City of Clifton, NJ
Passaic County
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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 2 of Chapter 21 of the Revised Ordinances of the City of Clifton, New Jersey, 1960; amended in its entirety 1-8-1992 by Ord. No. 5564-92. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Amusements — See Ch. 141.
Games of chance — See Ch. 257.

§ 255-1 Definitions.

In addition to the definitions contained in § 141-11 of Chapter 141, Amusements, as used in this chapter the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
AMUSEMENT AND ENTERTAINMENT MACHINES OR DEVICES
Any machine, contrivance or device which, upon the insertion of a coin, slug, token, disc or key into a slot, crevice or other opening or by the payment of any price, operates or may be operated by the public generally, and shall include, without limitation, such devices as marble machines, pinball machines, mechanical games or machines, skillball and music devices which emit songs, music or similar amusement and shall also mean jukeboxes, pool or billiard tables and bowling alleys.

§ 255-2 General regulations.

A. 
The owner or operator of a place of business, as defined in § 141-11 of Chapter 141, Amusements, shall not permit, suffer or allow any person to bet or gamble in any form or manner on the licensed premises and shall prevent any immoral or illegal conduct or activity from occurring.
B. 
No person on the licensed premises shall have illegally in his possession or under his control or offer to another any habit-forming drug, nor shall the owner or operator of a place of business permit, suffer or allow any such person on the licensed premises.
C. 
No owner or operator of a place of business, as defined in  § 141-11 of Chapter 141, Amusements, shall permit, suffer or allow the unlawful sale or consumption of alcoholic beverages upon the licensed premises.
D. 
The owner or operator of a place of business shall at all times maintain good order upon the licensed premises and shall not permit, suffer or allow any disturbance, congestion or loitering upon the licensed premises.
E. 
No device shall be operated in such a manner as to be heard outside.
F. 
No song shall be played or words spoken on any device which violate the obscenity law of New Jersey.
G. 
No device shall be permitted to cause any unnecessary or unwanted noise or commotion or otherwise interfere with the public health, welfare and morals.
H. 
No owner or operator of a place of business shall offer or permit to be offered any prize or other award to any person playing any device.
I. 
No device shall be located in a so-called back room or in any part of the licensed premises which is not open to the general public.
J. 
No licensed premises shall be without adequate sanitary facilities or contain any fire, safety or health hazard.
K. 
No licensee or any of his agents, officers or servants shall, by threats, promises or intimidation, seek to control or direct the placement or removal of any device or to control the placement of any such device from any location within the City of Clifton, and any such threats, promises or intimidation shall be reported immediately to the Police Department and to the License Inspector.
L. 
No licensee shall neglect or fail to report promptly to the Police Department and License Inspector any violation of any law or ordinance occurring on the licensed premises, nor shall any licensee neglect or fail to report promptly to the City Clerk any conduct or activity prohibited by this chapter.
M. 
Each licensee, distributor and/or owner or operator of a place of business shall promptly report, in writing, to the City Clerk any change or addition or deletion of the information furnished on the license application and all material attached thereto, and this obligation shall be fully met during the term of any license or the renewal thereof.
N. 
No licensee shall refuse to cooperate fully with the City Clerk or any law enforcement officer or agency, nor shall any licensee, operator and/or owner-operator refuse to produce and make available all records relating to the purchase or distribution of such devices. No such licensee shall refuse access to its premises to the City Clerk or to any member of the Department of Police, Fire, Health or Housing or to any law enforcement officer or agency.
O. 
Mechanical amusement devices.
(1) 
All mechanical amusement devices licensed by the City of Clifton must be available at all times during licensure for internal inspection by an authorized representative of the licensing division. No mechanical amusement device shall be fastened, locked or secured in such a fashion that the licensee or person in charge of the licensed premises cannot immediately provide access to the internal components of said machine upon the above request.
(2) 
No license shall be granted for any mechanical amusement device which is to be used for the purpose of gambling. For the purpose of this chapter, a mechanical amusement device, the operation of which is based in any part on random chance or the random assignment of numbers and the operation of which does not require more than minimal skill or hand-eye coordination, shall be presumed to be intended to be utilized for gambling purposes. By way of clarification but not limitation, mechanical amusement devices used for the purpose of gambling shall be deemed to include the following:
(a) 
Mechanical amusement devices known as joker poker or any similar mechanical amusement devices displaying playing cards; keno or any similar mechanical amusement devices displaying a number board where numbers are designated by random; horse racing; dice; lucky lines; cherry master or any similar mechanical amusement devices styled after a slot machine with a rolling display or circular wheel on which are depicted symbols; and lotto or lottery-type machines.
(b) 
Any mechanical amusement device which does not have an operable slot or receptacle for the insertion of coin or paper money.
(c) 
Any mechanical amusement device with buttons or controls labeled "double up" or "bet."
(d) 
Any mechanical amusement devices which can be controlled or operated from a remote location by other than the individual operator.
(e) 
Any mechanical amusement device readily capable of being converted by the internal technology of the mechanical amusement device to machine such as set forth in Subsection O(2)(a) above, but not limited to dual screen machines.
P. 
The licensing requirements and other applicable regulations contained in Article II of Chapter 141 of the Code of the City of Clifton shall also apply to amusement and entertainment machines or devices as defined in this chapter.

§ 255-3 Revocation of license; hearings.

Every license issued under Article II of Chapter 141 of the Code of the City of Clifton is subject to revocation if any of the following things occur:
A. 
The violation of any of the provisions of this chapter.
B. 
Any misstatement or omission in the license application or in any information submitted therewith or the failure to notify, in writing, the City Clerk of any changes by addition or deletion or amendment to said application or information during the term of said license or renewal.
C. 
The determination on revocation shall be made by the Municipal Council of the City of Clifton, which shall hold a hearing with respect thereto.
D. 
Prior to revoking any such license, the licensee shall be given such a hearing in the event that such a hearing is requested after notice of the right to such a hearing is given by the City Clerk. The licensee shall be given 10 days' notice of said hearing, or more, and such notice shall state the ground or grounds therefor. At such hearing, the licensee may submit evidence and witnesses in his defense.

§ 255-4 Seizure of mechanical amusement machines/devices.

A. 
If a police officer of the Police Department or other law enforcement officer with the authority to act within his jurisdiction shall have probable cause to believe that any mechanical amusement machine/device is used for gambling or if a mechanical amusement machine/device is prohibited pursuant to this chapter, such machine/device may be seized and removed from the premises by the Police Department or its authorized personnel or other law enforcement officer with the authority to act within this jurisdiction and impounded and considered contraband. As an alternative to the seizure and removal of the machine/device as a whole, a police officer may remove from the device such internal components as will disable the machine/device. If possible, those removing the machine/device shall provide the person in charge of the premises with a report, to be filed with the Police Department, noting any obvious danger to the property. Thereafter, any person aggrieved thereby may demand a hearing, in writing, directed to the City Clerk.
B. 
After seizure, any person aggrieved may demand a hearing as provided hereinabove and shall be given a hearing within 10 days from the date of such demand. In the event that the Municipal Council finds that the seizure was justified under the provisions of this chapter, the machine/device shall not be released until proper ownership and/or licensing fees are paid and properly presented, together with a removal/storage charge of $50 per machine/device seized. In the event that only the internal components of the machine/device were seized, the removal/storage charge per machine/device will be $25. In the event that said panel finds that the seizure was unjustified, the machine/device shall be returned to the person from whom it was seized forthwith, but such person shall have no further remedy against the City of Clifton.
C. 
If no person makes a claim to a seized machine/device within 120 days from the date of seizure, said machine/device may be destroyed or otherwise disposed of in accordance with state statute or local ordinance.

§ 255-5 Exemptions.

The provisions of this chapter requiring a proprietor's license shall not apply to any church, fraternal or veterans organization or religious or charitable organization which operates any machine or device exclusively for the use of its premises owned or controlled by it. This provision does not exempt any social club from the requirements of this chapter.

§ 255-6 Compliance with other provisions.

Every person seeking licensure hereunder shall comply with all state statutes, municipal ordinances and regulations, Building and Fire Code regulations and Zoning Code requirements,[1] as well as all other statutes and regulations, prior to receiving a license or licenses hereunder.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 197, Uniform Construction Codes, Ch. 233, Fire Prevention, and Ch. 461, Zoning, respectively.

§ 255-7 Violations and penalties.

Any person violating any provision of this chapter or failing to comply therewith may be punished by imprisonment not exceeding 90 days or by a fine not exceeding $500, or by both imprisonment and fine, and a separate offense shall be deemed committed on each day during or on which the violation or failure to cease transacting the business of distributing occurs or continues. Upon conviction, no licensee shall thereafter transact the business of distributing or operating within the City of Clifton.