Frequently Asked Questions
What is an Administrative Citation?The City of Turlock City Council adopted the Administrative Citation Ordinance as an alternative method of enforcement to deal with violations of the Turlock Municipal Code. City Code violations such as building code, zoning, licensing, and nuisance violations can be handled more effectively through the Administrative Citation process rather than through criminal court.
What do I do if I receive an Administrative Citation Warning or Compliance Letter?A compliance letter or administrative citation warning is a list of items that need to be corrected. Receiving a compliance letter or administrative citation warning is not the end of the world; it merely means there are City Code violations that need your attention. A Compliance Date is the date by which you need to have the items corrected or by which time you must make other arrangements with the City department issuing the citation.
What if I need more time to correct the violation described in the citation?If you need more time to correct the violation, you should contact the Enforcement Officer and/or the issuing Department identified on the Administrative Citation Warning or compliance letter. The City's primary goal is to obtain voluntary compliance and the Enforcement Officer may grant extensions of time as long as it appears you are making reasonable efforts to correct the violation in a timely fashion.
What happens if I don't correct the violation described in the citation?The primary goal of the City is to have the residents voluntarily comply with City Code requirements. However, if voluntary compliance is not possible and the Administrative Citation Process does not successfully remedy the violating situation, other legal remedies can be pursued.
What do I do if I receive an Administrative Citation?You must pay the fine and correct the City Code violation specified in the citation. The citation will include the municipal code section violated and a brief description, the box denoting if the citation is a warning or a citation with a fine, the date which the violation must be corrected or the date in which the penalty is due.
Please Do Not Ignore It.
Ignoring a Compliance/Warning Letter or Administrative Citation will not make the violation go away. Citations and Property Abatement are the City's method of last resort. The City wants to work with residents to resolve their code violation issues. Unfortunately, if an Owner is unwilling to co-operate the City is left with few options. Failure to pay the fine by the due date may result in additional penalties.
Can I just pay the fine?Paying the fine does not release you from the obligation of correcting the code violation. The violation must still be corrected by the date specified on the citation or arrangements made with the city department that issued the citation.
How do I make a payment?The administrative fine must be paid by cash, personal check, cashier's check, or money order, payable to the City of Turlock no later than the date specified on the citation. Please include the Citation Number on your check.
Can I use a credit card to pay the fine?At this time Administrative Citation fines cannot be paid by credit card.
Mail or deliver payment to:
City of Turlock Finance Office
Attn: Administrative Claims
156 S. Broadway, Suite 114
Turlock, CA 95380
What if I don't pay the fine?Late payments or a failure to pay the fine can result in additional penalties. Unpaid fines may result in property liens, or may be submitted for collections, which can negatively impact your credit history.
Questions regarding citations and Municipal Code violations should be referred to the issuing Department identified at the top of the Administrative Citation.
How do I appeal an Administrative Citation?The appeal process provides the opportunity to argue if the violations existed at the time the citation was issued. Any person disputing an Administrative Citation may contest the citation by completing a Request for Administrative Hearing form and returning the form to the City Clerk's office, along with the administrative fine, within 30 days from the date of the issuance of the citation. The City Code requires citations be paid even if the responsible party requests a hearing.
Appeal forms may be obtained:
- By calling the Department phone number checked at the top of the Administrative Citation.
- In person at 156 S. Broadway or 244 N. Broadway in Turlock.
Can I fax or email the Request for Hearing form?No. The original, signed Request for Administrative Hearing and either the receipt for the fine or an approved Advance Deposit Hardship Waiver must be mailed or delivered to the City Clerk's office within 30 days from the citation date.
What if I want to appeal but I can't afford to pay the fine in advance?Normally, an advance deposit of the administrative fine is required to be delivered with the hearing request form. However, if paying the penalty in advance causes a financial hardship, complete a Request for Advance Deposit Hardship Waiver form. The form and supporting documentation must be submitted to the City with the Request for Hearing form. Following a review, the City will provide a written determination for the waiver request.
How do I know if I have a hearing?After you have submitted your Request for Hearing form, the citation fine or an approved Hardship Waiver, the City Clerk's office will call, and confirm by mail, the hearing date and time.
What happens at the appeal hearing?A hearing provides the opportunity to bring an unresolved issue before a Hearing Officer to present information for deliberation and a final decision. The hearing is informal, without strict rules of evidence; however, the hearing will be recorded so that a record of the proceedings is preserved. You will have the opportunity to testify, present evidence, call witnesses and to question witnesses concerning the violation. You may appear personally or through an attorney.
Following the conclusion of the hearing, a written decision will be issued by the Hearing Officer that will either uphold or dismiss the citation. If the case is upheld, the fine is forfeited. If the case is dismissed, the fine will be refunded.
The decision of the Hearing Officer is final and conclusive.
When will I know the outcome of the hearing?Every effort will be made by the Hearing Officer to render a decision prior to the contesting party leaving the hearing. However, the Hearing Officer may take up to 7 days to render a decision. All decisions will be provided to the contesting party in writing.
Do I have to speak or can I have someone else speak on my behalf?You may designate someone to speak on your behalf.
Do I need an attorney?You may hire or retain your own attorney, if you feel it is necessary.
What if I am unhappy with the Hearing Officer's decision?You may obtain review of the administrative decision by filing a petition for review with the Stanislaus County Superior Court, 800 11th Street, Modesto, California 95354, (209) 530-3100, in accordance with the timelines and provisions set forth in California Government Code §53069.4.
Where can I find the provision of the Turlock Municipal Code relating to Administrative Citations?Information regarding Administrative Citations can be found in Title 2, Chapter 11 of the Turlock Municipal Code.
Questions regarding Administrative Citations and Municipal Code violations should be referred to the issuing Department identified at the top of the Administrative Citation.