Village of Massapequa Park, NY
Nassau County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Massapequa Park as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Health and sanitation — See Ch. 184.
Noise — See Ch. 218.
Nuisances — See Ch. 222.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 254.
Zoning — See Ch. 345.
[Adopted 10-6-2008 by L.L. No. 6-2008]

§ 189-1 Legislative intent; purpose.

The Village Board of Trustees hereby finds that there exist in the Village of Massapequa Park serious conditions arising from the rental of dwelling units that are substandard, inadequate in size, overcrowded and/or dangerous and/or are in violation of local and state law, and that the rental of such dwelling units poses a significant threat to life, limb and property of residents of the Village and others, tends to promote and encourage deterioration of housing within the Village, contributes to excessive vehicular traffic and parking problems and overburdens and has a detrimental effect upon municipal services. The Board finds that current Code provisions are inadequate to adequately deter and/or eliminate the existence of such dwelling units and that adequate legislation regulating these occupancies is required to promote and preserve the public health, safety, welfare and good order and governance of the Village. The enactment of the regulations set forth in this article, which regulations are remedial in nature and effect, shall have the effect of enhancing the public health safety, welfare and good order of the Village.

§ 189-2 Scope.

This article shall apply to all premises and rental dwelling units within such premises located within the Village of Massapequa Park, whether or not the use and occupancy thereof shall be permitted under the applicable use regulations for the zoning district in which such rental dwelling unit is located.

§ 189-3 Applicability.

The provisions of this article shall be deemed to supplement applicable state and local laws, ordinances, codes and regulations. Nothing in this article shall be deemed to abolish, impair, supersede or replace existing remedies of the Village, county or state or existing requirements of any other provision of local law or ordinance of the Village or of the county or state. In situations where there is a conflict between any provisions of this article and any applicable state or local law, ordinance, code or regulation, the more restrictive provision or requirement shall prevail.

§ 189-4 Determination of illegal occupancy.

It shall be unlawful to occupy or permit to be occupied or to assist in the occupancy of a dwelling unit where the number of occupants exceeds the permitted number of occupants.
A. 
Presumptions of illegal occupancies in single or one-family dwellings.
(1) 
In all civil and criminal prosecutions brought for the enforcement of Code provisions with respect to illegal occupancies, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that a single- or one-family dwelling unit is occupied by more than one family if any two or more of the following features are found to exist on the premises by the Code Enforcement Official authorized to enforce or investigate violations of the Code of the Village of Massapequa Park or any laws, codes, rules and regulations of the State of New York:
(a) 
More than one mailbox, mail slot or post office address or any combination thereof;
(b) 
More than one doorbell or doorway on the same side of the dwelling unit;
(c) 
More than one gas meter;
(d) 
More than one electric meter;
(e) 
More than one water meter;
(f) 
More than one connecting line for cable television service;
(g) 
More than one antenna, dish antenna or related receiving equipment;
(h) 
More than one telephone line;
(i) 
Separate entrances for segregated parts of the dwelling unit, including but not limited to bedrooms;
(j) 
Partitions or internal doors with "key locks" which may serve to bar access between segregated portions of the dwelling unit, including but not limited to bedrooms;
(k) 
Separate written or oral leases or rental arrangements, payments or agreements for portions of the dwelling unit among its owner(s) and occupants;
(l) 
The inability of any occupant to have lawful access to all parts of the dwelling unit;
(m) 
Two or more kitchens, each containing one or more of the following: a refrigerator, sink and/or range, oven, hotplate, microwave or other similar device customarily used for cooking or the preparation of food;
(n) 
Any entrance(s) which has not been set forth on any plans approved by and on file with the Building Department;
(o) 
Two or more motor vehicles parked on the dwelling lot registered to persons with two or more different surnames; or
(2) 
There shall also be a rebuttable presumption of an illegal occupancy if a portion of a one- or single-family dwelling has been advertised or listed with any newspaper, magazine, local advertising publication, or real estate broker or agent as being available for sale or rent, or has been verbally advertised as being available for rent.
B. 
Presumptions of illegal occupancies in multiple-family dwellings.
(1) 
In all civil and criminal prosecutions brought for the enforcement of Code provisions with respect to illegal occupancies, there shall also be a rebuttable presumption that a multiple-family dwelling unit is occupied by more than the permitted number of families if any two or more of the following are found to exist on the premises by the Code Enforcement Official authorized to enforce or investigate violations of the Code of the Village of Massapequa Park or any laws, codes, rules and regulations of the State of New York:
(a) 
The number of mailboxes, mail slots or post office addresses exceeds the number of permitted families;
(b) 
The number of doorbells or doorways exceeds the number of permitted families;
(c) 
The number of gas meters exceeds the number of permitted families;
(d) 
The number of electric meters exceeds the number of permitted families;
(e) 
The number of connecting lines for cable television service exceeds the number of permitted families;
(f) 
The number of antennas, dish antennas or related receiving equipment exceeds the number of permitted families;
(g) 
The telephone lines exceed the number of permitted families;
(h) 
The number of kitchens, each containing one or more of the following: a refrigerator, sink and/or range, oven, hotplate, microwave or other similar device customarily used for cooking or the preparation of food, exceeds the number of permitted families; and
(i) 
The number of motor vehicles parked on the dwelling lot registered to persons with different surnames exceeds the number of permitted families;
(j) 
The number of entrances for segregated parts of the dwelling unit(s), including but not limited to bedrooms, exceeds the number of permitted families;
(k) 
Partitions or internal doors with "key locks" which may serve to bar access between segregated portions of the dwelling unit(s), including but not limited to bedrooms;
(l) 
Separate written or oral leases or rental arrangements, payments or agreements for portions of the dwelling unit(s) among its owner(s) and occupants;
(m) 
The inability of any occupant to have lawful access to all parts of the dwelling unit(s);
(n) 
Entrance(s) which has not been set forth on any plans approved by and on file with the Building Department.
(2) 
There shall also be a rebuttable presumption that a multiple-family dwelling unit is occupied by more than the permitted number of families if a portion of the multiple-family dwelling has been advertised or listed with any newspaper, magazine, local advertising publication, or real estate broker or agent as being available for sale or rent, or has been verbally advertised as being available for rent.
C. 
Verified statement. If any two or more of the features set forth in Subsections A(1) or B(1) are found to exist on the premises by the Code Enforcement Official, the Code Enforcement Official may request that the owner of the building or dwelling provide a verified statement that the building or dwelling unit(s) is in compliance with all of the provisions of the Code of the Village of Massapequa Park, the laws and sanitary and housing regulations of the County of Nassau and the laws of the State of New York. If the owner fails to submit such verified statement in writing to the Code Enforcement Official within 10 days of such request, such shall be deemed a violation of this article.
D. 
Owner's right to inspection and report upon demand. A person charged with a violation of this article may demand an inspection by the Department of Buildings of the subject premises to rebut any of the presumptions hereunder. Such demand shall be in writing addressed to the Building Inspector. The Building Inspector shall prepare a report of the finding of the inspection together with photographs, if appropriate.
E. 
Presumptive evidence dwelling unit is rented. The presence or existence of any of the following shall create a presumption that a dwelling unit is rented:
(1) 
The dwelling unit is occupied by someone other than the owner and the owner of the dwelling unit represents, in writing or otherwise, to any person, establishment, business, institution or government agency that he resides at an address other than the dwelling unit in question.
(2) 
Persons residing in the dwelling unit represent that they pay rent to the owner of the premises.
(3) 
Utilities, cable, telephone or other services are in place or are requested to be installed or used at the dwelling unit in the name of someone other than the owner.
(4) 
Testimony by a witness that it is common knowledge in the community that a person other than the owner resides in the dwelling unit.
F. 
Presumptions rebuttable by conclusive evidence. Any and all of the presumptions raised by proof of the existence of any such conditions as set forth in this article may be rebutted but only by conclusive evidence that such conditions do not, in fact, exist or that such conditions or the dwelling unit or the occupancy thereof, in fact, complies with the Code.

§ 189-5 Penalties for offenses.

A. 
A violation of this article is a violation as that term is defined in the New York State Penal Law.
B. 
Notwithstanding any provision of this Code inconsistent herewith, for each violation of this article, the owner and any person who is in charge of the subject property at the time of the violation shall be liable for a fine of not less than $3,500 for the first violation; for a second and any subsequent violation, the fine shall be no less than $7,000.
C. 
Each week that the violation continues to exist shall constitute a separate and distinct violation.

§ 189-6 Enforcement.

A. 
The Building Inspector and/or his or her assistants shall be responsible for investigating and documenting violations of any case of illegal occupancy within the Village.
B. 
Prosecutions for violations of this article may be instituted in the Village Justice Court, the District Court of the County of Nassau or any other court of competent jurisdiction.
C. 
The Village Attorney may, upon direction of the Board of Trustees, institute an action in the Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of Nassau, for appropriate relief where it appears under the circumstances that the imposition of a fine alone would not be adequate.