[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Woodstown 11-27-72 as Ord. No. 257. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Be it ordained by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Woodstown, in the County of Salem and State of New Jersey:
In the interpretation of this chapter, the following words and phrases, unless the context shows another sense to be intended, shall be held to have the meanings hereinafter stated:
- As used in this chapter, shall not apply to exhibitions or performances in which the persons paying for admission or other members of the general public do not participate.
- PUBLIC DANCE
- Any dance to which admission can be had either with or without the payment of a fee, but shall not include the operation of any restaurant, tavern or similar establishment in which dancing may be merely incidental to other operations, nor shall it include any private social gathering held by any fraternal, charitable, religious or educational organization and limited to members thereof where such organization does not have as a primary purpose the sponsoring or holding of such social gatherings.
- PUBLIC DANCE HALL
- Any room, space or place in which a public dance is held.
It shall be unlawful to permit any public dance to be held, or to permit any dancing in any public dance hall, until the said public dance or public dance hall shall first have been duly licensed for such purpose.
Application for a license for a public dance under this chapter shall be made to the Borough Clerk and shall indicate the name and address of the person or organization sponsoring such public dance, the location, hours and date or days on which such dance is to be held, and shall indicate whether or not the applicant has ever had such a license revoked or suspended for violation of this chapter or of any other ordinances of the Borough of Woodstown or statutes of the State of New Jersey. Such application may also contain such additional provisions as may be required by regulations issued pursuant to this chapter.
No dance shall be permitted in the Borough of Woodstown without adequate police protection, including a member of the Police Department or reserves at the entrance of the dance.
The term "adequate police protection" will be determined by the Chief or, in his absence, the officer in charge, and will take into consideration the number of persons attending, their ages, location of the dance, hours of operation, etc.
All applications for a license under this chapter shall be granted unless the Borough Clerk, after hearing and considering all evidence and objections, shall determine that the granting of the license will be detrimental to public health, public safety, property values or business conditions in the immediate area, or that the proposed location fails to comply with the health or safety provisions of this chapter or any other laws.
No license shall be issued under this chapter unless the premises sought to be licensed complies with and conforms to all the laws of the United States of America, the State of New Jersey and the ordinances of the Borough of Woodstown, and is properly ventilated, supplied with sufficient toilet conveniences and is, in the judgment of the Chief of Police, a safe and proper place for the purposes for which it is to be used.
The fee for a license hereunder for any public dance hall or place or building used for public dancing shall be:
Per day, $15.
Per week, $25
Per month, $50
Per year, according to the floor space capacity of such place or building, at the rate of $25 for each 1,000 square feet or fraction thereof, provided that the minimum annual license fee shall be $50 and the maximum annual license fee shall be $150.
However, the provisions of this section shall not apply to any dance sponsored or operated by any religious, charitable or nonprofit corporation of the State of New Jersey, or by any public school when held under the supervision of the Board of Education of the Borough of Woodstown.
All public dance halls shall be at all times kept in a clean and sanitary condition, and all rooms, stairways and other passages used in connection therewith shall be kept sanitary and well lighted. It shall be the duty of the Chief of Police or officer in charge to order and cause any dance hall or place where any public dance is held to be vacated whenever, in his judgment, any provision of this section is being violated therein, or whenever indecent acts shall be permitted therein or whenever any disorder shall take place therein.
Any dance which, in the opinion of the Chief of Police or officer in charge, is vulgar or immodest may be prohibited by him by proper rules or regulations. No patron or attendant shall dance or attempt to dance or take part in dancing any such vulgar or immodest dance in any public dance hall.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, the Public Safety Committee of the Borough Council shall be authorized to promulgate proper and reasonable regulations, from time to time, in relation to dancing in public dance halls. Copies of such rules or regulations shall be printed and posted in every public dance hall or other place where a public dance shall be held, and shall be posted therein by the licensee in a conspicuous place. The violation of any such rule or regulation by any licensee hereunder or by any patron or attendant of any public dance shall be considered as a violation of this chapter.
Dancing shall not be permitted to continue in any public dance hall, building or place between 2:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. This prohibition shall apply to licensees, attendants and patrons.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, any license or permit issued hereunder may be revoked or suspended, after notice and hearing, by the Chief of Police for the causes hereinafter specified, and such license when so suspended or revoked shall not be reissued until at least six months have elapsed:
Violation of any federal, state or municipal laws by any licensee, patron or attendant.
Violation of any rules or regulations issued pursuant to this chapter, by any licensee, patron or attendant.
In any event where the operation of any public dance hall encourages or leads to gatherings of disorderly persons or to disorderly conduct, whether on or off the licensed premises.
Any other reasonable cause.
In any event where a written protest against the continued operation of any public dance as licensed by this chapter shall be filed with the Borough Clerk, signed by at least 25% of the owners of property located within 500 feet of the location of the said public dance, the Public Safety Committee of the Borough Council shall, upon written notice to the licensee and to the objectors, set a date, not less than 10 nor more than 20 days after the filing of the protest, for a public hearing on the protest. After hearing the testimony of all interested parties, it may revoke such license if, in its opinion, it appears from the evidence that operation of the public dance has been detrimental to public health, property values or business conditions in the immediate area, or that it has led to disorderly conduct or that it has resulted in violations of the provisions of this chapter or of any other laws of the Borough of Woodstown or the State of New Jersey.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, the Borough Clerk may issue special one-night permits, after investigation by the Chief of Police and, approval by the Borough Council, to any fraternal, social, charitable, religious or educational organization to sponsor any public dance either at any public dance hall licensed hereunder or at some other place in the borough, to be designated in said permit. Application for such special permit need not comply with the provisions of this chapter, other than the provisions of §§ 51-6 and 51-7, except that the Borough Clerk shall designate in any such special permit the date, place and hours when such dancing shall be carried on.
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be subject to a fine not to exceed $500 or imprisonment for a term not to exceed 90 days, or both.