Perham City Council takes aim at junk, weeds

Focus file photo by Marie Nitke

The city of Perham is tightening up its rules on junky yards, junk cars and weeds.

The Perham City Council on Monday, July 13, held a public hearing to amend three sections of the Perham City Code; all of which were approved by the council.

The amendments were made to the city codes pertaining to the Abandoned Motor Vehicles S91.02; Nuisances S92.18, and Weeds S92.35, was held as part of the monthly City Council meeting on July 13. The amendments to the city code will not be enforced until after they have been publicly posted.

The amendment to section S91.02 redefined what is considered an abandoned vehicle. Previously vehicles had to meet four criteria to be considered a junk vehicle under the city code. Under the amendment, vehicles will be considered junk if it meets two or more of the following:

  • Is not properly licensed in Minnesota.

  • Is extensively damaged, with the damage including things such as broken or missing wheels, motor, drive train or transmission.

  • Is apparently inoperable or incapable of legal movement on public roads.

  • Is used for repair or source of repair or replacement parts or kept for scrapping, dismantling, or salvage or any kind.

  • Has an approximate fair market value equal only to the approximate value of the scrap in it.

Under the amendments to sections S92.18 of the city code public nuisances have been amended to the following:


  • Accumulations in the open discarded or disused machinery, household appliance, automobile bodies or parts, or other material in a manner conducive to the harboring of rats, mice snakes or vermin, of the rank growth of vegetation among the items so accumulated, or in a manner creating fire, health, or safety hazards from accumulation.

  • Any piece of furniture that is manufactured and intended to be used exclusively indoors but is kept outdoors.

  • Excessive storage of non-permanent items in yards.

  • No more than four vehicles per lawful dwelling unit may be parked or stored anywhere outside on the residential property, except as otherwise permitted or required by the city because of nonresidential characteristics of the property. The maximum number does not include vehicles of occasional guests who do not reside on the property.

The amendment to section S92.35 pertaining weeds states that; any weeds, grass or similar vegetative cover growing on any low or parcel of land outside the traveled portion of any street or alley in the city cannot exceed 8 inches in height. Previous to this amendment, the maximum allowed height was 12 inches.
Other business discussed at the City Council meeting:

  • The council approved the preliminary budget and conceptual drawing for the Perham Area Community Center and Hub project that was presented to the Committee of the Whole on June 24.

  • The council approved the purchase agreement for the old Perham High School. The purchase agreement is only for the parcel of land that the old high school sits upon. The finalization of the purchase will start after the school board has approved its end of the agreement.

  • The council approved a $2,500 donation from Bean Mill for the PACC/Hub project and a $100,000 donation from the Kenny and Kim Nelson Trust for the Fire Department.

  • On-sale liquor licenses, contingent on all fees and legal requirements and including Sunday liquor, were approved for the following businesses: Suds Tavern, Brew Ales and Eats, Perham Lakeside Golf Club, and Zorbaz of Little Pine Lake; Grandstay Hotel was approved with no Sunday liquor.

  • Installation of the storm sewer on Second Street Northeast, as part of the Northeast Industrial Park Project , is underway.

  • The Committee of the Whole is scheduled for Wednesday, July 29, at 5:15 p.m.

  • The next regular Council Meeting is scheduled for Monday, Aug. 10, at 5:15 p.m.

  • The Primary Election will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 11. Polls will open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m.

  • The tentative schedule for the 2021 Budget Meetings are the following: Friday, Aug. 28 at 7 a.m. for the police department, public works, library, and fire department; Friday, Sept. 11, at 7 a.m. for capital debt and overview; and Wednesday, Sept. 30, after the Committee of the Whole for review.

What To Read Next
Mike Clemens, a farmer from Wimbledon, North Dakota, was literally (and figuratively) “blown away,” when his equipment shed collapsed under a snow load.
The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission met on Jan. 5, 2023, to consider the application for Summit Carbon Solutions.
Qualified Minnesota farmers will receive dollar-for-dollar matching money to purchase farmland.