FAQs: Codes
FAQs: Codes

Building Permit
Noxious Weeds/Grass
Grass in the Street

When do I need a Building Permit?

    Any structural changes or additions, electrical upgrades, demolitions, swimming pools and hot tubs require permits. Cosmetic interior remodeling, such as replacement of cabinets, doors, windows, carpeting, and plumbing fixtures, etc. do not require a permit.

Do I have to get a permit to re-roof my house?

    A permit is required only if the sheathing needs to be added to or replaced.

Do I need a permit to build a shed?

    A permit is required for any accessory building over 120 square feet (10' x 12'). Only one accessory building is allowed per residential lot.

Can I put up a fence without a permit?

    The City does not require a permit for fences 6' or less. 6' fences are allowed in the rear yard and 4-1/2' solid fences are allowed in the front yard. There are very specific requirements for corner lots or lots with two frontages. All fences must be within the property boundaries. The finished side of any fence must face towards your neighbors.

My neighbors will not cut their grass?

    All residentially zoned yards less than 5 acres in size must be cut so that the height of the grass is less than 8” high and all noxious weeds are eliminated. For all vacant lots less than 5 acres in size, the height of the grass must be less than 10” in height. If the property is 5 + acres in size, there is a 30’ perimeter requirement in which the property must be cut less than 8” in height unless property is vacant in which it must be cut less than 10” in height.

    Those areas of vacant lots within 30’ of the paved street or adjacent properties must have the grass trim cut around obstructions such as utility poles, mailboxes, or trees. The City will notify persons not complying with regulations of the need to mow their property. If the property is not mowed, the City will see that the property is mowed and bill the violator for the cost of mowing plus an additional $70 administration fee.

What can I do if my neighbor's yard is full of debris and junk?

    The Municipal Code prohibits any accumulation of worn out, broken or worthless items, including broken toys, washing machines, clothes dryers, stoves, ranges, refrigerators, newspapers, trash or refuse on any property. Useful items, such as lumber, boxes, barrels, bottles, cans, ladders, carts, logs and metal must be properly stored.

My neighbors leave their grass in the street?
    The Shawnee Municipal Code prohibits anyone from depositing debris or yard waste of any kind into the street, or curb and gutter. Grass clippings that are discharged by lawn mowers or dumped onto the street, curb or gutter, or in creeks or streams, stop up storm drains and prohibit optimum flow. Mowers should discharge grass back into the yard not onto the streets. During hard rains, blocked storm drains back up water into the street causing flooding of streets and property. In addition, yard waste dumped into our streams and ponds can cause increased natural bacteria growth (blue-green algae) which can release toxins that can be harmful if ingested by humans and pets. Increased bacteria growth also uses oxygen in the water that can cause fish to die. If you see this kind of dumping, please notify the Public Works Department at 742-6230.

Questions: E-Mail or call (913) 742-6010