[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Franklin 5-7-1971 (Ch. 50 of the 1988 Code); amended in its entirety 6-27-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-02. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Whenever it shall be deemed necessary for the preservation of the public health, safety and welfare or to eliminate fire hazard, the Zoning Officer or a designee may require any owner, tenant, occupant, managing agent, executor, administrator, or other similar person to remove or destroy brush, weeds (including ragweed), grass, dead and dying trees, stumps, roots, obnoxious growth, filth, garbage, trash and debris from any property within the Township.
Upon written complaint of any resident or property owner of the Township of Franklin or any employee of said Township or upon his own motion, the Zoning Officer or his designated agent shall make an investigation of the condition complained of. If, after inspection by an authorized agent of the Township, it is determined that a violation of this chapter or that a danger to the public health, safety and general welfare exists, the owner or tenant of such land shall, within 14 days after being notified by an authorized agent of the Township, or after posting of notice on said property, abate the condition specified in the notice.
The Franklin Township Zoning Officer will be the enforcing official. The Franklin Township Board of Health shall also have the authority to enforce this chapter.
The notice required shall be given to the owner or tenant of land aforesaid by any duly authorized agent of the Township, in writing, and served personally upon the owner or tenant of lands or by mailing by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the last known address and/or by posting such notice on the premises. Said notice shall be sufficient notice for a twelve-month period, and any further violation within said period will be deemed a failure to comply under § 131-5 below and subject to violations and penalties as set forth in § 131-6 below.
The notice shall substantially direct the owner or tenant of lands to whom it is addressed to abate the condition complained of within 14 days after receipt of notice. In the event of his refusal or neglect to do so in the manner directed by the duly authorized agent of the Township and within the time provided herein, the agent who issued the notice is hereby authorized and directed to cause the condition complained of to be abated in accordance with this section and to certify the costs thereof to the Township Committee. It shall examine the certificate and, if found correct, shall cause the cost as shown thereon to be charged against the lands of the owner or tenant or, in the event that such cost is excessive, shall cause the reasonable cost thereof to be charged against the lands.
The amount so charged shall become a lien upon the lands affected and shall be added to and become part of the taxes next to be assessed and levied upon the lands, the same to bear interest at the same rate as other taxes and to be collected and enforced by the same officers and in the same manner as taxes are collected and enforced in the Township. Costs shall be in addition to any penalties imposed for any violation of this section.
Any person who shall violate this chapter or any of its provisions shall, upon conviction thereof, be subject to any one or more of the following: a fine not exceeding $2,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 90 days or a period of community service not exceeding 90 days.
Each and every day such violation continues shall be considered a specific offense.