City of Somers Point, NJ
Atlantic County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Somers Point as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Beaches — See Ch. 85.
Development regulations — See Ch. 114.
[Adopted 2-26-2015 by Ord. No. 4-2015[1]]
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance was adopted as Ch. 147 but was renumbered to maintain the organization of the Code.

§ 92-1 Purpose.

It is the purpose and intent of this article to establish uniform regulations for the construction, reconstruction, renovation or repair and maintenance of existing or new bulkheads within the City of Somers Point.

§ 92-2 Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
BULKHEAD
A structure separating land and water areas, primarily designed to retain or prevent sliding of the land or prevent and protect the upland against erosion and other damage due to wave, storm, overflow or tidal action.
CONSTRUCTION OFFICIAL
The Somers Point Code Enforcement Officer, Building Inspector, or their designee.
DAYS
Unless specified to be "business days," "days" means calendar days.
NJDEP
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

§ 92-3 Permits.

A. 
Permit required. No person, legal entity or association of persons shall construct, reconstruct, extend, enlarge, repair (except for ordinary repairs), locate, move or change the size, shape, configuration or location of any bulkhead, pier, dock, wharf, boat piling or float without first obtaining a building permit therefor from the Construction Official.
B. 
Permit application.
(1) 
Applications for bulkhead permits shall be submitted to the Construction Official accompanied by the required fee and the following items in quadruplicate:
(a) 
Plans and specifications of the bulkhead that have been prepared, signed and sealed by a New Jersey licensed professional engineer.
(b) 
A property survey.
(c) 
Authorization for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and any other State of federal agency having jurisdiction over the property affected by the proposed work.
(2) 
Except as provided in N.J.S.A. 12:5-1 et seq., any such work, including ordinary repairs, requires application to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection as a prior approval, if said work, or any portion thereof, is conducted on the water side (as opposed to the land side) of the bulkhead.
(3) 
The Construction Official may relax or waive any or all of the requirements that are set forth above within the application for a permit pertains to reconstruction, renovation or repair work for which the cost of completion is less than $5,000; however, in relaxing or waiving any such requirements, the Construction Official shall have the authority to require the submission of such plans, drawings and contract documents as the Construction Official, in his sole and absolute discretion, determines will accurately depict the reconstruction, renovations or repair work to be performed.
(4) 
Soil data, depth of water, height of the proposed bulkhead and backfill, tide conditions, current, ice or other climatic conditions shall be considered in the design.
C. 
In the event that, upon review of the permit application, deficiencies are noted by the Construction Official, the applicant shall be informed of the nature of the deficiencies and the Construction Official shall provide written notice, by regular first class mail, of the deficiencies to the applicant at the address set forth on the application and the applicant then shall be afforded the opportunity to correct any application deficiencies.
D. 
Permit fee. The permit fee shall be calculated in the following manner:
(1) 
For new construction and renovations, the fee for such permit shall be $20 per $1,000 of the estimated construction cost, with a minimum of $100. The Construction Official shall determine if the estimated cost of the proposed work is reasonable and may request documentation to verify proposed costs.
(2) 
A permit fee shall not be charged if the bulkhead project is part of a Zoning or Planning Board approval for which an escrow and performance bond are already required and inspection by the City Engineer is required.
E. 
Appeal of permit denial.
(1) 
Any applicant aggrieved by the denial of a bulkhead permit may appeal the permit denial to Zoning Board by submitting to the administrative officer written correspondence appealing the permit denial. Such written appeal correspondence briefly shall describe the reason for the appeal. Such written appeal correspondence shall be submitted to the administrative officer within 20 days of the permit denial.
(2) 
Upon receipt of the appeal correspondence, the administrative officer shall transmit to the Zoning Board copies of the permit Construction Official in connection with review of the permit application. Thereafter, the administrative officer shall schedule a date for the hearing of the appeal, and notice of the hearing dated shall be provided to the permit applicant. In all instances the administrative officer shall endeavor to schedule the appeal hearing date not later than 30 days after receipt of the appeal correspondence. The hearing of the appeal shall be conducted by the Zoning Board at a public meeting. The applicant shall be permitted to produce evidence to Zoning Board in support of the permit application. The Zoning Board may consider evidence presented to it by the Construction Official or any other individual that the Zoning Board deems to have relevant information. The decision of the Zoning Board to approve or deny the permit application shall be through adoption of a formal resolution.
F. 
A permit shall not be required when the nature of the work to be performed consists of ordinary repairs to an existing structure. Ordinary repairs, for the purpose of this subsection, shall be deemed to be any repairs or replacements to a portion of the railing or the deck boards of any pier, dock, wharf, or float. The complete replacement of railings or deck boards on any pier, dock, wharf or float, and any and all repairs to a bulkhead or boat piling shall not, however, be deemed ordinary repairs and shall require a permit.
G. 
Expiration and display of permit.
(1) 
Any permit which may have been issued by the Construction Official, but under which no work has commenced within three months after the date of issuance, shall expire by limitation.
(2) 
The permit which has been issued must be kept at the scene of operation at all times during the progress of the work.

§ 92-4 Notification of material delivery and commencement of construction.

A. 
The permittee shall provide to the Construction Official written notice of delivery of all necessary materials to complete the project within 10 days of delivery to the site but not less than four business days in advance of said commencement of construction. The Construction Official shall inspect all materials delivered within two business days following receipt of the notice.
B. 
The permittee shall provide to the City Engineer and to the Construction Official notice of commencement of construction not less than two business days in advance of said commencement of construction.
C. 
The Construction Official shall have the right of inspection at any time between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m., at his or her convenience, for the purpose of ascertaining whether the construction and materials used are in accordance with the provisions of this article, and any owner, contractor or other person who shall refuse to comply with the reasonable and proper orders of the Inspector with relation to any matters committed to him by this article shall be guilty of a violation of the same.

§ 92-5 Final inspection.

Prior to the backfilling of any bulkhead construction, reconstruction, renovation or repair, the Construction Official shall perform an inspection to ascertain that the bulkhead has been built pursuant to the plans that were submitted with the permit application. Written notice of project completion shall be given to the City Engineer and to the Construction Official within seven business days of substantial completion of the project, but prior to backfilling, and that written notification shall be accompanied by a certification from a land surveyor of the elevations of the completed bulkhead height. If the Construction Official determines that the work that was performed pursuant to the bulkhead permit and the subject bulkhead fail to comply with the plans, drawings or documents that were submitted with the permit application or fail to comply with the provisions of this article, then written notice of final inspection failure shall be transmitted by the Construction Official by regular first-class mail to the permittee at the address set forth on the permit application. The notice of final inspection failure shall detail the reasons for inspection failure. Permittees shall correct all deficiencies that resulted in final inspection failure within 20 days of the date of the written notice of final inspection failure. If, upon the expiration of those 20 days, the bulkhead is not approved upon inspection by the Construction Official then the permittee is deemed to be in violation of the duty to maintain and repair the subject bulkhead as established by this article.

§ 92-6 Bulkhead specification.

All bulkheads constructed, reconstructed, renovated or repaired within the City of Somers Point shall conform to the following minimum specifications:
A. 
All new bulkheads shall be designed by a New Jersey licensed professional engineer.
B. 
All piles, except anchor piles, shall have a butt diameter of not less than 12 inches and a tip diameter of eight inches.
C. 
All piles shall be No.1 Douglas Fir Southern Yellow Pine and shall be treated with chromated copper arsenate to a net retention of 2.5 pounds per cubic foot or an acceptable preservative for marine construction according to the latest AREA specifications and American Wood Preservers' Association (A.W.P.A.) specifications. Piles must be constructed of non-polluting materials, if required or determined by the NJDEP.
D. 
Sheet piles.
(1) 
Sheet piles shall be vinyl unless a repair of less than an aggregate cost of $2,500 to an existing wood bulkhead is being made.
(2) 
Acceptable vinyl sheet pile material shall conform to the following specifications:
(a) 
Vinyl construction:
[1] 
Sheeting material: PVC Class 1-4013-13-0101 ASTM D4216.
[2] 
Allowable moment: 3,750 foot-pounds.
[3] 
Thickness: 0.250 inch.
E. 
Wales shall be Douglas Fir or Southern Yellow Pine and shall be treated with acceptable preservative for marine construction according to the latest AREA specifications and American Wood Preservers' Association (A.W.P.A.) specifications. Wales must be constructed of non-polluting materials, if required or determined by the NJDEP. Wales shall be four inches by six inches. At least two wales shall be required. A third wale shall be used where the finished top of bulkhead extends more than seven feet six inches above the existing bottom. All wale joints shall be staggered at pilings.
F. 
All timbers shall be set by the water jet method. Piles shall be set on not more than five-foot-two-inch centers, and shall be tied to anchor piles with tie rods as specified in Subsection G below. Anchor piles shall be treated, creosoted (or equivalent) pilings and shall have a butt diameter of not less than six inches, and shall be not less than 12 feet in length, and the top of same shall be set at least 18 inches below the elevation of the bulkhead cap.
G. 
All hardware shall be new, unused, hot-dipped galvanized steel in accordance with latest standards for saltwater applications.
(1) 
Bolts and tie rods shall be galvanized after threading and shall have sufficient length of thread so that no blocking will be required. No rethreading or thread extension shall be permitted. Bolts shall be 5/8 inch in diameter and of sufficient length to comply with the above requirements. Wales are to be bolted to all piles. Tie rods shall be at least 5/8 inch in diameter and shall have a minimum length of 14 feet. One tie rod will be required for each main pile. Galvanized nails or spikes shall be not less than 20 penny and each sheet pile shall receive not less than two nails or spikes per wale.
H. 
Construction of bulkhead returns shall tie into adjacent bulkhead construction.
I. 
All outfall piping shall be fitted with a tide-control device that is approved by the City Engineer.
J. 
Bulkheads subject to wave runup forces.
(1) 
A bulkhead that is subject to wave runup forces, specifically, a bulkhead in a V-Zone as described at N.J.A.C. 7:7E-3.18, shall be designed and certified by a professional engineer to withstand the forces of wave runup, and shall include a splash pad on the landward side. The splash pad shall have a minimum width of 10 feet, and may be constructed of concrete, asphalt or other erosion resistant material. If a cobblestone or similar splash pad is used, an appropriate subbase and filter cloth shall be incorporated into the design. The use of rip-rap along the seaward toe of the bulkhead structure may be required on a case-by-case basis as a means to limit the scour potential.
(2) 
A splash pad shall be required for all repaired, reconstructed or new bulkheads which are subject to wave runup forces.
K. 
Bulkhead construction, reconstruction, renovation or repair shall not adversely affect adjoining property.
L. 
All existing utilities shall be protected from damage during any work performed pursuant to a bulkhead permit. The bulkhead permittee shall be responsible for obtaining current "utility markout" from all appropriate state and local agencies prior to commencement of work.
M. 
Deviations from construction materials set forth herein are allowed so long as all specifications and technical data concerning the proposed construction material are submitted to the City and are approved in writing by the Construction Official. The use of any construction material that is not specifically set forth above or approved by the Construction Official is strictly prohibited.
N. 
All design materials herein shall be subject to the dictates of the NJDEP and USACOF.
O. 
Where required for installation or repair of a bulkhead, the soil and water either pumped out or removed from the basin, facility, stream, channel, marina or other area shall be performed in such a manner that the surface of the area where the residue of said pumping or removal placed shall properly drain and so that such pumping or removal shall not cause or permit water to stand or pond thereon to be the cause of blocking the other drainage of lands in the immediate vicinity of such pumping, removal or placing of residue.
P. 
No person shall use any boat basin, boat docking facility, stream, lagoon, channel, marina or other area subject to this article unless and until the said building permit has been issued and has been paid, and the construction of the boat basin, boat docking facility, stream, lagoon, channel, marina or other area covered by the building permit has been completely constructed, including the bulkheading thereof, and said construction and bulkheading inspected and approved by the Construction Official. The Department of Public Works and City Engineer shall inspect the outfall pipe and bulkhead penetration. In lieu of this inspection, the property owner may submit certification of proper installation by a licensed New Jersey engineer.
Q. 
Written approval; liability.
(1) 
No private contractor shall use a City street end or place any material, supplies or equipment on or over bulkheads at a City street end without first receiving specific written approval of the City, which shall require execution of an indemnity agreement in a form satisfactory to the City and proof of general liability insurance in an amount to be determined by the City Administrator and Joint Insurance Fund representative, which policy of insurance shall be endorsed to add the City of Somers Point, its officials, officers, agents, servants, employees and contractors as additional insured and shall be further endorsed to contain a waiver of subrogation against the City.
(2) 
If any such damage occurs to the City street, bulkhead or other City property, or damage or injury occurs to any third person or property, by any person, individual or business entity (regardless of whether written permission has or has not been granted by the City), such person, individual or business entity shall be solely responsible for any and all damage and shall indemnify and hold harmless the City of Somers Point and be responsible for the cost of repair of any such damage or destruction to said City street, bulkhead or City property.
(3) 
Failure to obtain written permission from the City shall be a violation of this article subject to the penalties set forth herein which shall be in addition to the indemnity obligation and cost to repair or correct any damage or injury.

§ 92-7 Height of bulkheads.

A. 
The top elevation of any bulkhead to be constructed or reconstructed shall be set at a minimum elevation of 7.0 msl (Datum NAVD 1988) and a maximum of 10.0 msl (Datum NAVD 1988) except along Block 2012, where the maximum height may be 14.0 msl (Datum NAVD 1988), with approval of the Construction Official.
B. 
The reconstruction of a bulkhead shall be required when the cost of repairing an existing bulkhead exceeds the aggregate cost of $2,500. This requirement shall not be avoided through making phased repairs.

§ 92-8 Maintenance; duty to repair.

A. 
All bulkheads within the City of Somers Point shall be maintained in such a condition so that they shall pose no danger to the health, safety or welfare of the residents of the City of Somers Point or to public or private property within the City of Somers Point. Bulkheads shall be kept in a state of repair so as to prevent erosion or damage to abutting, adjacent or adjoining properties.
B. 
Bulkheads shall be kept in such a state of repair so as to maintain the filling in of land around and about said bulkhead to the grade above the mean high-tide level as established for the City of Somers Point; and shall also be maintained to prevent erosion or damage to abutting, adjacent or adjoining properties.
C. 
Whenever a bulkhead has deteriorated or suffered damage to such a degree that a danger to the property, to the safety of the public, or adjoining properties is present, the Zoning Official or Code Enforcement Officer shall notify the property owner, in writing, by regular first-class mail to the address that is set forth on the City's tax records, of the nature of the deterioration or damage and require the owner to make the necessary repairs. The property owner shall apply to NJDEP for a bulkhead permit no later than 30 days from the date of the notice. Documentation that a permit has been applied to NJDEP may be request by the Zoning Official or Code Enforcement Officer. The application for a bulkhead permit shall include a plan of corrective action.
D. 
Upon issuance of the bulkhead permit and approval of the plan of corrective action from the NJDEP, the property owner shall promptly commence construction and shall complete all necessary repairs within 30 days from the date of NJDEP permit. Approval from the NJDEP does not exempt the applicant from completing a permit application and obtaining approval from the City Construction Office as required by § 92-3 and compliance with the other requirements of this article.
E. 
In the event that the property owner fails to submit a corrective action plan, fails to obtain a bulkhead permit to implement the corrective action plan or fails to implement the corrective action plan, the property owner shall be subject to the penalties set forth herein.

§ 92-9 Periodic inspection by Construction Official.

A. 
It shall be the duty of the Building Inspector, from time to time, to inspect all waterfront bulkheads, piers or docks in this City and to report to the Council and notify the owners or occupants of said premises of the existence of a dangerous, rotten or defective condition therein; thereafter, it shall be the duty of the owner, possessor or other persons in interest in said property to forthwith replace, remedy or repair or cause to be replaced or repaired such dangerous and defective condition.
B. 
Notice.
(1) 
Upon the neglect or failure of any such owner, possessor or other person in interest to repair or remedy such damaged, dangerous or defective condition within a reasonable time to be determined by the Construction Official, or immediately upon the discovery of such dangerous and defective condition, the Construction Official shall give written notice of the work required to be done to the owner or owners of such lands by mail, if their post office address be known, or if not known, then by posting such notice upon the property affected thereby, or by leaving the same with any occupant thereof or by personal service, if the owner be a resident of and present within the City of Somers Point.
(2) 
Such notice shall provide for allowing the owner 30 calendar days' time within which to perform the work thereby required. In the event that the owner must obtain a permit or approval from the Department of Environmental Protection, the owner must provide proof within the thirty-day period that such permit or approval is required and that the appropriate permit has been applied for. The owner must further provide documentation to the municipality that any required permits with the Department of Environmental Protection are being diligently pursued. Failure to complete the required repairs within 30 calendar days after receipt of the appropriate permit from the Department of Environmental Protection shall constitute a violation of this article.

§ 92-10 Violations and penalties.

A. 
Any person violating any provision of this article, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine not exceeding $1,250 or by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 90 days, or both.
B. 
A separate offense shall be deemed to be committed on each and every day during or on which a violation occurs or continues.
C. 
In the event a foreclosure complaint has been filed in any court within the State of New Jersey, this article and the enforcement remedies and penalties as set forth above shall be enforceable against the bank, mortgagee, mortgage company, or other financial institution who is a holder of a mortgage on the property or who has instituted foreclosure proceedings.

§ 92-11 Effect on other provisions.

All other provisions of the Somers Point Municipal Code which are not affected by this amendment are ratified and confirmed and shall remain in full force and effect.