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Overgrown trees, long grass: Luyang ratepayer risks RM1,000 penalty
Published on: Thursday, May 09, 2024
By: Sidney Skinner
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Overgrown trees, long grass: Luyang ratepayer risks RM1,000 penalty
The branches of the trees on the vacant land on Lorong Terus have extended into the airspace of the neighbouring homes
A LUYANG ratepayer risks becoming RM1,000 poorer for allowing the overgrown trees and long grass growing on his/ her vacant land to become a source of frustration to others living in the vicinity.

A spokeswoman for the City Hall’s Landscaping Department said this was the maximum fine which could be imposed, under the Local Government Ordinance 1961 (Amendment 2000), if he/ she was found guilty in court.

“Alternatively, the magistrate may require the individual to serve up to six months behind bars for failing to tend to the greenery on the undeveloped property,” she said.

“In the worst case scenario, the landowner could be slapped with both a fine and jail-term.”

Landscaping personnel in the midst of handing over a reminder to office staff at the landowner’s company.

She was responding to feedback about the potential health and fire hazards posed by the jungle which had sprung up on some vacant land, off Lorong Terus. 

“Some of those staying in this part of Taman Fu Yen Phase 4 came to us with their concerns about the tall trees and weeds thriving on the property.

“Many of the trees were no longer upright. They had begun leaning towards the houses nearby.

“Some of their branches had also apparently grown so long that they extended into the neighbouring yards.”

On top of this, a few homeowners harboured misgivings about dangerous reptiles forming habitats among the undergrowth on the land, according to her.

City Hall staff nailed a reminder to one of the tree stumps on this land on Lorong Pokok Seraya 4.

The spokeswoman said some of these grievances were lodged with the agency as far back as 2022.

She said a check of its records revealed that the landowner was formally reminded about getting his/ her land in order in September that year.

“We did this again in July 2023. Both reminders were taped to the gate for the property on Lorong Terus.”

Given as how these requests had so far gone unheeded and with City Hall continuing to receive complaints about the land, the spokeswoman said the agency took different approach when it came to the latest reminder.

“This document was personally handed over to office-staff at the landowner’s company.

“This will be last reminder we issue to the individual. Further action will be taken against him/ her, if he/ she fails to comply.

She did not rule out the possibility of this matter being referred to the agency’s Legal Department so that the offender could be taken to court.

“We are presently working with our peers at this Department to begin court proceedings against negligent landowners.”

Workers with SESB contractor hard at work felling the trees closest to the electricity poles in this part of Taman Khidmat.

The spokesman said a final warning, signed by the Mayor, would be given to these errant rate-payers as part of this process.

“They will be notified that their ‘overgrown and unmaintained’ land was an eye sore and source of discomfort to the public in the area due to the presence of pests, including mosquitoes, which might be breeding on their property.

“A seven day grace-period will be given for these individuals to abate this nuisance. 

“If they fail to comply, then we will have no choice but to initiate legal action.”

She urged those with vacant land to have their property maintained on a monthly basis so that these undeveloped plots did not become a public nuisance. 

The spokeswoman said a reminder letter was also nailed to one of the tree trunks on some empty land along Lorong Pokok Seraya 4, after a Kolombong homeowner spoke out about the fire risk posed by the jungle on the property. 

“We were made to understand that, at one stage, an electricity pole closest to the vacant land suddenly broke out in flames,” she said.

“Fire and Rescue Services Department staff were apparently called in to put out this blaze.”

She said workers with a Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd contractor chopped those trees, which were closest to its assets, sometime later. 

“We are keeping an eye on the situation in this part of Taman Khidmat. Further action will be taken if it warrants doing so.”

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