[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of East Rutherford 9-17-1996 by Ord. No. 96-28. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Property maintenance — See Ch. 340, in the Land Use Code.
It has been determined that the use of spray paints and ink markers and other methods to deface public and private property in the Borough of East Rutherford has increased significantly in the past years. Such defacing of property causes a decline in property values and encourages racism and ethnocentrism which can lead to violent criminal acts. The existing laws have failed to deter offenses within the Borough of East Rutherford, requiring specific prohibitions of such acts.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- The drawing, painting, carving, etching or other marking of any nature which defaces, obliterates, covers, alters, damages, mars or destroys the public property or personal property of another. It shall not include the occasional marking of a public sidewalk or street with washable chalk for traditional children's games.
- INDELIBLE MARKER
- Any felt-tip marker, china marker or similar device or implement that contains a fluid which is not water-soluble and which may have a flat or angled writing surface.
- SPRAY PAINT CONTAINER
- Any container or other device which contains paint or other pigmented substance, which is intended to expel the paint or pigment without the aid of additional devices or substances, and includes an aerosol spray paint can as it is commonly known.
No person without the prior consent of the owner shall place, write, paint, draw, inscribe, mark or cause any graffiti to be placed upon any public property or the real or personal property of another.
No person or merchant shall sell or offer for sale or transfer any spray paint container or indelible marker to a minor, unless the minor is accompanied by a parent or legal guardian at the time of the purchase of or transfer of property to said minor.
No person shall possess a spray paint can or indelible marker in any public building, public property or private property with the intent to use the same to deface a building or property absent permission to properly utilize the same.
Any parent, guardian or custodian who is in charge of a minor who is convicted of violating this chapter and has neglected to properly supervise such minor shall be presumed to have aided and assisted, allowed and/or permitted said minor to act in violation of this chapter.
A reward not exceeding $250 may be paid for information leading to the apprehension and conviction of any person violating § 166-3A of this chapter. This reward is payable upon written recommendation of the Chief of Police or his designee to the Mayor and Council, which may authorize payment of reward after its review.
Any person who violates the provisions of § 166-3A or B shall, upon conviction, be subject to a minimum fine of $100, which said fine shall not exceed $500, imprisonment not exceeding 45 days, and as an additional condition of sentencing, the Judge shall impose a requirement to restore the property which has been damaged as a result of the graffiti to the owner's satisfaction or make monetary restitution to the owner for the cost of cleanup incurred by said owner.
Any person convicted of a subsequent violation shall be subject to a minimum fine of $250, which said fine shall not exceed $1,000, imprisonment not to exceed 90 days and restoration of the property to the owner's satisfaction or monetary restitution for the cost of cleanup incurred by said owner.
Within 30 days from the date of enactment of this chapter, all owners of property, both real or personal, shall cause all graffiti to be removed from both real or personal property at their own cost and expense. Any property owner who violates this provision by failing to remove all graffiti from his or its real or personal property within 30 days from the date of enactment of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be subject to a minimum fine of $100.
Subsequent to this thirty-day period, all graffiti placed upon real or personal property shall be removed by the property owner within 14 days, at the property owner's expense. Failure to do so shall subject the property owner to the same penalty set forth in Subsection A above.