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Graffiti Abatement

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GRAFFITI ABATEMENT

The objective of this program is to remove graffiti as quickly as possible throughout the City to maintain the high quality appearance of public and private property in the community. The objective is to remove graffiti within 24 hours of discovery or reporting.

The program is staffed by two full-time employees and one part-time employee operating out of two fully equipped graffiti abatement trucks, one pickup truck and one gator solely dedicated to the Joann Bike Trail. They work an overlapping schedule to provide 7-day per week coverage.

There are a large number of surfaces from which graffiti is abated within the City on a daily basis. City-owned traffic signal control cabinets, irrigation control equipment, and many other non-City structures are maintained by the City's graffiti abatement team, as well as utility boxes owned by Southern California Edison and AT&T.

The City also provides a Graffiti Reward Program in which the City offers a monetary reward of up to $2,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of any person committing graffiti offenses.

The prevention of graffiti and the enforcement of laws pertaining to vandalism are important components of the City’s Graffiti Abatement Program. Staff utilize on-board computers in their trucks and smart phones to document all reported graffiti incidents. In 2010, City staff and Police personnel implemented the Countywide Tracking and Automated Graffiti Reporting system or “TAGRS”. The TAGRS system is a web based database program that provides a centralized database where the City can track graffiti and calculate the cost of removal. Photographs are taken in the field by the graffiti staff and are automatically downloaded into the database through a GPS (global positioning system) camera phone and are used in prosecuting these crimes. Working together, Police personnel have found the system to be effective in centralizing data, providing consistency in reporting, and ultimately prosecuting graffiti crimes. Monthly reports are generated and shared with key police department staff to assist in monitoring gang and tagger activity, allow for prevention and enforcement deployment decisions to be made and to compile information necessary to prosecute and seek restitution, should the responsible person(s) be identified and apprehended.

Costa Mesa Municipal Code
Title 11 Offenses - Miscellaneous
Chapter VII ½ §11-140.-11-149.4.

Contact Information
 
 Graffiti Hotline
(714) 327-7491
 Lead Maintenance Worker, Gaetano Russo
(714) 327-7491
 City Graffiti mobile app
 Link
 Orange County Flood Channel Graffiti Hotline
 (714) 834-3400
 County-owned and unincorporated areas, please call the County of Orange
 (714) 834-3400
 To report Graffiti on school property, please call Newport Mesa Unified School District (NMUSD) at (714) 424-7520.
 To report Graffiti on State property, please call Cal Trans at (949) 936-3600.