Residents who wish to make a complaint to the town ordinance enforcement department may now do so online, and the complaint will be immediately received electronically by officials and officers on the job, who will call officers on the job via cellphone.
Betsy Bambrick, the head of the department, described the procedure at a town board meeting on Tuesday.
A complainant must provide a valid email address and other information, or the system will not accept the complaint. Once an investigation begins, case files are kept confidential, she said.
Allowing officers to investigate a situation immediately, in “real time,” Ms. Bambrick said, is enormously effective in gathering the evidence needed to take code-breakers to court. In addition to regular hours, officers are on duty during night hours on weekends.
Noise complaints are directed to the Police Department, she said, although a code enforcement officer will respond as well if a complaint involves an overcrowded house or one being illegally rented for short-term stays.
Most of the summonses issued so far this summer, Ms. Bambrick said, have been for “excessive turnover” — renting, for under two weeks, more than three times in a year – rather than for share houses, rentals being shared by more people than allowed.