[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Passaic 12-24-1982 as Ord. No. 716-82. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Amended 2-28-1991 by Ord. No. 1129-91]
The Health Officer or his designee is designated and is hereby authorized, whenever necessary, to protect the health and safety of residential tenants and to act as an agent for a landlord in engaging a fuel oil dealer to deliver fuel oil at a reasonable price per gallon, not to exceed a maximum 100 gallons, and to refire the burner in order to restore the proper heating of any residential property rented by said landlord to which this chapter is applicable, and the Health Officer or his designee is also authorized to act as agent for the landlord to make repairs and/or have city employees make repairs and/or contract with an outside contractor to make repairs whenever necessary to restore the proper heating to any residential property rented by a landlord to which this chapter is applicable; Provided, however, that at least 12 hours have elapsed, if the outside air temperature is between 33° F. and 55° F., inclusive, or at least four hours have elapsed, if the outside air temperature is 32° F. or less, since the tenant has lodged a complaint with any municipal officer or agency, prior to which complaint a bona fide attempt has been made by the tenant or his representative to notify the landlord of the lack of heat and the landlord has failed to take appropriate action. "Lack of heat" means maintaining less heat than required by N.J.S.A. 26:3-31.
Any fuel oil dealer who delivers fuel oil or refires the burner in accordance with § 165-1 of this chapter may bill the landlord directly, or the City of Passaic may issue a voucher to the fuel oil dealer who delivered the fuel oil for the monetary amount due on the fuel oil delivered and the service charge for refiring the burner, if any. The voucher shall be paid in the manner provided for in the approval and payment of claims pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:5-17.
Any landlord or his agent whose negligence or failure to act results in the City of Passaic acting pursuant to § 165-1 of this chapter shall be liable to a civil penalty of not more than $300 for each affected dwelling unit in the residential property. Such penalty shall be recoverable by the City of Passaic in a civil action by a summary proceeding under the Penalty Enforcement Law (N.J.S.A. 2A:58-1 et seq.). Any action to collect or enforce any such penalty shall be brought in the Superior Court, County District Court or Municipal Court. The amount of such penalty shall be paid to the City of Passaic to be used for general municipal purposes.
In addition to the rights, remedies and penalties set forth in this chapter, the City of Passaic shall also be entitled to all of the remedies and relief enumerated in N.J.S.A. 26:3-31.8.
Neither the City of Passaic nor its employees shall be liable for any damage to any person or property in enforcing this chapter, except for the gross negligence or malfeasance of any municipal official, officer or employee, and under no circumstances shall the City of Passaic be held liable for damages from the lack of heat in the residential property.
The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to owner occupied residential rental properties containing five units or less.