[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Little Falls 8-6-2012 by Ord. No. 1159. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Alcoholic beverages — See Ch. 11.
Licensing — See Ch. 122.
Noise — See Ch. 136.
Retail food establishments — See Ch. 182.
Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 223.
Zoning — See Ch. 280.
Editor's Note: This ordinance also superseded former Ch. 140, Outdoor Dining Facilities, adopted 8-14-2006 by Ord. No. 990, as amended.
The Township of Little Falls recognizes the allowance of outdoor dining facilities for purposes of stimulating public interest, benefitting economic productivity, providing an aesthetically pleasing atmosphere in the business community and promoting the general welfare of the residents of the Township of Little Falls. The purpose of this chapter is to establish guidelines to procure and maintain a limited authorization license to permit outdoor dining.
Outdoor dining shall be permitted as a conditional accessory use of any eating and drinking establishment as more fully described in the Township of Little Falls Zoning Ordinance, § 280-1 et seq. This chapter is subject to an ordinance of the Township of Little Falls permitting outdoor dining as a conditional accessory use of such eating and drinking establishment. See Little Falls Zoning Code, § 280-1 et seq.
As used in this chapter, the following words or phrases shall have the meanings indicated below:
- OUTDOOR DINING AREA
- The designated area prescribed by title to the property of the retail food establishment to be used for purposes of the outdoor dining facility. The outdoor dining area shall be limited to the rear yard or side yard of the property or the sidewalk area immediately in front of the establishment's building or storefront.
- OUTDOOR DINING FACILITY
- Includes without limitation any cafe, coffee shop, diner, dining room, delicatessen, luncheonette, restaurant, soda fountain shop, tearoom, and other retail food establishments as defined hereunder. Outdoor dining will be restricted to only those facilities currently conducting indoor dining business.
- RETAIL FOOD ESTABLISHMENT
- As defined by the Little Falls Code § 182-2A under Class I: Food and Drink establishments.
The Township of Little Falls requires the owner of a retail food establishment to apply for and obtain an outdoor dining facility license to operate said facility within the outdoor dining area. No person shall operate an outdoor dining facility within the Township without first obtaining an outdoor dining facility license and satisfying all of the requirements of this chapter.
An applicant for an outdoor dining facility license must annually file for said application with the Township Clerk on forms supplied by the Clerk. These forms shall require the following information and such additional information as deemed necessary:
The name, address, and telephone number of the applicant;
The name, address, and telephone number of the retail food establishment where outdoor dining shall be maintained;
A detailed description of the proposed outdoor dining facility that shall include a diagram of the dimensions of the area and the number of tables, chairs, umbrellas, and receptacles for garbage and recyclables to be used for outdoor dining purposes;
Consent of the owner of the premises, if other than the applicant;
A check payable to the Township of Little Falls in the amount of the license fee required by § 140-9;
The signing of said forms and the providing of an insurance certificate as more fully described herein.
No outdoor dining license shall be issued unless the licensee shall have first filed adequate proof that the following insurance requirements have been provided:
The following language/wording must appear on the insurance certificate: "The certificate holder (Township of Little Falls) is included as an additional insured as respects losses arising solely from the operation of the outdoor dining facility."
Ten days' written notice of cancellation must be provided to the Township of Little Falls.
The insurance certificate must be written by a company licensed to do business in the State of New Jersey and rated A or better by A.M. Best Rating, and the certificate shall also state: "Rated by A.M. Best Rating."
The minimum insurance coverage requirements are:
General aggregate: $500,000;
Products and completed operation aggregate: $500,000;
Personal and advertising injury: $500,000;
Each occurrence: $500,000;
Fire damage (any one fire incident): $500,000;
Medical expense (any one person): $5,000;
Worker's compensation: statutory requirements;
No outdoor dining facility license shall be issued unless the licensee first executed and filed an indemnification agreement with the Township of Little Falls. In consideration of the issuance of the outdoor dining facility license, the licensee shall forever agree to defend, protect, indemnify and save harmless the Township of Little Falls, its officers, agents, damages, expenses, fees and costs, including attorney's fees, that arise out of or which may arise out of the licensee's operation of such outdoor dining facility.
The application for a license is subject to the approval of the Township Clerk. The application for a license and/or the applicant's investigation report are subject to review from the following offices without limitation: the Building/Zoning office, the Township Planning Board, the Health Department, and the Township Council. The Township Clerk shall approve or deny the application, taking into consideration the factors set forth in § 140-11 and in this chapter.
Prior to commencing the outdoor dining, the outdoor dining facility shall be required to apply for and obtain site plan review and approval from the Planning Board. Such facility shall file with the Building Department a drawing, which may be a survey, with those areas to be used for outdoor seating clearly designated, and the ownership of such property shall be clearly designated. Such drawing shall be accompanied by a fee of $100 as referred to in § 140-9, and all renewals shall be accompanied by drawings and a one-hundred-dollar fee in subsequent years. Said drawing must be submitted to and approved by the Building Department, and the fee must be paid. Failure to do so will be considered a violation of the Land Use Law and subject the parties to the sanctions authorized thereunder.
Any applicant who is denied a license may request in writing a hearing on the denial decision before the Township Council on all issues except those decided on by the Township of Little Falls Planning Board/Zoning Board of Adjustment, which are not reviewable by the Township Council.
The annual license fee for each and every premises on which outdoor dining facilities is conducted shall be $100.
An outdoor dining facility license shall be valid only through October 31 of a given year;
A new outdoor dining facility license must be obtained for each year;
An outdoor dining facility license may not be transferred in any way;
The license shall be displayed in a conspicuous place on the premises prior to the use of the outdoor dining facility.
The conduct of outdoor dining pursuant to a license issued under this section shall be subject to and inclusive of all of the following restrictions and requirements. This provision shall not be interpreted to limit the discretion of the Planning Board to require further conditions as part of site plan review as reasonable and appropriate.
Outdoor dining may only be in districts zoned for business, designated on the Township of Little Falls Zoning Map;
The outdoor dining area must be clearly defined and limited by way of a barrier such as fencing, landscaping, a wall or as approved by the Planning Board;
The outdoor dining area must not block, obstruct and/or inhibit pedestrian traffic on public sidewalks. Pedestrian traffic must have a clear, open and unobstructed access between the closest edge of the outdoor dining tables and the curbline of the sidewalk. Such pedestrian access shall have a minimum width of the greater of 10 feet or 1/2 of the sidewalk's width, but no less than six feet. There shall be a minimum of six feet between the building and the front property line in order for the dining area to be approved;
Any outdoor dining area shall have adequate buffering from adjacent buildings or sites consisting of landscaping and/or fencing or as approved by the Planning Board. If the outdoor dining area abuts residentially zoned land, the outdoor dining area shall be located a minimum of five feet from the common property line;
Property owners shall not place anything in an alleyway, path, or walkway or set up tables in such a manner as to block, obstruct, or inhibit access to such alleyways, paths, or walkways;
Outdoor dining facility owners, employers, and employees shall not block, obstruct, or inhibit a building's entrance/egress. It shall be unlawful to block or obstruct in any manner the clear width of any exit's discharge passageway, as determined by the clear width opening of the entrance/egress door(s). The exit's discharge passageway shall proceed directly to the street;
Only tables, chairs, umbrellas, and receptacles for garbage and recyclables are permitted within the outdoor dining area;
Outdoor dining facility owners, employers, and employees shall not place any table, chair, sign, umbrella or other item in such a manner as to block or obstruct any municipal sign receptacles for garbage and recyclables, public hydrants, or other public amenity;
Outdoor dining facility owners, employers, and employees must provide for the disposal of garbage and recyclables. Public receptacles for garbage shall not be used;
The outdoor dining area and surrounding sidewalk and property areas shall be kept clean from any and all litter during hours of operation;
All customers must be seated in the outdoor dining area during their patronage. Outdoor dining facility owners, employers, and employees are prohibited from serving drivers or passengers of all vehicles;
All food preparation shall be indoors in the regular kitchen area of the retail food establishment;
Any outdoor dining facility serving alcohol products in the outdoor dining area shall be required to do so only in connection with food service at tables. Alcohol service and/or consumption at the outdoor dining facility is subject to further regulations more fully described herein;
All outdoor food service is subject to the regulations contained in Chapter 12 of the New Jersey Sanitary Code;
There must be absolutely no offensive odor emanating from the outdoor dining facility and/or outdoor dining area due to food preparation, handling, spoilage, and/or litter;
Outdoor dining facility owners, employers and employees are prohibited from using public utility hookups;
All sound and video systems are prohibited within the outdoor dining area. The licensee shall not direct or permit to be directed to or from the outdoor dining area any bell, chime, siren, whistle. All noise emanating from the outdoor dining area shall be kept at such a level as to comply in all respects with the provisions of applicable ordinances;
Smoking shall be prohibited within and around the outdoor dining area. Such areas shall be marked by a sign indicating the prohibition of smoking;
No signs of any nature shall be permitted in the outdoor dining area, except as previously expressed;
Outdoor dining may commence May 1 and may continue through October 31;
Permissible hours of operation shall be from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.;
The outdoor dining areas must be cleared and washed daily by 10:30 p.m.;
All Sanitary Code, alcoholic beverage requirements, and all other laws and regulations shall apply to the outdoor seating unless specifically excluded;
The Township of Little Falls retains the right to temporarily suspend an outdoor dining facility license to allow for construction activity, utility repairs, special events, or any other appropriate reason as determined by the Township Council. Reasonable advance notice must be given to the affected outdoor dining facility licensees.
The outdoor dining area upon which an outdoor dining facility has been authorized to operate pursuant to this chapter may constitute premises duly licensed for the sale and/or consumption of alcoholic beverages provided:
The retail food establishment of which the outdoor dining facility is a part and an extension of is so licensed;
Specific approval has been obtained from the appropriate local and/or state agencies of the A.B.C. for the extension of the alcoholic beverage consumption license to the outdoor dining area. Such approval shall be separate from and must be obtained in addition to the license to operate an outdoor dining facility pursuant to this chapter;
Retail food establishments that do not possess a license to sell alcoholic beverages within their premises shall not be permitted to allow patrons to carry onto or consume alcoholic beverages on any outdoor dining area licensed as an outdoor dining facility herein.
Any license may be suspended or revoked for good cause by the Township Council, including but not limited to a misrepresentation of the information supplied by the application, the conviction of a crime, a violation of any ordinance, state or government regulation, or a violation of this chapter.
The Township Clerk shall be responsible for licensing and the collection of fees. This chapter shall otherwise be enforced by the Building Department/Construction Code Officials, Little Falls Police Department, and the Board of Health, as to the Sanitary Code.