Township of Pennsauken, NJ
Camden County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Adopted 5-22-1996 by Ord. No. 96-29]
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
AGENT or MANAGING AGENT
The individual or individuals designated by the owner as the person(s) authorized by the owner to perform any duty imposed upon the owner by this article. The term does not necessarily mean a licensed real estate broker or salesperson of the State of New Jersey as those terms are defined by N.J.S.A. 45:15-3; however; such term may include a licensed real estate broker or salesperson of the State of New Jersey if such person designated by the owner as his or her agent is so licensed.
LICENSE
The license issued by the Township Clerk attesting that the rental unit has been properly registered in accordance with this article.
LICENSE YEAR
September 1 to August 31 of the following year or any portion thereof.
LICENSEE
The person to whom the license is issued pursuant to this article. The term "licensee" includes within its definition the term "agent" where applicable.
MANAGING AGENT
See definition of "agent."
OWNER
The person who owns, purports to own or exercises control over any rental unit.
PERSON
An individual, firm, corporation, partnership, association, trust or other legal entity, or any combination thereof.
REGISTRATION TENANT
One person or persons to whom a rental unit is leased or rented by the licensee. All children under 12 years of age shall be excluded from the term "registration tenant."
RENTAL UNIT
Residential one-dwelling unit rental, including individual condominium units and two-dwelling-unit premises. In the case of a two-dwelling unit where the owner occupies one of the units, the unit the owner occupies shall not be considered a rental unit but must register the second unit as a rental unit. For the purposes of this chapter, any residential unit, one-dwelling unit or two-dwelling unit, where the unit is not occupied by the owner of the property, even if rent is not being charged or collected, shall be considered a rental unit.
[Amended 5-10-2006 by Ord. No. 06-11; 9-5-2007 by Ord. No. 07-30]
TOWNSHIP
The Township of Pennsauken.
TOWNSHIP CLERK
The municipal official or employee designated to receive rental license applications and registrations and to issue licenses pursuant to this article.
[Amended 8-13-2008 by Ord. No. 08-21]
All rental units, as defined in § 251-17 of this article, shall hereafter be registered with the Building Department on forms which shall be provided for that purpose and which shall be obtained from the Building Department. Such registration shall occur on an annual basis as provided herein.
[Amended 4-26-2000 by Ord. No. 00-09; 12-30-2002 by Ord. No. 02-32]
Each rental unit shall be licensed annually. The license term shall be as set forth in the definition of "licensing year" in § 251-17 of this article. No rental unit shall hereafter be occupied unless the rental unit is registered and licensed in accordance with this article.
A. 
Each rental unit shall be inspected at least once in each twelve-month period. An inspection which results in an approval or satisfactory rating shall be valid for one year from the inspection date.
[Amended 4-26-2000 by Ord. No. 00-09; 8-13-2008 by Ord. No. 08-21; 9-24-2008 by Ord. No. 08-27]
B. 
Such inspection shall be carried out in accordance with the following:
(1) 
Hotels and multiple dwellings as defined in N.J.S.A. 55:13A-3(j) and (k). Such properties shall be inspected by the Bureau of Housing Inspection of the State of New Jersey, Department of Community Affairs. A current, valid certificate of inspection issued by the State of New Jersey Department of Community Affairs pursuant to the Hotel and Multiple Dwelling Act (N.J.S.A. 55:13A-1 et seq.) shall satisfy the requirements of this article.
(2) 
Rental units. All rental units shall be inspected by the Township to determine compliance with Chapter 141, Development Regulations, Article VII, Zoning Regulations; the New Jersey State Housing Code (Chapter 184, Housing Standards); the Uniform Fire Safety Act of the State of New Jersey (N.J.S.A. 52:27D-192 et seq.); Chapter 243, Property Maintenance, Article I, Property Maintenance Code; the Uniform Construction Code of the State of New Jersey (N.J.A.C. 5:23-1.1 et seq.) and the Property Maintenance Code listed in Chapter 243, or such ordinances, codes and regulations in effect at the time of the inspection.
[Amended 8-13-2008 by Ord. No. 08-21]
C. 
Fees. The fees to be charged for inspection pursuant to this article shall be in accordance with the fee schedule established by resolution in the Township from time to time.
D. 
Inspection disclosing unsatisfactory conditions.
(1) 
Unoccupied property. In the event that a rental unit does not pass inspection, such unit shall not thereafter be licensed nor shall the owner of the property or his or her agent lease or rent such property, nor shall any tenant occupy the property until the necessary repairs or corrections have been made so as to bring the property and rental unit into compliance with Chapter 141, Development Regulations, Article VII, Zoning Regulations; the New Jersey State Housing Code (Chapter 184, Housing Standards); the Uniform Fire Safety Act of the State of New Jersey, Chapter 243, Property Maintenance, Article I, Property Maintenance Code; the Uniform Construction Code of the State of New Jersey, and the Property Maintenance Code, or such ordinances, codes and regulations in effect at the time of the inspection. The fact that a unit has failed inspection shall not relieve the owner of the obligation to register the property in accordance with this article notwithstanding that the necessary repairs have not been made. However, no license shall issue until such time as the Township Clerk is presented with satisfactory evidence that the property has been reinspected and complies with the ordinances, codes and regulations referred to in this subsection.
[Amended 8-13-2008 by Ord. No. 08-21]
(2) 
Occupied property. Whenever the property is occupied by a tenant at the time of the inspection and the rental unit does not pass inspection, said unit may continue to be occupied, provided that all such repairs or corrections are made within 60 days of the original inspection, unless the nature of the deficiency and the applicable law upon which the inspection is made mandates a shorter time for repairs, in which event the shorter time shall govern. In the event that the conditions are not corrected within such sixty-day period, or sooner if required, the owner and any tenant occupying the unit shall be deemed in violation of this article, and each and every day that the violation continues thereafter shall constitute a separate offense.
E. 
Commencing September 1, 1996, no rental unit shall be licensed unless the owner produces a current, valid certificate of inspection issued by the Pennsauken Code Enforcement Department and/or the office of the Construction Official.
A. 
No person or persons shall hereafter occupy any rental unit nor shall the owner permit occupancy of any rental unit within the Township, unless the same has been registered and licensed in accordance with this article.
B. 
A tenant who occupies a rental unit which is not registered and/or licensed and who does so in good faith and without knowledge of the requirement that such rental unit must be registered and licensed shall be supplied a written warning concerning the requirements of this article and such tenant shall thereupon be given a period of three business days to cause the rental unit to be registered and licensed in accordance with this article or, failing to do so, shall vacate said premises or otherwise be subject to the penalty provisions herein.
A. 
The owner of a rental unit which is being registered for the first time under this article shall complete a registration form for the rental unit and tender the prescribed fee. No license shall be issued, however, until such time as the property is inspected in accordance with this article and is found to be without violations and receives a satisfactory rating. The initial license shall be valid from the date of issue until the next August 31 date.
[Amended 4-26-2000 by Ord. No. 00-09]
B. 
[1]The license referred to in this section shall be an occupancy certificate that states it is for a rental unit and is valid for one year. The certificate shall be placed in a protective frame, hung by the entrance through which access is gained to the rental unit and readily visible upon entry. The failure to hang the certificate as required by this article shall constitute a violation hereof.
[Added 5-20-2009 by Ord. No. 2009:11]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Subsection B, regarding decals, was repealed 9-24-2008 by Ord. No. 08-27.
C. 
To renew a rental unit license, an owner shall file a completed registration form and pay the prescribed fee, which shall entitle the owner to the issuance of a license for the current license term or portion thereof, provided that said property has been inspected within the preceding 12 months and that no violations exist. If such property or unit has not been inspected within the preceding 12 months, or if it has been inspected and violations were noted, no license shall be issued until the property has been inspected or reinspected as the case may be.
[Amended 4-26-2000 by Ord. No. 00-09; 3-28-2012 by Ord. No. 2012:04]
D. 
In the event that a licensed property is sold, assigned or transferred during the license year, the rental license shall be transferable to the new owner.
A. 
At the time of filing the registration form the owner shall pay an annual fee equal to the following: $75 for each rental unit.
[Amended 4-26-2000 by Ord. No. 00-09; 5-10-2006 by Ord. No. 06-11; 9-5-2007 by Ord. No. 07-30; 8-13-2008 by Ord. No. 08-21]
B. 
The required fees shall cover an initial inspection, as well as one follow-up inspection in the event of failure of the first inspection. Any additional inspections will cost an additional fee of $25 per inspection.
[Amended 5-10-2006 by Ord. No. 06-11]
A. 
Without in any way intending to infringe upon the requirements of N.J.S.A. 46:8-28, all rental units shall be registered and licensed as provided herein. Every owner shall file with the Township Clerk of the Township of Pennsauken a registration form for each rental unit contained within a building or structure, which shall include the following information:
(1) 
The name and address of the record owner or owners of the premises and the record owner or owners of the rental business if not the same persons. In the case of a partnership, the names and addresses of all the general partners shall be provided together with the valid telephone numbers for each of such individuals. A physical location of where said person(s) can be found during normal business hours for the purpose of service of any notices or orders which may be necessary shall be provided.
[Amended 5-20-2009 by Ord. No. 2009:11]
(2) 
If the record owner is a corporation, the name and address of the registered agent and cooperate officers of said corporation including the addresses and telephone numbers of the corporate officers. A physical location of where said person(s) or the registered agent can be found during normal business hours for the purpose of service of any notices or orders which may be necessary shall be provided.
[Amended 5-20-2009 by Ord. No. 2009:11]
(3) 
If the address of any recorded owner is not located in the County of Camden, the name and address of a person who resides in the County of Camden who is authorized to accept notices from a tenant and to issue receipts therefor and to accept service of process on behalf of the record owner. The address shall be a physical location of where said person(s) or registered agent can be found during normal business hours.
[Amended 5-20-2009 by Ord. No. 2009:11]
(4) 
The name and address of the managing agent of the premises, if any; room number of the superintendent, janitor, custodian or other individual employed by the record owner or managing agent to provide regular maintenance service, if any.
(5) 
The name, addresses and telephone number of an individual representative of the record owner or managing agent who may be reached or contacted at any time in the event of an emergency affecting the premises or any unit of dwelling space therein, including such emergencies as the failure of any essential service or system, and who has the authority to make emergency decisions concerning the building and any repair thereto or expenditure in connection therewith. The addresses shall be a physical location of where said person(s) can normally be found during regular business hours and normally found during off hours.
[Amended 5-20-2009 by Ord. No. 2009:11]
(6) 
The name and address of every holder of a recorded mortgage on the premises.
(7) 
As to each rental unit, a specification of the exact number of sleeping rooms contained in the rental unit, and the exact number of sleeping accommodations contained in each of the sleeping rooms, identifying each sleeping room specifically by number and location within the apartment or dwelling, and by the square footage thereof. In order to satisfy the requirements of this provision, an owner shall submit a floor plan which shall become part of the application and which shall be attached to the registration form when filed by the Township Clerk.
(8) 
Such other information as may be prescribed by the Township.
B. 
Indexing and filing; public inspection; fee. The Township Clerk shall index and file the registration form and make it reasonably available for public inspection. In doing so, the Township Clerk shall follow the mandates of N.J.S.A. 46:8-28.1 as amended and supplemented so that the filing of the registration form will simultaneously satisfy the registration requirements of N.J.S.A. 46:8-29 to the extent that it applies to the property being registered and will also satisfy the registration requirements of this section. The Township Clerk shall maintain a master index of all such registration forms, and any person may obtain from the Licensing Clerk a list of all rental units properly registered and licensed upon payment of a fee of $25.
C. 
Amendments; filing. Every person required to file a registration form pursuant to this article shall file an amended registration form within 20 days after any change in the information required to be included thereon. No fee shall be required for the filing of an amendment except where the ownership of the premises is changed.
D. 
Copy to occupants and tenants. Every owner shall provide each occupant or tenant occupying a rental unit with a copy of the registration form required by this article. This subsection shall not apply to any hotel, motel or guest house registered with the State of New Jersey pursuant to the Hotel and Multiple Dwelling Act as defined in N.J.S.A. 55:13A-3. This subsection may be complied with by posting a copy of the registration certificate in a conspicuous place within the rental unit(s).
A. 
Each licensee granted a license pursuant to this article shall be permitted to lease or rent the rental unit which has been registered and for which a license has been granted hereunder to a number of registered tenants, which number shall not exceed the number which has been computed in accordance with the following:
(1) 
Every room occupied for sleeping purposes by one occupant shall contain at least 70 square feet of floor area.
(2) 
Every room occupied for sleeping purposes by more than one person shall contain at least 50 additional square feet of floor area for each occupant thereof, except that any such room, any building or structure which is in existence and for which a certificate of occupancy has been issued as of March 28, 1996, shall be deemed to accommodate two people notwithstanding the fact that such room does not have a minimum of 120 square feet as required by this Subsection A.
B. 
Maximum number of occupants; posting. The maximum number of occupants shall be posted in each rental unit. It shall be unlawful for any person to allow a greater number of occupants than the posted maximum number to sleep in or otherwise occupy the rental unit. Any person violating this provision shall be subject to the penalty provisions provided herein. For purposes of this subsection, the term "person" is intended to mean owner, tenant or guest occupying the rental unit, including invitees and licensees.
A. 
Grounds. In addition to any other penalty prescribed herein, an owner may be subject to the revocation or suspension of a license or having such license placed in probationary status or other appropriate disciplinary action upon the happening of one or more of the following:
(1) 
Conviction of a violation of this article in the Municipal Court or any other court of competent jurisdiction.
(2) 
Following a determination of a violation of this article after a hearing held pursuant to Subsection B of this section.
(3) 
A pattern of renting the unit(s) to one or more individuals or groups of individuals who, during any one or more license term(s), (is) (are) convicted of a violation of Chapter 210, Noise, or a violation of any other Township ordinance, which conviction is related to or rising out of the use and occupancy of 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) or that the conviction(s) were for conduct occurring during any single license term. It shall be sufficient to demonstrate that such convictions were of different individuals occurring over one or more license terms.
(4) 
A pattern of permitting the rental unit(s) to be occupied by more than the maximum number of occupants as defined herein.
(5) 
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.
(6) 
A false, misleading, or fraudulent statement made in connection with the registration, licensing or inspection of a rental unit or units, under this article.
(7) 
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) 
Disorderly conduct on the part of tenant(s) or occupant(s) or their guests. "Disorderly conduct" shall be as defined in N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2; provided, however, that a conviction of such person or persons under that statute shall not be required in order for the Township to take action under this section.
(b) 
A nuisance, as that term is defined by N.J.S.A. 2C:33-12; provided, however, that a conviction of such person or persons under that statute shall not be required in order for the Township to take action under this section.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 327, Nuisances, Public Health.
(c) 
The failure to comply with any directive of the Township concerning the abatement of conduct prohibited by Subsection A(7)(a) or (b) hereof.
(d) 
The public manifestation by tenant(s), occupants or guests of being under the influence of alcohol or controlled dangerous substances; provided, however, that a conviction of such individuals for such violation(s) shall not be required in order for the Township to take action under this section.
(e) 
The possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages by minors not related by blood to the tenant in or about the rental unit.
(8) 
Whenever the Police Department shall have made an arrest of or issued a summons to a tenant, occupant or 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 Subsection A of this section, provided that the owner and/or managing agent shall have had notice of the existence of such circumstances or conditions.
B. 
It shall be a defense to any proceeding for the revocation, suspension or other disciplinary action involving a rental license by demonstrating 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 proceeding, including but not limited to the institution of legal action against the tenant(s), occupant(s) or guests for recovery of the premises; eviction of the tenant(s) or otherwise.
C. 
Procedure; written complaint; notice; hearing.
(1) 
A complaint seeking the revocation or suspension of a license may be filed by any one or more of the following: the Township Construction Official, the Township Administrative Officer, Zoning and Planning, and the Township Code Enforcement Officers. Such complaint shall be in writing and filed with the Township Clerk. The complaint shall be specific and shall be sufficient to appraise the licensee of the charges so as to permit the licensee to present a defense. The individual(s) filing the complaint may do so on the basis of information and belief and need not rely on personal information.
(2) 
Upon the filing of such written complaint, the Township Clerk shall immediately inform the Township Administrator and a date for a hearing shall be scheduled which shall not be sooner than 10 nor more than 30 days thereafter. The Township Clerk shall forward a copy of the complaint and a notice as to the date, time and place of the hearing to the licensee and the managing agent, if any, by regular mail at the address indicated on the registration form. Service upon the managing agent shall be sufficient.
(3) 
The hearing required by this section shall be held by a Hearing Officer who shall be appointed by Township Committee. The Hearing Officer shall render a decision within 30 days of the conclusion of the hearing, recommending the dismissal of the complaint, revocation or suspension of the license, determining that the license shall not be renewed or reissued for one or more subsequent license years, or placing the license on probationary status as set forth in Subsection D, below. The Hearing Officer shall transmit his or her findings of fact and conclusions of law to the Township Administrator or the Assistant Township Administrator, who shall review the matter and may accept, reject or modify the recommendations of the Hearing Officer based on the record before him or her within 30 days of receipt of the Hearing Officer's decision.
(4) 
All hearings shall be recorded by sound recording equipment. 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 controls administrative hearings.
(5) 
The Township Solicitor or his or her designee may appear and prosecute on behalf of the complainant in all hearings conducted pursuant to this section.
D. 
License in probationary status.
(1) 
In lieu of a revocation or suspension of a license, the Township Administrator or Assistant Township Administrator may determine to place the license in a probationary status. Once imposed, the probationary status shall remain in effect for the remainder of that license term and the succeeding renewal term.
(2) 
The terms of the probationary status shall be specifically set forth in a resolution of the Township Committee, a copy of which shall be served upon the owner, managing agent, realtor (if different from the managing agent and if whose identity is known to the Township), 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, return receipt requested, it shall also be sent simultaneously by first-class mail. Mail to the owner and managing agent shall be at the address indicated on the rental registration form.
(3) 
The Township Committee 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 Subsection D(2) hereof.
(4) 
The violation of any term of condition or the probation by the owner, managing agent or tenant or occupant shall be cause for the immediate suspension or revocation of the rental license.
(5) 
An owner of a rental unit shall forthwith give written notification to the Township Clerk and Chief of Police of any change in tenants during the period of probation. New tenants shall be notified in accordance with Subsection D(2) hereof.
E. 
Conditional renewal of license.
(1) 
Any license which is in probationary status may be renewed for the succeeding license term conditioned upon compliance by the owner, managing agent or tenant or occupants with the terms and conditions of probation.
(2) 
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 the immediate suspension or revocation of the license.
A. 
Any person, firm, association or corporation violating any of the provisions of this article shall, upon conviction, be subject to one or more of the following: a fine not exceeding $1,250 or imprisonment in the county jail for a term not exceeding 90 days, or a period of community service not exceeding 90 days, in the discretion of the Municipal Court Judge.
B. 
Any person, firm, association or corporation who is convicted of violating this article within one year of the date of a previous violation and who was fined for the previous violation shall be sentenced by the court to an additional fine as a repeat offender. The additional fine imposed by the court upon a person, firm, association or corporation for a repeated offense shall not be less than the minimum or exceed the maximum fine fixed for a violation of the article but shall be calculated separately from the fine imposed for the violation of the article.
C. 
The foregoing penalties shall be in addition to any other penalty provided in this article and shall be in addition to those penalties set forth in N.J.S.A. 46:8-35.