Village of Suffern, NY
Rockland County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Suffern 8-21-2000 by L.L. No. 6-2000. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Brush and weeds — See Ch. 93.
Garbage, rubbish and refuse — See Ch. 150.
Numbering of property — See Ch. 177.
Tree removal — See Ch. 251.

§ 205-1 Purpose; short title.

The purpose of this chapter is to provide basic and uniform property and maintenance standards governing the condition and maintenance of all real property in the Village of Suffern.

§ 205-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
BUILDING
A structure wholly or partially enclosed within exterior walls, or within exterior or party walls, and a roof, affording shelter to persons, animals or property.
COURT
An open and unoccupied space on a lot which is enclosed on at least three sides by walls of a building.
FACADE
The face or front of a building.
INFESTATION
The presence of insects, rodents, vermin or other pests.
JUNKED VEHICLE
Any vehicle, including a trailer, which is without a currently valid license plate or plates and which is either dismantled, partly dismantled, inoperative or in an abandoned condition.
LOT
A plot, tract, premises or parcel of land without buildings or structures located thereon, as surveyed and apportioned for sale or other purpose.
MUNICIPALITY
A County, Town or Village.
PERSON
Any individual, partnership, corporation or other entity.
STRUCTURE
An assembly of materials forming a construction framed of component structural parts, which exists for occupancy or use, including architectural embellishments.
UNOCCUPIED HAZARD
Any building or part thereof which remains unoccupied for a period of more than six months, with either doors, windows or other openings broken, removed, boarded or sealed up.
YARD
An open space on the same lot which contains a building and is located between the building line and the lot line which the particular building line faces.

§ 205-3 Maintenance standards.

A. 
Yards and open areas. The owner, occupant or other person having charge of any premises shall maintain the yards and open areas thereof in accordance with the following requirements:
(1) 
Surface and subsurface water shall be drained to prevent damage to buildings and structures and to prevent the development of stagnant water. Gutters, culverts, catch basins, drain inlets, stormwater sewers and sanitary sewers or other satisfactory drainage systems shall be provided and utilized. No roof, surface or sanitary drainage shall create a structural safety or health hazard by reason of construction, maintenance or manner of discharge.
(2) 
Fences and other accessory structures shall be maintained in a safe and nondeteriorated condition.
(3) 
Steps, walks, driveways, parking spaces and similar paved areas shall be maintained so as to afford safe passage under normal use and other conditions. Any holes or other hazards that may exist shall be filled, and necessary repairs or replacement shall be made.
(4) 
Yards, courts, vacant lots and open areas shall be kept in a clean and sanitary condition free from litter, debris, rubbish, garbage, junk, vermin, rodent harborage and infestation and health, safety and physical hazards of any kind. They shall be maintained in a manner that will prevent dust or other particles from being blown about the neighborhood. Open wells, cesspools or cisterns shall be securely closed or barricaded from access to the public.
(5) 
Dead and dying trees and limbs or other natural growth which, by reason of rotting or deteriorating conditions or storm damage, constitute a hazard to persons in the vicinity thereof shall be removed upon compliance with the provisions of Chapter 251 of the Code of the Village of Suffern, when applicable. Heavy undergrowth and accumulation of plant growth which is unsightly, noxious or detrimental to health shall be eliminated or removed. Trees, hedges, bushes, shrubs and vegetation of any kind shall be kept pruned.
(6) 
It shall be unlawful to park or store or permit to be parked or stored in any yard or open area of a premises any motor vehicle that is abandoned, wrecked, dismantled, junked, substantially damaged or unregistered or which is not intended to be used or in no condition for legal use upon the public highway.
(7) 
All fences and planting areas installed on the premises shall be maintained by the owner of the property. Such maintenance shall include, but not be limited to, the replacement of trees and shrubs which may die and/or otherwise be destroyed, the maintenance and cutting of lawns and the replacement and/or repair of fences which may be in disrepair.
B. 
Buildings and structures. The owner, operator or occupant shall maintain each and every part of the building or structure free of all nuisances and any hazards to the safety of the occupants, pedestrians and all persons utilizing the premises or abutting roadways and maintain accessory structures and appurtenant equipment in attractive condition and good repair, capable of performing the function for which the same was designed or intended to be used, including but not limited to the following:
(1) 
Exterior surfaces of buildings and structures that are not inherently resistant to deterioration shall be sealed and regularly treated with a protective coating of paint or other suitable preservative sufficient to prevent deterioration and to maintain a neat and orderly appearance. All such surfaces shall be maintained free of excessive flaking, peeling and crumbling.
(2) 
Every exterior wall, roof and porch or appurtenance thereto shall be maintained in a manner so as to prevent collapse of the same or injury to the occupants of the building or to the public.
(3) 
All buildings and structures shall be kept in a clean, sanitary and safe condition, free from litter, debris, rubbish, garbage, junk, vermin, rodents and health and safety and physical hazards of any kind. No building shall, except as provided in § 205-3B(10) or in an emergency or ongoing construction, be boarded up in part or whole except by permission of the Superintendent of Public Works.
(4) 
Foundations of every building and structure shall be maintained structurally sound and in good repair so as to prevent the accumulation of moisture within the space enclosed by such foundation, and such foundation and any window or door thereon shall be protected against the entrance of rodents.
(5) 
Roofs of every building or structure shall be maintained weathertight and be equipped with gutters and downspouts to ensure that drainage does not cause excessive erosion, ponding or water damage and does not create a nuisance on public or private property and that does not cause undue heat loss from occupied areas. All roofs, gutters and downspouts shall be maintained in a good state of repair.
(6) 
The exterior of every building and structure and all appurtenances thereto, both above and below the roofline, shall be maintained in good repair in a safe condition and weathertight so as to resist decay or deterioration from any cause.
(7) 
All exposed surfaces shall be maintained free of damaged, disintegrating, crumbling, broken or missing materials, excessive pitting or corrosion and unsafe defects, and all broken or missing glass panes shall be replaced.
(8) 
The exterior of every building and structure shall be maintained free of buckled, sagging, broken, partially missing, rotted or decayed walls, doors, windows, porches, balconies, steps, stairways, railings, balusters, chimneys and decorative trim. The exterior of every building and structure shall be maintained so that the appearance of the premises shall not constitute a blighting factor for adjoining property.
(9) 
Every repair to and replacement of a portion of the exterior of a building and structure or part thereof or appurtenances thereto shall match and conform to the overall exterior design and appearance of such structure.
(10) 
The owner of a vacated building shall take such steps and perform such acts as may be required of him from time to time by the Village's Superintendent of Public Works to ensure that the building and its adjoining yards remain safe and secure and do not present a hazard to adjoining property or to the public. All openings shall be provided with painted exterior-grade plywood closures, securely fastened.
(11) 
Buildings and structures shall be maintained in such condition so that they shall not become an unoccupied hazard as defined in this chapter. All graffiti or defacing shall be removed and the surface finish restored within a five-day period.
(12) 
All signs, awnings and lighting systems shall be maintained in a completely operable, clean, sightly, nondeteriorated and safe condition.
(13) 
Fuel-burning, heat-producing equipment shall be installed and maintained so that the emission or discharge into the atmosphere of smoke, dust particles, odors or other products of combustion will not create a nuisance or be detrimental to the health, comfort, safety or property of any person.
(14) 
Chimneys, flues and their supports shall be installed and maintained so as to be structurally safe, durable, smoke-tight, noncombustible and capable of withstanding the action of flue gases without softening, cracking, corroding or spalling.
(15) 
Air-conditioning units which are over or adjacent to any public opening or sidewalk shall direct their condensation and runoff away from the same.
(16) 
If a sign is removed from the exterior of a building or structure, the area that was covered by the removed sign and now left exposed, even if a new sign is installed, shall be cleaned, maintained and repaired so that the exterior of that building or structure shall have a uniform color and texture.
(17) 
Windows in retail/commercial stores in the CB Zoning District as designated on the Zoning Map of the Village of Suffern shall not be obstructed, cluttered or blocked, and in no event may more than 10% of the area of any such window be covered with signs, announcements, merchandise or obstructions of any kind or nature.

§ 205-4 Registration.

The owner of any dwelling which contains two or more renters or boarders shall file with the Village Clerk before January 1 of each year a statement identifying the owner and superintendent or agent, if any, of each dwelling, the address and telephone number of each, whether the owner resides on the premises on a permanent basis and the number of renters or boarders residing thereat. This information shall be conspicuously posted in the lobby or entrance area of each such dwelling. In addition, the owner must furnish to the Village Clerk before January 1 of each year a telephone number at which the owner or an agent may be reached 24 hours per day and advise the Village Clerk of any changes within 24 hours of such change.

§ 205-5 Enforcement and compliance; notice of violation.

A. 
Any owner, tenant or occupant of any property in violation of this chapter shall remove such offense when ordered to do so within five days of the service of written notice as provided in Subsection B below or such shorter time as may be directed therein.
B. 
All written notices under this section shall be served on the owner, tenant or occupant of any property by posting a copy of such violation notice upon the front portion of the property or upon the main structure and by mailing a copy of such notice by ordinary mail to the owner of the property as shown on the latest assessment rolls of the Village. In the case of any person responsible for the creation of an offense existing upon a public street or public property, notice may be personally served on such person or mailed by ordinary mail to such person at such person's last known address.
C. 
This chapter shall be enforced by the Code Enforcement Officer, Building Inspector, Fire Inspector, Superintendent of Public Works and/or their deputies, assistants or designees; by any police officer of the Village of Suffern or by any other person authorized to enforce the provisions of this chapter.

§ 205-6 Notice of violation; abatement by Village; collection of costs.

A. 
Notice to remove. The Code Enforcement Officer or any other person authorized to enforce the provisions of this chapter is hereby authorized and empowered to notify the owner or the agent of such owner of any property within the Village to take specified action to remedy any violation of this chapter within a specified period of time. Such notice shall be by registered mail, addressed to said owner at his last known address, or by personal service.
B. 
Action upon noncompliance. Upon the failure, neglect or refusal of any owner or agent so notified to act as directed within the specified period of time or within 20 days after the date of such notice in the event that the same is returned to the Village by the post office because of its inability to make delivery thereof, provided that the same was properly addressed to the last known address of such owner or agent, the Village is hereby authorized and empowered to undertake the appropriate action to remedy the condition.
C. 
Charge included in tax bill. When the Village has effected the removal of such dangerous litter or has paid for its removal, the actual cost thereof, plus accrued interest at the rate of 6% per annum from the date of the completion of the work, if not paid by such owner prior thereto, shall be charged to the owner of such property on the next regular tax bill forwarded to such owner by the Village, and said charge shall be due and payable by said owner at the time of payment of such bill.
D. 
Recorded statement constitutes lien. Where the full amount due the Village is not paid by such owner within 10 days after the disposal of such litter, as provided for in Subsections A and B above, then, and in that case, a sworn statement shall be filed with the Village Clerk showing the cost and expense incurred for the work, the date the work was done and the location of the property on which said work was done. The recordation of such sworn statement shall constitute a lien and privilege on the property and shall remain in full force and effect for the amount due in principal and interest, plus costs of court, if any, for collection, until final payment has been made. Said costs and expenses shall be collected in the manner fixed by law for the collection of taxes. Sworn statements recorded in accordance with the provisions hereof shall be prima facie evidence that all legal formalities have been complied with and that the work has been done properly and satisfactorily and shall be full notice to every person concerned that the amount of the statement, plus interest, constitutes a charge against the property designated or described in the statement and that the same is due and collectible as provided by law.

§ 205-7 Penalties for offenses.

A. 
Any person failing to comply with a lawful order pursuant to this chapter or committing an offense in violation of any provision of this chapter shall be guilty of a violation punishable by a fine not exceeding $5,000, or by community service in an amount deemed appropriate by the court, or by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 15 days, or by any combination of the same.
[Amended 1-8-2007 by L.L. No. 1-2007]
B. 
The continuation of an offense against the provisions of this chapter shall constitute, for each week the offense is continued, a separate and distinct offense hereunder.
C. 
Failure to comply with the direction of any official of the Village of Suffern when notice has been provided in accordance with § 205-7 shall constitute a separate and distinct offense hereunder.

§ 205-8 Conflicts with other legislation.

Where a provision of this chapter is found to be in conflict with any provisions of any other local law or ordinance, the provision or requirement which is more restrictive or which establishes the higher standard shall prevail.

§ 205-9 Severability.

The invalidity of any word, section, clause, paragraph, sentence, part or provision of this chapter shall not affect the validity of any other part of this chapter which can be given effect without such invalid part or parts.