[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Southeast 6-16-1988 by L.L. No. 5-1988. Amendments noted where applicable.]
By the adoption of this chapter, the Town Board of the Town of Southeast, Putnam County, New York, declares its intent in so doing to be to regulate, control and license the activities or businesses known as "auto graveyards," "junkyards" and "secondhand parts collection areas," the processing of used metals for resale and the dumping, storing and disposal of waste, secondhand or used materials of whatever composition. Said Town Board hereby declares that such activities or businesses can constitute a hazard to property and persons and a public nuisance. Such materials may be highly flammable and sometimes explosive. Gasoline tanks on old autos often contain in some quantity combustible gasoline. The engines and other parts of such autos are frequently covered with grease and oil, which is also flammable. The tires, plastic seats, tops and other elements of such autos are also flammable. Batteries and other elements of such autos can contain acids and other matter potentially harmful to humans. These autos frequently contain sharp metal or glass edges or points upon which a human could receive serious cuts and abrasions. These autos can constitute attractive nuisances to children and certain adults. The presence of such junkyards, even in areas zoned for business or industry, is unsightly and tends to detract from the value of surrounding land and property unless such areas are properly maintained and operated.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- A passenger auto, truck, tractor truck, trailer, bus, motorcycle or other vehicle, however propelled, as well as tractors, bulldozers, machinery and equipment.
- The Town Board of the Town of Southeast.
- EXISTING BUSINESS
- A business in operation on or prior to the date of the adoption of this chapter and such a business as is included within the legislative intent of the Board as set forth in § 87-1 of this chapter and for which business application is made for a license under § 87-7 of this chapter within 30 days of the adoption of this chapter.
- OPEN STORAGE
- Any place of storage or deposit, other than junkyards, not within a building, whether or not in connection with another business, of new or used materials, such as but not limited to lumber, machinery, building materials and equipment, rags, paper, rubbish, bottles, glassware, crockery, bags, cloth, rubber, iron, brass, copper, silver, clothing, furniture, used motor vehicles or parts thereof or any repaired, reconstructed, renewed, renovated, partly ruined or damaged materials or merchandise or personal property.
- Any individual, an association, a partnership or a corporation.
No person shall engage in or conduct on real property within the Town of Southeast, either for himself or for and on behalf of any other person, directly or indirectly, as agent, employee or otherwise, any activity or business, either for profit or otherwise, at wholesale or retail, which involves the collection, storage, burning, dumping, disassembling, dismantling, salvaging, sorting or otherwise handling or arranging for sale, storage or disposal or otherwise of bodies, engines or parts of autos or of any other secondhand or used property of whatever material it is composed or any waste material, whether composed of wood, paper, cloth, cardboard, plastics, metals, stone, cement or otherwise, without first obtaining a license therefor as hereinafter provided.
Each applicant for a license hereunder shall execute under oath an application therefor, to be supplied to him by the Town Clerk, which shall contain the following information:
That the applicant is over 21 years of age.
That he is a citizen of the United States.
Whether he has ever been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor and such other facts or evidence as is deemed necessary to establish that he is a person fit and capable of properly conducting the activity or business for which the license is sought.
A description of the exact type of business he intends to conduct.
The nature of the materials he intends to handle.
The number of employees he intends to engage.
The name and address of the owner or owners of the land and the nature of the right of occupancy of the applicant to the use of such land.
At the time of making the application, the applicant shall submit to and file with the Town Clerk a map or plan of the real property upon which he intends to conduct the activity or business for which he is making application for a license hereunder, with the area of such real property which it is proposed to use for such purposes, the location of the fence required hereunder indicated thereon as well as the location of any buildings on such land, the location of any streets or highways abutting or passing through such land and the location of any water, sewer or gas mains or laterals available thereto, as well as the general drainage pattern of such land.
The fee for the initial license shall be as set forth from time to time by resolution of the Town Board, which sum covers not only the cost of issuing the license itself but also the cost of making the necessary inspections of the premises to ascertain compliance with the regulations hereinafter prescribed.
Such license shall be effective from the date of its issuance until the 31st day of December of the year of such issuance, after which a new application for license must be made yearly if the licensee desires to continue such activity or business.
Such license is personal with the licensee. It does not go with the title of the land, nor may it be sold, assigned, transferred or disposed of.
Such license may be revoked by the Board after a public hearing thereon at which the licensee shall have an opportunity to be heard. Upon revocation of a license, the Board may require the removal of autos, parts and materials left on the premises previously licensed.
In the event that an applicant for a license as provided herein shall have been duly issued a valid and effective junk dealer's license by the Supervisor of the Town of Southeast pursuant to the provisions of Article 6 of the New York State General Business Law, then such applicant shall be entitled to and allowed a credit against the above-provided license fee in the amount of $5, such junk dealer's license fee actually paid by such applicant; otherwise, this chapter shall be fully binding upon and applicable to the holder of any such junk dealer's license.
The licensee must personally manage or be responsible for the management of the activity or business for which the license is granted.
The licensee must maintain an office and a sufficient number of employees on the premises to assure the proper and safe conduct of such activity or business, to minimize the fire hazard therefrom and to prevent improper trespass thereon by children and others.
The licensee must erect and maintain a six-foot-high opaque fence of wood or of other material adequate to prohibit the entrance of children and others into the area of the activity or business and to contain within such opaque fence the materials dealt in by the licensee; and if such area abuts a residential area or public street or highway, such opaque fence shall be 25 feet from the boundary line thereof. All the materials dealt in by the licensee shall be kept within such opaque fence at all times.
Inside and adjacent to and contiguous with such fence a strip of land at least 10 feet in width shall be kept free of all dry grass or other growth or other combustible material so as to provide a fire lane or line around the whole area where the activity or business of the licensee is being conducted.
The autos, parts and materials dealt in by the licensee shall be disassembled or dismantled by means other than by burning. They shall be piled or arranged in neat rows so as to permit easy, clear passage through the area.
There shall be maintained at each such place of activity or business for which a license is issued at least one fire extinguisher of approved design and capacity for each 40,000 square feet of area. Each fire extinguisher shall be hung or mounted in a conspicuous place, clearly marked and available.
When the area is not supervised by the licensee or his employees, the fence shall be locked at a secure gate in a secure manner.
Suitable sanitary facilities shall be available, connected to approved public sewers or septic tanks, for the use and convenience of the employees of the licensee as well as the general public visiting the area.
The area of the licensee's activity or business shall not be used as a dump area nor as a place for the burning and disposal of junk or trash.
The Town police, the Town Clerk or the Town Board or any of its representatives shall be granted access to the area of the activity or business of the licensee at all reasonable hours to inspect the same for compliance herewith.
A person presently engaged in or conducting an activity or business such as described herein on real property within the Town of Southeast must, within 30 days after the effective date of this chapter, make an application to the Town Clerk of the Town of Southeast for a license and, at the same time, must file a map or plan of the real property upon which he is conducting such activity or business.
In the application, such applicant shall agree that, if granted the license applied for, he will conduct the activity or business pursuant to the regulations set forth in this section and that, upon his failure to do so, such license may be revoked.
The special provisions provided in this section applicable to a person presently engaged in or conducting an activity or business as described hereinabove are personal, and they may not be enjoyed by any person to whom the licensee may transfer such business or activity nor the land upon which it is situated by gift, sale, devise or otherwise, nor may such licensee make any substantial changes in the area or scope of such activity or business without complying with all the provisions of §§ 87-4 and 87-6 of this chapter.
The fee for the license in the case of a person presently engaged in or conducting an activity or business such as is described herein shall be as set forth from time to time by resolution of the Town Board, and all other provisions in relation to such license as are contained in § 87-5 hereof shall be applicable to such licensee.
If the person conducting such activity or business is not the sole owner thereof, he shall state such fact at the time of making application to the Town Clerk as above provided; and the Town Clerk, at the time of issuing a license to such person, shall send the owners or each of them a notice of the issuance of such license to such person, together with a copy of this chapter.
Inside and adjacent to and contiguous with the boundary lines of adjoining properties owned by others, a strip of land at least 10 feet in width shall be kept free of all dry grass or other growth or other combustible materials so as to provide a fire lane or line around the whole area where the activity or business of the licensee is being conducted.
Operation. Open storage shall be conducted in a manner not to disturb the clean, wholesome and attractive environment which has been declared to be of vital importance to the continued general welfare of the citizens of the Town of Southeast. Premises shall be kept in an orderly condition and shall be properly screened from view.
Fencing. All operations shall be enclosed with a suitable opaque fence approved as to type, height and construction by the Town Board. Materials shall not be stacked inside the fence so as to be visible from any road.
In the event that the applicant for renewal shall have been issued a valid and effective junk dealer's license in this Town pursuant to the provisions of Article 6, § 60, of the New York State General Business Law, then such applicant shall be entitled to and allowed a credit against the above-provided license fee in the amount of $5.
Upon annual expiration of a license issued per § 87-5, an applicant shall apply for renewal of any license issued under this chapter. The applicant for such renewal will file an application as required under § 87-4. The Town Board shall obtain an inspection report filed by the Town Code Enforcement Officer certifying that operating conditions on the property meet all conditions set forth in this chapter prior to renewal of the permit.
[Amended 11-18-2004 by L.L. No. 14-2004]
The violation of any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be punishable by a fine of not more than $250 or imprisonment for not more than 15 days, or both.