City of Pawtucket, RI
Providence County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Council of the City of Pawtucket, approved 7-9-1970 as Ch. No. 1265. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Canine waste removal — See Ch. 116, Art. V.
Upkeep of vacant land — See Ch. 132, Art. I.
Newspapers and magazines — See Ch. 282.
Nuisances — See Ch. 290.
Parks and playgrounds — See Ch. 294.
Refuse collection — See Ch. 347, Art. II.
Construction materials in streets — See Ch. 351, Art. VIII.

§ 263-1 Title.

This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "City of Pawtucket Antilitter Ordinance."

§ 263-2 Definitions and word usage.

A. 
When not inconsistent with the context, words used in the present tense include the future, words used in the plural number include the singular number, and words used in the singular number include the plural number. The word "shall" is always mandatory and not merely directory.
B. 
For the purposes of this chapter the following terms, phrases, words and their derivations shall have the meaning given herein.
AIRCRAFT
Any contrivance now known or hereafter invented, used or designated for navigation or for flight in the air. The word "aircraft" shall include helicopters and lighter-than-air dirigibles and balloons.
AUTHORIZED PRIVATE RECEPTACLE
A litter storage and collection receptacle as required and authorized in the Garbage Ordinances of the City of Pawtucket.[1]
CITY
The City of Pawtucket.
COMMERCIAL HANDBILL
Any printed or written matter, any sample or device, dodger, circular, leaflet, pamphlet, paper, booklet or any other printed or otherwise reproduced original or copies of any matter of literature which:
(1) 
Advertises for sale any merchandise, product, commodity or thing;
(2) 
Directs attention to any business or mercantile or commercial establishment or other activity for the purpose of either directly or indirectly promoting the interest thereof by sales;
(3) 
Directs attention to or advertises any meeting, theatrical performance, exhibition or event of any kind for which an admission fee is charged for the purpose of private gain or profit, but the terms of this subsection shall not apply where an admission fee is charged or a collection is taken up for the purpose of defraying the expenses incident to such meeting, theatrical performance, exhibition or event of any kind, when either of the same is held, given or takes place in connection with the dissemination of information which is not restricted under the ordinary rules of decency, good morals public peace, safety and good order, provided that nothing contained in this subsection shall be deemed to authorize the holding, giving or taking place of any meeting, theatrical performance, exhibition or event of any kind without a license, where such license is or may be required by any law of this state or under any ordinance of this city; or
(4) 
While containing reading matter other than advertising matter, is predominantly and essentially an advertisement, and is distributed or circulated for advertising purposes or for the private benefit and gain of any person so engaged as advertiser or distributor.
GARAGE
Putrescible animal and vegetable wastes resulting from the handling, preparation, cooking and consumption of food.
LITTER
Garbage, refuse and rubbish as defined herein and all other waste material which, if thrown or deposited as herein prohibited, tends to create a danger to public health, safety and welfare.
NEWSPAPER
Any newspaper of general circulation as defined by general law, any newspaper duly entered with the United States Postal Service, in accordance with federal statute or regulation, and any newspaper filed and recorded with any recording officer as provided by general law; and, in addition thereto shall mean and include any periodical or current magazine regularly published with not less than four (4) issues per year, and sold to the public.
NONCOMMERCIAL HANDBILL
Any printed or written matter, any sample or device, dodger, circular, leaflet, pamphlet, newspaper, magazine paper, booklet or any other printed or otherwise reproduced original or copies of any matter of literature not included in the aforesaid definitions of a commercial handbill or newspaper.
PARK
A park, reservation, playground, beach, recreation center or any other public area in the city, owned or used by the city and devoted to active or passive recreation.
PERSON
Any person, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company or organization of any kind.
PRIVATE PREMISES
Any dwelling, house, building or other structure designated or used either wholly or in part for private residential purposes, whether inhabited or temporarily or continuously uninhabited or vacant, and shall include any yard, grounds, wall, driveway, porch, steps, vestibule or mailbox belonging or appurtenant to such dwelling, house, building or other structure.
PUBLIC PLACE
Any and all streets, sidewalks, boulevards, alleys or other public ways and any and all public parks, squares, spaces, grounds and buildings.
REFUSE
All putrescible and nonputrescible solid wastes (except body wastes), including garbage, rubbish, ashes, street cleanings, dead animals, abandoned automobiles and solid market and industrial wastes.
RUBBISH
Nonputrescible solid wastes consisting of both combustible and noncombustible wastes, such as paper, wrappings, cigarettes, cardboard, tin cans, yard clippings, leaves, wood, glass, bedding, crockery and similar materials.
VEHICLE
Every device in, upon or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, including devices used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 347, Solid Waste.

§ 263-3 Litter in public places.

No person shall throw or deposit litter in or upon any street, sidewalk or other public place within the city except in public receptacles, in authorized private receptacles for collection or in official city dumps.

§ 263-4 Placement of litter in receptacles so as to prevent scattering.

Persons placing litter in public receptacles or in authorized private receptacles shall do so in such a manner as to prevent it from being carried or deposited by the elements upon any street, sidewalk or other place or upon private property.

§ 263-5 Sweeping litter into gutters prohibited.

No person shall sweep into or deposit in any gutter, street or other public place within the city the accumulation of litter from any building or lot or from any public or private sidewalk or driveway. Persons owning or occupying property shall keep the sidewalk in front of their premises free of litter.

§ 263-6 Merchants' duty to keep sidewalks free of litter.

No person owning or occupying a place of business shall sweep into or deposit in any gutter, street or other public place within the city the accumulation of litter from any building or lot or from any public or private sidewalk or driveway. Persons owning or occupying places of business within the city shall keep the sidewalk in front of their business premises free of litter.

§ 263-7 Litter thrown by persons in vehicles.

No person, while a driver or passenger in a vehicle, shall throw or deposit litter upon any street to other public place within the city or upon private property.

§ 263-8 Litter in parks.

No person shall throw or deposit litter in any park within the city except in public receptacles and in such a manner that the litter will be prevented from being carried or deposited by the elements upon any part of the park or upon any street or other public place. Where public receptacles are not provided, all such litter shall be carried away from the park by the person responsible for its presence and properly disposed of elsewhere as provided herein.

§ 263-9 Litter in lakes and fountains.

No person shall throw or deposit litter in any fountain, pond, lake, stream, bay or any other body of water in a park or elsewhere within the city.

§ 263-10 Throwing or distributing commercial or noncommercial handbills in public places.

No person shall throw or deposit any commercial or noncommercial handbill in or upon any sidewalk, street or other public place within the city. Nor shall any person hand out or distribute or sell any commercial handbill in any public place; provided, however, that it shall not be unlawful on any sidewalk, street or other public place within the city for any person to hand out or distribute, without charge to the receiver thereof, any noncommercial handbill to any person willing to accept it.

§ 263-11 Placing commercial and noncommercial handbills on vehicles.

No person shall throw or deposit any commercial or noncommercial handbill in or upon any vehicle; provided, however, that it shall not be unlawful in any public place for a person to hand out or distribute without charge to the receiver thereof a noncommercial handbill to any occupant of a vehicle who is willing to accept it.

§ 263-12 Depositing commercial and noncommercial handbills on uninhabited or vacant premises.

No person shall throw or deposit any commercial or noncommercial handbill in or upon any private premises which are temporarily or continuously uninhabited or vacant.

§ 263-13 Prohibiting distribution of handbills where properly posted.

No person shall throw, deposit or distribute any commercial or noncommercial handbill upon any private premises, if requested by anyone thereon not to do so or if there is placed on said premises in a conspicuous position near the entrance thereof a sign bearing the words: "No Trespassing," "No Peddlers or Agents," "No Advertisement" or any similar notice, indicating in any matter that the occupants of said premises do not desire to be molested or have their right of privacy disturbed or to have any such handbills left upon such premises.

§ 263-14 Distributing commercial and noncommercial handbills at inhabited private premises; exemption for newspapers.

A. 
No person shall throw, deposit or distribute any commercial or noncommercial handbill in or upon private premises which are inhabited, except by handing or transmitting any such handbill directly to the owner, occupant or other person then present in or upon such private premises; provided, however, that in case of inhabited private premises which are not posted, as provided in this chapter, such person, unless requested by anyone upon such premises not to do so, may place or deposit any such handbill in or upon such inhabited private premises, if such handbill is so placed or deposited as to secure or prevent such handbill from being blown or drifted about such premises or sidewalks, streets or other public places, and except that mailboxes may not be so used when so prohibited by federal postal law or regulations.
B. 
The provisions of this section shall not apply to the distribution of mail by the United States, nor to newspapers (as defined herein), except that newspapers shall be placed on private property in such a manner as to prevent their being carried or deposited by the elements upon any street, sidewalk or other public place or upon private property.

§ 263-15 Dropping litter from aircraft.

No person in an aircraft shall throw out, drop or deposit within the city any litter, handbill or any other object.

§ 263-16 Posting notices prohibited.

No person shall post or affix any notice, poster or other paper or device, calculated to attract the attention of the public, to any lamppost, public utility pole or shade tree, or upon any public structure or building, except as may be authorized or required by law.

§ 263-17 Litter on occupied private property.

No person shall throw or deposit litter on any occupied private property within the city, whether owned by such person or not, except that the owner or person in control of private property may maintain authorized private receptacles for collection in such a manner that litter will be prevented from being carried or deposited by the elements upon any street, sidewalk or other public place or upon any private property.

§ 263-18 Owner to maintain premises free of litter.

The owner or person in control of any private property shall at all times maintain the premises free of litter; provided, however, that this section shall not prohibit the storage of litter in authorized private receptacles for collection.

§ 263-19 Litter on vacant lots.

No person shall throw or deposit litter on any open or vacant private property within the city whether owned by such person or not.

§ 263-20 Notice to remove.

[Amended 6-9-1977 by Ch. No. 1595; 11-8-1984 by Ch. No. 1907; 8-8-1985 by Ch. No. 1932[1]]
Upon a finding by the Director of Zoning and Code Enforcement, his or her agent or designee, that the property within the city is in such condition as to be in violation of the requirements of this chapter, he or she, his or her agent or designee shall give notice thereof to the owner or owners of such property to comply with the requirements of this chapter within twenty-four (24) hours after service of notice. Such notice shall contain a statement of the Director of Zoning and Code Enforcement, his or her agent or designee's findings as to violations, a description of the property and the estimated cost of clearing such property or the removal or remedying the condition thereof found to be violating this chapter. Such notice may be given personally or by certified mail, police constable or City Sergeant to the owner or owners of the property described as their names and addresses are shown upon the records of the Tax Assessor of the city, and service of such notice shall be deemed complete and sufficient when so addressed and deposited in the United States mail with postage prepaid and/or by posting a certified copy on the premises and/or by advertising in one (1) or more newspapers.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code; see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I.

§ 263-21 Failure to comply.

[Amended 11-8-1984 by Ch. No. 1907]
Upon failure of the owner or owners of such premises to remedy the conditions existing in violation of the requirements hereof within seven (7) days after service of notice to do so as provided herein, then the Director of Zoning and Code Enforcement, his or her agent or designee, shall proceed to have such conditions remedied either by the City of Pawtucket or through a private contractor so retained by said city. Said owner or owners shall then be cited to appear before the Pawtucket Municipal Police Court where, upon conviction, said owner or owners shall be fined in accordance with § 263-29 hereof. Cleanup costs incurred shall become a lien against such property to the same extent and character as the lien for real estate taxes and with the same penalty and interest and with the same rights of collection, foreclosure sale and forfeiture as obtained for tax liens, unless said costs are paid to the Pawtucket Municipal Court in accordance with § 263-29 hereof.

§ 263-22 Notice to City Clerk.

[Amended 11-8-1984 by Ch. No. 1907]
Upon the making of a finding of violation, the Director of Zoning and Code Enforcement, his or her agent or designee, shall deliver a certified copy thereof, and of the notice, to the City Clerk; and the City Clerk shall place the same on record as a lien against the property described therein. It shall also be the duty of the Building Inspector to file such other and further certification as to work done and amounts due or paid as the circumstances may require.

§ 263-23 Notice of completion of work.

Upon completion of the required work by the city as provided in § 263-21 hereof, notice thereof and of the cost assessed therefor shall be given to the owner in the same manner as prescribed for notices of violations in § 263-20 of this chapter, and the sum assessed shall be due and payable thirty (30) days after such completion and cost unless such assessment shall be appealed to the Board of Appeals as provided herein prior to the expiration of said thirty-day period.

§ 263-24 Right to appeal.

Any person owning all or any interest in said property shall have the right to appeal the findings of violation within fifteen (15) days of service of the notice thereof and any such person shall have the right to appeal the assessment of cost within thirty (30) days of service of notice thereof. Such appeals shall be taken to the Board of Appeals created by Sec. 3-100(C) of the Charter of the City of Pawtucket.

§ 263-25 Failure to remove dangerous litter; creating a nuisance.

[Amended 11-8-1984 by Ch. No. 1907]
The failure, neglect or refusal of any owner or agent so notified to properly dispose of litter dangerous to the public health, safety or welfare and also which is creating a public nuisance within twenty-four (24) hours after the publication of notice provided herein shall be deemed a misdemeanor.

§ 263-26 Authority to enforce.

[Amended 11-8-1984 by Ch. No. 1907]
The Director of Zoning and Code Enforcement, his or her agent or designee, shall enforce the terms and conditions of this chapter when violations occur on private property. Any police officer of the city shall enforce the terms and conditions of this chapter when a violation occurs in a public place; and in addition thereto, any member of the park police of the city is empowered to enforce the terms and conditions of this chapter when a violation occurs in any public park in the city.

§ 263-27 Repealer.

The provisions of this chapter shall not repeal any ordinance or part of any ordinance of the City of Pawtucket or any other law upon the subject which the provisions of this chapter relate unless the provisions of any ordinance or part of any ordinance is expressly inconsistent and then only to the extent of such inconsistency.

§ 263-28 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 11-8-1984 by Ch. No. 1907; 8-8-1985 by Ch. No. 1932; 4-20-1990 by Ch. No. 2135]
A. 
Any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall be fined in an amount not exceeding five hundred dollars ($500.), and in addition shall pay all costs and expenses involved in the offense. Each day such violation is committed or permitted shall constitute a separate offense and shall be punishable as such hereunder.
B. 
Habitual offender. Any person cited under the provisions of this chapter after two (2) separate violations within a one-year period shall, upon the third violation commencing with the date of the first violation, be deemed a habitual offender, and shall be immediately cited and summoned before the Pawtucket Municipal Police Court without the necessity of notice provided in § 263-20 hereof. A violation log shall be maintained by the Director of Zoning and Code Enforcement, his or her agent or designee. Said court shall, upon conviction, impose a fine of no less than two hundred dollars ($200.), and, in addition, shall assess said offender all costs and expenses involved in the violation.