Where and how do I submit a complaint?
In order to ensure that all complaints are resolved as efficiently and expeditiously as possible, please take a moment to direct complaints to the appropriate county department. For instance, within the Community Development Department, the Building Division investigates unpermitted structures and other building code violations; the Environmental Health Division responds to matters of food safety, sanitation, and hazardous material spills; and the Planning Division addresses zoning violations, such as unpermitted land uses, inadequate setbacks, junk vehicles, and the cultivation of medical marijuana. If, however, the complaint involves animal control or air quality violations, for example, the complaint should be directed to the Agriculture Department.
Please note that the information on this page is specific to the Community Development Department and complaints submitted to Community Development will be routed by county staff to the appropriate division (i.e., Planning, Building, or Environmental Health) for follow up.
Further, so that staff has sufficient information to follow up on a complaint, it is requested that all complaints being submitted to the Community Development Department be submitted in writing. Complaint forms are available for download here, and once completed, can be delivered to the Community Development Department at 806 South Main Street, Yreka, CA 96097, or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
What if I don’t want anyone to find out who complained?
All complainants' identities are kept confidential and will not be disclosed to an outside party, except by court order. Therefore, it is requested that complainant’s include their name and contact information to assist code enforcement staff during the investigative process. Without this information, staff is unable to contact the complainant for additional information, should it be needed, and/or potentially gain access to private property where the alleged violation can be observed.
What happens if someone complains about me?
County staff will conduct an investigation to determine whether a violation of County Code exists. Depending upon the nature of the case, this may entail a visit to the property where the alleged violation exists. Unless it is a matter of immediate health and safety, County staff will always request permission to enter the property from the owner or other occupant of the property before doing so. If staff is unable to obtain permission to enter, an inspection warrant will be obtained. Following the preliminary investigation, the property owner and/or tenant will be contacted and a letter will be sent explaining the problem, how to correct the situation, and potential penalties for failing to do so.
The County will make every reasonable effort to work with the violator as long as progress toward abating the violation is occurring. If efforts at resolution are ignored or delayed, a Notice to Comply and Order to Abate will be issued followed by a citation. Potential penalties vary depending upon whether the case is addressed criminally, civilly, and/or administratively, though in all cases, the County will attempt to recover enforcement costs from the violator.