[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Penns Grove 10-7-2003 by Ord. No. 2003-4; amended in its entirety 7-5-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-5. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meaning indicated:
- PARKING AREA
- A parking lot or other property provided by a retailer for the use of a customer for parking an automobile or other vehicle. The parking area of a retail mercantile establishment located in a multistore complex or shopping center shall include the entire parking area used by the complex or center.
- A person of either sex, corporation, partnership, association, joint-stock company, limited liability company, societies and other entities capable of being sued.
- PUBLIC PROPERTY
- Includes streets, avenues, roads, alleys, lanes, highways, boulevards, concourses, driveways, culverts, crosswalks, sidewalks, parks, parking lots, parking areas and places generally used by the general public.
- SHOPPING CART
- A push cart of the type or types which are commonly provided by grocery stores, drugstores or other retail mercantile establishments for the use of the public in transporting commodities in stores and markets and their parking areas.
It shall be unlawful for any person to remove a shopping cart, as defined herein, from the property of any store or other business establishment as well as from the business establishment's parking area. Further, it shall be unlawful for any person or other business establishment to permit or allow any person to remove a shopping cart, as defined herein, from the property of the store or other business establishment or its parking area.
It shall be unlawful for any person, or such persons, agents or employees, to leave or suffer or permit to be left any shopping cart, either owned by such person or in such person's possession, custody or control, upon any public property as defined above.
The Borough shall remove or cause to be removed any shopping cart found upon any public property and shall take the same to Borough property, where it shall be held until redeemed, sold or otherwise disposed of as hereinafter provided.
The Borough of Penns Grove shall not impound a shopping cart that has a sign or notice identifying the owner of the shopping cart, or the retailer who has written consent from the owner to use the shopping cart, and listing a valid telephone number or address through which the owner or retailer can be contacted, unless the following conditions are met:
The shopping cart is located outside of the premises or parking area of the retail mercantile establishment and on public property as defined above.
The Borough will notify the owner or retailer of the location of the shopping cart and will allow three business days from the date of such notification for the owner, retailer or an authorized agent to retrieve the shopping cart unless immediate removal is necessary to prevent a danger to public safety.
The Borough shall notify the owner or retailer by certified mail, return receipt requested, and regular mail or personal delivery upon impoundment of a shopping cart and shall include information as to how the cart may be retrieved.
The location that an impounded shopping cart is held is reasonably convenient to the owner, retailer or authorized agent and is open for business at least six hours of each business day.
Should the owner or retailer of the impounded shopping cart fail to retrieve the shopping cart upon notification, upon conviction of violation of this chapter, the Municipal Court shall impose a fine not exceeding $50 for each occurrence for failure to retrieve shopping carts. An occurrence includes all shopping carts impounded in accordance with this section during a twenty-four-hour period.
The Borough shall allow the owner or retailer a minimum of five business days following receipt of notice that a shopping cart has been impounded to retrieve the shopping cart before a violation is issued and before the cart is sold or otherwise disposed of.
The Borough may impound a shopping cart without compliance with § 371-5 under the following circumstances:
The Borough may impound a shopping cart that has a sign or notice identifying the owner of the shopping cart, or the retailer who has written consent from the owner to use the cart, and lists a valid telephone number or address through which the owner or retailer can be contacted, without meeting the conditions required by § 371-5 of this chapter if the Borough follows the following procedures or the following circumstances exist:
The Borough notifies in writing the owner or retailer with 24 hours of impounding the shopping cart and includes information on how the shopping cart may be retrieved.
The Borough releases the shopping cart to the owner, retailer or authorized agent without any charge or fine whatsoever, if the owner, retailer, or authorized agent attempts to retrieve the cart within five business days of notice.
The Borough may impound a shopping cart that does not have a sign or a notice identifying the owner of the shopping cart, or the retailer who has written consent from the owner to use the shopping cart, and does not list a valid telephone number or address through which the owner or retailer can be contacted.
Under the circumstances set forth in this section, should the owner or retailer be determined through other means rather than notice on the cart and pursuant to the procedures set forth in this section, the owner or retailer may be held in violation of this chapter, in which case the Municipal Court may fine the owner or retailer a fine not exceeding of $50 for each occurrence for failure to retrieve shopping carts. An occurrence includes all shopping carts impounded in accordance with this section during a twenty-four-hour period.
When any shopping cart remains in the possession of the Borough for a period set forth in § 371-5 above after removal and with respect to which no person has retrieved said cart from the Borough with proof establishing to the Borough's satisfaction that the person retrieving the cart has sufficient proof of ownership or right of possession, then the Borough shall give public notice in its official newspaper that, at a specified place and time, not less than five days after such notice is published, such shopping cart shall be sold at public auction for not less than $25, plus the cost of advertising the sale. If, after such notice of sale is given, any person desires to redeem any cart prior to sale, such person shall pay to the Borough for redemption the sum of $25 plus the cost of advertising the sale. A general description of the cart shall be sufficient. The sale shall be conducted by the Borough Clerk or such person as the governing body may designate. The redemption costs shall not be exclusive of any penalty or fine issued as a result of a violation of this chapter.
If the shopping cart is not sold at public auction, the Borough may offer it again for sale or may dismantle, destroy or otherwise dispose of such shopping cart.
Any disposition of such shopping cart made pursuant to this chapter shall be made without any liability of the Borough to the owner of such shopping cart or person lawfully entitled thereto or having any interest therein. If the shopping cart clearly identifies the owner and the owner is notified pursuant to § 371-5 or 371-6 and the owner does not remove and redeem in accordance with this chapter within the time period prescribed by this chapter and the Borough is unable to dispose of the shopping cart by auction, the Borough Clerk or other designated individual shall certify the cost of disposal to the Borough of Penns Grove and authorize the forwarding of a bill to the owner of the shopping cart for payment of the cost of disposal plus $25 for handling within 30 days of the date of the bill. The amount of these charges shall become a lien upon any land owned by the owner and shall be added to and become part of the taxes to be assessed upon said land, to bear interest at the same rate as taxes not paid. The cost shall be in addition to any penalties imposed for any violation of this chapter.
Upon redemption or sale of the shopping cart, the proceeds shall be deposited in the general funds of the Borough.
The Zoning Officer, Police Department or other official designated by the Borough Council shall be authorized to enforce the provisions of this chapter. Mandatory court appearances shall be required for all violations of this chapter.
This chapter shall not apply to any shopping cart or personal property which may come into possession and custody of any department of the Borough pursuant to any other ordinance, law or regulation.
Use of the public auction or disposition remedy does not preclude use of other provisions or penalties in this chapter or which are provided for by law.