[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Cheektowaga 5-4-1992 by L.L. No. 4-1992. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Mass gatherings — See Ch. 160.
It is hereby declared to be in the interest of the public health, safety and welfare of the residents of the Town of Cheektowaga to regulate the operation of dance halls in the town. It has been determined that the unregulated operation of public dance halls may result in disorder, violence, vulgarity and indecency. It is also in the best interests of the town to ensure that public dance halls are conducted in buildings that comply with all building, firesafety and sanitary codes.
The following words, when used in this chapter, shall have the following meanings:
- One or more natural persons, corporations, partnerships, firms, societies, clubs or other associations.
- PUBLIC DANCE
- Any dance, concert or related activity (whether conducted indoors or outdoors) to which the general public is admitted for which an attendance charge or donation is imposed as a condition of attendance.
- PUBLIC DANCE HALL
- Any place (whether inside or outside a building) having an occupancy capacity of 300 or more persons where a public dance, concert or related activity is permitted or conducted as a part of the business of such place.
- The Town of Cheektowaga, excluding those portions of the town which are in the Villages of Depew and Sloan.
No person shall hold any public dance or permit any dancing in any public dance hall within the town unless such public dance hall shall have been licensed as provided in this chapter.
Churches, fire districts, schools, municipal corporations, volunteer fire organizations, veterans organizations and other charitable and not-for-profit organizations shall be exempt from the licensing requirements of this chapter; provided, however, that any profit-making entity which utilizes an exempt entity's premises for a public dance shall comply with the requirements of this chapter.
Application for a license for a public dance hall must be made to the Town Clerk on forms furnished by him, which application shall contain at least the following:
Name, address and telephone number of all owners and tenants of the premises on which a public dance is to be held. Each individual who has a 20% or greater interest in the business or property must be listed.
A statement of whether any of the applicants, their officers, directors, partners or any other person involved in the operation or management of the public dance hall has been convicted in the preceding five years of any crimes involving firearms, gambling, racketeering, controlled substances, sexual offenses, prostitution, assault or contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
A written statement setting forth all measures proposed to ensure that adequate traffic control, crowd protection and security, both inside and outside the premises, will be maintained, and that the ages of patrons admitted to the public dance hall will be monitored.
Proof that the premises upon which a public dance is to be held has a valid certificate of occupancy, a public assembly permit and all other permits required by law.
The name, address and telephone number of the supervisor in charge of the public dance hall.
Permission for the Cheektowaga Police Department to conduct a fingerprint criminal history record investigation of the applicants. Waivers will be signed by each applicant. Such fingerprints will be forwarded to the Division of Criminal Justice Services along with the appropriate processing fee. All processing fees are to be paid by the applicant and the only authorized method of payment will be a United States Postal or American Express money order made out to the Division of Criminal Justice Services.
The annual license fee for a public dance hall shall be $100 and shall be paid in advance at the time of the filing of the application. Such fee shall not be prorated, and the license is not transferable to any other person.
Each license granted for a public dance hall shall expire one year from date of issuance.
An additional fee shall be assessed against a licensee to cover the cost of extraordinary police services provided by the town where the necessity for such extraordinary police services is occasioned by the negligence of the licensee, its officers or employees.
No license for a public dance hall shall be issued until it shall be found that the following requirements will be complied with:
A person must be designated as a dance hall supervisor. The dance hall supervisor must remain on the premises during the time dancing is permitted and until 30 minutes after the end of the dance to ensure that the dance is conducted in an orderly manner.
Adequate security, as determined by the Chief of Police, shall be provided. The number of security personnel required shall be based on the number of patrons attending the public dance, past history of the operations of the public dance hall, etc.
The public dance hall applicant shall maintain adequate liability insurance, as determined from time to time by the Town Board, to cover its operations. The licensee, upon request, shall provide the town with a certified exact copy of such liability insurance.
It shall be the obligation of the licensee to provide proper and adequate illumination of all portions of the public dance hall.
All town police officers, fire inspectors and building inspectors shall have free access to the public dance hall for the purpose of inspection and to enforce compliance with applicable laws and ordinances.
The licensee must possess a permit for a place of assembly, as required, from the Town Fire Inspector and all necessary approvals from the County Health Department.
No person conducting a public dance or person maintaining a public dance hall shall allow a person under the age of 14 years to enter or remain on the premises unless accompanied by a parent or guardian.
No person conducting a public dance or maintaining a public dance hall shall allow a person under the age of 18 years to remain on the premises after 11:00 p.m.
It is the responsibility of the licensee to require identification showing the age of each person admitted to a public dance hall.
The Town Clerk shall deny or revoke an application for a license for a public dance hall if he finds one or more of the following to be true:
An applicant is under the age of 18.
An applicant has failed to answer or falsely answered a question or request for information on the application form provided.
An applicant or an applicant's spouse has been convicted of a provision of this chapter, other than the offense of operating a public dance hall without a license, within two years immediately preceding the application.
An applicant's premises have not been approved by the Health Department, Fire Inspector or Building Inspector.
The license fee required by this chapter has not been paid.
The applicant does not show adequate measures for the protection of the public health, safety and welfare in terms of traffic control, crowd protection and security, both inside and outside the premises, and the monitoring of the ages of patrons admitted to the public dance hall.
The applicant's liability insurance as required by this chapter is canceled or not renewed.
If the Town Clerk denies or revokes a license for a public dance hall, he shall send an applicant written notice via certified mail, return receipt requested, and advise the applicant he may appeal his denial or revocation within 30 days by sending a written request to the Town Board. The Town Board shall then give the applicant a hearing on his request for an appeal.
The Chief of Police, any police officer, building inspector or fire inspector of the Town of Cheektowaga shall have the power to cause a public dance hall where any public dance is being held to be vacated whenever any provision of this chapter is being violated or whenever any indecent or immoral act is committed or whenever any disorder of a gross, violent or vulgar character takes place therein with the knowledge or consent of the licensee, owner or lessee or his agent or other person in charge of the public dance hall.
All public dancing shall be discontinued at or before the hour of 4:00 a.m. on any day on which dancing is allowed.
Any license issued under this chapter shall be posted and kept posted on the licensee's premises in a conspicuous place near the front entrance on the interior of the premises.
The provisions of this chapter shall be administered and enforced by the Chief of Police or any officer of the Police Department of the Town of Cheektowaga.
The provisions of this chapter are severable. If any provision of this chapter or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect any other provisions or applications of this chapter which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application.
Any person who shall violate the provisions of this chapter shall be guilty of an offense and shall be liable for a fine of not less than $250 nor more than $1,000, or imprisonment for a period not to exceed 15 days, or for both fine and imprisonment. Every day or part thereof that such violation shall continue shall be deemed to have been a separate and distinct violation of the provisions of this chapter.