Village of Washingtonville, NY
Orange County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Washingtonville 5-7-1990 by L.L. No. 7-1990. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES

Building construction and fire prevention — See Ch. 56.

Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 148.

Subdivision of land — See Ch. 150.

Zoning — See Ch. 175.

Street specifications — See Ch. A181.

Water main specifications — See Ch. A182.

§ 88-1
Purpose. 

§ 88-2
Definitions. 

§ 88-3
Administration by Enforcement Officer. 

§ 88-4
Permit required; fees. 

§ 88-5
Application requirements. 

§ 88-6
Additional requirements. 

§ 88-7
Exemptions. 

§ 88-8
Reclamation bond. 

§ 88-9
Penalties for offenses; remedies. 

§ 88-10
Assessment of costs against property. 

§ 88-1 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to promote the public health, safety and general welfare and to ensure that the filling and grading of properties are safely conducted in conformance with Chapter 175, Zoning, and other applicable laws.

§ 88-2 Definitions.

Unless specifically defined below, words or phrases used in this chapter shall be interpreted so as to give them the meanings they have in common usage and to give this chapter its most reasonable application.

ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
The Village Building Inspector, Village Engineer and/or other person so designated by the Board of Trustees.
FILLING
The placement of soil, rubble, spoils, rocks and/or any other appropriate fill on any property for the purpose of filling, raising or elevating any portion of a property. Unlawful fill includes garbage, trash, hazardous materials, nonhazardous refuse and demolition or construction waste.
GRADING
The changing or alteration of the surfaces or slopes of lawns or grounds on a site.

§ 88-3 Administration by Enforcement Officer.

The Enforcement Officer shall administer and implement this chapter by processing all filling and grading applications and referring to the Planning Board applications which require filling or grading resulting in a change in elevation or grade of two feet or more on any portion of the property.

§ 88-4 Permit required; fees.

No person shall conduct or cause to be conducted any land operations to fill or grade any property without securing a permit from the Building Inspector, unless an exemption set forth in § 88-7 applies. For applications which are referred to the Planning Board, no permit shall be issued by the Building Inspector unless and until the Planning Board approves said issuance. Fees for applications to the Building Inspector and for application referrals to the Planning Board shall be established and amended from time to time by resolution of the Board of Trustees.

§ 88-5 Application requirements.

Submission by the applicant of the following information or exhibits may be required by the Enforcement Officer and/or Planning Board prior to issuance of a permit:

A. 

Engineering drawings showing the tax lot upon which the activity will be conducted.

B. 

The names and addresses and the tax map numbers of all contiguous property owners and the names and addresses and tax map numbers of all property owners located within 500 feet of the proposed site.

C. 

A plan showing all existing and proposed contour lines, amount of fill to be placed or displaced, location of trees over eight inches in diameter measured four feet from the ground and road access to the site.

D. 

Erosion control plan.

E. 

Drainage plan.

F. 

Soil and groundwater testing in order to gain information concerning pre-fill conditions at the site.

G. 

Preliminary copies of any contracts to perform such filling and grading, which contract shall state that it is subject to this chapter, and a copy of this chapter shall be attached to and become a part of such contract.

H. 

Documentation regarding permit status with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Any required New York State Department of Environmental Conservation permit must be in effect prior to the issuance of a permit by the village.

I. 

Proof of insurance adequate to cover the intended work pursuant to the terms of the permit. The village shall be named as an additional insured on the applicant's policy. The applicant shall by a separate instrument agree to indemnify and hold harmless the village from any claims arising out of the intended activity.

J. 

Completion date and any other information which the Enforcement Officer or Planning Board deems reasonable in reviewing the application.

§ 88-6 Additional requirements.

A. 

Operations shall be conducted only during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon on Saturdays. No operations shall be conducted on Sundays or holidays.

B. 

Prior to the issuance of a permit, the Planning Board shall hold a public hearing on 10 days' notice concerning applications referred to said Board. Notice of the hearing shall be given 10 days prior thereto by the applicant to all abutting property owners and all other owners of property within 500 feet of the intended site. Proof of such notice shall be given by certified mail, return receipt requested, and at the time of the public hearing, the applicant shall file proof of mailing of the notice of public hearing.

C. 

The Planning Board may engage the services of an independent consultant to review the application and supporting documentation, the fees for which shall be paid by the applicant. The Board of Trustees may for this purpose require the applicant to deposit funds in advance in a reasonable amount and any surplus shall be returned.

D. 

Filling and grading shall be done in such manner as not to result in an increase of surface water runoff onto any other properties and shall not result in any conditions which increase erosion or result in any unstable conditions upon the site, adjacent properties or wetlands.

E. 

The Board of Trustees or its designee may contract appropriate surveillance of the site on a twenty-four-hour, seven-day-week basis, until the activity is completed. The applicant shall be required as a condition of the permit to sign the permit authorizing the Board of Trustees, its employees or agents, to enter onto the applicant's property to conduct the appropriate surveillance. Any and all costs for this service will be estimated by the Board of Trustees prior to the issuance of a permit, and the applicant shall be required to post a certified check to cover such costs.

F. 

The applicant shall retain a professional engineer licensed to practice in the State of New York, who shall certify as to the contours of the site at regularly scheduled times to be established by the Enforcement Officer or his designee.

G. 

Any monitoring and/or testing of fill material which is required during the course of operations shall be performed by a licensed professional engineer and/or testing lab retained by the village. All costs for this testing shall be reimbursed to the village by the applicant.

H. 

The Enforcement Officer or Planning Board shall impose any other reasonable conditions on the permit, such as but not limited to screening, access controls, dust controls and site security, which it believes is necessary in order to adequately maintain the site.

I. 

The duration of any permit issued pursuant to this chapter may be limited to 60 days or other period deemed reasonable by the Enforcement Officer and/or Planning Board.

§ 88-7 Exemptions.

Permission to fill or grade property shall not be required for routine planting or landscaping, grading lawn areas, normal repairs to occupied property, correcting hazards representing an imminent threat to life or property, removal of dead wood, customary agricultural operations or for land development or alteration specifically approved pursuant to, but not prior to, a building permit, approved subdivision and/or approved site plan.

§ 88-8 Reclamation bond.

The applicant may be required to post a cash bond in an amount to be determined by the Enforcement Officer and/or Planning Board, which bond shall be posted with the Village Clerk to guarantee the satisfactory restoration and reclamation of the site and repair of any village roads or other public property which might be damaged as a result of the filling and grading activities of the applicant. In the event that the applicant fails or refuses to make the necessary repairs, the Board of Trustees shall, after notice and public hearing pursuant to § 88-9, use the funds of the cash bond in order to cover its costs and expenses in making such repairs.

§ 88-9 Penalties for offenses; remedies.

A. 

Any filling or grading activities violative of this chapter shall be deemed a public nuisance.

B. 

Liability for violations.

(1) 

Civil liability. A person who violates any of the provisions of this chapter or terms of any permit issued hereunder or who fails to perform any duty imposed by this chapter shall be liable to a penalty not to exceed $1,000 per day of such violation and, in addition, such person may be ordered to abate such violation. Violation of a permit condition shall constitute grounds for abatement and for revocation of such permit.

(2) 

Criminal liability. Any person who, having any of the culpable mental states defined in § 15.05 of the New York State Penal Law, violates any of the provisions of this chapter or terms of any permit issued hereunder or who fails to perform any duty imposed by this chapter shall be guilty of an unclassified misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine of not less than $2,500 nor more than $10,000 per day of violation or by imprisonment for a term of not more than 90 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment. If the conviction is for an offense committed after a first conviction of such person under this subsection, punishment shall be by a fine of not more than $20,000 per day of violation or by imprisonment for not more than six months, or by both.

(3) 

In addition to or in lieu of the above penalties, the village may enter upon the premises and correct the conditions caused by the violation of any provision of this chapter or permit issued hereunder. In such event, the property owner shall reimburse the village in an amount equal to 125% of the actual costs incurred in correcting said conditions, which amount includes but is not limited to administrative, legal and engineering costs incurred as a result of said violation.

C. 

Notice of violation; service.

(1) 

Issuance; abatement of violation.

(a) 

Wherever the Enforcement Officer determines that a violation exists, a notice of violation shall be issued. Such notice shall state the nature of the violation, the provision or term violated and a reasonable time to abate such violation.

(b) 

Nothing herein shall be construed so as to prevent the village from requiring the immediate abatement of a violation. The time to remedy shall be measured from the date the village determines that a violation may exist.

(2) 

A notice of violation shall be served upon a person of suitable age and discretion either residing or employed at the premises where the violation exists or by service by certified mail upon the owner indicated on the current tax roll of the village to the address indicated therein and by posting of the copy of the notice at the premises where the violation exists.

D. 

Administrative appeal and hearing.

(1) 

Any person or owner of property who is served a notice of violation shall have the right to make an appeal to the Board of Trustees. All appeals shall be made within seven days of service of a notice of violation and shall be simultaneously submitted to the Enforcement Officer and the Board of Trustees. The making of an appeal shall not stay an order to abate contained in the notice of violation.

(2) 

The Board of Trustees shall set a date and time for a public hearing on any appeal. A notice of hearing shall be made by mailing a copy of such order by certified mail to the addresses of those persons having a recorded interest in real property in the premises as shown by the records of the County Clerk and by posting a copy of such order on said premises. The failure to provide notice to each such person shall not invalidate subsequent proceedings pursuant to this chapter. The public hearing shall be set for a date not less than 15 days after the order with notice of hearing is mailed.

(3) 

Hearing procedure.

(a) 

The Board of Trustees shall conduct a public hearing at the time and place specified in the notice of hearing. The hearing may be adjourned from time to time and shall continue until all interested persons in attendance are heard. No formal rules of evidence need apply nor shall a stenographic transcript be required.

(b) 

The property owner shall have the right to present evidence and examine witnesses to show why penalties should not be assessed and/or why an order to abate should be suspended.

(c) 

The Board of Trustees shall make findings and make a determination. Such determination shall indicate the basis and rationale of the decision, shall state the dollar amount of fines and shall be supported by substantial evidence.

(d) 

Any fines imposed and the costs to the village of the proceeding in such event shall be immediately due and payable and shall be paid within 15 days of their imposition.

(4) 

The determination of the Board of Trustees may be reviewed in a proceeding pursuant to Article 78 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules, provided that such proceeding is commenced within 30 days of such determination. Judicial review shall not stay any order to abate nor stay payment of any fine imposed.

§ 88-10 Assessment of costs against property.

All costs and expenses incurred by the village to properly monitor and reclaim property or abate and correct violations of this chapter, including but not limited to legal, engineering and administrative expenses, shall be borne by the property owner. In the event of nonpayment, said costs and expenses shall be a lawful charge against the subject real property to be assessed, levied and collected in the same manner provided for the levying and collection of real property taxes. The lien of such assessment shall be prior and superior to every other lien or claim, except the lien of existing tax assessment or other prior lawful charge imposed by the state or political subdivision or district thereof.