[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Hamilton 11-9-2020 by Ord. No. 1932-2020. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The Township Committee hereby find and adopt, as if set forth more fully herein, the fact assertions of the "whereas" clauses of this chapter, as their findings of fact.
Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in the Township Code, it shall be unlawful for an owner, lessor, sublessor, any other person(s) or entity(ies) with possessory or use right(s) in a dwelling unit, their principals, partner or shareholders, or their agents, employees, representatives and other persons(s) or entity(ies), acting in concert or a combination thereof, to receive or obtain actual or anticipated consideration for soliciting, advertising, offering, and/or permitting, allowing, or failing to discontinue the use or occupancy of any dwelling unit, as defined herein, for a period of 30 days or less.
Nothing in this chapter will prevent formation of an otherwise lawful occupancy of a dwelling unit for a rental period of more than 30 days, However, rental of a room or a portion of the premises, which includes accessory structures, recreational vehicles, tents or any similar structures, for any term is not permitted.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ADVERTISE or ADVERTISING
- Any form of solicitation, promotion, and communication for marketing, used to solicit, encourage, persuade, or manipulate viewers, readers, or listeners into contracting for goods and/or services in violation of this chapter, as same may be viewed through various media including but not limited to newspapers, magazines, flyers, handbills, pamphlets, commercials, radio, direct mail, internet websites, or text or other electronic messages for the purpose of establishing occupancies or uses of rental property, for consideration, which are prohibited by this chapter.
- Soliciting, charging, demanding, receiving or accepting any legally recognized form of consideration including a promise or benefit, a quid-pro-quo, rent, fees, other form of payment, or thing of value.
- DWELLING UNIT
- Any structure, or portion thereof, whether furnished or unfurnished, which is occupied in whole or in part, or intended, arranged or designed to be occupied, for sleeping, dwelling, cooking, gathering and/or entertaining, as a residential occupancy, by one or more persons. This definition includes an apartment, condominium, building, co-operative, converted space, or portions thereof, that is offered to use, made available for use, or is used for accommodations, lodging, cooking, sleeping, gathering and/or entertaining of occupants and/or guest(s), for consideration, for a period of 30 days or less.
- HOUSEKEEPING UNIT
- Constitutes a family-type situation, involving one or more persons, living together that exhibit the kind of stability, permanency and functional lifestyle equivalent to that of a traditional family unit, as further described in the applicable reported and unreported decisions of the New Jersey Superior Court.
- Any individual using, inhabiting, living, gathering, entertaining, being entertained as a guest, or sleeping in a dwelling unit, or portion thereof, or having other permission or possessory right(s) within a dwelling unit.
- Any person(s) or entity(les), association, limited liability company, corporation, or partnership, or any combination, who legally use, possess, own, lease, sub-lease or license (including an operator, principal, shareholder, director, agent, or employee, individually or collectively) that has charge, care, control, or participates in the expenses and/or profit of a dwelling unit pursuant to a written or unwritten agreement, rental, lease, license, use, occupancy agreement or any other agreement.
- An individual, firm, corporation, association, partnership, limited liability company, association, entity, and any person(s) and/or entity(ies) acting in concert or any combination therewith.
- RESIDENTIAL OCCUPANCY
- The use of a dwelling unit by an occupant(s).
The residential occupancy of an otherwise lawful and lawfully occupied dwelling unit for a period of 30 days or less by any person who is a member of the housekeeping unit of the owner, without consideration, such as house guests, is permitted.
The lease or rental of any dwelling for commercial or corporate purposes is prohibited.
The print, electronic, or internet advertisement of any rental that is prohibited or fails to comply with provisions of this chapter or any other applicable provision of the Township Code is prohibited.
Any owner, lessor, sub-lessor, any other person(s) or entity(ies) with possessory or use right(s) in a dwelling unit who chooses to rent their dwelling unit in accordance with this chapter must register the dwelling unit with the Division of Inspections annually and obtain a certificate of continued occupancy (CCO) on an annual basis.
The provisions of this chapter shall be enforced by the Building Code Official, Fire Official, other Sub-Code or Code Official, Zoning Officer or the Police Department as their jurisdiction may arise, including legal counsel for the Township or other persons designated by the Township Administrator, to issue municipal civil infractions, directing alleged violators of this chapter and/or to appear in court or file civil complaints.
A violation of this chapter is hereby declared to be a public nuisance, a nuisance per se, and is hereby further found and declared to be offensive to the public health, safety and welfare.
Violation of any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by a minimum fine of $100 or a maximum of $2,000 or by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 90 days or by a period of community service not exceeding 90 days. Each and every violation shall be considered a separate violation. Any person who is convicted of violating the provisions of this chapter within one year of the date of a pervious violation and who was fined for the previous violation may be sentenced by the court to an additional fine as a repeat offender. The additional fine imposed as a repeat offender shall not be less than the minimum or exceed the maximum fine provided herein, and same shall be calculated separately from the fine imposed for the violation of this chapter.
The penalty imposed herein shall be in addition to any and all other remedies that may accrue under any other law, including, but not limited to, eviction proceedings and/or injunction, reasonable attorney's fees or other fees and costs, in the Township's Municipal Court or the Superior Court of New Jersey, or in such other Court or tribunal of competent jurisdiction, by either summary disposition or by zoning or construction code municipal proceeding.