[HISTORY: Adopted by the Common Council of the City of Burlington by Ord. No. 15-2000 (Ch. 5.68 of the 1996 Municipal Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- DOUBLE NEWSRACK BOX
- Two single newsrack boxes, one above the other, wherein the double newsrack box functions as one large box with one windowed access door to gain access to the entire double newsrack box.
- MODULAR NEWSRACK BOX ASSEMBLY (HEREAFTER MNBA)
- A unit that has assembled together two or more newsrack boxes in a housing that is supported by one or more pedestals. The modular newsrack box assembly is then permanently attached to a sidewalk or concrete pad by bolts or other such fasteners. Newspapers are distributed by placing such newspapers in the various newsrack boxes by various newspaper vendors. Two or more newspaper vendors may distribute newspapers from a modular newsrack box assembly. Attached to this chapter is an illustration of an MNBA unit for purposes of illustration. The illustration contains four newsrack boxes, however, the unit may be enlarged to up to 10 newsrack boxes on one MNBA unit.
- NEWSRACK BOX
- A rectangular cube-type box that has a windowed door on its front for viewing inside the cube shaped box and gaining access to the box. Newspapers are placed in the newsrack box for purposes of distribution. One gains access to the interior of the newsrack box by opening the front windowed door. The newsrack box may be, but need not be, accessed by inserting coined money to unlock the access door.
Editor's Note: Said illustration is on file in the Municipal Clerk's office.
Only MNBA units shall be permitted to be installed on the public sidewalks, public property, and on the exterior of any building on private property in the City within the zones identified as the OP-1, C-1, C-2, C-3, IP and W-1. MNBA units, freestanding newsrack boxes, and other such newspaper vending units shall not be permitted to be placed on the exterior of any building in the residential districts R-1, R-2, or RI Zones. No other newsrack boxes, MNBA units, or other such newspaper vending units, shall be permitted to be placed anywhere in the City, except as provided in this chapter.
Each newspaper vendor shall be obligated to purchase at its expense an MNBA unit or share in the cost of the purchase of an MNBA unit with other newspaper vendors using an MNBA unit. In the event the City purchases the MNBA unit for and on behalf of a newspaper vendor or vendors, such newspaper vendor or vendors shall reimburse the City its proportionate share of the City's cost. The City shall not receive any additional money above and beyond that which it expended for the MNBA unit. The City prefers that the newspaper vendors purchase the newsrack boxes and the MNBA units.
Maintenance, repair, and service of each newsrack box in an MNBA unit itself shall be the obligation of the newspaper vendors respectively. In the event the City expends any monies for such, the City shall be reimbursed its expenditures, by the newspaper vendors who are obligated to make such expenditures. Prior to the City performing any maintenance, repairs or service to any newsrack boxes and/or MNBA units, the City will take reasonable steps and efforts to call the responsible newspaper vendors to perform such maintenance, repair and/or service.
The style, color, size, material, and design of the MNBA unit and each component newsrack box shall be determined by the Common Council. In the Historic District, the Historic Preservation Commission shall give its written recommendations to the Common Council within 30 days of referral.
The locations of the MNBA units on public property or public sidewalks within the City shall be selected by the Common Council in accordance with the standards set forth in this chapter. The newspaper vendor shall be obligated to arrange for the installation or work for each MNBA unit installed on the public sidewalks or public property, at the newspaper vendor's expense.
The MNBA units can accommodate from two to 10 single newsrack boxes. There is no limit on the reasonable number of MNBA units that can be located in the City in compliance with this chapter.
There is no limit to the reasonable number of newsrack boxes that a particular newspaper vendor can utilize, except that a newspaper vendor is permitted to have only one newsrack box per MNBA unit whenever other newspaper vendors wish to utilize a newsrack box in such MNBA unit. For the purposes of this chapter, a double newsrack box is considered as one newsrack box.
There are no time restrictions as to when the public may access the newsracks to obtain newspapers, that is, such access may occur 24 hours per day, seven days per week, since the MNBA's are not located in the residential districts.
Any other type of individual freestanding newspaper vending machines, boxes, newsracks, etc., whether coin operated or otherwise, are prohibited in the City. Any such prohibited units existing after the adoption of this chapter shall be removed by the particular owner of such unit no later that 90 days after the effective date of this chapter or at an earlier date when such newspaper vendor has been afforded the opportunity to utilize a newsrack box in an MNBA unit or units from which to distribute newspapers in accordance with this chapter.
Within 10 days of the adoption of this chapter, the Business Administrator shall send a copy of it to each known newspaper vendor. After the adoption of this chapter, newspaper vendors shall take timely action to comply with the terms of this chapter. A newspaper vendor may seek, in writing, an extension of the ninety-day removal time limit, for just cause, stating the newspaper vendor's reasons why such extension should be granted, provided that such newspaper vendor had taken timely action to comply with this chapter and its reasons for noncompliance are due to reasons other than its own actions or inactions. The City will not unreasonably deny such requests for an extension.
A newspaper vendor desiring a general location for a newsrack box within a MNBA unit shall submit such request, in writing, to the Common Council addressed to the City Clerk, as required in this chapter. The Common Council shall make available a location or locations to each newspaper vendor who request a location or locations. The Common Council will seek to identify a location as close as practicable to that which had been requested by the newspaper vendor, taking into account the criteria of this chapter. In the event the Common Council is unable to grant the vendor's request for a specific location, the Common Council will identity its reasons for such a decision based on the criteria of this chapter, and in such event the Common Council will identify an alternative location or locations that is available to the applying newspaper vendor. In no event shall the newspaper vendor be denied the right to distribute its papers. The newspaper vendor's right to distribute shall not be abridged by the Common Council in that the Common Council shall make available a location or locations to each newspaper vendor who requests a location or locations.
The Common Council, in its discretion, shall determine the specific location and manner of installation of each MBNA unit. The Common Council, in the exercise of its discretion, shall not act unreasonably, capriciously or arbitrarily, and its decision shall be in accordance with the criteria of this chapter, as governed by federal and state law.
The MNBA units located on public sidewalks, public property, and on the exterior of any building on private property shall be installed in accordance with the following criteria:
No MNBA unit shall be installed wherein it impedes the flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic.
No MNBA unit shall be installed wherein it endangers the public safety of persons or property.
No MNBA unit shall be installed where it interferes with the ingress and egress from any residence or place of business.
No MNBA unit shall be located wherein its locations interferes with the use of traffic signals, fire hydrants, utility poles, mailboxes, and other such police, fire, and/or traffic control devices.
The content of the newspaper publication shall not be considered in determining the manner of and place of location of the MNBA unit.
The newspaper vendor does not need a license, permit or other such approval to distribute its newspaper.
In the Historic District, the MNBA unit shall be placed in a location in keeping with the historic character and historic zoning so as to minimize the visual appearance and clutter of newsracks, but not at the expense of the newspaper vendor's First Amendment right to distribute its newspaper.
No MNBA unit shall be installed above, or within a proximity to interfere with the use, maintenance, and/or repair of any gas line, water line, sewer line or other such utility line.
No MNBA unit shall be located so as to impede the lawful use of any buildings.
No MNBA unit shall be located so as to interfere with the growth of any municipally owned shade trees, plants, and shrubs existing in the right-of-way sidewalk area.
No MNBA unit shall be located to interfere with the use of municipality installed public benches and seating.
A newspaper vendor seeking to distribute its newspapers in the City, in accordance with this chapter, shall make a request, in writing, to the Common Council addressed to the City Clerk for a location within the City.
The newspaper vendor is to identify the location by designating a corner of a particular intersection and/or by reciting dimensions from some fixed identifiable structure or object, and/or by some other method of identifying the location so as to clearly inform the Common Council of the location requested.
The Common Council shall review the request and shall make the final determination as to the location of the MNBA unit. The Common Council must take into account the requests of other newspaper vendors, in an effort to coordinate the location of the MNBA units with the requests of all newspaper vendors and to establish the necessary number of two or more newsrack boxes in MNBA units. In the event several newspaper vendors select a particular intersection and/or location and identify different corners and/or locations, the Common Council will consolidate those requests into the MNBA unit and identify the specific location where the MNBA should be placed in accordance with the criteria in this chapter.
The Common Council shall inform the newspaper vendor no later than 20 business days of receipt of its request as to the location of the MNBA unit wherein such vendor may place its papers for distribution from a newsrack box, except in the Historic District the Common Council may extend this period by 15 business days to provide the Historic Preservation Commission with an opportunity to provide its written recommendations.
A newspaper vendor is permitted to make as many requests as is reasonably necessary for the distribution of its newspapers in the City. There is no limitation on the reasonable number of requests or on the reasonable number of locations that a particular newspaper vendor may utilize in accordance with this chapter.
As of the date of the adoption of this chapter, freestanding newsracks exist at various locations in the City. In the event one or more of such locations are requested by newspaper vendors, a vendor having a freestanding newsrack at the location shall receive preference as to a newsrack box in an MNBA unit at such location or the alternative to such location.
The earliest received location request shall have a preference over subsequent requests for the same location or alternate to that location.
In the event the newspaper vendor disagrees with the Common Council's decision concerning its request for a location or any other decision related to this chapter, such newspaper vendor may request to the Common Council in writing, a reconsideration of its decision, stating its position concerning its request for reconsideration. The Common Council shall respond to such requests for reconsideration within 20 days of its receipt by the Municipal Clerk.
The Common Council simultaneously with the adoption of this chapter has adopted a resolution setting forth locations for the MNBA units to be installed in accordance with this chapter. The locations set forth in the resolution are not exhaustive or exclusive. The resolution may be amended by the Common Council.
Any person or entity who violates any provision of this chapter shall be notified, in writing, of such violation by the Business Administration and shall have 15 days from the date of the notice to correct the violation.
Any person or entity who violates any provision of this chapter and continues such violation for more than 15 days after having received the above notice shall, upon conviction, be subject to a fine or not more than $250; each day may be considered a separate offense.