believe that nuisance exists within the Territory.
(c) The department may issue an order to avoid, correct, or remove, at the owner’s expense, any property or condition that the department determines to be a nuisance.
(1) The order shall specify the nature of the nuisance and the method(s) to abate the nuisance, including:
(A) To close, direct, and compel the evacuation of, or decontaminate or cause to be decontaminated any real property, building or structure as needed; or
(B) To decontaminate or cause to be decontaminated, or destroy, any material, goods, or conditions.
(2) The order shall designate a reasonable time in which the nuisance must be abated.
(3) If a property owner or occupant does not comply with the order within the specified time, the department may cause the nuisance to be removed or abated at the owner or occupant’s expense.
(4) Whenever the removal or abatement of a nuisance requires immediate action by the department, the department may pay the cost of removal or abatement and seek reimbursement for expenses from the responsible persons.
(5) If the person responsible for a nuisance refuses to pay or reimburse expenses incurred by the department, expenses may be:
(A) Assessed against affected real property, building or structure as a lien;
(B) Collected from rents paid on the real property, building or structure, pursuant to a Court order obtained by the department; or
(C) Collected in the same manner as personal taxes assessed by the Territory.
(6) An occupant or other person who caused or permitted a nuisance to exist is liable to the owner of the premises for the amount paid by the owner or assessed against the property, building or structure.History: 2007, PL 30-11.