Report a Nuisance

The Public Nuisance Ordinance (PNO), Ordinance # 12550 C.M.S., was adopted by the Oakland City Council on November 4, 2003. The PNO established an administrative process and penalty structure to address “nuisance” properties, as well as a Case Manager to help coordinate and direct resources to resolve the cases.


Prior to the Public Nuisance Ordinance (PNO) adoption it was unclear how the City’s administrative processes could address general nuisance activities and violations of the Oakland Municipal Code (OMC) on or near properties. Staff had to concurrently make findings and send notices under several different provisions of the OMC. The PNO sets out procedures for the declaration of a property as a public nuisance, including the roles of the various agencies involved in investigations, case preparations and enforcement.

The distribution of City resources made it difficult to investigate, declare and process nuisance cases. Often these cases cross several different departments and agencies with no official direction on how to coordinate resources. Coordination among departments made it challenging to abate public nuisance properties when there was no structure or habitability related violations, and only generalized nuisance activity such as selling drugs or related loitering. Under the previous procedural process, the City’s Building Official had to assess evidence of public nuisance and issue a “substandard” finding to initiate the administrative enforcement processes in OMC Title One. The Building Official is the designated official to evaluate and establish findings of nuisance based on structure, habitability and zoning violations. However previous ordinances provided no guidance for the coordination needed to properly evaluate, make findings and abate property based nuisances involving criminal and/or other general nuisance conduct.


In order to enforce the noise ordinance the noise must emanate from a property and not the public right of way. If the issue is the former, then the occupants of two or more separate housing or commercial units must certify that they have experienced such period of noise and describe with particularity the source. Review the Guideline for reporting noise nuisance document below on qualifying “noise” disturbances. Written complaints can be emailed by clicking the “Report a Nuisance” button above.


The City of Oakland Office is seeking firms or individuals (contractor) to serve as a Hearing Officer to perform the services described in the enclosed attachment under a professional services agreement. The contractor(s) will hear appeals of enforcement actions pertaining to any and all building, housing, fire, property, zoning codes, special business permits and public nuisance cases. These contracts will be on an as needed basis for a period of two years or up to $30,000, whichever occurs first.

For more detail, please see enclosed informal RFQ. Due date for responses is no later than 3:00 p.m., Monday, June 1, 2020.