[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Mount Laurel 4-20-1959 by Ord. No. 1959-1. Amendments noted where applicable.]
No person, firm or corporation shall move or cause, allow, permit or suffer to be moved any soil from, in or upon any land in the Township of Mount Laurel unless and until a soil permit therefor shall first have been issued by the Township Council of the Township of Mount Laurel.
Editor's Note: With the adoption 1-18-1971 of Ord. No. 1971-1, the former Township Committee became the Township Council, which change is reflected throughout the chapter.
No owner of any land in the Township of Mount Laurel shall move or cause, allow, permit or suffer any soil in or upon such land to be moved from said premises by any person, firm or corporation until such person, firm or corporation has first obtained a soil permit to do so.
No soil permit shall be required in connection with the construction, alteration, addition to or repairing of any building erected or hereafter to be erected on any land, or the excavation, filling, landscaping or grading incidental to the use of such building on said land, including the installation, repair or replacement of a sanitary system used in connection therewith, provided that the finished grade on such land after completion of said work shall not be lowered to a point more than six inches higher than the crown of the road abutting the property upon which such building shall be located. Further, any holes left as the result of excavation shall not be filled with stones, boulders, debris or stumps unless they are covered with at least three feet of soil.
No soil permit shall be required in connection with the construction of an irrigation pond or lake on any farm in the Township of Mount Laurel.
Any person, firm or corporation desiring to excavate on any lands within the corporate limits of the Township of Mount Laurel for the purpose of removing soil shall, before commencing work on such excavation, file a written application on a form furnished by the Township for a permit therefor with the Township Council of the Township of Mount Laurel, which application shall contain the following data:
Name and address of the owner of the land.
Name and address of the applicant if different from the owner.
Description of the land, including lot and block number as shown on the Township Tax Map.
Reason for removing the soil.
Type and quantity of soil to be removed.
Location to which soil is to be removed.
Dates of commencement and completion of the removal of the soil.
Brief description of the final condition in which land shall be placed.
A map or maps drawn to such scale as the Township Council shall in each case approve, attached to the application, showing: exact present contour lines and contour grades of the land; all present surface water drainage courses or systems, including natural drainage; exact proposed contour lines and contour grades after the completion of the excavation or removal of soil; all proposed surface water drainage courses or systems, including natural drainage; grades of all abutting streets, lots and land; the manner in which the proposed excavation or removal will affect drainage to and from all abutting lands and streets; and the proposed slopes and lateral supports.
Such other pertinent data as the Township Council may require.
The Township Council shall have the right to refer said application to such Township officials, boards or bodies as it may desire in order to obtain the most complete recommendations as to the effect of the proposed excavation or removal of soil.
Said application with the information thereto attached shall be reviewed by the Township Council and may be refused or denied in the discretion of said Township Council; provided, however, that if at the time of making said application the applicant shall request a hearing in connection with same, a date shall be set upon sufficient notice to afford the applicant an opportunity to attend said hearing and to present such further facts as applicant shall desire. If after examination of the application and data and hearing, if requested, the Township Council shall approve of said application, the Township Clerk shall issue a permit, subject to the terms of this chapter and any special conditions found necessary in the specific case. Said permit shall be good to the end of the calendar year and must be renewed each year.
In considering and reviewing the application and in issuing or denying the permit, the Township Council shall be guided by the general purpose of municipal planning and shall take into consideration the following factors:
Soil erosion by water and wind;
Surface water drainage;
Lateral support of abutting streets, lots and lands; and
Public health and safety, as set forth in the application and which may be found necessary by the Township Council. In addition, the bond shall be conditioned upon the repair at the expense of the owner or applicant of any street or streets damaged by the transportation of soil in connection with the application if, in the judgment of the Township Council, such repairs are deemed to be necessary. The term "expense" as used in this section shall include the cost and supervision incurred by the Township Engineer in connection with such repairs.
The owner of the premises or the person in charge of the removal of soil, when permission has been duly granted, shall not take away the top layer of arable soil for a depth of six inches, but such top layer of arable soil to a depth of six inches shall be set aside for retention on the premises and shall be respread over the premises when the rest of the soil has been removed, pursuant to levels and contour lines approved by the Township Council.
The Building Inspector, Township Engineer, any member of the Township Council and their agents shall have at all times the right to inspect any property where a permit has been issued under the provisions of this chapter. In order to facilitate this right of inspection, the owners of said property shall cause sufficient grade and boundary stakes to be put in place while work is going on or about to commence. The Township Engineer, Township Council and their agents shall also have the right to inspect said property at any time for the purpose of laying out roads, drainage or for any other purpose deemed in the best interest of the Township of Mount Laurel.
[Amended 6-1-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-11]
Together with the application there shall be deposited with the Township Clerk a permit fee computed at the rate of $0.05 per cubic yard, multiplied by the estimated number of yards to be removed within the permit period, of soil as defined in this chapter; provided, however, in no event should said fee be less than $50. However, the Township Council may waive or modify this requirement for the entire payment initially, but shall require not less than 10% of the total permit fee to be paid with the application, but in no event less than $25. The balance of the fee shall be paid in monthly installments equal to the number of yards removed in each month multiplied by the amount stipulated in this section. The monthly installments shall be paid on or before the tenth day of the month. Failure to make payment on this date shall result in suspension of the permit until all arrears shall have been paid.
The terms used in this chapter shall be defined, deemed and construed to have the following meanings:
- Any parcel of land or portion thereof, the boundary lines of which can be ascertained by reference to the maps and records, or either, in the office of the Tax Assessor of the Township of Mount Laurel or the office of the Clerk of Burlington County.
- To dig; to excavate; to remove; to grade, regrade, level or otherwise alter or change the location or contour; to transport; to supply. This term shall not be construed to include plowing, spading, cultivating, harrowing or disking of soil or any other operation usually and ordinarily associated with the tilling of soil for agricultural or horticultural purposes.
- Any individual, firm, association, partnership or corporation, or any group of two or more of them or anyone acting in behalf of said person.
- Any earth, topsoil, sand, clay, loam, gravel, humus, rock or dirt, or any combination thereof, without regard to the presence or absence therein of organic matter.
Any person who shall violate this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be subject to a fine of not more than $1,000 or be imprisoned in the county jail for a term not exceeding 90 days, or both, for each offense. The Judge before whom any person is convicted for violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall have the power to impose any fine or term of imprisonment not exceeding the maximum fixed herein.
[Amended 10-17-1983 by Ord. No. 1983-31; 10-17-1984 by Ord. No. 1984-33]
In addition to any other remedy or penalty the Township Council shall have the right to institute proceedings for an injunction in the Superior Court of the State of New Jersey or any other court having jurisdiction and having authority to entertain injunctive proceedings.