[HISTORY: Adopted by the Common Council of the City of Burlington by Ord. No. 8-1997 (Ch. 5.04 of the 1996 Municipal Code); amended in its entirety 2-18-2014 by Ord. No. 01-2014. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
The purpose of this chapter is to provide a uniform set of procedures for administering the issuance, renewal and revocation of all licenses issued by the City, except alcoholic beverage licenses, dog licenses and taxicab licenses; provided that tax-exempt religious and charitable organizations shall be exempted from paying the license fees provided for in this title.
An applicant for a license under this chapter shall file an application with the Municipal Clerk unless otherwise stated and shall give the following information:
Name, physical description and permanent and local address of the applicant. If the applicant is a corporation, the name and address of its registered agent and a copy of its certificate of incorporation;
If the licensed activity is to be carried on at a fixed location, the address and description of the premises;
If a vehicle is to be used, its description including the license number;
If the applicant is employed by another, the name and address of the employer, together with credentials establishing the exact relationship;
The days of the week and the hours of the day during which the licensed activity will be conducted;
A description of the nature of the business and the goods, property or services to be sold or supplied;
The source of supply of the goods or property or services proposed to be sold, where such goods, services or products are located and the method of delivery;
A statement as to whether the applicant has been convicted of any crime or the violation of any municipal ordinance other than traffic offenses and, if so, the date and place of conviction, the nature of the offense and the punishment or penalty imposed;
Appropriate evidence as to the good character and business responsibility of the applicant so that an investigator may properly evaluate his/her character and responsibility;
The applicant shall be fingerprinted if the Chief of Police determines that fingerprints are necessary for proper identification. Fingerprint records shall be immediately processed for classification and identification;
Three recent photographs of the applicant shall be attached. Photographs shall be approximately two inches square and shall show the head and shoulders of the applicant in a clear and distinguishing manner;
Applications by partnerships shall be signed by all partners with the information required by this section supplied in detail as to each partner and applications of corporations shall have attached individual statements containing all of the information required by this subsection relating to each employee or agent who shall engage in the licensed activity and shall be signed by each employee or agent;
Proof that all required fees have been paid relating to the portion of the property wherein the business or business activity for which a license or permit is being or has been sought, or where the business or business activity to be conducted, including all fines or other penalties, which may have been assessed as to the condition or use of the property against the owner or tenant of the property, either individually or against the property. Proof of payment is also required for all escrows due for any professional services rendered for any prior applications before the Land Use Board. All applicants before the Land Use Board are required to replenish the applicant's corresponding escrow account within 30 days of receipt of the final invoice for professional services performed in connection with an application before the Land Use Board. If the applicant has filed a timely written protest of such invoice, the fees due are to be paid and deposited with the City and held in the applicant's escrow account pending the adjudication of any such protest. When a mercantile license is required from the City of Burlington for any activity on any rental property, any property owner shall be required to provide the proposed tenant with a written notice of the amount of unpaid taxes, water and sewer charges at least 30 days before the effective date of the lease. Failure to pay all fines, fees and escrows shall be deemed a violation of the Code and/or can result in the denial of the requested license or permit and will prevent the property owner, tenant and/or an applicant from presenting any application before the Land Use Board for the property. Failure to pay all fines, fees and escrows may further result in the owner, applicant, or tenant being subject to the fines and penalties set forth in § 213-15;
For vendors who will engage in the sale of new or pre-owned vehicles, motorcycles, tractors, lawnmowers, farm equipment or other motorized equipment or the sale of bicycles, skateboards and other nonmotorized sporting or recreational equipment where equipment displays are maintained on the exterior of the property's main building for more than 30 days at a time or more than 60 days within a calendar year:
A sketch plan identifying the property by the lot and block number as well as the commonly known address of the property and the zoned permissible use designated for the property must be submitted prior to the issuance of any license for business. The sketch plan must be prepared by a licensed professional such as a professional planner, professional engineer or architect or surveyor. The sketch plan must set forth with precision the following information as to the property and the business's proposed use of the site: the location and dimensions of the property; the required setbacks and any proposed deviation from the required setbacks; the size, location, fixtures and square footage of all buildings or structures on the site (including storage sheds, garages and all proposed dumpsters); the existence of any encroachments; the existence of any site improvements (existing or proposed); the location, width and depth of driveways and sidewalks and other areas on which there exists impervious material; the depiction of the property and driving lanes must depict the flow of traffic, not only both on and off the property, but also indicate the areas on the property through which vehicles are able to be driven or stored, and to designate how emergency vehicles. The sketch plan must also include details of landscaping, such as the existence of any buffers, living fences, barricades or limitations on the flow of traffic, must set forth with particularity the size, number and dimensions of designated areas for parking for use by the vendor's employees, customers and for the accessibility of emergency vehicles and the presence of parking spaces for ADA compliance or other requirements for handicapped accessibility; and the means by which trash from the premises will be disposed including the location and dimensions of any trash dumpsters;
The City may request that the sketch plan be reviewed by the City's Engineer prior to the issuance of the business license. Within 20 days of presentation of a copy of the proposed sketch plan, the Engineer shall review the plan and provide comments, if any, or approval or the recommendation that the proposed use or a site plan application be submitted before the Land Use Board for approval;
The subsequent renewal of a license may be withheld if the subsequent ongoing use of the property is materially inconsistent with the features depicted in the sketch plan, including the dimensions of the buildings or driveways, the areas of ingress or egress, the usage of the property in terms of lot coverage, landscaping, or any other feature affecting safety or compliance with other provisions of the City's Code or other applicable county, state, or federal laws or regulations;
When submitting the information described in this section, the applicant shall certify that such information is supplied to the City of Burlington with full understanding that the City shall rely upon the accuracy of the facts set forth therein in granting the mercantile license. By its submission for a mercantile license, the applicant further agrees to comply with the laws and ordinances of the City of Burlington applicable to the operation of said business.
This section shall not apply to any alcoholic beverage license or permit issued pursuant to the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act. At the time of filing the application, a fee as set forth in Ch. 146 shall be paid to the Chief of Police to cover the cost of investigation of the facts stated herein. This fee shall not be prorated.
Each application shall be referred to the Chief of Police or a police officer designated by him/her, who shall immediately institute whatever investigation of the applicant's business responsibility, moral character and ability to properly conduct the licensed activity as (s)he considers necessary for the protection of the public, and shall communicate his/her findings, in writing, to the license inspector within a reasonable time after the application has been filed.
If the investigator decides that the applicant's character, ability or business responsibility is unsatisfactory or the products, services or activity are not free from fraud, (s)he shall disapprove the application and the license inspector shall refuse to issue the license and shall so notify the applicant. Otherwise the license inspector shall issue the license immediately, provided the required license fees have been paid except in cases where approval of the Council is required. In the case of an application for a solicitor's, peddler's or canvasser's license, the license may be issued immediately subject to the investigation.
License. Licenses shall be in a form which the Mayor and Council shall prescribe by resolution and shall contain the following information:
The name and address of the licensee;
The number and type of the license and the nature of the licensed activity;
The address at which the licensed activity is conducted, if the activity is carried on at a fixed location;
If the licensed activity is conducted from a vehicle, the make, model and license number of the vehicle;
The expiration date of the license;
Any other appropriate information which the Mayor and Council may, by resolution, require.
It shall be a condition of the issuance of any and all licenses under the provisions of this chapter that said business shall be used and operated only for lawful purposes and not in violation of Title 16, the Land Use Ordinance, or other ordinances of the City of Burlington.
The Chief of Police shall keep a record of all licenses issued under this chapter. The record shall be in a form prescribed by resolution of the Mayor and Council and shall contain the same information as is required by § 213-4 to be contained in the license. It shall also indicate the amount of the fee paid for the license, the date upon which payment was received, the date of the issuance of the license, whether the license is a new license or a renewal and any other information which the Mayor and Council may, by resolution, require.
When the licensed activity is conducted at a fixed location or from a vehicle, the license shall be prominently displayed at the location or on the vehicle. In all other cases the licensee shall have his/her certificate of license prominently displayed upon his/her person.
A license shall apply only to the person to whom it was issued and shall not be transferable to another person. Licenses may be transferred from place to place in cases where the licensed activity is conducted at a fixed location, but only with the approval of the Mayor and Council by resolution. Any person, firm or corporation receiving a license pursuant to the within chapter shall notify the City Clerk within 10 days after a change in the location of any licensed business.
Annual licenses shall expire at midnight on December 31 in the year when issued. Where another date has been expressly provided, the license shall expire at midnight on the date specified in the license. Applications for the renewal of licenses shall be made not later than December 1 of the year of issue.
When an application for a license is made during the course of any calendar year, the fee shall be prorated to the nearest month. Any period of time greater than one-half month shall be considered as a full month for this purpose.
The City Clerk shall have the right to revoke any license whenever the holder thereof or any of the licensee's agents, employees or servants violates any provision of this chapter, the laws of the State of New Jersey or any rules or regulations promulgated as herein provided. After written notice of the revocation has been served upon the licensee, an appeal may be filed to the City Council within 10 days of service of said notice. The City Council shall thereon conduct a hearing of the matter within 30 days after receipt of the notice of appeal and shall render a decision within 15 days of such hearing.
Causes. Any license or permit issued by the City may be revoked after notice and a hearing for any of the following causes:
Fraud or misrepresentation in any application for a permit or license;
Fraud, misrepresentation or other material misrepresentation made in the conduct of the licensed activity;
A violation of any provision of the Municipal Code or state or federal law;
Conviction of the licensee for any felony or high misdemeanor or a misdemeanor or disorderly person's offense involving moral turpitude;
Conduct of the licensed activity whether by the licensee or his/her agents or employees in an unlawful manner or in a manner that constitutes a breach of the peace or a menace to the public health, safety or general welfare;
Whenever a license has been issued immediately upon application, pending the results of the investigation provided for by this section, such license may be summarily revoked if the result of the investigation is such as would have resulted in denial of the application.
Notice of hearing. Notice of hearing for the revocation of a license or permit shall be given in writing by the City Clerk. The notice shall specifically set forth the grounds upon which the proposed revocation is based and the time and place of the hearing. It shall be served by mailing a copy to the licensee at his/her last known address by certified mail, return receipt requested, at least five days prior to the date set for the hearing.
Hearing; determination. At the hearing the licensee shall have the right to appear and be heard, to be represented by an attorney, to present witnesses in his/her own behalf, to cross-examine opposing witnesses and to have a permanent record made of the proceedings at his/her own expense. The Council shall revoke or suspend the license if it is satisfied by a preponderance of the evidence that the licensee is guilty of the acts charged.
Reinstatement of revoked license. The Council may issue another license to a person whose license has been revoked or denied if after hearing it is satisfied by clear and convincing evidence that the acts which led to the revocation or denial will not occur again; otherwise, no person whose license has been revoked or denied nor any person acting for him/her, directly or indirectly, shall be issued another license to carry on the same activity.
Every person to whom a license is issued under the terms of this chapter shall be governed by the following rules and regulations:
All circulars, samples or other matter shall be handed to an occupant of the property and not left on or about the premises.
No person, subject to the provisions of this chapter, shall sell or attempt to sell, in accordance with the terms of this chapter, except as set forth in the preceding paragraphs, before 8:00 a.m. and not after 9:00 p.m., Mondays through Saturdays, except where expressly invited in the homes by the occupant thereof.
No person, subject to the terms of this chapter, shall enter or attempt to enter the house of any resident in the City without an express invitation from the occupant of the house.
No person, subject to the terms of this chapter, shall conduct himself/herself in such a manner as to become objectionable to or annoy an occupant of any house.
No licensee shall have any exclusive right to any location on any public street, nor shall any licensee be permitted a stationary location or be permitted to operate in a congested area where such operation might impede or inconvenience the public use of such streets. For the purpose of this chapter, the judgment of the police officer, exercised in good faith, shall be deemed conclusive as to whether the area is congested and the public impeded or inconvenienced.
The Clerk, Chief of Police, or any police officer, any code enforcement official or any other appropriate City official shall enforce the provisions of this chapter.
The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to the following:
Any person who has been honorably discharged from the active military service of the United States, who is a resident of this state, and every exempt member of a volunteer fire department, volunteer fire engine, hook and ladder, hose, supply company or salvage corps, of any municipality or fire district in this state, who holds an exemption certificate issued to him as an exempt member of any such department, company or corps, and who is a resident of this state, provided that any such person shall have been issued a license pursuant to N.J.S.A. 45:24-9 et seq. Such person shall be required to comply with all other applicable provisions of this chapter and Chapter 5.56;
Any person engaged in the delivery of goods, wares or merchandise or other articles or things in the regular course of business to the premises of persons who had previously ordered the same or were entitled to receive the same by reason of a prior agreement;
Any person under 18 years of age;
Federal census takers and polls or surveys taken pursuant to federal, state or local laws.
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to maintain an office or place of business, to conduct, engage in or carry on any business, trade or occupation within the City of Burlington, without first complying with the provisions of this chapter and obtaining a license therefor as provided herein.
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to conduct business within the City of Burlington in a manner inconsistent with the license issued by the City to conduct business within the City of Burlington in a manner which is an unauthorized expansion of the business purpose or premises as licensed by the City.
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to maintain an office or place of business, to conduct, engage in or carry on any business, trade or occupation within the City of Burlington, in violation of the Land Use Ordinance, including the provision that all professional fees and escrows must be paid within 30 days of presentation of the invoice, notwithstanding the filing of a written protest.
Any person, firm, association or corporation violating any section of this chapter shall, upon conviction in the Municipal Court, be subject to one or more of the following: a fine not exceeding $1,000; imprisonment for a term not exceeding 90 days; or a period of community service not exceeding 90 days. Each day after the initial violation shall be considered a new and individual violation.