Special Enforcement Blitz to Address Illegal Home-Based Businesses

Largo, MD – Prince George’s County is taking action against illegal home-based businesses following a surge in citizen complaints regarding kitchen cafés, makeshift clubs, driveway auto repair shops, and other unpermitted businesses. The Stepped-Up Enforcement Initiative, which was launched on March 1, is spearheaded by the Department of Permitting, Inspections and Enforcement (DPIE) utilizing trained Enforcement Division inspectors.  

During the first 30 days of the blitz, DPIE will be out in neighborhoods passing out enforcement information to residents. Inspectors will also work with community and agency partners and utilize social media to spread the message about the program. Inspectors will converge on certain areas on designated weekends and evenings.

“Unlicensed businesses pose a threat to our community's integrity and safety," said County Executive Angela Alsobrooks. "This initiative is about more than shutting people down, we also aim to work with residents operating businesses illegally to bring them into compliance, whenever possible, ensuring fairness and fostering a thriving business environment throughout the county."

“The blitz will focus additional attention and resources on the illegal businesses that were identified as frequent offenders in targeted locations,” said DPIE Director Dawit Abraham. “The County has created a multi-level response. Though DPIE inspectors will serve as the primary on-the-ground team, we will work with other agencies such as Police Department COPS officers and staff from the County Executive’s Office of Latino Affairs, African Diaspora Advisory Board, Muslim Association and other stakeholders.”

An amnesty program will run through July 1, providing violating owners with 90 days to come into compliance before DPIE issues fines.  

The initial phase of the special enforcement blitz will target areas of the County that generate the highest number of complaints, including Adelphi, Hyattsville, Lewisdale, Langley Park, Lanham, Riverdale Park, Seabrook and Upper Marlboro. Campaign materials will be distributed in multiple languages including Spanish, Tagalog, Chinese, Arabic, Amharic and French. Spanish-speaking DPIE inspectors will work in high-density communities with large numbers of Latino residents.  

Learn more about the campaign mypgc.us/UnlicensedBusinesses.