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Temple City officials urging residents to keep properties maintained

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Posted at 7:19 PM, Oct 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-03 20:19:44-04

TEMPLE, Texas — Central Texas just went through a summer of intense heat and drought so when the rain finally came it was a welcomed relief.

The problem is, it wasn’t nearly enough rain to prevent wildfires.

”The rain did give the vegetation a little boost but now that we're back in those dry conditions, it’s starting to dry out again,” said Santos Soto with Temple Fire and Rescue. "So, that fire danger is still kind of present.”

That is why cities like Temple are urging residents to keep their properties cut short and reminding people that there is a city ordinance restricting how tall it can be.

”So, the city's ordinance requires most property’s grass to be no taller than nine inches,” said Kiara Nowlin with the City of Temple.

But all across the city, there are yards and vacant lots where the growth is much higher.

This raises the risk of wildfire, leaving Temple Fire to respond to avoidable grass fires at homes within the past week.

”They were going to cook a meal outside on the grill, had some taller vegetation, had some debris laying around, and ended up catching that on fire,” said Soto. “So, that’s always a present issue for some folks if, those lawns aren’t maintained.”

Outside of a fire hazard, you are risking a hefty bill if you break city ordinance, and they are forced to cut you grass for you.

”Code Compliance will mow the property at the owner's expense and that cost $200,” said Nowlin.

If you don’t have the equipment or means to maintain your yard, the City of Temple will loan you the tools for free.

”The city does offer a free program called the Tool Library, that allows residents to check out lawn equipment using their no-cost membership,” said Nowlin. “If that is something residents are interested in, they can visit TempleTX.gov/tool library for more information.”

Whether it’s to avoid possible wildfire or a hefty bill from the city you need to keep your grass cut.