Town of Guttenberg, NJ
Hudson County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Ord. #2/7/90 § 1; #028/00; Ord. #010/06]
The International Property Maintenance Code shall be and is hereby adopted as the Existing Structures Code of the Town for the control of buildings and structures as herein provided; and each and all of the regulations, provisions, penalties, conditions and terms of said International Property Maintenance Code are hereby referred to, adopted, and made a part thereof.
[1]
Editor's Note: A copy of the International Property Maintenance Code is on file in the office of the Town Clerk.
[1]
Editor's Note: Former subsection 13-1.2, Additions, Insertions and Charges, previously codified herein and containing portions of Ord. 2/7/90 was repealed in its entirety by Ordinance No. 010/06.
[Ord. 8/17/88 § 3]
It shall be unlawful for any person to discard or dump along any street, on or off any right-of-way, any household or commercial solid waste, rubbish, refuse, junk, vehicle or vehicle parts, rubber tires, appliances, furniture or private property, except by written consent of the owner of the property, in any place not specifically designated for the purpose of solid waste storage or disposal.
[Ord. 8/17/88 § 4]
It shall be unlawful for any residential property owner to store or permit storage of any bulky household waste, including household appliances, furniture and mattresses, in areas zoned residential except in a fully enclosed structure or during days designated for the collection of bulky items.
[Ord. No. 17-2017]
a. 
Mattresses and box springs that are placed curbside for bulk collection shall be completely wrapped in plastic or placed in disposable plastic bags. Plastic wrapping or plastic bags must be sufficient to cover all exposed areas of the mattress and box spring. The plastic wrapping and/or disposable plastic bags are required to avoid, to the greatest extent possible, Town employees from coming into contact with bedbugs or bedbug-infested materials.
b. 
Furniture, mattresses or box springs or other items placed curbside for bulk collection that are not wrapped or infested with bedbugs, may be refused pickup for bulk collection in the absolute discretion of the Superintendent of the Department of Public Works or his designee.
[Ord. 8/17/88 § 6]
It shall be unlawful for any residential property owner to park or permit the parking of any vehicle on his or her residential lawn.
[Ord. 8/17/88 § 7]
It shall be unlawful for any person to keep or permit the keeping on streets, vacant lots and residential lawns except in a fully enclosed structure, any motor vehicle, trailer or semi-trailer, which is (a) missing tires, wheels, engine or other parts essential to its operation or (b) which displays extensive body damage or deterioration; or (c) which does not display a current, valid State license; or (d) which is wrecked, disassembled or partially disassembled.
[Ord. 8/17/88 § 5]
It shall be unlawful for any residential property owner to store or permit the storage of tires in areas zoned residential, except in a fully enclosed structure or on days designated for the collection of tires.
[Ord. 8/17/88 § 9]
It shall be unlawful for any owner, agent or contractor in charge of a construction or demolition site to permit the accumulation of litter before, during or after the completion of any construction or demolition project. It shall be the duty of the owner, agent or contractor in charge of a construction site to furnish containers adequate to accommodate all debris or trash at areas convenient to construction areas and to maintain and empty the receptacles in such a manner and with such a frequency as to prevent spillage of refuse.
[Ord. 8/17/88 § 10]
It shall be unlawful for any residential or commercial property owner to permit open or overflowing waste disposal bins on his or her property.
[Ord. #002/06]
An application shall be filled out for a placement of a portable on demand storage container if requested by a resident of the Town of Guttenberg. Said container shall mean to include all on-site storage containers utilized in the relocation of household furniture or other items. Said container must be placed in an approved designated legal parking spot in front of the applicant's residence. Said container may not obstruct the roadway nor the sidewalk. All applications shall be approved by the Code Enforcement Officer or his designee. A $75 fee will be charged for each container and the permit shall be for three days.
[Ord. #02-14]
Refuse receptacles shall be stored only in areas designated for storage between garbage collections. They shall be placed adjacent to the curb in front of the premises, or other area designated for collection no earlier than 6:00 p.m. on the day before collection and shall be promptly returned to the storage area upon collection. Refuse receptacles shall not be stored on sidewalks or areas in front of any buildings or houses between collection days.
[Ord. No. 13-2015; Ord. No. 09-2016]
Each person violating Sections 13-1 through 13-6 of the provisions of this chapter, shall, upon first conviction, be liable to a penalty of $100. Any second or subsequent conviction shall be liable to the penalty as stated in Chapter 1, Section 1-5.
[1]
Editor's Note: Prior ordinance history: Ordinance No. 2014-15.
[Ord. No. 23-2017; amended 5-27-2020 by Ord. No. 14-20]
It is the purpose and intent of the Mayor and Council of the Town of Guttenberg to establish a process to address the deterioration, crime and decline in value of Town neighborhoods caused by properties with defaulted mortgages and vacant properties located within the Town of Guttenberg, and to identify, regulate, limit and reduce the number of these properties located within the Town. It is the Mayor and Council of the Town of Guttenberg's further intent to establish a registration requirement as a mechanism to protect neighborhoods from the negative impact and conditions that occur as a result of vacancy, lack of adequate maintenance and security and will provide a method to expeditiously identify a contact person for each property responsible for this protection.
It is not the intent of this section to determine the rights and liabilities of persons under agreements to which the Town is not a party. This section shall not be construed to alter the terms of any lease or other agreement between a landlord and a tenant or others relating to property that is the subject of this section; provided that no provision of any lease or other agreement shall be construed to excuse compliance with this section. Additionally, a violation of this section shall not in and of itself create a negligence per se standard or otherwise expand existing liability in tort for either a landlord or a tenant.
[Ord. No. 23-2017; amended 5-27-2020 by Ord. No. 14-20]
The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this chapter, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning.
ACCESSIBLE PROPERTY/STRUCTURE
Means a property that is accessible through a comprised/breached gate, fence, wall, etc., or a structure that is unsecured and/or breached in such a way as to allow access to the interior space by unauthorized persons.
APPLICABLE CODES
Means to include, but not be limited to, the Town's Zoning Ordinance, the Town's Property Maintenance Ordinance, Solid Waste Ordinance, Residential and Commercial Recycling Ordinance, and the State and Town Building and Fire Codes.
BLIGHTED PROPERTY
Means:
a. 
Properties that have broken or severely damaged windows, doors, walls, or roofs which create hazardous conditions and encourage trespassing; or
b. 
Properties whose maintenance is not in conformance with the maintenance of other neighboring properties causing a decrease in value of the neighboring properties; or
c. 
Properties cited for a public nuisance pursuant to the Town Codes; or
d. 
Properties that endanger the public's health, safety, or welfare because the properties or improvements thereon are dilapidated, deteriorated, or violate minimum health and safety standards or lacks maintenance as required by the applicable codes.
DEFAULT
Shall mean that the mortgagor has not complied with the terms of the mortgage on the property, or the promissory note, or other evidence of the debt, referred to in the mortgage.
ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
Means any Law Enforcement Officer, Building Official, Zoning Official, Code Enforcement Officer, Fire Inspector, Building Inspector, or other person authorized by the Town to enforce the applicable code(s).
EVIDENCE OF VACANCY
Means any condition that on its own, or combined with other conditions present, would lead a reasonable person to believe that the property is vacant. Such conditions may include, but are not limited to: overgrown and/or dead vegetation; past due utility notices and/or disconnected utilities; accumulation of trash junk or debris; abandoned vehicles auto parts or materials; the absence of furnishings and/or personal items consistent with habitation or occupancy; the presence of an unsanitary, stagnant swimming pool; the accumulation of newspapers, circulars, flyers and/or mail, or statements by neighbors, passers-by, delivery agents or government agents; or the presence of boards over doors, windows or other openings in violation of applicable code.
FORECLOSURE
Shall mean the legal process by which a mortgagee, or other lien holder, terminates a property owner's equitable right of redemption to obtain legal and equitable title to the real property pledged as security for a debt or the real property subject to the lien. This definition shall include, but is not limited to, public notice of default, a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure, sale to the mortgagee or lien holder, certificate of title and all other processes, activities and actions, by whatever name, associated with the described process. The process is not concluded until the property obtained by the mortgagee, lien holder, or their designee, by certificate of title, or any other means, is sold to a non-related bona fide purchaser in an arm's length transaction to satisfy the debt or lien.
MORTGAGEE
Means the creditor, including but not limited to, trustees; mortgage servicing companies; lenders in a mortgage agreement; any agent, servant, or employee of the creditor; any successor in interest; or any assignee of the creditor's rights, interests or obligations under the mortgage agreement, excluding governmental entities.
OWNER
Means any person, firm, corporation or other legal entity who, individually or jointly or severally with others, holds the legal or beneficial title to any building, facilities, equipment or premises subject to the provisions of this chapter.
REAL PROPERTY
Means any residential or commercial land and/or buildings, leasehold improvements and anything affixed to the land, or portion thereof identified by a property parcel identification number, located in the Town limits.
REGISTRABLE PROPERTY
Means:
a. 
Any real property located in the Town, whether vacant or occupied, that is encumbered by an ongoing foreclosure action by the mortgagee or trustee, has been the subject of a foreclosure action by a mortgagee or trustee and a judgment has been entered, or has been the subject of a foreclosure sale where the title was transferred to the beneficiary of a mortgage involved in the foreclosure and any properties transferred under a deed in lieu of foreclosure/sale.
The designation of a "foreclosure" property as "registrable" shall remain in place until such time as the property is sold to a non-related bona fide purchaser in an arm's length transaction or the foreclosure action has been dismissed.
b. 
Any property that is vacant for more than 30 days or any cancellation of utility service, whichever occurs first.
SEMIANNUAL REGISTRATION
Shall mean six months from the date of the first action that requires registration, as determined by the Town, or its designee, and every subsequent six months. The date of the initial registration may be different than the date of the first action that required registration.
VACANT
Means any improved or unimproved lot and any parcel of land in the Town that contains any building or structure that is not lawfully occupied or inhabited by human beings as evidenced by the conditions set forth in the definition of "evidence of vacancy" above which is without lawful tenant, or lawful occupant or without a certificate of occupancy. "Vacant property" does not mean property that is temporarily unoccupied while the residents are away on vacation, personal matters or business, or is not intended by the owner to be left vacant, so long as the period does not exceed 30 days.
[Ord. No. 23-2017; amended 5-27-2020 by Ord. No. 14-20]
These sections shall be considered cumulative and not superseding or subject to any other law or provision for same, but rather be an additional remedy available to the Town above and beyond any other state or Town provisions for same.
[Ord. No. 23-2017; amended 5-27-2020 by Ord. No. 14-20]
Pursuant to the provisions of § 13-8.5, the Town or its designee shall establish a registry cataloging each registrable property within the Town, containing the information required by this section.
[Ord. No. 23-2017; amended 5-27-2020 by Ord. No. 14-20]
a. 
Any mortgagee who holds a mortgage on real property located within the Town shall perform an inspection of the property to determine vacancy or occupancy, upon default by the mortgagor. The mortgagee shall, within 10 days of the inspection, register the property with the Code Enforcement Department, or its designee, on forms or other manner as directed, and indicate whether the property is vacant or occupied. A separate registration is required for each property, whether it is found to be vacant or occupied.
b. 
Registration pursuant to this section shall contain the name, direct mailing address, a direct contact name, telephone number, and email address for the mortgagee/trustee, and the mortgage servicer, and the name and twenty-four-hour contact phone number of the local property management company responsible for the security and maintenance of the property who has the authority to make decisions concerning the abatement of nuisance conditions at the property, as well as any expenditure in connection therewith.
c. 
Mortgagees who have existing registrable property on the effective date of this section have 30 calendar days from the effective date to register the property with the Code Enforcement Department, or its designee, on forms or other manner as directed, and indicate whether the property is vacant or occupied. A separate registration is required for each property, whether it is vacant or occupied.
d. 
If the mortgage on a registrable property is sold or transferred, the new mortgagee is subject to all the terms of this section. Any previous unpaid registration fees are the responsibility of the new mortgagee or trustee and are due and payable with their initial registration; except if it is determined that the transferee is exempt from paying fees, then the previous mortgagee will not be released from the responsibility of paying all previous unpaid fees and fines, regardless of who the mortgagee was at the time when registration was required, including but not limited to unregistered periods during the foreclosure process. The provisions of this section are cumulative with and in addition to other available remedies. Moreover, the Code Enforcement Department is authorized and empowered to refer the previous mortgagee's non-payment of previous fees and fines to a court of competent jurisdiction for disposition.
e. 
If the servicing rights for a mortgage on a registrable property are sold or transferred, the registration must be updated to include all the new servicer information within 10 days of the servicing transfer.
f. 
If the mortgagee owner of a foreclosed real property sells or transfers the property to a non-arm's length related person or entity, the transferee is subject to all the terms of this section and within five days of the transfer register the property. Any previous unpaid registration fees are the responsibility of the new registrable property owner and are due and payable with their initial registration; except if it is determined that the transferee is exempt from paying fees, then the previous mortgagee will not be released from the responsibility of paying all previous unpaid fees and fines, regardless of who the mortgagee was at the time when registration was required, including but not limited to unregistered periods during the foreclosure process. The provisions of this section are cumulative with and in addition to other available remedies. Moreover, the Code Enforcement Department is authorized and empowered to refer the previous mortgagee's non-payment of previous fees and fines to a court of competent jurisdiction for disposition.
g. 
As long as the property is registrable it shall be inspected by the mortgagee, or designee, monthly. If an inspection shows a change in the property's occupancy status the mortgagee shall, within 10 days of that inspection, update the occupancy status of the property registration.
h. 
A nonrefundable registration fee of $500 shall accompany each registration pursuant to this section.
i. 
If the foreclosing or foreclosed property is not registered, or the registration fee is not paid within 30 days of when the registration or renewal is required pursuant to this section, a late fee equivalent to 10% of the semiannual registration fee shall be charged for every thirty-day period, or portion thereof, the property is not registered and shall be due and payable with the registration.
j. 
All registration fees must be paid directly from the mortgagee, trustee, servicer, or owner. Third party registration fees are not allowed without the consent of the Town and/or its authorized designee.
k. 
Properties subject to this section shall remain under the semiannual registration requirement, and the inspection, security and maintenance standards of this section as long as they are registrable.
l. 
Until the mortgage or lien on the property in question is satisfied, or legally discharged, the desire to no longer pursue foreclosure, the filing of a dismissal of lis pendens and/or summary of final judgment and/or certificate of title, voluntary or otherwise, does not exempt any mortgagee holding the defaulted mortgage, from all the requirements of this section as long as the borrower is in default.
m. 
Any person or legal entity that has registered a property under this section must report any change of information contained in the registration within 10 days of the change.
n. 
Failure of the mortgagee to properly register or to modify the registration information from time to time to reflect a change of circumstances as required by this section is a violation of the section and shall be subject to enforcement and any resulting monetary penalties and/or property liens.
o. 
Pursuant to any administrative or judicial finding and determination that any property is in violation of this section, the Town may take the necessary action to ensure compliance with and place a lien on the property for the cost of the work performed to benefit the property and bring it into compliance.
p. 
Properties subject to this chapter shall be in accordance with the applicable code(s) of the Town.
q. 
Registration of foreclosure property does not alleviate the mortgagee and/or owner from obtaining all required licenses, permits and inspections required by applicable code or state statutes. Acquisition of required licenses permits, and inspections or registration of rental property does not alleviate the requirement for the property to be registered under this section. The mortgagee and/or owner is expected to update the status of the property in the event of a mortgagee-managed rental.
[Ord. No. 23-2017; 5-27-2020 by Ord. No. 14-20]
a. 
Any owner of vacant property located within the Town shall, within 10 days after the property becomes vacant, register the real property with the Town Registry.
b. 
Initial registration pursuant to this section shall contain at a minimum the name of the owner, the mailing address of the owner, email address, and telephone number of the owner, and if applicable, the name and telephone number of the property manager and said person's address, email address, and telephone number.
c. 
At the time of initial registration each registrant shall pay a nonrefundable semiannual registration fee of $500 for each vacant property. Subsequent nonrefundable semiannual renewal registrations of vacant properties and fees in the amount of $500 are due within 10 days of the expiration of the previous registration. Said fees shall be used to offset the costs of: (1) registration and registration enforcement, (2) code enforcement and mitigation related to vacant properties, and (3) for any related purposes as may be adopted in the policy set forth in this chapter. Said fees shall be deposited to a special account in the Town's department dedicated to the cost of implementation and enforcement of this section and fulfilling the purpose and intent of this chapter.
d. 
If the property is sold or transferred, the new owner is subject to all the terms of this chapter. Within 10 days of the transfer, the new owner shall register the vacant property or update the existing registration. The previous owner(s) will not be released from the responsibility of paying all previous unpaid fees, fines, and penalties accrued during that owner's involvement with the vacant property.
e. 
If the vacant property is not registered, or either the registration fee or the semiannual registration fee is not paid within 30 days of when the registration or semiannual registration is required pursuant to this section, a late fee shall be equivalent to 10% of the semiannual registration fee shall be charged for every thirty-day period, or portion thereof, the property is not registered and shall be due and payable with the registration. This section shall apply to the initial registration and registrations required by subsequent owners of the vacant property.
f. 
Properties subject to this section shall remain subject to the semiannual registration requirement, and the inspection, security, and maintenance standards of this section as long as the property is vacant.
g. 
Failure of the owner to properly register or to modify the registration to reflect a change of circumstances as required by this section is a violation of this chapter and shall be subject to enforcement by any of the enforcement means available to the Town.
h. 
If any property is in violation of this chapter, the Town may take the necessary action to ensure compliance with and place a lien on the property for the cost of the outstanding obligation and any additional cost incurred to the property into compliance.
i. 
Properties registered as a result of this section are not required to be registered again pursuant to the foreclosure mortgage property section.
[Added 5-27-2020 by Ord. No. 14-20]
a. 
Registration Violation. The penalty to a mortgagee and/or owner who is out of state and has filed a summons and complaint in an action to foreclose a Guttenberg residential property, but not appointed an in-state representative or agent pursuant to this section, shall be subject to a fine of $2,500 for each day of the violation.
b. 
Code Violation. A mortgagee and/or owner subject to this section shall be fined $1,500 for each day commencing on the 31st day after receiving notice of a violation of the requirement to care, maintain, and or provide proper security upkeep, issued by the Construction Code Official or other authorized agent for the Town pursuant to this section.
[Ord. No. 13-2015; Ord. No. 09-2016]
All sidewalks, steps, driveways, and similar paved areas for public use shall be kept in good repair, and deteriorated, uprooted, cracked or dilapidated sidewalks shall be repaired by the property owner. In the case where the owner or his contractor replaces a portion of the sidewalk staying in conformance with the International Property Maintenance Code or a driveway apron, then such construction shall conform to the specifications prepared by Guttenberg Building Department.
[Ord. No. 13-2015; Ord. No. 09-2016]
a. 
No person shall do any of the following acts upon any sidewalk or street within the Town of Guttenberg without the written approval of the Guttenberg Building Department:
1. 
Cut, trim, break, climb with spikes, disturb the roots of, spray with any chemical, remove or otherwise injure any living tree or shrub or injure, misuse or remove any structure or device placed to support or protect such tree or shrub.
2. 
Plant any tree or shrub.
3. 
Fasten any rope, wire, electric attachment, sign or other device to a tree or shrub or to any guard about such tree or shrub.
4. 
Close or obstruct any open space provided about the base of a tree or shrub to permit the access of air, water fertilizer to the roots of such tree or shrub.
5. 
Place any building material within six feet of a tree or shrub.
b. 
The Guttenberg Building Department shall give written approval to an owner of a Guttenberg property to trim or remove any tree or shrub on his or her property when that owner can prove to the Guttenberg Construction Official that said tree or shrub is dead or no longer viable and/or causing damage to the property of the Guttenberg owner.
[Ord. 8/17/88 § 13; Ord. No. 29-11; Ord. No. 13-2015; Ord. No. 09-2016]
Any person found guilty of a violation of Section 13-9 and/or 13-10 of this chapter shall be liable to the penalty stated in Chapter 1, Section 1-5.