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Tall Grass in Your Yard in Rochester Could Net You a Tall Fine

Having tall grass in your yard here in Rochester could net you a tall fine starting this year.


That’s right! There’s a new ordinance in effect in the Med City this year that has to do with your lawn. Specifically, how tall you grass is.

Now, there’s always been an ordinance in place that says you need to keep your grass (and/or weeds) under control. But according to this Post-Bulletin article, this summer marks the first year that if let things get to a foot high, the city can fine you.

Just how much are we talking? Well, a first citation for failing to mow your lawn starts at $60, then jumps to $90 on your second violation, and a whopping $120 for a third violation, the story notes.

So just how does the city levy a fine? Are there now ‘grass inspectors’ roaming around Rochester with a tape measure to make sure your lawn is cut to the correct length?

Uh, no. It’s actually complaint-driven. Meaning, if there’s a property in your neighborhood that hasn’t mowed their lawn, you’ve got to first file a complaint with the Forestry Department’s main office at 328-2515 or by email

They’ll then send someone out to see if the long grass and/or weeds really are that long. (And a foot is actually pretty high — meaning the property owner’s probably not fired up the lawn mower even once this season.)  If the grass is found to be out of control, in addition to the fine, the property owner could be assessed the cost the city spends to get things mowed.

You can read more about the ordinance HERE.

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