[HISTORY: Adopted by the Common Council of the City of North Tonawanda 7-19-2006 by L.L. No. 2-2006. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: Former Ch. 74, Retirement Incentive Program, adopted 9-15-1992 by L.L. No. 3-1992, was superseded 7-3-2002 by L.L. No. 1-2002. Said L.L. No. 1-2002 was not included in the Code because the open period for eligible employees to retire under the provisions of said local law have expired.
The Common Council of the City of North Tonawanda finds that one of the highest priorities of local government is the protection of the health and safety of Its citizens. This is especially true of children and other vulnerable members of society. The Common Council further finds that convicted sex offenders pose a significant continuing risk to society. Moreover, as the tragic murder of Jessica Lunsford in Florida in spring 2005 and other such events have shown, recidivism among convicted sexual offenders is a continuing problem.
Recently, residents of the City have been advised that there are residing in the City a number of convicted sex offenders. At least some of these sex offenders have registered as required by Article 6-C of the Corrections Law of the State of New York, commonly known as "Megan's Law." Some of these individuals have been categorized by the State Department of Corrections as Level II sex offenders who have been determined to be of moderate risk of committing another sex crime. Some of these individuals have been categorized as Level III sex offenders who have been determined to be of a high risk to commit another sexual crime. However, the Common Council finds that some sex offenders fail to register or fail to update their registration information when they move from one location to another.
The Common Council finds that the protection of the victims and potential victims of sexual offenders in North Tonawanda is a matter of unique local concern not fully and adequately addressed by state law. The Common Council finds that the disclosures required and the limitations contained herein will protect the citizens of North Tonawanda and will provide to employers who contract with North Tonawanda information that will assist these employers in protecting children who may come into proximity with a sex offender in the scope of employment.
The Common Council finds that the City of North Tonawanda has not assessed and cannot assess the risk of recidivism of any particular sex offender or class of sex offenders and has made no determination of dangerousness of any particular sex offender or class of sex offenders. Rather, the Council finds that this chapter is remedial in nature and designed to fill certain gaps in state law as well as to provide protections for residents of the City who receive certain services from the City. The Council further finds this chapter to be the most narrowly tailored means of fulfilling its compelling interest in the safety of its citizens. Finally, the Council does not intend for any person to use the information required by this chapter to harm or injure any registrant under the law.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Any person 17 years of age or older.
- CHILD or CHILDREN
- Persons under 17 years of age. The singular and plural shall include one another. If the applicable statute defining a crime against a child refers to a child younger than 18, the younger age shall control.
- DAY CARE
- Any lawful form of care for a child, as defined by federal and state law and regulation, for less than 24 hours per day.
- DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS
- New York State Department of Corrections.
- Any individual, partnership, association, corporation, business trust, legal representative or organized group of persons paying wages or any form of compensation to any person for services that directly or indirectly benefit the individual, partnership, association, corporation, business trust, legal representative or organized group of persons.
- EXTENDED-STAY ESTABLISHMENT
- Any hotel, motel, rooming house, inn, rooming unit, bed-and-breakfast, residence inn, country inn, motor court, R-V park or motor lodge that lets or provides any space for occupancy by any person. Any place of business that provides services or utilities to motor homes, recreational vehicles, trucks with campers or any other motor vehicle in which an individual does or may sleep overnight is an extended-stay establishment under this chapter.
- His or her.
- HOMELESS ADULT
- Any adult who has been in the City of North Tonawanda for more than 24 hours or intends to be in the City for more than 24 hours without residence or place of lodging.
- HOMELESS SHELTER
- Any structure that provides temporary housing to a homeless adult.
- An interactive computer service or system or an information service, system or access software provider that provides or enables computer access by multiple users to a computer server and includes, but is not limited to, an information service, system or access software provider that provides access to a network system commonly known as "the Internet," or any comparable system or service and also includes, but is not limited to, a World Wide Web page, newsgroup, message board, mailing list, or chat area on any interactive computer service or system or other on-line service. The NTPD website shall mean any Internet site made available by the NTPD to the public, including any link to the website of the City of North Tonawanda.
- The North Tonawanda Police Department.
- OUTSIDE NEW YORK
- Anywhere outside the geographical borders of the State of New York or any federal enclave, Indian trust lands or reservations located inside the geographical borders of New York.
- Any person required to register under this chapter.
- REGISTRATION YEAR
- Any year from the date of first registration under this chapter.
- Any person who:
- RESPONSIBLE ADULT
- An adult who is not a sex offender.
- A licensed or accredited public, charter, private or religious school that offers instruction to students in preschool through any grade up to Grade 12.
- SEX OFFENDER
- Shall have the same meaning as the term is defined in § 168-a1. of the Corrections Law of the State of Nets York.
- SEX OFFENDER VIOLATION
- A violation of any law defined as a sex offense of the Corrections Law of the State of New York.
- SEX OFFENSE
- Shall have the same meaning as that term is defined in § 168-a2 of the Corrections Law of the State of New York.
Sex offenders who reside in the City of North Tonawanda and who are required to register with the Department of Corrections pursuant to Article 6-C of the Corrections Law of the State of New York must register with the North Tonawanda Police Department.
A sex offender must register with the North Tonawanda Police Department within 10 days after being released from incarceration, or 10 days from the date of sentencing if not incarcerated for a sex offender violation. A registrant under this section must provide the North Tonawanda Police Department with the following information:
His legal name, any other names or aliases he has used or is using and any new names he has applied for in the last year.
His date of birth.
His social security number.
His current address, the address of any other residences he owns or the address of any other real property he owns or leases and the address of any other locations or places of lodging where the sex offender intends to stay or does in fact stay for more than three consecutive days at any time or an aggregate of 10 or more days in a registration year. Homeless shelters and extended-stay establishments must be included in the disclosure required pursuant to this subsection. Pursuant to this subsection, the registrant must provide a description and location of any and all rented or owned spaces to which the registrant claims a right to privacy or a right to exclude others, including but not limited to storage buildings.
His place of employment and the name and telephone number of a contact person who knows his location at any and all times during employment hours or other times he performs work in the scope of his employment duties.
His driver's license number and the license plate number, vehicle identification number and description by make and model of all vehicles registered to him, owned by him, driven by him during employment or otherwise available to him with regularity by consent from another.
A list of any and all sex offense violations of which he has been convicted or to which he has entered a plea of guilty.
As an alternative to the registration information to be gathered in Subsection B above, the North Tonawanda Police Department may rely on such information as is gathered and provided by the State of New York to the City of North Tonawanda pursuant to Article 6-C of the Corrections Law of the State of New York.
Any sex offender who provides inaccurate information to the NTPD commits a separate violation of this chapter.
In the event of any change in registration information or addition of new information that would have been required in the initial or subsequent registration other than a change of address or employment governed by Subsection C or D below, the registrant must notify the NTPD and provide new valid information within 10 days after the change.
A sex offender who is required to register under this chapter and elects to change the address of any place of lodging, including but not limited to a residence, extended-stay establishment or homeless shelter, must notify the NTPD of the prospective change within 10 days after the change occurs.
A sex offender who is required to register under this chapter and changes his place of employment must notify the NTPD 10 days after the voluntary change. Sex offenders must provide the name and telephone number of a new contract person within 10 days of the time new work begins.
When a sex offender registers under this chapter, NTPD may take and retain his photograph and a set of fingerprints. Additionally, NTPD may record and retain the person's shoe size, a DNA sample, dental imprints and a description of tattoos, scars and other identifying features that would assist in identifying the sex offender, as determined by the NTPD. As an alternative, the NTPD may rely on DNA and other identifying information on databases provided by the State of New York.
Following the initial registration, registrants, except homeless adults, are required to annually renew the registration, as arranged by the NTPD. Homeless adults residing from time to time in homeless shelters must verify registration data, in writing, every 90 days as long as they are in town, on a form provided by the NTPD. Sex offenders who have been convicted of two or more sex offenses must register for life.
The North Tonawanda Police Department shall maintain a local registry of sex offenders registered under this chapter. The City of North Tonawanda will maintain a database of sex offenders distinct from any registry of sex offenders maintained by the State of New York. Registration under any registration program maintained by the State of New York does not exempt a sex offender from registration under this chapter. The City of North Tonawanda will make available and disseminate sex offender registration information as authorized by New York law.
Address verification checks. The North Tonawanda Police Department may conduct address verification checks to substantiate that registrants are living where they claim to live. The check shall verify that the registrant in fact lives at the claimed address. If the NTPD is unable to verify the address, the registrant may be prosecuted pursuant to this chapter and Corrections Law § 168. The North Tonawanda Police Department may contact and interview any person living or located near the claimed address. The provisions of this subsection are in addition to any other lawful investigation NTPD may undertake.
Sex offender location. After the effective date of this chapter, sex offenders shall not newly occupy any real property, acquire any real property by lease or otherwise or establish a place of lodging within one-fourth-mile radius of a school, day-care center, playground or park.
Within five days from the effective date of this chapter, a sex offender employed by an employer located in the City of North Tonawanda shall notify his current employer that he is a registered sex offender. At the time a sex offender applies or receives an offer of employment by an employer where the sex offender will be working substantially within the City of North Tonawanda, the sex offender shall notify the employer that he is a registered sex offender. All sex offenders shall provide the employer or prospective employer with the current conditions of probation in writing, including, if applicable, any conditions of probation that require the sex offender to stay away from vulnerable populations or conditions the sex offender's contact with vulnerable populations.
Nothing in this chapter creates or shall create a cause of action against the City of North Tonawanda not already authorized under existing law. Without limitation, the City is not liable to any person harmed who claims that notice under this chapter may have prevented the harm.
Each violation of this chapter by a sexual offender shall be punishable by a fine of $250 and/or 15 days in jail. Each day that a registrant should have registered or supplemented his registration but failed to do so shall constitute a separate offense. It is the intent of the Common Council that violations of this chapter should not be treated by the courts as lesser included offenses that merge into a violation of Article 6-C of the Corrections Law of the State of New York. The City shall also be entitled to injunctive relief to enforce the provisions of this chapter.