[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the City of Margate City 4-28-1983 by Ord. No. 1983-4. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Article I General Provisions
Article II Revocation or Suspension of Rental Licenses
[Amended 1-25-1988 by Ord. No. 1988-1]
The Construction Code Official or his designated inspector is hereby designated as the officer to exercise the powers prescribed by this chapter and to enforce the provisions thereof. All reference hereafter in this chapter to the "Construction Code Official" shall relate to and include the person or persons designated by the Construction Code Official as his designated inspector.
No dwelling unit or apartment shall be rented or offered for rent without first being licensed.
[Amended 9-12-1985 by Ord. No. 1985-12; 2-12-1987 by Ord. No. 1987-2; 1-12-1990 by Ord. No. 1989-21; 3-22-1990 by Ord. No. 1990-64-4-2007 by Ord. No. 2007-9; 4-2-2009 by Ord. No. 04-2009]
Application for such license shall made to the Building Department on forms provided by said Department. The fee for such application shall be $100 for each dwelling unit or apartment. The dwelling unit or apartment must be rented or occupied within 60 days of the date the rental license is issued.
After completion of the application, the Building Department shall cause an inspection to take place within 10 days of the filing of the application, and after said inspection, if all is in accord with the 1990 BOCA Property Maintenance Code and amendments, federal, state and local government codes, the Construction Code Official shall issue a permit for said use immediately.
[Amended 1-25-1988 by Ord. No. 1988-1; 9-9-1993 by Ord. No. 1993-15]
If, after the inspection, the apartment or dwelling does not comply with the aforementioned codes, then, in that event, the applicant must take the necessary steps to correct the defect, and then a reinspection shall occur within 10 days after request by the applicant, said reinspection being without a fee.
If a third inspection is required, then a basic charge of $10 shall be assessed, with a charge of $5 for every additional unit over one that is reinspected for the third time.
[Amended 9-12-1985 by Ord. No. 1985-12]
[Amended 7-10-1997 by Ord. No. 1997-15]
Said license issued by the Building Department shall expire and be due for renewal one year from its issuance. Each applicant shall reapply to the Building Department of the City of Margate City, which application shall be filed 30 days prior to the expiration date of the previous license upon forms provided by the Building Department. If, in fact, the lessee of the dwelling or apartment remains the same, reinspection shall not be required to reissue a license unless three years have elapsed, and during that three-year period no application fee shall be charged. If three years have elapsed since the last inspection or reinspection or new tenancy occurs, then in that event an inspection shall occur under the conditions set forth in this section. If the dwelling unit or apartment is part of a complex of 50 or more dwelling units, an apartment reinspection shall only be required one year from date the last license was issued regardless of the number of changes of tenants during the term.
Seasonal, monthly, biweekly and weekly rentals shall be permitted during the time period May 1 to September 30 under the terms and conditions set forth herein. A rental license can be applied for any time after March 1. After completion of the rental license application, the Building Department shall cause an inspection to take place in accordance with the procedures and requirements set forth in the preceding paragraphs. Additionally, the applicant must provide to the Building Department a copy of each and every lease for the dwelling unit and a list containing the name of each tenant prior to any tenancy or change in occupancy to the dwelling unit or apartment.
[Added 4-2-2009 by Ord. No. 04-2009]
The application for such license shall contain the following information:
The name, address and telephone number of the owner of the dwelling unit or apartment and the name, address and telephone number of the designated person of the licensee as submitted by the licensee.
The address of the dwelling unit or apartment and an exact description of same, including the name, if any, and the street and number by which the apartment or dwelling unit is designated.
The exact number of sleeping rooms contained in the apartment or dwelling, and the exact number of sleeping accommodations contained in the dwelling shall be as follows:
Every dwelling unit shall contain at least 150 square feet of floor space for the first occupant thereof and at least 100 additional square feet of space for every additional occupant thereof, the floor space to be calculated on the basis of total habitable room area.
In every dwelling unit of two or more rooms, every room occupied for sleeping purposes by one occupant shall contain at least 70 square feet of floor space, and every room occupied for sleeping purposes by more than one occupant shall contain at least 50 square feet of floor space for each occupant thereof. Notwithstanding the foregoing, in every lodging unit, every room occupied for sleeping purposes by one occupant shall contain at least 80 square feet of floor space, and every room occupied for sleeping purposes by more than one occupant shall contain at least 60 square feet of floor space for each occupant thereof.
A statement that the applicant for such license fully understands that each apartment or dwelling for which a license is issued under this chapter shall comply with all federal, state and local requirements pertaining to housing codes and, further, that said dwelling or apartment shall be kept in a safe, sanitary condition and shall have proper and adequate light and ventilation and shall be subject to inspection by the Construction Code Official of the City of Margate City during reasonable hours in order that said Official might ascertain if the apartment or dwelling complies with the provisions of this chapter.
[Amended 1-25-1988 by Ord. No. 1988-1]
The City of Margate City shall prepare an application form as required by this chapter and reserves the right to amend or modify the same from time to time.
Each licensee granted a license hereunder shall be permitted to lease the apartment or dwelling unit for which a license has been granted hereunder to the number of registered tenants permitted to sleep in said facility in accordance with state, local and federal codes and § 223-6C hereinabove. It shall be unlawful and in violation of this section for the licensee to lease an apartment or dwelling unit to a number or group of registered tenants which exceeds the total number of sleeping accommodations which have been set forth in the license request under this chapter, said number to have been determined and provided to the applicant prior to the issuance of a license.
It shall be unlawful and in violation of this section for an owner or, in the alternative, a tenant of any registered apartment or dwelling unit to knowingly permit a number of people greater than the maximum number of occupants as set forth in the license to occupy said premises.
Each licensee granted a license hereunder shall be required in its application to designate a person for the purpose of receiving notice of violations of this chapter, which person may be the licensee. Said person shall be required to reside within the toll-free range of the City of Margate City, New Jersey, during the entire time of the letting.
[Amended 1-25-1988 by Ord. No. 1988-1; 3-24-1994 by Ord. No. 1994-6]
After inspection and approval of the premises by the Building Department, the license will issue only upon delivery to the Building Department of a list containing the names, addresses and telephone numbers of the tenants and/or occupants of the premises for the term of the rental period. A copy of this list of tenants' names shall also be kept upon the premises for inspection by the Construction Code Official upon request. In the event that the tenants and/or occupants change during the rental period, such information must be given to the Building Department.
It shall be unlawful and in violation of this section for any real estate broker, real estate salesperson or any other individual to rent an apartment or dwelling that is not registered as required by this chapter or to rent an apartment or dwelling unit which the lease thereof provides for a number of occupants greater than the maximum number of occupants permitted to occupy such apartment or dwelling.
[Amended 3-22-1990 by Ord. No. 1990-6]
Each licensee hereunder shall advise any and all tenants within their dwelling unit or apartment of the existence of this chapter and the terms and conditions as set forth herein and advise that their lease is subject to the terms and conditions of this chapter. In addition, each licensee shall require that all tenants sign a copy of the license, acknowledging that they are aware of the requirements, which copy will be returned to the Margate City Code Enforcement Officer prior to the tenant's taking possession of the property.
Any license issued for the operation of an apartment or dwelling unit hereunder may be suspended or revoked for violation of federal, state and local codes and this chapter by the Board of Commissioners after due notice to the licensee by certified mail, return receipt requested. No suspension or revocation shall occur until the applicant has failed to respond to the notice within 10 days after its receipt or upon a determination by the Board of Commissioners after a hearing. The applicant must request a hearing within 10 days after receipt of the above-mentioned notice, and a hearing must be held within 15 days of the request by the applicant.
Any and all apartments or dwelling units shall have contained in their lease language indicating that said lease is subject to the rules and regulations as set forth under this chapter. This section shall only apply to future leases, and any existing leases need not comply.
[Amended 1-25-1988 by Ord. No. 1988-1]
Any person or persons who violate any of the provisions of this chapter or the rules and regulations adopted pursuant thereto and is or are found guilty of a violation thereof shall be punished by a fine not exceeding $1,000 or 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.
[Added 6-2-2005 by Ord. No. 2005-18]
In addition to any other penalty prescribed herein, an owner of a dwelling unit offered for rent may be subject to the revocation or suspension of a rental license or having such license placed in probationary status or other appropriate disciplinary action upon the happening of one or more of the following:
Conviction of a violation of this chapter in the municipal court or any other court of competent jurisdiction.
Following a determination by the City of Margate, after a hearing, that a violation of this chapter has occurred.
A pattern of renting the dwelling unit(s) to one or more individuals or groups of individuals who, during any one twelve-month period, is/are convicted of three violations of Chapter 192, Noise, or a violation of any other City ordinance dealing with disorderly, indecent, tumultuous or riotous conduct, which convictions are related to or arising out of the use and occupancy of the rental unit(s) or attributable to acts upon or in proximity to the rental unit(s). In order to support disciplinary action under this section it need not be shown that convictions are of the same individual(s). It shall be sufficient to demonstrate that such convictions involved conduct occurring on three separate occasions over any twelve-month period.
A pattern of permitting the rental unit(s) to be occupied by more than the maximum number of occupants as defined herein.
Maintaining the rental unit or units or the property in which the rental unit is a part in a dangerous condition likely to result in injury to person or property.
A false, misleading or fraudulent statement made in connection with the registration, licensing or inspection of a rental unit or unit(s) under this chapter.
A pattern of conduct which results in creating, maintaining, permitting or suffering the existence of any of the following conditions at or about the rental unit:
A nuisance as that term is defined by N.J.S.A. 20:33-12; provided, however, that a conviction of such person or persons under that statute shall not be required in order for the City to take action relating to the rental license under this section.
The failure to comply with any directive of the City concerning the abatement of conduct prohibited by Subsection G(1);
Whenever the Police Department shall have made an arrest of or issued a summons to a tenant, occupant, guest or owner on three or more occasions during any thirty-day period for an offense related to or arising out of the use and occupancy of the rental unit(s), the same shall be prima facie evidence of a violation of this chapter with regard to rental licensing, provided that the owner and/or managing agent shall have had notice of the existence of such circumstances or conditions.
It shall be a defense to any proceeding for the revocation or suspension of a rental license to demonstrate that the owner has taken appropriate action and has made a good faith effort to abate the conditions or circumstances giving rise to the revocation or suspension proceeding, including but not limited to the institution of legal action against the tenant(s) or otherwise. Evidence of such actions on the part of the owner or managing agent, however, shall not preclude the City from placing the rental license in probationary status as provided in this chapter, nor shall it preclude the City from instituting action pursuant to this chapter.
A written complaint seeking the revocation or suspension of a rental license may be filed by any of the following: the Mayor or Commissioner, the Chief of Police or his designee, or the Construction Code Official or his designee. The complaint shall be filed with the City Clerk and shall be sufficiently specific to inform the licensee of the charges pending and state the particulars of any substantiated violations underlying the charges. The complaint may be filed on the basis of information and belief and the Complainant need not rely on personal knowledge or information.
Upon the filing of such written complaint, the City Clerk shall immediately mail a copy of the complaint to the licensee and managing agent, if any, at the address indicated on the registration form and to the name appearing on the tax records if different from that of the licensee. The complaint shall be accompanied by a notice informing the licensee and managing agent that a hearing will be scheduled not sooner than 10 days nor more than 30 days after service of the complaint upon the licensee or managing agent. The City Clerk shall simultaneously notify the Board of Commissioners as to the filing of such complaint and the date of service upon the licensee or managing agent. The Board of Commissioners shall then fix a date for the hearing unless the matter is to be heard by a hearing officer, in which event the hearing officer shall fix the date for the hearing. The complaint and all notices shall be sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, and by regular first class mail.
The hearing required by this section shall be held before the Board of Commissioners unless, in its discretion, the Board determines that the matter shall be heard by a hearing officer, who shall be appointed by the Board of Commissioners.
If the matter is referred to a hearing officer, such officer shall transmit his findings of fact and conclusions of law to the Board of Commissioners within 15 days of the conclusion of the hearing. The Board of Commissioners shall then review the matter and may accept, reject or modify the recommendations of the hearing officer based on the documentary evidence and written findings of fact and conclusions of law submitted by the hearing officer. In the event the matter is not referred to a hearing officer and is heard by the Board of Commissioners, then the Board shall render a decision within 15 days of the conclusion of the hearing. Following the hearing, a decision shall be rendered either dismissing the complaint, revoking or suspending the license, or determining that the license shall not be renewed or reissued for one or more subsequent license years. The rental license may also be placed in probationary status as provided herein.
A verbatim record shall be made of the hearing. All witnesses shall be sworn prior to testifying. The strict rules of evidence shall not apply and the evidential rules and burden of proof shall be that which generally control administrative hearings. Any person shall be entitled to obtain a transcript of such hearing at his sole cost and expense.
The City Solicitor or his or her designee shall appear and prosecute on behalf of the complainant in all hearings conducted pursuant to this section.
In lieu of a revocation or suspension of a rental license, the Board of Commissioners may determine to place a license in a probationary status. Once imposed, the probationary status shall remain in effect for the remainder of that license term and may be made applicable to the succeeding renewal term.
The terms of the probationary status shall be specifically set forth in a resolution of the Board of Commissioners, a copy of which shall be served upon the owner, managing agent, rental agent, if known, tenants, occupants, Police Chief and Code Enforcement Officer. Such notice shall be served personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested, or both. If service is made by certified mail, it shall also be sent simultaneously by first class mail. Mail sent to the owner and managing agent shall be sent to the address indicated on the rental registration form.
The Board of Commissioners may on its own initiative, or at the request of an owner, managing agent, tenant or occupant of the rental unit, modify the terms of such probationary status at any time during the probationary term. If modified, it shall be by resolution, copies of which shall be served upon such persons and in such manner as specified in the preceding section.
The violation of any of the terms or conditions of the probation by the owner, managing agent, or tenant or occupant shall be cause for the immediate suspension or revocation of the rental license.
Any rental license which is in probationary status maybe renewed for the succeeding license term conditioned upon compliance of the owner, managing agent, tenants and occupants with the terms and conditions of probation.
The failure to comply with the terms and conditions of probation by the owner or managing agent or tenant or occupants shall be cause for immediate suspension or revocation of the rental license.
A rental license shall be deemed severable with respect to the revocation, suspension or disciplinary actions instituted pursuant to this chapter. Accordingly, the revocation or suspension or other disciplinary action involving a rental license may be limited to one or more rental units or may apply to all rental units in a property. If limited to less than all the rental units, such license shall remain in full force and effect as to any and all rental units not involved in the revocation, suspension or disciplinary proceedings.
Any complaint seeking the suspension or revocation of a rental license shall be filed by the City and served upon the owner or managing agent by October 30 in order to have any effect on the current license year and the rental season immediately following. If such complaint is filed after said date and if the charges are sustained, the revocation or suspension of the rental license shall not impact upon the rental season immediately following, but shall affect the next ensuing rental season.
Any person, firm, association or corporation violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be subject to one or more of the following:
Any person, firm, association or corporation convicted of violating this article within one year of the date of a previous violation, and who was lined for the previous violation, shall be sentenced to an additional line as a repeat offender. The additional fine shall be in an amount not to exceed $1,000.
The foregoing penalties shall be in addition to any other penalty provided in this chapter and shall be in addition to those penalties set forth in N.J.S.A. 46:8-35.
The following words or phrases when used in this chapter, shall have the following meanings:
- HEARING OFFICER
- A person designated pursuant to this article to hear and determine proceedings pursuant to this article and its enabling legislation, N.J.S.A. 40:48-2.12(n) et seq. As required by the state statute, said hearing officer shall be a licensed New Jersey attorney who shall not be an owner or lessee of any real property within the City of Margate, nor hold any interest in the assets of or profits arising from the ownership or lease of such property.
- The person or persons who own or purport to own any building in which there is rented or offered for rent housing space for living or dwelling under either a written or oral lease, including, but not limited to, any building subject to the Hotel and Multiple Dwelling Law, P.L. 1967, c. 76 (N.J.S.A. 55:13A-1 et seq.), and owner-occupied two-unit premises.
- SEASONAL RENTAL
- Any rental of residential accommodations for a term of less than one year and including any part of the period extending from May 15 to September 15.
- SUBSTANTIATED COMPLAINT
- A complaint which may form the basis for proceeding on accordance with the authority conferred by N.J.S.A. 40:48-2.12(q). A substantiated complaint shall be one in which there was prosecution and conviction in any court of competent jurisdiction.
Duty and responsibility of landlord. Landlords of seasonal rentals shall be held to a standard of responsibility in the selection of tenants and supervision of the rental properties. Under certain circumstances, a landlord shall be required to post an adequate bond against the consequences of disorderly behavior of their tenants as hereinafter provided.
Substantiated complaints; number required; procedure.
If in any one-year period there shall be three or more complaints, on separate occasions, of disorderly, indecent, tumultuous or riotous conduct upon or in proximity to any seasonal rental premises and attributable to the acts or incitements of any of the tenants or occupants of those premises, and those complaints have been substantiated by prosecution and conviction in any court of competent jurisdiction, the Board of Commissioners, as the municipal governing body, the Mayor, the Code Enforcement Official, or the Chief of Police or his designee may institute proceedings to require the landlord of those premises to post a bond against the consequences of future incidents of the same character.
Notice of the institution of such proceedings shall be served upon the landlord, in person or by registered or certified mail, to the address appearing on the tax records of the City of Margate advising said landlord of the institution of such proceedings, together with particulars of the substantiated complaints upon which the proceedings are based, and of the time and place at which a hearing will be held. Such hearing shall be held in the Municipal Building. Said hearing shall be held no sooner than 30 days from the date upon which notice is served or mailed.
At the hearing, the hearing officer shall give full hearing to both the complaint of the municipality and to any evidence in contradiction or mitigation that the landlord, if present or represented and offering such evidence, may present. At the conclusion of the hearing, the hearing officer shall determine whether the landlord shall be required to post a bond in accordance with the terms of this article.
Any bond required to be posted shall be in accordance with the judgment of the hearing officer, in light of the nature and extent of the offenses indicated in the substantiated complaint upon which the proceedings are based. Such bond shall be adequate in the case of subsequent offenses to make reparation for: (1) damages likely to be caused to public or private property and damages consequent upon disruption of affected residents' right of fair use and quiet possession of their premises; (2) securing the payment of fines and penalties likely to be levied for such offenses; and (3) compensating the municipality for the cost of repressing and prosecuting such incidents of disorderly behavior. In no event shall the bond be in an amount less than $500 or more than $5,000. The City may enforce the bond thus required by action in Superior Court, and the City shall be entitled to an injunction prohibiting the landlord from making or renewing any lease of the affected premises for residential purposes until that bond or equivalent security, in satisfactory form and amount, has been deposited with the City.
The bond or other security deposited in compliance with this article shall remain in force for a period of three years. Upon the lapse of the specified period, the landlord shall be entitled to the discharge thereof, unless prior thereto further proceedings leading to a forfeiture or partial forfeiture of the bond or other security shall have been had, in which case the security shall be renewed, in an amount and for a period that shall be specified by the hearing officer.
Hearing officer; qualifications; appointment.
The Board of Commissioners is hereby authorized to appoint a hearing officer who is qualified pursuant to the requirements of N.J.S.A. 40:48-2.12(p) as amended and supplemented. Such hearing officer shall be a licensed attorney of the State of New Jersey and shall not be an owner or lessee of any property with the municipality, nor hold any interest in the assets of or profits arising from the ownership or lease of such property.
The appointment of a hearing officer shall be by resolution of the Board of Commissioners. The appointment shall be for a term specified by the Board of Commissioners, but in no event to exceed one year. The hearing officer shall be eligible for reappointment. The services of the hearing officer may be terminated without cause upon the giving of 30 days' notice. The services of the hearing officer may be terminated for cause immediately.
The hearing officer may be compensated by salary or a professional services contract in the discretion of the Board of Commissioners.