Shawnee is an active and vibrant community. Our neighborhoods are a mixture of diverse people, businesses, schools, and residences. This is one of the reasons that Shawnee is such a great place to live, work, and raise a family.
Getting to know your neighbors and becoming a part of the community can be a rewarding experience. In January, the City established a Good Neighbor Program, which encourages residents to be considerate and respectful to one another. Here are a few tips for being a good neighbor in Shawnee:
Get to know your neighbors.
Simply saying hello or greeting them with a wave can be a good way to begin building neighborly connections.
Be courteous and respectful.
Consider the differences in lifestyles between neighbors, such as family situations (small children, teenagers, retired, elderly, professionals, and students), different work and sleep schedules, and whether they are comfortable with pets or not.
Communication is key.
Talking to neighbors can go a long way in building neighborhood relationships. Ask questions if you aren’t sure when you are scheduled for trash collection or ask about recycling, yard maintenance, and more. If you’re planning to have guests, ask about parking or noise that may be intrusive. Opening the line of communication can prevent minor concerns or issues from turning into major conflicts between neighbors.
Be willing to give a helping hand.
If you notice litter in a neighbor’s yard, ask if they need help picking it up. If an elderly neighbor can’t rake the leaves in their yard or clear the ice from their porch or sidewalk, help them out.
Follow the city ordinances and Homeowners Associations.
Making sure you adhere to city ordinances is crucial to good neighborhood relations. If you live in a neighborhood with a Homeowners Association, make sure you follow those regulations also.
As a resident in a Shawnee neighborhood, these are a few things you can do to be a good neighbor.
Be a responsible pet owner. Being a responsible pet owner means ensuring vaccinations are maintained, preventing excessive pet-related noise, restraining pets in an appropriate manner, and removing pet waste. Residents are allowed to keep up to two cats and two dogs without any type of city license. Any additional pets require a special animal permit. Details on the City ordinance regulating pets can be found in Municipal Code Chapter 6, Animals or you can contact the City Clerk’s Office at (913) 742-6014.
Block parties serve as a way for neighbors to meet neighbors. You can obtain a block party permit up to two weeks prior to the scheduled event by completing the Block Party Request Form on the City’s website. Barricades must be furnished by the residents. For questions on block parties, contact the Police Department at (913) 631-2150.
If you would like an appearance from the Shawnee Fire Department, contact (913) 631-1080. Pending availability, a fire truck will be dispatched to the block. Children are given the opportunity to get inside the fire truck and learn about the different tools and equipment on the truck.
Many neighbors use public sidewalks to exercise, go to school, or access local stores or services. People with disabilities rely on them to take care of their day to day activities. Snow and ice can make a sidewalk difficult or treacherous to use and pedestrians, including children, sometimes resort to walking in the street to reach their destinations. As a reminder, the owner and/or occupant of a property adjacent to a public sidewalk is required to remove snow or ice from the abutting sidewalk within 48 hours after it has stopped falling. For more information on snow an ice removal from sidewalks, contact the Codes Administration Division at (913) 742-6210.
The Shawnee Snow Squad is a volunteer group that assists Shawnee residents who are physically unable to remove snow from their property. For more information or to get involved, contact the City’s Volunteer Coordinator at (913) 742-6244.
To assist snow removal crews, please do not park vehicles on the streets. Park vehicles in the driveway and don’t allow vehicles to extend into the roadway. When vehicles are parked on narrow streets, hills or both sides of the street, the City may not be able to clear snow from the street. Also, please place basketball goals, hockey goals, skateboard ramps or other structures at least 10 feet back from the street to allow for proper snow removal.
Fences higher than six feet require a permit from the Codes Administration Division. No solid fence over 4½ feet high is allowed in a front yard area (a corner lot has two front yards) and no solid fence over 3 feet high is allowed on corner lots within the sight distance triangle of 25 feet (Figure 1).
All fences shall be constructed with the finished side facing outward from the property. Fences should be maintained in good condition and be free from breaks, missing structure members, leaning, buckling, sagging or chipped and peeling paint. Fences are regulated by Municipal Code 17.60.030, Fences and Walls. For further information, contact the Codes Administration Division at (913) 742-6010.
The City does not issue or require a permit for garage sales. Residents are allowed two garage sales per calendar year at their residence. City ordinance allows for sales lasting up to five days between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. Garage sale signs are permitted as long as they are not located in public right of way and are taken down one day after the sale. More information about garage sales can be found in Municipal Code Chapter 5.32, Garage Sales, or you can contact the City Clerk’s Office at (913) 742-6014.
Be courteous - keep the noise to an acceptable level. Complaints about excessive noise can come from loud music, outdoor activities, early morning lawn mowers, and guests coming or going during late night or early morning hours. Municipal Code 9.70, Regulating Noise within Residential Areas of the City, governs noise levels in the City. If you have a noise complaint, you can contact the Police Department at (913) 631-2150.
Items such as, but not limited to, lawn mowers, yard tools, buckets and other miscellaneous items must be located within a fully enclosed structure or within the back yard and substantially screened by the equivalent of a 6’ solid board fence from view from any neighbor. Storage items, including but not limited to gardening equipment, vehicle parts, ladders, or wheelbarrows, should not occupy more than 20% of the rear yard area. Firewood, not to exceed one cord (4’ x 4’ x 8’), may be stored outside of the shielded storage area and should be neatly stacked and no closer to the street than the nearest primary wall surface of the residence.
A limited number of unrelated occupants are allowed to live in a home. The number of occupants allowed to reside in a residence is regulated by zoning district. Many neighborhoods are zoned primarily for single-family dwelling units. This means that no more than four unrelated persons can occupy a residence within a single-family district. Find out what a residence is zoned by contacting the Planning Department at (913) 742-6011. Over-occupancy is a violation of City ordinance and can lead to other issues that disturb neighbors, such as excessive vehicle parking or noise.
Please be courteous when parking on the streets in neighborhoods. The City has various regulations for parking vehicles. Parking in yards, on sidewalks, and other “No Parking” signed areas is prohibited. Vehicles parked on the street must be moved every 48 hours. Be aware of your vehicles position so that your neighbors can back out of their driveway safely and allow at least 10 feet width of the street so adequate distance can be maintained for emergency vehicles. Vehicles may not be parked within six feet (6’) of any mailbox.
Recreational vehicles, including boats, ATVs, campers, and trailers can be stored, one per residence, on the side or rear yard (not between the house and the street), and are required to be stored on a concrete, asphalt or paver brick parking pad that is at least the same size as the vehicle. These items may also be stored on the front driveway of a home for not more than 4 days in a 30-day period, to allow for trip preparation.
The City regulates parking through Municipal Code 10.20 Parking Restrictions. For more information on parking restrictions, contact the Codes Administration Division at (913) 742-6210.
Recycling, Trash & Yard Waste
Keep Shawnee clean and green. Trash and recycling removal services are provided to residents by private companies licensed with the City. Recycling and trash materials can be set out for pick-up up to 24 hours prior to pick-up. Empty containers should be removed within twelve hours of collection. Visit the City’s Trash & Recycling FAQ website or contact the City Manager’s Office at (913) 742-6213 for questions regarding recycling and trash.
The City requires all licensed residential haulers to have at least one large item pick up date during the year. The City calls these Tidy Town weekends. The Municipal Code stipulates collection for those east of Pflumm on the last Saturday in April and pick up for those west of Pflumm on the first Saturday in May.
A permit is required to solicit in the City. Permits cost $5.00 and are valid for 30 days from the date of issue. A solicitor’s permit is not required for persons soliciting for non-profit organizations and/or charitable contributions, or for census takers or political candidates or their agents. Solicitation is allowed between 9:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. Solicitor’s must carry a valid solicitor’s permit with them and show it to any resident who requests to see it. The City Clerk’s office has free “No Solicitor’s” stickers. For more information, contact the City Clerk’s Office at (913) 742-6014. If you are ever concerned about your safety, call 911.
Stormwater Pollution Prevention
Reminder – “Only Rain Down the Drain”. Help prevent the polluting of local streams and bodies of water by not dumping chemicals, yard waste, grass clippings or other pollutants into the storm drainage system. Yard waste, including grass clippings, clogs drains, pollutes lakes and streams, and causes harm to the ecosystem. The City regulates stormwater drainage pollution through Municipal Code 11.12.040, Stormwater Pollution Prevention. To report an illegal discharge of pollutants, contact the Stormwater Management Division at (913) 742-6009.
Yard maintenance is the responsibility of every owner or occupant and includes the maintenance of plant and grass material in any right-of-way abutting the property. In all areas except properties zoned agricultural, grass must be maintained at a height not to exceed 8 inches. Vegetation and trees should be trimmed so as not to impair vision or obstruct travel of motorists or obstruct pedestrian travel on sidewalks. Trees over the public right-of-way and sidewalks should be trimmed up to a height of 14 feet. Ground cover such as grass should be provided for all areas where soil is exposed. Shrubs and hedges should be neatly trimmed and maintained. It is illegal for anyone to deposit yard waste of any kind into the streets, curbs, gutters, creeks or streams. For more information on yard maintenance, contact the Codes Administration Division at (913) 742-6210.