Town of Barnstable, MA
Barnstable County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town of Barnstable 6-1-2006 by Order No. 2006-125.[1] Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Noncriminal enforcement of violations — See Ch. 1, Art. I.
Fees — See Ch. 76.
Noise — See Ch. 133.
Solid waste — See Ch. 202.
[1]
Editor's Note: This order also provided that it would take effect 120 days after its final approval by the Council, and it repealed former Ch. 170, Rental Property, adopted 12-19-1991 (Art. LI of Ch. III of the General Ordinances as updated through 7-7-2003).

§ 170-1 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to protect the health, safety, and welfare of both the occupant(s) of rental housing units and the general public and to maintain the quality of life in residential neighborhoods. It will assist the Board of Health in the enforcement of state and local health and safety laws or regulations and provide a method of correcting violations when conditions require immediate attention, in particular, situations associated with recreational tenancy.

§ 170-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
BOARD OF HEALTH
The Board of Health of the Town of Barnstable.
DWELLING
Any building or area in a building used or intended for use for human habitation, including, but not limited to, apartments, condominiums, cottages, guesthouses, one-, two- or multiple-unit residential buildings, and rooming houses, but not including any licensed facility.
FRONT YARD
The area between the roadway and the part of the structure nearest to the roadway.
LICENSED FACILITY
Any facility licensed under any state or local laws or regulations other than those registered under this chapter.
OCCUPANT
Anyone residing overnight in a dwelling.
OWNER
Any person who alone or severally with others has legal title to any dwelling, dwelling unit, rooming unit or parcel of land, vacant or otherwise; mortgagee in possession; or agent, trustee or other person appointed by the courts.
PERSON
Any individual, partnership, corporation, firm, association, or group including a governmental unit other than the Town of Barnstable or any of its agencies.

§ 170-3 Responsibility of notification.

No person shall allow occupancy of any dwelling without first notifying the occupant(s) at the time of such occupancy of this chapter and of Chapter 133, Noise, of the Code of the Town of Barnstable.

§ 170-4 Certificate of registration.

A. 
No person shall rent or lease, or offer to rent or lease, any dwelling or any portion of a dwelling to be used for human habitation without first registering with the Board of Health, which shall determine the number of bedrooms and the number of persons such dwelling or portion of a dwelling may lawfully accommodate under the provisions of any state or local health and safety ordinance or regulation.
B. 
The Board of Health shall, pursuant to the above subsection, issue a certificate of registration which shall be renewed on the following December 31, provided that the certificate may be renewed each year.

§ 170-5 Posting of certificate of registration.

No person shall rent or lease, or offer to rent or lease, any dwelling or any portion of a dwelling to be used for human habitation without first conspicuously posting within such dwelling or portion of a dwelling a certificate of registration provided by the Board of Health specifying the number of bedrooms and the number of persons such dwelling or portion of a dwelling may lawfully accommodate.

§ 170-6 Keeping of register.

The owner(s) shall be responsible for keeping a register containing all names of current occupants in the dwelling. The register shall be retained for a period of two years and shall be made available to the Board of Health, the Director of Public Health, a health inspector, a police officer, or the Town's licensing agent upon request.

§ 170-7 Provision of names, addresses and telephone numbers of owners or agent.

An owner of a dwelling which is rented for residential use shall provide the Board of Health with his/her current residential address and telephone number. If the owner is a corporation, the name, address, and telephone number of the president and legal representative of the corporation shall be provided. If the owner is a realty trust or partnership, the name, address, and telephone number of the managing trustee or partner shall be provided. In the event that the owner does not reside within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the owner shall designate a resident agent to represent him within the commonwealth and shall provide the Board of Health with written notification of the name, address and telephone number of the resident agent so designated.

§ 170-8 Fee for registration.

There shall be a fee of $90 to procure a certificate of registration. The fee for any additional units owned by the same owner at the same address shall be $25 per unit.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Section 3 of Order No. 2006-125 provided that, notwithstanding the provisions of this § 170-8, the fee for the first year of registration, prior to 1-1-2007, shall be $40 and each additional unit owned by the same owner at the same address shall be $10 per unit.

§ 170-9 Parking restrictions.

A. 
The occupant of a dwelling shall use, or allow to be used, no more than 25% of the front yard and no more than 20 feet of frontage as a parking area and/or driveway.
B. 
Nothing in this section shall be deemed to supersede the parking requirements set forth by site plan review.

§ 170-10 Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms.

Every owner shall test and perform maintenance on every smoke detector and carbon monoxide alarm upon renewal of any lease term for any dwelling unit or on an annual basis, whichever is more frequent. Any detector or alarm found to be defective shall be repaired or replaced forthwith. The occupant(s) must report faulty or inoperative smoke detector unit(s) to, first, the owner of the dwelling and, second, if necessary, the local Fire Department.

§ 170-11 Inspections.

[Amended 8-1-2013 by Order No. 2013-034[1]]
Dwelling units covered by this chapter shall be subject to reasonable inspections by Town inspectional staff. All interior inspections shall be done in the company of the owner, occupant or the representative of either.
[1]
Editor's Note: This order also repealed former § 170-11, Storage and removal of rubbish, garbage and other refuse, and renumbered former §§ 170-12 through 170-15 as §§ 170-11 through 170-14, respectively.

§ 170-12 Written notice of violation; time limits for correction.

A. 
Written notice of any violations of this chapter shall be given by the Board of Health or its agent specifying the nature of the violation to the occupant and owner and the time within which compliance must be achieved. The requirements of this subsection shall be satisfied by mailing, through the United States Postal Service, or by delivering in hand as memorialized by an affidavit of any Town employee or officer authorized to serve any form of process notice to the owner or legal representative named on the registration.
B. 
Violations of an unoccupied dwelling shall be corrected prior to occupancy. Violations found in an occupied dwelling shall be corrected within the time specified as determined by the Board of Health or the Director of Public Health.

§ 170-13 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 8-1-2013 by Order No. 2013-034]
A. 
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall be subject to a fine not to exceed $300. Any owner of a rental property found to have two documented violations within any twelve-month period shall pay a fine of $300. Each day of continued violation may be deemed to be a separate offense.
B. 
This chapter may be enforced under the provisions of MGL c. 40, § 21D. The fine for any violation under the provisions of MGL c. 40, § 21D shall be $100, or $300 for any owner of a rental property found to have two documented violations within any twelve-month period. Each day of continued violation may be deemed to be a separate offense.

§ 170-14 Severability.

Each provision of this chapter shall be construed as separate. If any part of this chapter shall be held invalid for any reason, the remainder shall continue in full force and effect.