City of Clifton, NJ
Passaic County
By using eCode360 you agree to be legally bound by the Terms of Use. If you do not agree to the Terms of Use, please do not use eCode360.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Municipal Council of the City of Clifton 12-20-1960 by Ord. No. 3319 as Article I of Chapter 10 of the Revised Ordinances of the City of Clifton, New Jersey, 1960. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Advertising — See Ch. 121.
Bazaars, carnivals and circuses — See Ch. 159.
Canvassing and soliciting — See Ch. 189.
Garage sales and house sales — See Ch. 259.
Hawking and peddling — See Ch. 265.
Junkyards and junk shops — See Ch. 289.
Licensed businesses — See Ch. 303.
Special sales — See Ch. 371.
Public solicitations — See Ch. 391.
Transient merchants and pawnbrokers — See Ch. 429.

§ 149-1 Legislative declaration.

§ 149-2 Definitions.

§ 149-3 License required; exceptions.

§ 149-4 Application for license.

§ 149-5 City Clerk to be applicant's agent for service of process.

§ 149-6 Surety bond required.

§ 149-7 Investigation of applicant.

§ 149-8 Presentation of application to City Council.

§ 149-9 Granting of license; grounds for denial.

§ 149-9.1 Issuance of conditional license.

§ 149-10 License fee for public auction.

§ 149-11 Authority of license; nontransferability; display of license.

§ 149-12 Term of license.

§ 149-13 License fee for auctioneer.

§ 149-14 Term of auctioneer's license.

§ 149-15 Separate auctioneer's license not required in certain cases.

§ 149-16 Inspection of premises.

§ 149-17 Assignment of licensed premises prohibited.

§ 149-18 Sanitary facilities required.

§ 149-19 Sales prohibited on streets or sidewalks.

§ 149-20 Bells and loud noises prohibited.

§ 149-21 Sales on Sundays and holidays prohibited.

§ 149-22 Record book to be kept.

§ 149-23 Night auctions of certain articles prohibited.

§ 149-24 Auctions of certain articles permitted only at regular place of business.

§ 149-25 Record of sales to be kept.

§ 149-26 Terms and conditions of sale to be stated.

§ 149-27 Prohibited practices.

§ 149-28 Labeling requirements.

§ 149-29 Misleading advertisements.

§ 149-30 Unlawful bidding practices.

§ 149-31 Blind package sales unlawful.

§ 149-32 Substitution of articles prohibited.

§ 149-33 Investigation of licensees.

§ 149-34 Revocation of license; hearing.

§ 149-35 Suspension of license pending hearing.

§ 149-36 Effect upon other provisions.

§ 149-37 Violations and penalties.

§ 149-1 Legislative declaration.

The provisions of this chapter are provided for the regulation of public auctions and auctioneers in the interest of the protection and preservation of the safety and property of the City and its inhabitants. The license fees prescribed in this chapter are imposed for the purposes of such regulation and for the raising of revenue.

§ 149-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
AUCTIONEER
Includes any person who, at public outcry, offers for sale to the highest bidder any goods, chattels, wares, merchandise or other personal property.
LICENSED PREMISES
Includes all buildings or structures used for and in connection with a public auction, market or mart and the lands and premises described in the application and accompanying plot plan.
PERSONAL PROPERTY and PROPERTY
Include any goods, wares, works of art, jewelry, antiques, commodities, compound or thing, chattels, merchandise or personal property which may be lawfully kept or offered for sale.
PUBLIC AUCTION and PUBLIC AUCTION, MARKET OR MART
Include a public sale of personal property to the highest bidder, by a person licensed and authorized for that purpose, and the place where such auction is to be conducted.

§ 149-3 License required; exceptions.

A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to act as an auctioneer or to sell, expose or offer for sale at public auction any personal property or to maintain, use or operate premises in the pursuit, carrying on and exercise of a public auction, market or mart in the City unless he first applies for and obtains the appropriate license therefor in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.
B. 
The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to sheriffs, constables, sergeants at arms, executors, administrators, guardians, assignees of insolvent debtors, trustees in bankruptcy, receivers, persons holding a license to conduct a closeout sale in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 371, Sales, Special, or other persons required by law to sell personal property.
[Amended 11-14-1966 by Ord. No. 3728]

§ 149-4 Application for license.

[Amended 11-14-1966 by Ord. No. 3728]
A. 
Any person desiring a license under this chapter shall file with the City Clerk an original and four copies of an application, under oath, in writing, on a form furnished by the City Clerk.
B. 
The application shall set forth the following information:
(1) 
The applicant's name, business name and business address.
(2) 
Whether the applicant is an individual, a partnership, a corporation or another entity and, if another entity, a full explanation and description thereof.
(3) 
If the applicant is an individual, the applicant's residence address and date and place of birth.
(4) 
If the applicant is a partnership, the full names, residence addresses, dates and places of birth of each partner.
(5) 
If the applicant is a corporation or other entity, in the case of a corporation, the full names, residence addresses, dates and places of birth of each major officer and each stockholder, the name and address of the registered agent and the address of the principal office [The term "stockholder," as used herein, means and includes any person owning or having an interest, either legal or equitable, in 10% or more of the stock issued and outstanding of the applicant corporation.]; in the case of another entity, the full names, residence addresses, dates and places of birth of each person owning or having any interest, either legal or equitable, aggregating in value 10% or more of the total capital of said entity, the name and address of the registered agent, if any, and the address of the principal office.
(6) 
Whether the applicant or any partners, officers or stockholders thereof have ever been arrested or convicted of a crime and, if so, the name of the person arrested or convicted, the date of arrest, the crime or charge involved and the disposition thereof. The term "officers," as used herein, means and includes the president, vice presidents, secretary and treasurer of a corporate applicant.
(7) 
The address of the place where the auction is to be conducted by street number and tax lot and block.
(8) 
The experience the applicant has had as an auctioneer or a person engaged in the auction business.
(9) 
The place or places and the times that the applicant has been so engaged as an auctioneer or in the auction business.
(10) 
The name and address of the bonding company furnishing the bond as hereinafter required.
C. 
The application shall be accompanied by the following:
(1) 
References from two resident freeholders of the City as to the applicant's character and integrity.
(2) 
A detailed statement of the quantity, and description of the quality and kind of personal property to be offered for sale, the location thereof at the time of the application and where it may be seen and inspected.
(3) 
The license fee, prescribed in this chapter, which fee shall be returned if the license is denied.

§ 149-5 City Clerk to be applicant's agent for service of process.

A. 
The applicant shall also file with each application an instrument, in writing, nominating and appointing the City Clerk as the applicant's true and lawful agent, with full power and authority to acknowledge service of any notice and process for and on behalf of said applicant in respect to any matters connected with said license and surety bond, or for the performance of the conditions of said bond or for any breach thereof. The instrument nominating and appointing the City Clerk as agent shall contain recitals to the effect that said applicant consents and agrees that service of any notice or process may be made upon said agent and, when so made, shall be as valid as if personally served upon the applicant according to the laws of this or any other state, and waiving all claims or rights of error by reason of such acknowledgment of service or manner of service.
B. 
The City Clerk shall keep a record of all notices and processes served upon him pursuant to the provisions of Subsection A of this section showing the date of such service. The City Clerk shall forthwith notify the licensee of such service, by registered or certified mail addressed to the licensee at the residence address or registered office shown on the licensee's application. Such notification shall be deemed complete upon mailing.

§ 149-6 Surety bond required.

Before any action is taken upon an application for a license, there shall be filed with the City Clerk a surety bond of a surety company authorized to do business under the laws of the State of New Jersey, and satisfactory to the City, in the sum of $5,000. The surety bond shall be conditioned upon the due observance of all ordinances of the City respecting the conduct and operation of auctioneers and the auction business at any time during the continuance of such business. The surety bond shall be for the benefit of any person who recovers a judgment against any licensee under this chapter by reason of any damage sustained by such person as a result of having purchased any article or commodity at a public auction or sale, conducted or operated by said licensee, due to fraud or deceit practiced in advertising, selling or effecting such purchase or sale. The surety bond shall be for the protection of persons and property and for the preservation of the safety and property of the City and its inhabitants, and as may be required by any statute or City ordinance or regulation.

§ 149-7 Investigation of applicant.

[Amended 11-14-1966 by Ord. No. 3728]
A. 
Every application so received shall be submitted to the Chief of Police, Fire Chief, Building Inspector and the Health Officer, who shall investigate, or cause to be investigated, the applicant and the premises for which such license is sought. Each officer shall furnish the City Clerk, in writing, with a report containing his findings and conclusions.
B. 
The investigation and report of the respective officers shall take into consideration the following:
(1) 
Chief of Police: the qualifications of the applicant; the parking facilities, traffic hazards and such other matters as may affect the public safety and welfare.
(2) 
Fire Chief: fire hazards and adequacy of exits.
(3) 
Building Inspector: the safety of the structures to be used and the location and zone in which the auction is to be located.
(4) 
Health Officer: the provisions for sanitary convenience and facilities.

§ 149-8 Presentation of application to City Council.

The City Clerk shall present each application and reports thereon to the City Council at the next regular meeting thereof after the filing of such application; provided, however, that at least 14 days shall intervene between such filing and the regular meeting.

§ 149-9 Granting of license; grounds for denial.

[Amended 1-19-1994 by Ord. No. 5666-94]
The City Council may, in its discretion and subject to the provisions of this chapter, grant a license. It may deny the application for any of the following reasons:
A. 
That the location and use of said property covered by the application do not conform to all ordinances of the City, and to all laws, rules and regulations of the State of New Jersey or of any body, board or commission thereof, which may be applicable thereto.
B. 
That the applicant is not a proper or fit person to be licensed.
C. 
That the location of said public auction will be a hazard to life and property.
D. 
That the operation of a public auction at the location sought will affect the health, morals or safety of the public.

§ 149-9.1 Issuance of conditional license.

[Added 1-19-1994 by Ord. No. 5666-94]
A. 
If, in the opinion of the City Clerk, an application for the issuing of a license cannot be timely presented to the City Council, the City Clerk may issue a conditional license for a period not to exceed 30 days.
B. 
A conditional license may only be issued if all the following are met:
(1) 
Payment of a nonrefundable fee for a conditional license for a public auction of $1,000. Should the City Council grant a license, this conditional license fee will be applied to the license fee.
(2) 
All forms, reports and investigations from all municipal departments required under this chapter be forwarded to the City Clerk before the issuance of the conditional license.
(3) 
The applicant has complied with all other provisions of this chapter.
(4) 
This conditional license shall not be transferable.

§ 149-10 License fee for public auction.

The fee for a license for a public auction shall be $1,000 for a period of one year or any part thereof.

§ 149-11 Authority of license; nontransferability; display of license.

The license for a public auction shall authorize the licensee, subject to the limitations imposed by this chapter, to conduct and operate a public auction at the place specified in the application and shall not be assignable or transferable. The license shall, at all times, be exposed in a conspicuous place on the premises.

§ 149-12 Term of license.

[Amended 12-20-1966 by Ord. No. 3740]
The license for a public auction shall be issued for a period of one year only, commencing as of January 1 and expiring on December 31 of the year of its issuance, unless sooner surrendered or revoked.

§ 149-13 License fee for auctioneer.

The license fee for an auctioneer shall be $1,000 for a period of one year or any part thereof.

§ 149-14 Term of auctioneer's license.

[Amended 12-20-1966 by Ord. No. 3740]
Auctioneer's licenses shall be issued for a period of one year, commencing as of January 1 and expiring on December 31 of the year of its issuance, unless sooner surrendered or revoked.

§ 149-15 Separate auctioneer's license not required in certain cases.

A separate license to act as auctioneer shall not be required of the holder of a license for a public auction or of one of the proprietors if such licensee is a partnership, or one of its officers if the licensee is a corporation.

§ 149-16 Inspection of premises.

[Amended 4-6-1971 by Ord. No. 4037-71]
All licensed premises shall be subject to inspection at all reasonable times by members of the Police Department, Fire Public Safety Department, Building Inspector, Health Department or any other officer or representative of the City.

§ 149-17 Assignment of licensed premises prohibited.

No part of the licensed premises shall be assigned or sublet by the licensee, nor leased or rented as a concession.

§ 149-18 Sanitary facilities required.

Sanitary conveniences and facilities for both sexes shall be provided upon the licensed premises. No license for a public auction shall be issued until a certificate of the Health Department is filed with the City Clerk showing the establishment and operation of approved sanitary conveniences and facilities upon the licensed premises.

§ 149-19 Sales prohibited on streets or sidewalks.

No auctioneer shall sell or expose for sale any kind of property upon any street or sidewalk in the City, nor so near a street or highway as to attract persons and vehicles upon the adjoining streets or highways so as to create a traffic or other hazard to life and property.

§ 149-20 Bells and loud noises prohibited.

No auctioneer shall ring a bell or permit one to be rung in, about, upon or in front of the licensed premises at any time. He shall not solicit or permit soliciting, by music, singing or loud noises for the purpose of attracting the public.

§ 149-21 Sales on Sundays and holidays prohibited.

No auctioneer shall sell, expose or offer for sale any kind of property, nor shall any licensed premises remain open for the purpose of selling or offering for sale any property on Sundays or legal holidays.

§ 149-22 Record book to be kept.

A. 
Every auctioneer, whether acting in his own behalf or as an officer, agent or representative of another, shall, upon the receipt or acceptance by him of any personal property for the purpose of sale at auction, and before offering the same or any part thereof for sale at public auction, write or cause to be written in a book to be kept by him for that purpose the following:
(1) 
The name and address of the person who employed him to so sell such property.
(2) 
The name and address of the person for whose benefit, behalf or account the property is to be so sold.
(3) 
The name and address of the person from whom the auctioneer received or accepted the property.
(4) 
The name and address of the owner of the property immediately prior to such receipt or acceptance.
(5) 
The location, with street number, if any, of the property immediately prior to its receipt or acceptance.
(6) 
The date of the receipt or acceptance.
(7) 
The place, with street number, if any, in which the property is to be kept until sold or offered for sale at auction.
(8) 
A description of the property, the quantity thereof and the distinctive marks thereon, if any.
(9) 
The terms and conditions upon which the auctioneer receives or accepts the property for sale at auction.
B. 
Such books and entries therein shall, at all reasonable times, be open to the inspection of the City Manager, Chief of Police, any member of the Police Department of the City or other officer or agent thereof, the prosecutor of the pleas of Passaic County, and to any person who shall be duly authorized in writing for that purpose by any of them and shall exhibit such written authorization to such licensee.

§ 149-23 Night auctions of certain articles prohibited.

No sale, by public auction, shall be held or permitted on any weekday, including Saturday, between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 a.m., of any new or used diamonds, precious or semiprecious stones, gems, watches, clocks, gold, silverware, jewelry and goods, wares and merchandise commonly classified as jewelry.

§ 149-24 Auctions of certain articles permitted only at regular place of business.

No sale, by public auction, of any new or used diamonds, precious or semiprecious stones, gems, watches, clocks, gold, silverware, jewelry and goods, wares and merchandise commonly classified as jewelry shall be licensed or permitted, except that such auction may be held at the applicant's existing regular place of business and at the place wherein his regular business has been conducted for a period of at least one year prior to the application.

§ 149-25 Record of sales to be kept.

A clerk shall keep an accurate written record of each article sold. The record shall set forth the quantity, quality, kind or grade of each item sold, the name and post office address of the purchaser thereof, and the price paid for each of said items.

§ 149-26 Terms and conditions of sale to be stated.

No auctioneer shall sell, expose for sale or offer for sale any property, personal or mixed, of any kind, nature or description without, at the time of offering such property, stating in a loud and distinct voice either that the property is sold without any warranty or representations as to quality, fitness, condition, price, value or genuineness, or that said article is expressly warranted to be as the auctioneer represents it.

§ 149-27 Prohibited practices.

A. 
No auctioneer shall accept false bids from any person in the employ of himself or others.
B. 
No property shall be given away, disposed of or offered to any person as a gift, premium, bonus or inducement to purchase any other article of property or commodity.

§ 149-28 Labeling requirements.

A. 
No person shall sell, expose or offer for sale at public auction any new goods, wares or merchandise unless there is securely attached to each article a tag or label, upon which shall be plainly written or printed in English a true and correct statement of:
(1) 
The kind and quality of metal or material of which such article is made or composed.
(2) 
The percentage or carat or other common designation of such material or metal.
(3) 
The patent number or trademark.
(4) 
The name and address of the manufacturer.
B. 
Seconds.
(1) 
No person shall sell, expose or offer for sale at public auction any goods, wares or merchandise commonly referred to as "seconds" unless there is securely attached to each of such articles a tag or label upon which shall be plainly written or printed in English:
(a) 
The word "second," unless such word is printed or impressed upon the article.
(b) 
The patent number or trademark.
(c) 
The name and address of the manufacturer.
(2) 
In case such articles are plated, overlaid or veneered, then such tag or label shall contain a true statement of the kind of material or metal covered and of the covering.
C. 
When precious or semiprecious stones are offered for sale or sold, such written statement shall set forth the name, weight, quality and fineness of said stones, and imitations shall be described as such.
D. 
When watches and clocks are sold, the name of the manufacturer shall be stated in writing, and no parts, movements or mechanisms thereof shall be substituted or contain false and misleading names or trademarks. Secondhand or old movements shall not be offered for sale in new cases, without a statement to that effect.
E. 
The tag or label shall remain securely attached to any such articles or merchandise and shall be delivered to the purchaser as a true and correct description and representation of the articles sold; and in case said written statement is not a true and correct description and representation of such articles sold, the same shall be deemed prima facie evidence of intent to defraud.

§ 149-29 Misleading advertisements.

It shall be unlawful for any person, with intent to sell or dispose of at auction any property, goods, wares or merchandise, or to induce the public in any manner to enter into any obligation for, or acquire title to or interest in, any such personal property at any public auction, to make, publish, disseminate, circulate or place before the public of the City, directly or indirectly, in any newspaper, book, notice, handbill, poster, bill, circular, pamphlet, letter or other publication any advertisement regarding personal property offered to the public which contains any assertion, representation or statement of fact which is untrue, deceptive or misleading.

§ 149-30 Unlawful bidding practices.

It shall be unlawful for any person to:
A. 
Act as a by-bidder, or what is commonly known as a "capper" or "booster," at any public auction.
B. 
Offer or make false bids on any personal property exposed or offered for sale at such auction.
C. 
Pretend to buy anything at any public auction sale in order, in any manner, to stimulate such sales by any deceit or misrepresentation in the making of bids or offers for the purchase of any personal property exposed or offered therein for sale.

§ 149-31 Blind package sales unlawful.

It shall be unlawful to sell what are commonly known as "blind packages" or articles which cannot be seen by bidders before bids are made.

§ 149-32 Substitution of articles prohibited.

No person shall, after an article has been exhibited and offered for sale at public auction, substitute an article in lieu of that offered to and purchased by the bidder, whereby said bidder is defrauded.

§ 149-33 Investigation of licensees.

The City Manager may, upon his own initiative or upon the filing of a written verified complaint by any person, investigate the actions of any licensee.

§ 149-34 Revocation of license; hearing.

A. 
In addition to the penalty provided in § 149-37, any license issued under this chapter may be revoked by the City Council if it determines, after notice and hearing, that the licensee:
(1) 
Has willfully made false promises or willful misrepresentation in violation of this chapter.
(2) 
Has made false promises or misrepresentations through agents, salesmen, advertisements or otherwise contrary to this chapter.
(3) 
Has failed to account for or to pay over any moneys coming into his possession and belonging to others.
(4) 
Has made false statements in the application for a license.
(5) 
By his conduct has demonstrated unworthiness, incompetency, bad faith or dishonesty.
(6) 
Has violated any of the provisions of this chapter.
B. 
Notice of the hearing provided in Subsection A of this section shall be given in writing to the licensee. Such notice shall be given in person or by registered or certified mail, addressed to the licensee at the address given in the application at least five days prior to the date set for the hearing.

§ 149-35 Suspension of license pending hearing.

The City Manager shall have the power to suspend, for a period of not more than one month, any license issued under this chapter, upon any of the grounds enumerated in § 149-34 for revocation of a license by the City Council; provided, however, that during the period of such suspension the matter is brought on for hearing before the City Council as provided in § 149-34.

§ 149-36 Effect upon other provisions.

Nothing in this chapter shall be deemed to repeal or impair Chapter 429, Transient Merchants and Pawnbrokers.

§ 149-37 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 5-9-1969 by Ord. No. 3912; 3-17-1970 by Ord. No. 3969]
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by a fine not exceeding $500 or by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 90 days, or both. A separate offense shall be deemed committed on each day during or on which a violation occurs or continues.