Municipal Infractions are civil citations used to obtain compliance with the Bowie City Code. Municipal infractions are issued by a Code Compliance Officers, Animal Control Officers, Park Rangers, and Bowie Police Officers.
When are Municipal Infractions Issued?
Generally, municipal infractions are issued after a person fails to comply with a warning or a notice of violation of the Bowie City Code. A warning notice or (Notice of Violation) may be in the form of a letter, door hanger or verbal communications. A written notice has a description of the violation, referenced code section, correction date and the name and telephone number of the issuing officer.
A municipal infraction may be issued without a prior warning if the circumstances dictate it should be issued immediately and a warning is not required by the Bowie City Code. Municipal infractions may be issued immediately to a repeat offender, out of state violator (solicitor), and when a City official witnesses the defendant committing a violation.
Municipal infractions are issued to each violator and, if occurring on private property, to all property owners on record. Tenants, resident agents, business owners and visitors may also receive a municipal infraction for certain violations. Multiple municipal infractions can be issued if the violation persist. A municipal infraction may be delivered personally, by certified restricted mail, first class mail, or conspicuously posting on the property in violation.
Example of Municipal Infraction Citation
Click on image to view larger citation
If You Receive a Municipal Infraction
Read it carefully. Municipal infractions are court documents charging you with an offense. You may elect to:
- Pay the fine within 20 days of receipt,
- Request a District Court trial within 15 days of receipt, or
- Apply for an Administrative Review Board (ARB) hearing within 15 days of receipt.
*Requests for ARB are only accepted if you state a reason on the application as to why the municipal infraction was issued in error. To request a hearing before the ARB please complete and submit an ARB application. Mail the application to the Department of Community Services,15901 Fred Robinson Way, Bowie, MD 20716
If you take no action, the municipal infraction will be:
- Forwarded to the District Court for trial,
- The City may request to double the fines, and
- The City may seek an abatement order which permits the City to enter onto the property to make the necessary repairs, Any costs are to be paid by the property owner in the form a lien on the property.
Payment of the fine does not excuse the defendant of the responsibility to correct the violation. The City of Bowie may seek the abatement order at court even if the fine is paid.
Questions about Municipal Infractions
If you have any questions or concerns regarding municipal infractions, please contact the issuing code enforcement officer or the Code Compliance Office at 301-809-3008.