SB 203
Modifies nuisance actions in certain cities and counties
LR Number:
Last Action:
7/9/2019 - Signed by Governor
Journal Page:
Calendar Position:
Effective Date:
August 28, 2019
House Handler:

Current Bill Summary

HCS/SCS/SB 203 - This act allows a person who is not the owner of real property in Kansas City, St. Louis County, Independence, or St. Louis City or who is a creditor holding a lien interest on the property, and who suspects that the real property may be abandoned, to enter the premises to visually inspect the property to determine whether it is abandoned. Any person who enters the property, according to the provisions of the act, shall not have a right to a mechanics lien. If the person makes a good faith determination based on the inspection that the property is abandoned, the person may secure the property, remove trash or debris from the grounds, landscape, maintain, or mow the grounds, and remove or paint over graffiti. This act provides immunity for the person entering the property from claims of civil and criminal trespass and all other civil immunity, as well as barring an action against the property owners in certain circumstances, unless the act or omission constitutes gross negligence or willful, wanton, or intentional misconduct.

This act specifies that, in the case of real property that is subject to a mortgage or deed of trust, the creditor holding the debt secured by the mortgage or deed of trust may not enter the premises of the real property if the entry is barred by an automatic stay issued by a bankruptcy court.

This act modifies how actions against another property owner whose property is a nuisance are brought in certain cities and counties. Specifically this act modifies how notice of a nuisance is given to the property owner or tenant of the property. Also, this act modifies how proceedings seeking an injunctive relief against the property owner under this act are conducted.

The definitions of the terms "nuisance" and "neighborhood organizations", as they are used in this act, are modified. Property owners and neighborhood organizations seeking injunctive relief under this act will no longer have to show they are suffering actual damages as a result of the nuisance in order to bring such an action. Additionally, this act permits attorney's fees being awarded in certain circumstances to the party who brought the action.

This act modifies a defense available to property owners who are acting in good faith to comply with all orders rather than an order issued by the Department of Natural Resources, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, or the Office of the Attorney General.

This act requires the board of aldermen of cities of the fourth classification to seek appraisals and to provide additional reasonable analyses before putting a proposed water or wastewater system sale or a sale of a gas plant before the voters. One appraisal shall be conducted by an independent appraiser selected by the board of aldermen and another appraisal shall be conducted by an independent appraiser approved by the potential buyer and shall be used to determine the utility's fair market value. In addition, the board of aldermen shall prepare an inventory of the utility's real and personal property, a statement of net position or balance sheet of the utility, and a financial information statement of the utility. Alternatives to disposing of the utility system by sale shall be considered by the board.