Borough of Highland Park, NJ
Middlesex County
By using eCode360 you agree to be legally bound by the Terms of Use. If you do not agree to the Terms of Use, please do not use eCode360.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Highland Park as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 10-17-2006 by Ord. No. 1704 (§ 2-46 of the 1987 Code)]

§ 150-1 Entering into or amending agreements with certain contributors.

A. 
Any other provision of law to the contrary notwithstanding, the Mayor and Borough Council of the Borough of Highland Park, its departments, instrumentalities, or independent authorities, and the purchasing agents or agencies of the foregoing shall not enter into or amend, extend, or modify an agreement or contract with any redeveloper for the planning, replanning, construction or undertaking of any redevelopment project, including the acquisition or leasing of any public property in conjunction with the redevelopment of any area within the Borough of Highland Park pursuant to the Local Redevelopment and Housing Law, if that redeveloper has solicited or made any contribution during the applicable time period as specified below, to: a candidate, candidate committee, or joint candidates committee of any candidate for elective municipal office in the Borough of Highland Park; a holder of public office having ultimate responsibility for the award of a redevelopment agreement; or any political action committee (hereinafter PAC) that regularly engages in the support of Borough of Highland Park municipal or Middlesex County elections and/or Borough of Highland Park or Middlesex County political parties. If, however, any of the foregoing has received a contribution during the applicable time period from a presumptive redeveloper who is an owner of property at the time the property was determined as an area in need of redevelopment, the local official shall be required to return said contribution. For purposes of this article, the "applicable time period" shall be defined as the time period between the date that the property which is the subject of the redevelopment project has been included in a memorializing resolution adopted by the governing body directing the Planning Board to conduct a preliminary investigation to determine if the site is in need of redevelopment pursuant to and in accordance with the New Jersey Local Redevelopment and Housing Law, N.J.S.A. 40A:12A-1 et seq., and the date of entering into the redevelopment agreement, or the 12 months prior to entering into the agreement, whichever is shorter.
B. 
All redevelopment agreements or amendments thereto entered into by the Mayor and Borough Council of the Borough of Highland Park shall contain a provision prohibiting redevelopers as defined in Subsection C from soliciting or making any contribution to a candidate, candidate committee, or joint candidates committee of any candidate for elective municipal office in the Borough of Highland Park; a holder of public office having ultimate responsibility for the award of a redevelopment agreement; or any PAC.
C. 
As defined in this article, a "redeveloper" means:
(1) 
Any person, firm, corporation or public body that shall enter into or propose to enter into a contract with a municipality or other redevelopment entity for the redevelopment or rehabilitation of an area in need of redevelopment, or an area in need of rehabilitation, or any part thereof, under the provisions of this act, or for any construction or other work forming part of a redevelopment or rehabilitation project;
(2) 
Any person who owns 10% or more of the equity or ownership or income interests in a person or entity as defined in Subsection C(1) above and their spouses and child/children living at home.
D. 
For the purposes of this article, the holder of public office having ultimate responsibility for the award of a redevelopment agreement is:
(1) 
The Borough Council of Borough of Highland Park Council and each of its members (without regard to such member's vote on any aspect of a redevelopment agreement) if the redevelopment agreement requires approval or appropriation from the Council or from a public officer appointed by Council; or
(2) 
The Mayor of Borough of Highland Park if the redevelopment agreement requires the approval of the Mayor or a public officer appointed by the Mayor; or
(3) 
A designated redevelopment entity, if the redevelopment agreement requires the approval of the redevelopment entity.

§ 150-2 Contributions made prior to effective date.

No solicitation or contribution made by a redeveloper or consultant as defined in §§ 150-1C and 150-4, respectively, shall be deemed a violation of this article if that contribution or agreement was made by the redeveloper or consultant prior to the effective date of this article which shall be January 2, 2007.

§ 150-3 Notice given by municipality; sworn statement of redeveloper.

A. 
It shall be the municipality's continuing responsibility to give notice to this article when the municipality gives notice of redevelopment pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:12A-6 and when the municipality adopts a resolution directing the Planning Board to prepare a redevelopment plan and at the time that the municipality adopts the ordinance to implement the redevelopment plan.
B. 
Prior to arranging and entering into the redevelopment agreement with any redeveloper, the Borough of Highland Park or any of its purchasing agents or agencies or independent authorities, as the case may be, shall receive a sworn statement from the redeveloper that the redeveloper has not made any contribution in violation of § 150-1A above. Furthermore, the redeveloper shall have a continuing duty to report any violations of this article that may occur while arranging and entering into the redevelopment agreement, and until all specified terms of the agreement have been completed. The certification required under this section shall be made prior to entry into the agreement with the municipality and shall be in addition to any other certifications that may be required by any other provision of law.

§ 150-4 Return of prohibited contributions.

A redeveloper or consultant may cure a violation of § 150-1 of this article, and shall not be deemed to be in violation thereof if, within 30 days after the cited violation, the redeveloper notifies the Municipal Council in writing and seeks and receives reimbursement of a contribution from the municipal candidate or municipal or county political party or PAC referenced in this article.

§ 150-5 Violations and penalties.

A. 
It shall be a breach of the terms of the Borough of Highland Park redevelopment agreement if it is demonstrated by a preponderance of the evidence that such redeveloper has:
(1) 
Made or solicited a contribution in violation of this article;
(2) 
Purposely, knowingly or recklessly concealed or misrepresented a contribution given or received;
(3) 
Made or solicited contributions through intermediaries for the purpose of concealing or misrepresenting the source of the contribution;
(4) 
Made or solicited any contribution on the condition or with the agreement that it will be contributed to a campaign committee of any candidate or holder of the public office of Borough of Highland Park;
(5) 
Engaged or employed a lobbyist or consultant with the intent or understanding that such lobbyist or consultant would make or solicit any contribution, which if made or solicited by the redeveloper itself, would subject that entity to the restrictions of this article;
(6) 
Funded contributions made by third parties, including consultants, attorneys, family members, and employee;
(7) 
Engaged in any exchange of contributions to circumvent the intent of this article; or
(8) 
Directly or indirectly, through or by any other person or means, done any act which would subject that entity to the restrictions of this article.
B. 
Furthermore, any redeveloper who violates Subsection A(2) through (8) shall be disqualified from eligibility for future redeveloper designations in Highland Park for a period of four calendar years from the date of the violation.
[Adopted 11-1-2006 by Ord. No. 1705 (§ 2-43 of the 1987 Code)]

§ 150-6 Prohibitions.

[Amended 10-16-2007 by Ord. No. 07-1731]
A. 
To the extent that it is not inconsistent with state or federal law, the Borough of Highland Park and any of its departments, instrumentalities or purchasing agents shall not enter into any agreement or otherwise contract to procure "professional services" as such term is used at N.J.S.A. 40A:11-5(1)(a)(i) and/or banking, insurance or other consulting service (hereinafter "professional services") from any professional business entity if such professional business entity has solicited or made any contribution (as such term is defined at N.J.A.C. 19:25-1.7, which definition includes loans, pledges and in-kind contributions) (hereinafter "contribution"), to: a candidate or joint candidate(s) committee of any candidate for elective municipal office in Borough of Highland Park or a holder of public office having ultimate responsibility for the award of a contract; or to any Borough of Highland Park or Middlesex County Political Party Committee; or to any political action committee that regularly engages in the support of Borough of Highland Park municipal or Middlesex County elections and/or Borough of Highland Park municipal or Middlesex County political parties or Borough of Highland Park municipal or Middlesex County political party committees (hereinafter "PAC"), in excess of the thresholds specified in Subsection D within one calendar year immediately preceding the date of the contract or agreement.
B. 
No professional business entity who submits a proposal for, enters into negotiations for, or agrees to any contract or agreement with the Borough of Highland Park or any of its departments or instrumentalities, for the rendition of professional services shall knowingly solicit or make any contribution, in excess of the thresholds specified in Subsection D to: a candidate or joint candidate(s) committee of any candidate for elective municipal office in Borough of Highland Park or holder of public office having ultimate responsibility for the award of a contract; or to any Borough of Highland Park or Middlesex County political party committee; or to any political action committee ("PAC") that regularly engages in the support of Borough of Highland Park municipal or Middlesex County elections and/or Borough of Highland Park municipal or Middlesex County political parties or Borough of Highland Park municipal or Middlesex County political party committees, between the time of first communication between that professional business entity and the municipality regarding a specific agreement for professional services and the later of the termination of negotiations or rejection of any proposal, or the completion of the performance of that contract or agreement.
C. 
For purposes of this article, a "professional business entity" whose contributions are regulated by Subsections A and B hereof means:
[Amended 9-16-2008 by Ord. No. 08-1742]
(1) 
An individual including the individual's spouse, and any child living at home;
(2) 
A firm; corporation; professional corporation; partnership; limited liability company; organization; association; or any other manner and kind of business entity;
(3) 
Any person who owns 10% or more of the equity or ownership or income interests in a person or entity as defined in Subsection C(1) and (2) above, as well as that person's spouse and any child living at home;
(4) 
All partners or officers of such an entity, in the aggregate, and their spouses and any child living at home; and
(5) 
All "affiliates" of a person defined in Subsection C(1) and (2) above [as the term "affiliate" is used in 11 U.S.C. § 101(2)].
D. 
The monetary thresholds of this article are: a maximum of $300 for any purpose to any candidate for mayor or Borough Council, or $300 to a Borough of Highland Park political party committee; $500 to a Middlesex County political party committee or to any PAC. However, any group of persons meeting the definition provided in Subsection C above of "professional business entity" may not annually contribute for any purpose in excess of $2,500 to all Borough of Highland Park candidates and officeholders with ultimate responsibility for the award of the contract and all Borough of Highland Park or Middlesex County political party committees and PACs combined, without violating Subsection A of this section.
[Amended 9-16-2008 by Ord. No. 08-1742]
E. 
For purposes of this article, the office that is considered to have ultimate responsibility for the award of the contract shall be:
[Amended 9-16-2008 by Ord. No. 08-1742]
(1) 
The Council of the Borough of Highland Park, if the contract requires approval or appropriation from the Borough Council or a public officer who is responsible for the award of a contract if that public officer is appointed by the Council.
(2) 
The Mayor of the Borough of Highland Park, if the contract requires approval of the Mayor, or a public officer who is responsible for the award of a contract if that public officer is appointed by the Mayor.

§ 150-7 Effective date.

[Amended 12-19-2006 by Ord. No. 1711]
No solicitation or contribution made by a redeveloper or consultant as defined in § 150-1, respectively, shall be deemed a violation of this article if that contribution or agreement was made by the redeveloper or consultant prior to the effective date of this article which shall be January 2, 2007.

§ 150-8 Contribution statement by professional business entity.

[Amended 9-16-2008 by Ord. No. 08-1742]
A. 
Prior to awarding any contract or agreement to procure services, including professional, banking, insurance, and consulting services, from any professional business entity the Borough of Highland Park or its purchasing agents and departments, as the case may be, shall receive a sworn statement from the professional business entity made under penalty of perjury that the professional business entity has not made a contribution in violation of § 150-6 of this article.
B. 
The professional business entity shall have a continuing duty to update said statement during the negotiation, proposal process or duration of a contract. The certification required under this section shall be made prior to entry into the contract or agreement with the Borough of Highland Park or prior to the provision of services or goods, as the case may be, and shall be in addition to any other certifications that may be required by any other provision of law.

§ 150-9 Return of excess contributions.

[Amended 9-16-2008 by Ord. No. 08-1742]
A professional business entity may cure a violation of § 150-6 of this article, if, within 30 days after receiving a notice of the violation from the Borough, the professional business entity notifies the Borough Council in writing and seeks and receives reimbursement of a contribution from the municipal candidate or municipal or county political party or PAC referenced in this article.

§ 150-10 Exemptions.

[Amended 9-16-2008 by Ord. No. 08-1742]
The limitations set forth in § 150-6A do not apply to contracts which: are awarded to the lowest responsible bidder after public advertising for bids and bidding therefor within the meaning of N.J.S.A. 40A:11-4; or are awarded in the case of emergency under N.J.S.A. 40A:11-6. There is no exemption for contracts awarded pursuant to a fair and open process under N.J.S.A. 19:44A-20 et seq.

§ 150-11 Violations and penalties.

A. 
It shall be a material breach of the terms of a Borough of Highland Park agreement or contract for professional services when a recipient of such agreement or contract has:
(1) 
Made or solicited a contribution in violation of this article;
(2) 
Knowingly concealed or misrepresented a contribution given or received;
(3) 
Made or solicited contributions through intermediaries for the purpose of concealing or misrepresenting the source of the contribution;
(4) 
Made or solicited any contribution on the condition or with the agreement that it will be recontributed to a candidate or joint candidates committee of any candidate for elective municipal office in Borough of Highland Park or any Borough of Highland Park or Middlesex County political party committee, or any PAC;
(5) 
Engaged or employed a lobbyist or consultant with the intent or understanding that such lobbyist or consultant would make or solicit any contribution, which if made or solicited by the professional business entity itself, would subject that entity to the restrictions of this article;
(6) 
Funded contributions made by third parties, including consultants, attorneys, family members, and employees;
(7) 
Engaged in any exchange of contributions to circumvent the intent of this article; or
(8) 
Directly or indirectly, through or by any other person or means, done any act which if done directly would subject that entity to the restrictions of this article.
B. 
Any professional business entity that violates Subsection A shall be disqualified from eligibility for future Borough of Highland Park contracts for a period of four calendar years from the date of the violation.