[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Dumont as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Traffic and parking — See Ch. 21.
Dangerous and unfit buildings — See Ch. 148.
Uniform construction codes — See Ch. 182.
Fire prevention — See Ch. 216.
Littering — See Ch. 256.
Parking of recreational vehicles — See Ch. 317.
Solid waste — See Ch. 368.
Abandoned vehicles — See Ch. 423.
Zoning — See Ch. 455.
Multiple-family housing standards — See Ch. 514.
Article I Multiple-Dwelling Property Maintenance Standards
Article II Property Maintenance Standards
[Adopted 6-29-1976 by Ord. No. 841]
This article shall be known as "The Multiple-Dwelling Property Maintenance Code of the Borough of Dumont" and may be referred to in this article in the short form as "this code."
It is hereby found and declared that there exist in the Borough buildings and premises used for multiple dwelling purposes which are, or may become, substandard with respect to structural integrity, equipment or maintenance, and further, that such conditions, including but not limited to structural deterioration, lack of exterior maintenance, infestation, lack of minimal essential heating, plumbing, storage, or refrigeration equipment, lack of maintenance or upkeep of essential utilities and facilities, existence of fire hazards, inadequate provisions for light and air, unsanitary conditions, and overcrowding, constitute a menace to the health, safety welfare and reasonable comfort of the citizens and inhabitants of the Borough of Dumont.
The purposes of this code is to protect the public health, safety and welfare by establishing standards governing the maintenance, condition and occupancy of premises situated in the Borough, used or intended to be used or designed to be used, in whole or in part, for multiple dwelling residential purposes; to establish standards governing utilities, facilities and other physical components and conditions essential to make such premises fit for human habitation or occupancy and use; to fix certain responsibilities and duties upon owners and operators, and distinct and separate responsibilities upon occupants; to prevent blighting conditions; to authorize and establish procedures for the inspection of such premises; to correct violations or to fix penalties for the violations of this code; to provide for the right of access across adjoining premises to permit repairs. This code is hereby declared to be remedial and essential for the public interest and it is intended that this code be liberally construed to effectuate the purposes as stated herein.
Buildings affected by this code. Every building and the premises on which it is situated in the Borough used, or intended to be used or designed to be used, in whole or in part, for multiple dwelling residential purposes, including two-family non-owner-occupied houses and any other building housing three or more dwelling units, shall comply with the provisions of this code, whether or not any such building shall have been constructed, altered or repaired before or after the enactment of this code, and irrespective of any permits or licenses which shall have been issued for the use or occupancy of any such building or premises for the construction, alteration or repair of any such building or for the installation or repair or equipment or facilities therein or thereon prior to the effective date of this code. This code establishes standards for the occupancy and use of all such buildings and premises and does not replace, modify or lessen standards otherwise established for the construction, repair, alteration or use of such buildings and premises, equipment or facilities contained therein or thereon, except as provided in Subsection B hereof. Where there is mixed occupancy of such buildings and premises, the residential and nonresidential uses thereof shall be regulated by and be subject to the applicable provisions of both this code and the Building, Zoning and other applicable ordinances of the Borough.
Higher standards to prevail in case of conflict with other ordinances or laws. In any case where the provisions of this code impose a higher standard than that set forth in any other ordinance of the Borough or law of the State of New Jersey applicable thereto, then the standards as set forth herein shall prevail, but if the provisions of this code impose a lesser standard than such other ordinance of the Borough or law of the State of New Jersey, then the higher standard contained in such other ordinance or law shall prevail.
Issuance and renewal of other permits and licenses. After the date of enactment hereof, all licenses, permits and certificates of occupancy relating to such buildings and premises which may be issued or renewed pursuant to any other ordinance of the Borough, may be issued or renewed only upon compliance with this code as well as compliance with the ordinance under which such licenses and permits may be granted or renewed.
Enforcement and compliance with other ordinances. Compliance with this code shall not constitute a defense against the violation of any provision of any other ordinance of the Borough applicable to any building or premises.
Owner and operator. Owners and operators shall have all the duties and responsibilities as prescribed in this code and the regulations promulgated pursuant thereto, unless specifically set forth to the contrary, and no owner or operator shall be relieved from any such duty and responsibility nor be entitled to defend against any charge of violation thereof by reason of the fact that the occupant is also responsible therefor and in violation thereof. This section shall not be construed to impose liability upon any owner or operator for violations caused by an occupant and of which the said owner or operator did not have actual notice.
[Amended 3-14-1978 by Ord. No. 862]
Occupant. Occupants shall have all the duties and responsibilities as prescribed in this code and all the regulations promulgated in connection therewith, and the occupant shall not be relieved from any such duty or responsibility nor be entitled to defend against any charge of violation thereof by reason of the fact that the owner or operator is also responsible therefor and in violation thereof.
Contract not to alter responsibilities. Unless expressly provided to the contrary in this code, the respective obligations and responsibilities of the owner and operator on one hand, and the occupant on the other, shall not be altered or affected by any agreement or contract by and between any of the aforesaid or between them and their parties.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ABANDONED MOTOR VEHICLE
- A motor vehicle exposed to public view which does not have a valid registration and license plate and has no inspection sticker or an inspection sticker which has elapsed for more than 30 days of has been inoperative for more than 30 days because of the lack of essential components such as an engine or wheels.
- Any enclosed space which contains one or more of the following, i.e., bathtub, shower, water closet, lavatory, water closet compartment, washbowl, sink or fixtures serving similar purposes.
- BOARDING HOUSE
- Any building in which there are one or more independent rooms for sleeping, whether furnished or unfurnished, available for occupancy by five or more persons for compensation and where there are not individual eating facilities. Such buildings shall be governed by the provisions applicable to multiple-family dwelling.
- The Borough of Dumont, County of Bergen, State of New Jersey.
- A combination of materials intended to form a safe and stable structure, used for multiple dwelling residential purposes and including any accessory buildings and appurtenances belonging thereto or usually enjoyed therewith.
- The condition of a building, or part thereof, characterized by holes, breaks, rot, crumbling, cracking, peeling, rusting or other evidence of physical decay, lacking structural maintenance, whether interior or exterior.
- DWELLING UNIT
- Any room or group of rooms forming a single habitable unit which includes or is intended to include living, sleeping, bathing, toilet and cooking facilities.
- EXPOSED TO PUBLIC VIEW
- Any building or premises, or part thereof, which may be lawfully viewed by the public, or any member thereof, from a sidewalk, street, alleyway, parking lot or from any adjoining or neighboring premises.
- EXTERIOR OF PREMISES
- Those portions of a building which are exposed to public view or the elements and the open space of any premises not occupied by any building.
- Animal, vegetable and other organic waste, resulting from handling, preparing, cooking and consumption of food or other products. (See also "refuse" and "rubbish.")
- HABITABLE ROOM
- A room occupied by one or more persons for living, eating or sleeping, but not including bathrooms, laundries, serving and storage pantries, corridors, foyers, vestibules, cellars, boiler and utility rooms or spaces that are not used frequently or for an extended period of time or areas that have less than 50 square feet of floor area.
- The presence of insects, rodents, vermin or other pests on or within the premises.
- MIXED OCCUPANCY
- Any building containing two or more dwelling units and also having a portion thereof devoted to nonresidential uses. The applicable provisions for residential buildings shall control the residential portions thereof and the applicable provisions for nonresidential buildings shall control the nonresidential portion thereof.
- MULTIPLE-FAMILY DWELLING
- A building designed for, arranged for, or actually containing three or more dwelling units for residential purposes.
- The use of this word refers only to the nondwelling use of a mixed occupancy building.
- (1) Any public nuisance known at common law or in law or equity jurisprudence, or as provided by the Statutes of the State of New Jersey, or the ordinances of the Borough.
- (2) Physical conditions dangerous to human life or detrimental to health of persons including, but not limited to, any inadequately protected well, shaft, basement, excavation; abandoned motor vehicle, structurally unsound fence, wall or building, lumber, trash, debris, or vegetation such as poison ivy, oak, sumac, or ragweed or other condition which is or may be detrimental to the safety or health of persons, as well as anything which might constitute an attractive nuisance to children.
- (3) Inadequate or unsanitary sewerage or plumbing facilities in violation of this code.
- (4) Fire hazards.
- (5) Electrical hazards.
- Any person or persons, including the owner, having actual possession of, and using a building or any part thereof.
- Any person who has charge, care, or control of a building or premises, or part thereof, whether acting with or without the knowledge and consent of the owner.
- Any person who, alone or jointly or severally with others shall have legal or equitable title to any premises, with or without accompanying actual possession thereof; or shall have charge, care, or control of any dwelling unit, as owner or agent of the owner, or as executor, administrator, trustee, receiver or guardian of an estate, or as a mortgagee in possession regardless of how such possession was obtained. Any person who is a lessee, a sublessee or assignee of all or any part of the building shall be deemed to be a co-owner with the lessor and shall have joint responsibility over the portion of the premises sublet or assigned by such lessee.
- A lot, plot, or parcel of land and any buildings located thereon, including, but not limited to, sidewalks, yards and parking areas.
- All putrescible and nonputrescible solid wastes (except body wastes), including but not limited to brush, weeds, broken glass, debris of any description, garbage, rubbish, ashes, street cleanings, dead animals, abandoned motor vehicles and solid market and industrial wastes.
- Combustible and noncombustible waste materials, excluding garbage, but including liquid commercial and industrial wastes.
- The deterioration, decay, or damage caused by exposure to the elements.
Meaning of certain words. Whenever, in describing or referring to any person, party, matter or thing, any word importing the singular number or masculine gender is used, the same shall be understood to include and to apply to several persons or parties as well as to one person and to females as well as males, and to bodies corporate as well as individuals and to several matters and things as well as one matter or thing. The word "shall" shall be applied retroactively as well as prospectively.
Applicability. All of the provisions contained in this section shall be applicable to multiple dwelling residential buildings and premises, except where specifically provided to the contrary.
Exterior of premises: nuisances and hazards. The exterior of any premises shall be kept free of refuse, nuisances and any hazards to the safety of occupants, pedestrians and other persons utilizing the premises, and free of unsanitary conditions. It shall be the duty of the owner or operator to keep the premises free of or remove, abate and correct the premises against such conditions, which include but are not limited to the following:
Defective chimneys and flue and vent attachments thereto. Chimneys and flue and vent attachments thereto, if used, shall be maintained structurally sound, free from defects and so maintained as to capably perform at all times the functions for which they were designed and constructed. Chimneys, flues, gas vents and other draft producing equipment shall provide sufficient draft to develop the rated output of the connected equipment, shall be structurally safe, durable, smoke-tight, and capable of withstanding the temperature and action of flue gases.
Unsafe exterior porches, landings, balconies, stairs, and fire escapes. In all buildings, exterior porches, landings, balconies, stairs and fire escapes shall be provided with banisters or railings properly designed and kept structurally sound, in good repair, well painted or otherwise provided with a protective treatment to prevent deterioration, and kept free from defects and hazards to public health safety.
Refuse. All refuse shall be kept in secure containers pursuant to the sanitary code of the Borough.
Hazardous natural growth. Trees and limbs or other natural growth which constitute a hazard or may be dangerous to persons in the vicinity thereof.
Overhangings. Loose, overhanging and projection objects which by reason of location above ground level constitute dangers to persons in the vicinity thereof.
Dangerous unsanitary conditions. Holes, excavations breaks, projections, icy conditions, uncleared snow, obstructions and excretion of pets or other animals on paths, sidewalks, walks, driveways, parking lots and parking areas, and other parts of the exterior of the premises which are accessible to and used by persons having access to such premises.
Recurring accumulation of stormwater. Adequate runoff drains shall be provided and maintained in accordance with applicable Borough ordinances to eliminate recurrent accumulations of stormwater.
Sources of infestation. Any conditions which may encourage the growth and development of insects, rodents, vermin or other pests.
Defective walls. Foundation walls and retaining walls shall be kept structurally sound, free from defects and damage, and capable of sustaining imposed loads safely.
Awnings and marquees. Any awning or marque and its accompanying structural members which extend over any street, sidewalk or other portion of the premises shall be maintained in good repair and shall be so maintained as to not constitute a nuisance or a safety hazard. In the event any such awning or marquee is not properly maintained in accordance with the foregoing, it shall, together with its supporting member, be removed forthwith. Where such awning or marquee is exposed to public view, it shall be maintained in good condition and shall not show evidence of excessive weathering, ripping, tearing or other deterioration. Nothing herein shall be construed to authorize any encroachment of an awning, marquee or its accompanying structural members on streets, sidewalks, or other parts of the public domain.
Sidewalks, driveways, etc. All sidewalks, driveways, walkways and entrance stairways shall be maintained in a safe condition, such as will not constitute a hazard to persons using the premises.
Waterways and brooks, etc. All waterways, brooks, drainage ditches and swales, to the extent that the same are located on any subject premises, shall be maintained free of obstructions which would impede the natural flow of water.
Exterior of premises: repair and maintenance. The exterior of every building or accessory building (including fences) shall be maintained in good repair. They shall be maintained free of conditions reflective of extensive deterioration and subnormal maintenance characterized by such conditions as broken panes of glass, openings unprotected by doors or windows; loose or missing siding or roof coverings affecting five percent or more of the outside surface, instances of rotting wood or crumbling stones or bricks, defective or inoperable leaders or gutters which permit water damage to the property, to the end that the property itself may be preserved, safety and fire hazards eliminated and the general welfare of the neighborhood protected.
Removal of refuse. If the owner or operator of any lands or buildings in the Borough shall fail or neglect to remove refuse within 10 days after notice to remove same, in the manner and within the time provided, the Public Officer may, in addition to such other remedies provided herein, cause same to be removed by the Borough. In such cases, the Public Officer shall certify the cost thereof to the Mayor and Council, which shall examine the certificate, and if found correct and reasonable shall by resolution approve the cost as shown thereon to be charged against said lands. The amount so charged shall become a lien upon such lands and shall be added to and become and form part of the taxes next to be assessed and levied upon such lands, the same to bear interest at the same rate as taxes, and shall be collected and enforced in the same manner as are taxes.
Single-family, two-family, multifamily residence and commercial properties. The exterior of all single-family, two-family, multifamily residences and commercial properties and premises shall be maintained so as to facilitate the elimination of health, safety, quality of life, and fire hazards and so that the appearance of the premises and all buildings thereon shall reflect a level of maintenance in keeping with the standards of the neighborhood, including but not limited to the following:
[Amended 11-23-2010 by Ord. No. 1424; 2-21-2017 by Ord. No. 1513]
Storage of commercial and industrial material. There shall not be stored or used at a location exposed to public view equipment and materials relating to commercial or business uses.
Front, rear, or side yard parking. No person shall park, stop or stand any motor vehicle or permit or suffer the same to be done in any front, rear, or side yard area of any dwelling building except on driveway and parking areas located and installed in compliance with applicable Borough ordinances.
Prohibited actions: mixed-occupancy buildings and premises. The exterior of mixed-occupancy buildings and premises shall be maintained so that the appearance thereof shall not constitute a blighting effect upon neighboring properties nor an element leading to a progressive deterioration and downgrading of neighboring properties, including the following:
Signs and billboards. All permanent signs and billboards exposed to public view shall be maintained in good repair. Any sign or billboard which has weathered excessively or faded or the paint on which has excessively peeled or cracked shall, with its supporting members, be removed forthwith or put into a state of good repair. All nonoperative or broken electrical signs shall be repaired or shall, with their supporting members, be removed forthwith.
Windows and window display areas. All windows exposed to public view shall be kept clean and free of marks and foreign substance. Except when utilized for display purposes, no materials stock or inventory shall be permitted in window display areas exposed to public view unless such areas are first screened by drapes, venetian blinds or other means of making the windows opaque. All screening of interiors shall be maintained in a clean and attractive manner and in a good state of repair.
Repair and painting of exteriors of buildings. All store fronts and the exteriors of all mixed-occupancy buildings shall be kept in good repair, painted where required or otherwise provided with protective treatment sufficient to prevent deterioration and shall not constitute a safety hazard or nuisance. In the event repairs to a store front become necessary, such repairs shall be made in harmony with the original design with the same materials or appearance similar to those used in the construction of the store front in such a manner as to permanently repair the damaged area or areas.
Exterior gardens shall be maintained in a neat and orderly manner and any grass or bushes shall be trimmed as required to maintain a neat appearance.
Multiple-family, mixed occupancy and nonresidential buildings and premises. All multiple-family and mixed occupancy buildings and their premises shall be kept free of nuisances or other conditions which may constitute health, safety or fire hazards for occupants, neighbors or the general public. The owner, operator or occupant of every such building and its premises shall, along with other responsibilities necessary to attain these objectives:
Maintain all floors and supporting structural members in sound condition capable of safely bearing imposed loads.
Cover bathroom and kitchen floors with water-resistant materials.
Supply properly fitting screens in good repair for each exterior door and window in multiple-family dwellings. Such screens shall be installed and maintained by the owner or operator from May 1st to October 1st of each year. Window screens shall not be required in those windows provided with air-conditioning units or in centrally air-conditioned dwellings.
Keep walls and ceilings in good repair, free from cracks, breaks, loose plaster and similar conditions. Walls and ceilings shall be protected with paint, paper, sealing material or other covering so they may be clean, free of visible foreign matter, sanitary and well maintained at all times. No paints containing lead shall be used.
Maintain interior stairs structurally sound and free from defects, provided handrailings or banisters for all stairs, balconies, fire escapes and stairwells keeping then securely attached, maintained free from defects and of sufficient height to guard against accidents and be appropriate for use by persons of normal heights, provide adequate lighting for all stairs with control switches operable from each story except in those cases where artificial lighting for hall ways and common areaways is supplied in accordance with state law from a master control switch.
Maintain all connections of plumbing fixtures to the sanitary sewer through lines which are free of leaks, corrosion or deterioration and provide unobstructed passage from the plumbing facilities within the dwelling to the sanitary sewer.
In every building containing four or more dwelling units, the owner shall provide or designate a superintendent, janitor, caretaker or housekeeper who shall at all times maintain the premises in compliance with this article, the Building Code and Health and Sanitary Ordinances of the Borough and shall keep the premises free from filth, garbage, refuse and rubbish, and who shall cause garbage and refuse to be placed out for collection. Said person shall be regularly as prescribed by the Sanitary Code available on the premises to perform the foregoing duties.
In the event said superintendent, janitor, caretaker or housekeeper shall not reside in said premises, the owner shall make such person's name, address, telephone number and work schedule known to all tenants, and shall register the same with the Borough Clerk, and shall also make available and known to all tenants and the Borough Clerk the name of an alternative individual who shall be responsible during the absence of said superintendent, janitor, caretaker or housekeeper.
In any premises containing 12 or more dwelling units, rooming units or combination thereof, said superintendent, janitor, caretaker or housekeeper shall reside on the premises. Where more than one building on adjoining premises or premises in near proximity to each other are in common ownership or under common management or maintenance supervision, the requirements contained herein shall apply separately to each building unless the owner or manager thereof can demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Public Officer that proper operation of the premises and provision of all essential services and facilities as required by the Borough can be provided by a resident superintendent, janitor, caretaker or housekeeper of one building who shall assume responsibility for the other building or buildings adjoining or in near proximity to his place of residence. The governing body of the Borough of Dumont shall have the authority to suspend the enforcement of this section for a period not exceeding one year from the effective date of this article upon written application from the owner or operator of an existing building for good cause shown.
Said superintendent, janitor, caretaker or housekeeper shall have sufficient knowledge, competence and responsibility and shall have authority from the owner or operator to attend or to arrange for continual operation of all essential services and facilities required under this article. Where violations arise under this article and by reason of same, the Public Officer finds that such person is not capable or competent to regularly perform the duties required by this article, said Public Officer shall order the owner or operator to provide that a suitable person be placed in charge and be responsible for said premises.
The failure of any superintendent, janitor, caretaker or housekeeper to comply with the provisions of this article, even in disobedience of instructions, shall not relieve the owner or operator from the duties and responsibilities imposed by this article.
The owners and management of every building having four or more dwelling units shall file with the Borough Clerk in the month of January in each year a statement containing the name and address of the owner, the name and address of the lessor if other than the owner, the name and address of the agent, if any, in charge of the premises and the name and address of the person authorized to receive notice or process under this code.
Every dwelling unit having its own cooking facilities shall contain a minimum floor area of 150 square feet for the initial occupant and 100 square feet for each additional occupant, except for the purpose of this section, children under one year of age shall not be counted as occupants.
Occupancy of dwelling units having only one habitable room shall be limited to two persons. Children under one year of age shall not be counted as occupants.
Occupants shall not, after notice as required hereunder, occupy or continue to occupy premises which are substandard by reason of the failure of the dwelling unit occupied by them or of the building or premises to conform to and comply with the requirements hereunder.
The owner or operator shall, prior to leasing any dwelling unit, ascertain the number of persons that shall occupy each dwelling unit. If the number of persons exceeds the requirements of this code, the owner or operator shall not permit such persons to occupy the dwelling unit.
If at any time it is ascertained that the number of occupants in a dwelling unit exceeds the requirements of this code causing a violation thereof, the owner or operator shall, upon receipt of a notice of violation, take all steps necessary to eliminate said violation. If the owner or operator is unable to eliminate the violation by peaceable means within the period of time specified in said notice, he shall commence within such period, legal action to dispossess, evict or eject the occupants who cause the violation. No further action hereunder shall then be taken against the owner or operator so long as such legal action is pending in court and is prosecuted expeditiously and in good faith.
When required. No owner or operator of a multiple-family dwelling shall permit the occupancy of a dwelling unit by a tenant not previously occupying said dwelling unit without first obtaining an inspection certificate from the Public Officer. All inspections required hereunder shall be made within five days after receipt of a written request from the owner or operator.
Issuance of certificate. An inspection certificate shall be issued by the Public Officer only after examination of the dwelling unit and favorable findings as to matters which are embraced in this code and other applicable laws of the Borough and State of New Jersey.
Application and fees. Application for an inspection certificate shall be submitted in writing by the owner to the Public Officer not later than 10 days prior to a new tenancy; provided, however, that the said written application procedure may be dispensed with if the owner or operator gives oral notice of a vacancy to the Public Officer at least 10 days prior to a new tenancy. The Public Officer shall have the authority to waive the ten-day period for such oral notice; provided, however, that the inspection is accomplished prior to a new tenancy. There shall be no fee for the first inspection made by the Public Officer. In the event reinspection is required by reason of a failure to comply with the terms of this code or any other law, the applicant shall submit a fee of $10 prior to each such reinspection. This cost shall not be passed on to the prospective tenant.
[Amended 3-14-1978 by Ord. No. 862]
Occupancy pending repairs.
If, in the opinion of the Public Officer, only minor violations are found to exist after inspection, a new occupant may be permitted to conditionally occupy the dwelling unit. Where a dwelling unit is occupied prior to the issuance of an inspection certificate, the owner or operator shall make all required repairs within 15 days after mailing of written notification from the Public Officer. Such occupancy, however, shall at all times, be subject to the issuance of an inspection certificate. Where occupancy has been permitted under this provision, the owner or operator shall obtain a signed statement from the occupant acknowledging that such occupancy is subject to an inspection certificate and granting permission to the Public Officer to enter into the premises at a later date for the purpose of reinspection.
Minor violations shall be construed to mean violations not exceeding a total cost of $200 and which do not present an immediate danger to the health, safety or welfare of the occupant.
Identification and conduct of inspectors. The Public Officer or his agent acting as an Inspector, shall be supplied with official identification and shall exhibit such identification when entering any dwelling unit, building or part thereof, subject to this code. Such persons making inspections shall conduct themselves as to avoid intentional embarrassment or inconvenience to the occupant. The purpose of the visit shall be explained to the occupant.
All parts of the premises under the control of an occupant shall be kept in a clean, sanitary and safe condition by the occupant and the occupant shall refrain from performing any act which would render any part of the entire building and premises unclean, unsanitary, unsafe or which would prevent the owner or operator from performing any duty required hereunder.
Public Officer. The Borough Council shall designate the Public Officer who shall serve for a term of one year, to exercise the powers prescribed by this code. The Public Officer may appoint or designate such other public officials or employees of the Borough who have such background and training necessary to perform such of his functions and powers under this code as he deems necessary for its enforcement. The Public Officer may be the Building Inspector. The first Public Officer shall serve for a term ending December 31, 1976. All subsequent Public Officers shall be appointed for a one-year term commencing on January 1 and ending on December 31.
Inspections. All nonresidential and public areas of multiple-family dwellings and premises within the Borough covered by this code shall be subject to inspection from time to time by the Public Officer to determine the condition thereof in order that he may perform his duty of safeguarding the health and safety of the persons occupying the same and of the general public. For the purpose of making such inspections, the Public Officer is hereby authorized to enter, with the express consent of the occupant, examine and survey at all reasonable times all such premises; provided, however, that such entries are made in such manner as to cause the least possible inconvenience to the persons in possession.
Search warrant. If the Public Officer is denied the right of inspection he may, upon affidavit establishing good cause, apply to the Municipal Court or such other court of competent jurisdiction for a search warrant to permit entry into the premises in question.
Notice and hearing where violation discovered.
Where a violation of this code is found to exist or upon petition of at least five Borough residents and investigation by the Public Officer, a written notice from the Public Officer shall be served on the person or persons responsible for the correction thereof.
The notice shall specify the violation or violations committed, what must be done to correct or abate same, a reasonable period of time not to exceed 30 days to make such corrections, the right of the person served to request a hearing, and that the notice shall become an order of the Public Officer 10 days after service unless a hearing is requested pursuant to this article. The thirty-day time limit set forth herein shall not be effective where specific time limits are set forth in other sections of this code.
Notice may be served personally on an owner, operator or occupant or agent for the owner or operator as set forth in § 306-10F of this code. Service may also be made by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the last known address of the person or by posting the notice in a conspicuous place upon the premises where the owner or lessor has failed to register, pursuant to § 306-10F. Where the notice is directed to an occupant, service may also be made by posting same on the door or entrance to the area he occupies.
Ten days from the date of service of a notice, the notice shall constitute a final order unless any person affected by the notice requests a hearing thereon and served a written requested within the ten-day period in person or by mail on the Public Officer. Such request for a hearing shall set forth briefly the grounds or reasons on which the request for a hearing is based and the factual matters contained in the notice of violation which are to be disputed at the hearing. The Public Officer, upon receipt of the request, shall within 30 days therefrom and upon five days notice to the party aggrieved set the matter down for hearing.
At any hearing required hereunder, a Hearing Board shall conduct/decide issues presented to it.
Said Hearing Board shall consist of the following members of which three members shall constitute a quorum:
Building Inspector or his delegate.
Fire Marshal or his delegate.
Health Officer of the Board of Health or his delegate.
Two citizens of the Borough who shall be appointed by the Mayor with the consent of the Council for a term of three years each, except that the terms of the first two members shall initially expire on December 31, 1977 and December 31, 1978.
If a vacancy shall occur otherwise than by expiration of term, it shall be filled by appointment as above provided for the unexpired term.
If the Building Inspector is the Public Officer, he or his delegate shall be disqualified from acting as a member of the Hearing Board and a third citizen shall be appointed in his place and stead for a term of one year by the Mayor with the consent of the Council.
The Hearing Board shall be vested with all the powers provided by law to compel the attendance of witnesses and parties in interest by issuance and service of subpoena, to require by subpoena the production of books, records or other documents at any such hearing which may be pertinent to matters to be determined by it and to enforce any such subpoena or secure any other for the enforcement of any such subpoena as provided by law. A determination shall be made within 10 days from the completion of the hearing. The Hearing Board shall issue an order either incorporating the determinations and directions contained in the notice, modifying the same or withdrawing the notice.
The Public Officer or the Hearing Board, where necessary, may extend the time for correction or abatement of the violations for an additional period of time not to exceed 30 days, except where major capital improvements or renovations are involved, in which instance the time for completion may be extended for a period not to exceed 90 days beyond the expiration date of the original notice.
Where the violation or condition existing on the premises are of such a nature as to constitute an immediate threat to life and limb unless abated without delay, the Public Officer may either abate the violation or condition immediately or order the owner, operator or occupant to abate the violation or condition within a period of time not to exceed three days, and upon failure to do so, the Public Officer shall abate the condition immediately thereafter.
Where abatement of any nuisance, as nuisance is defined herein, correction of a defect in the premises or the maintenance of the premises in a proper condition so as to comply with the requirements of any municipal ordinances or state law applicable thereto requires expending Borough monies therefor, the Public Officer shall present a report of the work proposed to be done to accomplish the foregoing to the Mayor and Council with an estimate of the cost thereof along with a summary of the proceedings undertaken by the Public Officer to secure compliance, including notices served upon the owners, operators, lessors or agents, as the case may be, hearings and order of the Hearing Board with reference thereto. The Mayor and Council may thereupon by resolution authorize the abatement of the nuisance, correction of the defect or work necessary to place the premises in proper condition and in compliance with ordinances of the Borough and laws of the state. The Public Officer may thereafter proceed to have the work performed in accordance with the said resolution at Borough expense not to exceed the amount specified in the resolution, and shall upon completion thereof submit a report of the monies expended and costs to the Mayor and Council. After review of the same, the Mayor and Council may approve the said expenses and costs and they shall become a lien against the said premises and shall be added to and become and form a part of the taxes next to be assessed and levied upon such lands, the same to bear interest at the same rate as taxes and shall be collected and enforced in the same manner as are taxes. A copy of the resolution approving the said expenses and costs shall be certified by the Mayor and Council and filed with the Tax Collector, and a copy of this report and resolution shall be sent by certified mail to the owner.
Public Officer may act as custodian. In addition to other remedies provided herein where the Public Officer has issued an order requiring the abatement of the nuisance, correction of a defective condition or the maintenance of the premises in a proper condition so as to conform to the ordinances of the Borough and laws of the state applicable thereto, and the owner, operator, lessor or agent charged with the premises has failed to comply therewith, the Public Officer may for the purposes of correcting any of the foregoing conditions, act as custodian of any building or structure and may as custodian, enter into and take care of the premises and supervise the abatement of any nuisance, correction of defect or placing of the premises in compliance with municipal ordinances and state laws. For the performance of the duties of custodian, the Borough shall receive for the services from the owner, operator and lessor of the premises, compensation approved by the Mayor and Council not exceeding $5 a day per dwelling unit or $30 a week per dwelling unit in the premises, whichever is less, as costs and expense, the same to be certified and collected as provided in § 305-14E(6) hereof.
Appointment of receiver. Where the owner, operator or lessor of the building who is required to register hereunder violates this code or any other municipal ordinance pertaining to said structure or fails to abate any violation of this code, or violates an order of the Public Officer with respect thereto, the Borough Attorney, upon resolution duly approved by the Mayor and Council, shall commence an action in the Superior Court seeking appointment of the Public Officer as Receiver ex officio of the rents and income from said property. Said rents and income shall be collected by said Receiver and shall be expended and allocated to:
Secure compliance with the ordinances of the Borough and laws of the State as set forth in the order of the Public Officer; and
Be utilized to defray such costs and expenses of the receivership as may be adjudged by the Superior Court; and
Be applied towards payment to the Borough of any fines or penalties with costs which may have been imposed on the owner, operator or lessor for violation of the ordinances of the Borough and which have remained unpaid.
Who may apply. Where any owner, operator or occupant is required to make repairs or otherwise improve his property and is unable to comply with this code without having right of access to the building or premises through or cross adjoining premises not owned by him or under control, and where right of access has been refused the owner, operator or occupant, or where the owner or person responsible for granting permission cannot be found or located, then upon filing an affidavit setting forth the facts with the Public Officer, the Public Officer shall serve a five-day written notice of hearing in accordance with the provisions for service contained in this code upon the owner, operator or occupant of any adjoining premises affected by the application.
Hearing. On the day fixed for hearing, the Public Officer shall provide opportunity for the owner, operator or occupant of the adjoining property or properties to state why access shall not be granted across such adjoining properties.
Issuance: conditions. If the Public Officer determines that access is necessary to accomplish or complete repairs or improvements necessary for compliance with this code, then the Public Officer shall issue a certificate of necessity setting forth therein the person or persons to whom the certificate shall apply, such conditions as shall be necessary to protect the adjoining property, reasonable time limits during which such certificate shall operate, precautions to be taken to avoid damage and where the Public Officer deems proper, that a bond be procured at the expense, if any, of the person seeking access to secure the adjoining property against damage to persons or property arising out of such rights of access. The bond shall take into consideration the extent, nature and duration of the repairs, the proximity of the improvement on the premises affected and the potential risk of damage thereto. The bond shall be filed with the Public Officer.
Procedure where access refused. Any refusal to comply with this article or any interference with the access to premises pursuant to a certificate issued hereunder, shall be a violation of this code and, in addition to the penalties provided hereunder the Public Officer may upon affidavit, apply to the Municipal Court Judge for a warrant under the procedure set forth in the applicable section of this code authorizing access to the premises under appropriate conditions and circumstances as provided above.
Any person who shall violate any of the provisions of this code shall, upon conviction, be punished by a fine not to exceed $500 or by imprisonment in the county jail for a period not to exceed 90 days or by both such fine and imprisonment; and each violation of any of the provisions of this code and each day the same is violated shall be deemed and taken to be a separate and distinct offense.
[Adopted by Ord. No. 972 (Ch. 15A of the 1970 Revised Ordinances)]
A certain document, three copies of which are on file in the office of the Borough of Dumont, being marked and designated as "The BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, Second Edition," as published by Building Officials and Code Administrators (BOCA) International, Inc., be and is hereby adopted as the Property Maintenance Code of the Borough of Dumont in the County of Bergen in the State of New Jersey for the control of buildings and structures as herein provided; and each and all of the regulations of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, Second Edition, are hereby referred to, adopted, and made a part thereof, as if fully set out in this chapter, except for such additional sections, deletions or amendments as are hereinafter set forth.
Ordinance Nos. 865, 1-63 and 953 of the Borough of Dumont entitled, "An Ordinance to establish a Commercial Property Maintenance Code in and for the Borough of Dumont"; 1-63 entitled "Borough of Dumont Multiple Housing Code 1963" and Ordinance No. 953, "An Ordinance Amending Article 1, Sections 15A-1 through 15A-48 of the Revised General Ordinances of the Borough of Dumont, as amended, entitled "Multiple Dwelling Property Maintenance Code" to effectuate amendments to establish same as a residential dwelling property maintenance code" and all other ordinances or parts of ordinances in conflict herewith are hereby repealed.
Nothing in this article or in the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code hereby adopted shall be constructed to affect any suit or proceeding impending in any court, or any rights acquitted, or liability incurred, or any cause or causes of action acquired or existing, under any act or ordinance hereby repealed as cited in § 306-19 of this article; nor shall any just or legal right or remedy of any character be lost, impaired or affected by this chapter.
Section PM-103.1 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Officer," is deleted in its entirety, and the following substituted: "It shall be the duty and responsibility of the Building Code Official and/or Health Officer to enforce the provisions of this code as herein provided."
Section PM-107.1 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Placarding of structure," is modified in that the placard shall bear the following words: "This building is declared unsafe for human occupancy."
Section PM-109.2 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Penalty," is supplemented to state that the penalty shall be a fine of not less than $200 nor more than $1,000, or imprisonment for a term not to exceed 90 days, or both, at the discretion of the court.
[Amended 4-17-2007 by Ord. No. 1336]
Section PM-110.2 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Appeals board," is modified in that the title of said section now reads "Hearing board."
Section PM-111.2 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Unreasonable repairs," is supplemented in that the cost of repair shall be calculated using the latest edition of the Building Valuation Data Report, as published by BOCA International, Inc., and referenced in N.J.A.C. 5:23-3.
Section PM-301.7 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Storage areas," is modified in that any solid screen shall be not less than five feet in height in conformance with Ordinance No. 466, § 4; Ordinance No. 671, § (3); and Ordinance No. 809, § 1, of the Borough of Dumont.
Section PM-302.4.4 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Insect screens," is modified in that food-handling establishments will require insect screens even if their doors swing out.
Section PM-302.4.7 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Guards for basement windows," is supplemented in that any shield or window must be capable of being opened from the inside without a key or special tool.
Section PM-404.5 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Minimum ceiling heights," is modified in that habitable rooms shall have a clear ceiling height over the minimum area required by this code of not less than 7.5 feet.
Section PM-601.1 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Residential buildings," is modified to read as follows: Every dwelling unit must provide heating facilities capable of meeting a room temperature of 68° F. at a point of three feet above the door and three feet from an exterior wall in all habitable rooms, bathrooms and toilet rooms.
Section PM-801.9 of the BOCA Basic Property Maintenance Code/1981, entitled "Caretaker," is supplemented in that the caretaker can either reside on the premises or be readily available in case of an emergency.
Vacant lots. All grass, weeds and similar growth shall be cut from the curbline, or the edge of the pavement when there is no curb, to the rear property line and from side property line to side property line. The height of any said growth shall at no time exceed three inches.
Lots on which structures exist. All grass, weeds and similar growth shall be cut from the curbline, or the edge of the pavement when there is no curb, to the rear property line and from side property line to side property line. The height of said growth shall at no time exceed three inches.