§ 142-92 Enforcement; administrative site plan review; construction permits; certificates of occupancy.
These rules, regulations and standards shall be considered the minimum requirements for the protection of the public health, safety and welfare of the citizens of the Township. Any action taken by the Township under the terms of this chapter shall give primary consideration to the above-mentioned matters and to the welfare of the entire community. Moreover, if an applicant or his agent can clearly demonstrate that, because of peculiar conditions pertaining to his land, the literal enforcement of one or more of these regulations is impracticable or will exact undue hardship, the appropriate municipal agency may permit such exception or exceptions as may be reasonable and within the general purpose and intent of the rules, regulations and standards established by this chapter.
§ 142-92 Enforcement; administrative site plan review; construction permits; certificates of occupancy.
[Amended 10-10-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-23]
Construction Official and Zoning Officer. It shall be the duty of the Zoning Officer of the Township to administer and enforce the provisions of this chapter. The Construction Official shall be responsible for all sections as they relate to N.J.A.C. 5:23. No structure shall be erected until a zoning permit is obtained from the Zoning Officer and a construction permit is obtained from the Construction Official, and no structure or lot shall be used in violation of this chapter. It shall be the duty of the Zoning Officer to inspect the structures and land in the Township and order the owner, in writing, to remedy any condition found to exist in violation of any provision(s) of this chapter.
Administrative site plan review. Prior to any on-site inspections, there shall be an administrative review of plans submitted for improvements that do not require approval from a board of jurisdiction. The administrative site plan review checklist, together with two copies of the plot plan and the applicable fees and escrow as specified in § 142-84 of this chapter, shall be submitted to the administrative officer. An applicant shall also complete an escrow agreement for the administrative site plan review on forms approved by the Township. The escrow agreement shall obligate the applicant to pay any additional fees for inspection and reasonable professional review services as may be required to complete the review, and for the inspection of the construction site and off-site improvements in question.
Construction permits. Every application for a construction permit shall be accompanied by two sets of plans drawn in ink or a blueprint showing the actual shape and dimensions of the lot to be built upon, the exact location, size and height of all existing and proposed structure(s), the existing or intended use of each structure, the number of dwelling units the structure is designed to accommodate, the number and location of off-street parking spaces and off-street loading areas and such other information with regard to the lot and neighboring lots as may be necessary to determine and provide for the enforcement of this chapter. A construction permit shall be granted or denied within 20 business days from the date of a complete application unless additional time is agreed upon, in writing, by the applicant. One copy of such plans shall be returned to the owner when such plans shall have been approved or denied by the Construction Official, together with such permit as may be granted. All dimensions shown on these plans relating to the location and size of the lot to be built upon shall be based on an actual survey of the lot by a land surveyor licensed in the State of New Jersey. The lot and the location of the structure(s) thereon shall be staked out on the grounds before construction is started. No construction permit shall be issued for any structure until prior site plan, subdivision and variance approvals, as may be necessary, have been granted by the appropriate municipal agency or municipal agencies in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and until all review and inspection fees and all local taxes and assessments on the property have been paid.
Construction permits shall be issued only upon compliance with all applicable requirements, including the provisions of Subsection C, and only after the full width of the bituminous stabilized base course and all curbs, drainage systems and utility crossings within the full right-of-way are constructed, inspected, and approved by the Township Engineer up to and along the frontage of the lot on which the building or structure is to be erected. Builder and/or developer may enter into a developer's agreement, acceptable to the Township Engineer and approved by the governing body, which may modify via a construction phasing plan the requirement that the aforementioned public improvements be construed prior to the issuance of a building permit.
All new buildings and/or structures shall be required to obtain a foundation release approval from the Township Engineer and Construction Official prior to the erection of any steel, concrete, wood or other materials above the foundation line. Approval shall be granted only after a foundation location survey, performed by a land surveyor licensed in the State of New Jersey, has been reviewed and found consistent with the Development Regulations of Robbinsville Township. Two copies of the survey indicating block, lot and address, and bearing the seal of said surveyor, shall be submitted to the office of the Construction Official. A ten-business-day review may be required by the Engineer/Construction Official to ensure compliance with the regulations. Said survey shall include all setbacks, top of block/concrete elevation for footing and foundation walls.
Failure to comply with this subsection shall result in a stop-construction notice being issued and penalties being assessed under the State of New Jersey Uniform Construction Code Act, N.J.S.A. 52:27D-119 et seq., and N.J.A.C. 5:23.
A stop-construction notice shall be issued by the Construction Official when, in the opinion of the Township Engineer, the survey indicates that the foundation system does not conform to these regulations. The recipient of the stop-construction notice shall have 30 days from receipt of the notification to make all necessary corrections to the foundation system so that it conforms to the regulations. A revised foundation location survey shall be submitted prior to the removal of a stop-construction notice or order.
On minor additions and utility structures, a waiver may be granted by the Construction Official if, after consultation with the Township Zoning Officer, the proposed structure is known to be within the established setback criteria of the regulations.
Certificates of occupancy.
It shall be unlawful to use or permit the use of any newly constructed structure or part(s) thereof, either occupied by a new use or occupant or hereafter erected, altered, converted or enlarged, wholly or in part, and/or to receive a certificate of occupancy, until a certificate of approval has been issued by the Zoning Officer, or designee, and received by the Construction Official. A certificate of approval shall only be issued when the following items, as applicable, have been met:
The structure or part(s) thereof and the proposed use conform to this chapter and all other applicable codes and ordinances of the Township;
Prior site plan, subdivision and variance approvals, as may be necessary, have been granted by the appropriate municipal agency or municipal agencies in accordance with the provisions of this chapter;
All local taxes and assessments on the property have been paid;
A letter from each utility company has been received by the Township stating that the utility has been inspected, has been installed in accordance with the approved plan and is ready for use; and
An as-built map showing the exact location of all improvements, including utilities and their elevation.
Upon notice being served of any condition found to exist in violation of any provision(s) of this chapter with respect to any land use, the certificate of occupancy for such use shall thereupon, without further notice, be null and void, and a new certificate of occupancy shall be required for any further use of such structure or land.
In case any building or structure is erected, constructed, reconstructed, altered, moved or converted or any building, structure or land is used in violation of or contrary to the provisions of this chapter, the Township may institute an action to enjoin or any other appropriate action or proceeding to prevent such erection, construction, reconstruction, alteration, conversion or use. However, nothing in this chapter shall be construed to restrict the right of any party to obtain a review by any court of competent jurisdiction according to law.
Any person, firm or corporation that shall violate any provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof by any court authorized by law to hear and determine the matter, be fined such sum not exceeding $2,000, as such court in its discretion may impose; or, if the party so convicted is a natural person, such person may be imprisoned for such term not exceeding 90 days, as such court in its discretion may impose, or be fined a sum not exceeding $2,000, as such court in its discretion may impose; or such natural person may be both imprisoned and fined not exceeding the maximum limits set forth herein, as such court in its discretion may impose. Each day that such violation exists shall constitute a separate offense.
The owner of any building or structure, lot or land, or part thereof, or the tenant or occupant of any building or structure, lot or land, or part thereof, where anything in violation of this chapter shall be placed or shall exist or be suffered, allowed or permitted to exist, and any architect, builder, developer, contractor, agent, person or corporation engaged in connection therewith and who assists in the commission of any such violation, shall each be guilty of a separate violation and, upon conviction thereof, shall each be liable to the fine or imprisonment, or both, specified above.
Any person, firm or corporation convicted under this chapter, and subject to a fine in an amount greater than $1,250, shall be entitled to: a) cure or abate the violation within 30 days of conviction; and b) a hearing before any court of competent jurisdiction, as provided by law. Subsequent to the thirty-day period, a fine greater than $1,250 may be imposed if a court has not determined otherwise or, upon reinspection of the property, it is determined that the abatement has not been substantially completed.
Selling land before final subdivision approval.
If before final subdivision approval has been granted any person, as owner or agent, transfers or sells or agrees to transfer or sell any land which forms a part of a subdivision for which municipal approval is required in accordance with the provisions of this chapter, except pursuant to an agreement expressly conditioned on final subdivision approval, such person shall be subject to a penalty not to exceed $2,000, and each lot disposition so made may be deemed a separate violation.
In any such action, the transferee, purchaser or grantee shall be entitled to a lien upon the portion of the land from which the subdivision was made that remains in the possession of the subdivider or his assigns or successors, to secure the return of any deposit made or purchase price paid and also to a reasonable search fee, survey expense and title closing expense, if any. Any such action must be brought within two years after the date of the recording of the instrument of transfer, sale or conveyance of said land, or within six years if unrecorded.
This chapter may be amended by the governing body after the appropriate referrals, notices, hearings and other requirements of law.