BY George Petrena, Correspondent

The Town of Branford is getting tougher ordinance and teeth into them that will allow the town to pose a fine without having to go to court.

That's right, the town will be able to fine up to $1,000 for neglected property and trash in lawns, even open alcohol containers.

Town Attorney Kevin Daly told the council at the September meeting, "We can in essence enforce our ordinance. If owners have a property they won't clean up, we can call them before the Branford Town Council and we could fine them up to $l,000. We've taken the criminal infraction out of our ordinance, and it shall become a civil infraction not to exceed $1,000."

The town can determine the amount of the fine up to $1,000. If the person doesn't pay the fine the town can put a lien against their property. "We can clean up their property-put a civil matter against them and get the judgment, and then sell the property," said Daly This action is ordinance 2004-3, amending section 14 of the town's code of ordinances. The first reading of the ordinance was read on September 14. The law will go into effect with the third and final reading probably in November, unless the council happens to determine it expedient and do the second and third reading at the October meeting. Then it would become effective immediately. This was done because of a state statute that was recently passed, allowing this action to take place.

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