Village of Highland Falls, NY
Orange County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Highland Falls 7-20-2009 by L.L. No. 6-2009.[1] Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Building Code Enforcement Officer — See Ch. 8.
Building construction — See Ch. 70.
Numbering of buildings — See Ch. 74.
Unsafe buildings — See Ch. 76.
Fair housing — See Ch. 91.
Housing standards — See Ch. 122.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 170.
[1]
Editor's Note: This local law provided an effective date of 1-1-2010.
A. 
The Board of Trustees of the Village of Highland Falls finds and determines that this chapter will help protect and safeguard the Village of Highland Falls, its residents, property owners and property and promote the general health, safety and welfare.
B. 
The purpose of this chapter is to establish a registry of all rental property, as defined herein, enabling the Village to identify persons responsible for the care and management of such property in order to assist the enforcement of local, state and federal laws and regulations.
C. 
The registry will also help protect the public health, safety and welfare by enabling fire, police, ambulance and Village officials to more quickly and effectively respond to emergencies or potentially unsafe conditions by providing a current index of rental properties, the number of potentially occupied units within each property and a local contact responsible for the maintenance of such properties.
D. 
The provisions of this chapter shall apply to all property located in the Village of Highland Falls.
For the purpose of this chapter, the following words and phrases shall have the respective meanings set forth below:
OWNER
Any individual or individuals, partnership or corporation, similar type of business organization or proprietary interest, whether or not for profit or otherwise, in whose name title to a building is vested.
RENTAL PROPERTY
Includes all real property improved with a building or buildings containing at least one residential unit that is either rented, leased, let or hired out to be occupied. This definition shall not include cooperative or condominium apartments.
A. 
Registration. Every owner of rental property as defined herein shall be required to register such property with the Building Department on such form or forms as prescribed by the Village Board of Trustees within a period of 60 days from the effective date of this chapter. A new form shall be filed whenever there is a change in the information provided. If there is a change in ownership, it shall be the responsibility of the new owner to file such amended form within a period of 30 days after taking title to the property.
B. 
Registry fee. Upon submission of the registration form, the owner shall also submit a registration fee. In addition, the owner shall also submit a renewal registration fee on or before June 1 of each year. The amount of said fee shall be determined by resolution of the Board of Trustees and amended from time to time in the same manner.
A. 
The information required on the registry form shall be determined by resolution of the Village Board of Trustees and modified from time to time in the same manner.
B. 
The information required on the registry form may include, but not be limited to, the following:
(1) 
The name of owner(s), owner mailing address and telephone number and emergency contact information, including telephone number.
(2) 
The name, mailing address and telephone number of the agent, if any, appointed by the owner for the purpose of service of process.
(3) 
The name or names, titles, addresses and telephone numbers of any responsible person(s) of the corporation, limited-liability company, partnership or other business entity if ownership is held in a nonindividual capacity.
(4) 
The property address and the section, block and lot number of the property as stated on the Tax Map of the Village of Highland Falls.
(5) 
The number of residential buildings on each property, the number of residential units within each building which may be occupied at any one time and the number of bedrooms within each unit.
(6) 
Identification of fire and other safety features of each building, including but not limited to fire alarm systems, the location of fire doors and stairwells, external fire escapes and any other safety features of the building(s).
(7) 
The name, address and telephone number of a local responsible person over 21 years old, residing or doing business in the Village of Highland Falls and/or the Town of Highlands, who shall be responsible for the care and management of such property when the owner resides or has its principal place of business outside of the Village of Highland Falls and/or the Town of Highlands.
C. 
The form shall be signed by the owner and his or her local responsible person, if any, identified in Subsection B(7) above, and witnessed by a notary public and shall contain the following declaration:
"I certify that all information contained in this statement is true and correct to the best of my knowledge and belief. I understand that the willful making of any false statement of material fact herein will subject me to the provisions of law relevant to the making and filing of false instruments and shall constitute a violation of this chapter."
D. 
It shall be the responsibility of each owner to timely notify the Building Department whenever the information provided on the registry form has become outdated or for any reason is no longer accurate by filing an appropriately amended registration form within 30 days from the change. It shall also be the responsibility of each owner to annually recertify the information on the form.
A. 
Failure to comply with any provision of this chapter, failure to submit a complete and accurate registry form and/or providing false information on the registry form shall be deemed a violation of this chapter. This chapter shall be enforced by the Building Inspector and Code Enforcement Officer.
B. 
No certificate of occupancy shall be issued to a rental property unless and until the owner has complied with the provisions of this chapter.
C. 
The enforcement officer shall serve notice of a violation personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested, on the owner or agent of the subject rental property.
D. 
Such notice shall require removal of the violation and compliance with this chapter immediately or, at the enforcement officer's discretion, within a reasonable time.
E. 
The enforcement officer shall be authorized to issue appearance tickets.
F. 
Any person, including an owner as defined herein, who violates any provision of this chapter shall be guilty of a violation and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punishable by a fine in an amount of no less than $250 or by a term of imprisonment of not more than 15 days, or both, for a first violation; in an amount of not less than $250 nor more than $700 or a term of imprisonment of not more than 15 days, or both, for a second violation committed within a period of five years of the first violation; and in an amount of not less than $700 nor more than $1,000 or a term of imprisonment of not more than 15 days, or both, for a third and each subsequent violation committed within a period of five years of the first violation. Each day that a violation of or failure to comply with any provision of this chapter occurs shall constitute a separate and distinct violation.
G. 
Civil penalties.
(1) 
In addition to and not in lieu of the above, any person, including an owner as defined herein, who violates any provision of this chapter shall be liable to the Village for a civil penalty in an amount of no less than $250 for a first violation; in an amount of not less than $250 nor more than $700 for a second violation committed within a period of five years of the first violation; and in an amount of not less than $700 nor more than $1,000 for a third and each subsequent violation committed within a period of five years of the first violation. Each day's continued violation shall constitute a separate and distinct violation.
(2) 
Civil penalties may be ordered in any action or proceeding by any court of competent jurisdiction, including but not limited to state and federal courts. All penalties shall be paid to the Village.
(3) 
The judgment amount of any civil penalty ordered pursuant to this section, if not paid, may be assessed and levied against the real property which is the subject of the penalty and collected in the same manner as a real property tax.
H. 
In addition to and not in lieu of the remedies authorized above, the Board of Trustees or the Building Inspector or Code Enforcement Officer may institute any appropriate action or proceeding to prevent, restrain, enjoin, correct or abate any violation or threatened violation of this chapter or to enforce any provision of this chapter.