[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Pemberton 9-17-1984 by Ord. No. 6-1984 (Ch. 63 of the 1975 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
The renting of unfit dwellings is hereby prohibited. A certificate of occupancy following inspection between tenancies is required.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the following meanings:
- ENFORCEMENT OFFICIAL
- The Borough Construction Code Official, the Borough Building Inspector or any other local official duly authorized and appointed by the Borough Council to perform the duties set forth in this chapter.
- Any person or persons in actual possession of and living in the residential rental unit.
- Any person who owns, purports to own or is properly authorized to exercise powers of or for an owner of property used as a residential rental unit.
- Shall include the leasing, rental or other granting of occupancy for any period of time where title to the residential unit is not transferred to the actual occupant at the time such occupancy commences.
- RESIDENTIAL RENTAL UNIT
- Any building or part thereof, whether furnished or unfurnished, which is occupied or intended, arranged or designed to be occupied for sleeping or dwelling purposes by one or more persons, and shall include all privileges, services, furnishings, furniture, equipment, facilities and improvements connected with the use or occupancy thereof.
No person shall rent, lease or in any way deliver up for occupancy to any occupant or prospective occupant any residential unit for the purpose of living therein which is not safe, clean and fit for human occupancy, which does not comply with and conform to the provisions of the New Jersey State Housing Code established by this chapter as the standard to be used in determining whether a dwelling is safe, sanitary and fit for human habitation; and until that person has obtained a certificate of occupancy for the premises and has registered the premises as hereinafter provided.
Prior to any residential rental unit becoming occupied, the owner shall give written notice thereof to the Borough enforcement official. This notice shall contain the name and address of the owner and, if a notice is given by someone on behalf of the owner, that person's name and address. The notice shall describe the residential rental unit and shall be accompanied by a fee of $50 for each inspection.
Within 10 working days of receipt of the notice and fee as set forth above, the enforcement official shall make an investigation of the premises: said inspection shall be made for the purpose of determining the conditions of residential rental units in order that the enforcement official may perform his duties of safekeeping and the health and safety of the occupants of the residential rental units. The inspection shall include the determination of the presence of smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors in accordance with state requirements. For the purpose of making such inspections, the enforcement official is hereby authorized to enter, examine and survey at all reasonable times all residential rental units and all rooms therein. If the residential rental unit complies with the requirements of § 155-3 above, the enforcement official shall issue a written certificate of occupancy. If the residential rental unit does not comply with the requirements, then no certificate of occupancy shall be issued, but the enforcement official shall issue a written notice of defect specifying any violations of the requirements. Each certificate and notice shall be dated, and a duplicate copy shall be retained by the enforcement official. In the event of a notice of defect, it shall be served upon the owner and the parties in interest either personally or by leaving a copy thereof at his usual place of abode in the presence of a member of the family, and they shall be informed of the contents thereof or, if not found by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested to his last known address.
Any person affected by any notice which has been issued in connection with the enforcement of any provision of this chapter or of any rule or regulation adopted pursuant hereto may request and shall be granted a hearing on the matter before the Borough Council, provided that such person shall file in person or by mail in the office of the Borough Clerk a written petition requesting such hearing within 10 days after the notice was served. Upon receipt of such petition, the Borough Clerk shall set a time and place of such hearing within 30 days therefrom and shall give the petitioner and enforcement official five days' written notification thereof. At any hearing held in accordance with this section, the petitioner shall be given an opportunity to be heard and to show cause why such notice should be modified or withdrawn. The Borough Council shall have the power to administer oaths and affirmations in connection with the conduction of any such hearing, and the rules of evidence prevailing in the courts shall not be controlling in any such hearings.
After hearing, the Borough Council shall sustain, modify or withdraw the notice depending upon its findings as to whether the provisions of this chapter and the rules and regulations adopted pursuant hereto have been complied with. If the Borough Council sustains or modifies such notice, it shall be deemed to be an order. The proceedings at such hearings, including the findings and decision of the Borough Council, shall be summarized, reduced to writing and entered as a manner of public record in the office of the Borough Clerk. Such record shall also include a copy of every notice or order issued in connection with the matter. Any person aggrieved by the decision of the Borough Council may seek relief therefrom in any court of competent jurisdiction as provided by the laws of this state.
A certificate of occupancy shall remain in effect for as long as the occupant of the residential rental unit for which said certificate has been issued remains unchanged, provided that, but notwithstanding the foregoing, nothing in this chapter shall operate to prevent any other duly authorized official or employee of the Borough of Pemberton or State of New Jersey from inspecting any premises for which a certificate of occupancy has been issued and from exercising its power to correct violations of any housing, zoning or building codes or any other applicable laws or ordinances found to exist on such premises and to prosecute any persons for such violations.
Upon the inspection of any residential rental unit, the enforcement official in his discretion may cause to be issued a temporary certificate of occupancy conditioned upon the owner's removing any conditions which violate the standards set forth in § 155-3 above within a reasonable period of time, not to exceed 30 days from the issuance of said certificate. The fee for a temporary certificate of occupancy shall be $25, payable to the Borough of Pemberton. Upon removal of the violations by an owner who has received a temporary certificate of occupancy, the enforcement official shall issue a permanent certificate of occupancy at no additional fee.
If the inspection is not made by enforcement official and neither a certificate of occupancy nor a notice of violation is issued to the owner within 15 days of the application for the certificate of occupancy, the owner may permit the residential rental unit to be occupied, but subject to the right of the enforcement official to inspect said residential rental unit and, if a violation is found, to require the owner to correct said violation within 30 days of receipt of notice thereof.
Every person who lets to another for occupancy as of the date of the adoption of this chapter any residential rental unit shall register the unit with the Borough Department of Inspections, which shall maintain a registry thereof. The registration, on forms provided by the Borough Department of Inspections, shall include the following information:
The registration shall not have to be renewed as long as the premises shall continue to be let to another for occupancy. When the owner shall no longer let the premises to another for occupancy, the owner shall notify the Department of Inspections in writing of such fact. Upon a conveyance of ownership of the residential rental unit, the new owner shall, within 10 days after receipt of the deed, notify the Department of Inspections in writing of the change in ownership.
Any person, firm or corporation violating any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be subject to a fine not exceeding $1,250, a term of imprisonment not exceeding 90 days or a period of community service not exceeding 90 days, or any combination thereof, and each day that a violation shall continue shall be considered a separate violation of this chapter.