Atlantic City, NJ
Atlantic County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of Atlantic City 4-16-1986 by Ord. No. 18-1986. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 222.

§ 184-1 Definitions.

For purposes of this chapter, certain words and phrases used herein are defined as follows:
DISTRIBUTOR
The person responsible for placing and maintaining a newsrack in a public right-of-way.
NEWSRACK
Any self-service or coin-operated box, container, storage unit or other dispenser installed, used or maintained for the display and sale of newspapers or other news periodicals. The use of the singular herein shall include the plural.
PERSON
Any corporation, association, operation, firm, partnership, trust or other form of business association as well as a natural person.
SIDEWALK
Any surface provided and intended for the exclusive use of pedestrians.
STREET or ROADWAY
That portion of a street designed for or ordinarily used for vehicular traffic.

§ 184-2 Regulations.

No person shall place, install or maintain a newsrack on any sidewalk, boardwalk or ramp leading to the Boardwalk, except in strict accordance with the rules and regulations set forth as follows:
A. 
No newsrack shall exceed 50 inches in height, 24 inches in width or 20 inches in thickness.
B. 
No newsrack shall be used for advertising signs or publicity purposes other than that dealing with the display, sale or purchase of the newspaper or news periodical offered for sale therein.
C. 
Each newsrack shall be equipped with a coin-return mechanism in good working order so as to permit a person inserting a coin to secure an immediate refund in the event that the newspaper or news periodical offered for sale therein is not received by that person for any reason.
D. 
Each newsrack shall have affixed to it in a permanent manner a visible legible notice in substantially the following form:
IN CASE OF A MALFUNCTION OF THIS NEWSRACK OR AN ACCIDENT INVOLVING IT OR TO SECURE A REFUND THE DISTRIBUTOR WHO HAS PLACED AND MAINTAINS IT IS:
Name of Distributor
Number, Street or P.O. Box
Post Office, Zip Code
Telephone number, including area code
E. 
Each newsrack shall be maintained in a neat, clean and attractive condition, reasonably free of chipped, cracked or peeling paint, reasonably free of rust or corrosion, free of any cracked glass or plastic, free of any trash and in good repair at all times.
F. 
No newsrack shall be placed or allowed to remain in any location so that it interferes with the removal of snow or ice or the removal of leaves or debris, whether the removal is a public or private duty.
G. 
No newsrack shall be placed or maintained projecting onto, into or over or resting wholly or partly upon any portion of the roadway of a public street.
H. 
No newsrack shall be affixed or attached to any tree, fixture, parking meter stand, signpost, boardwalk railing or other property owned by the City of Atlantic City. Any newsrack located in or upon the public right-way must be affixed or weighted down internally, in such a way that it is prevented from moving, falling or swiveling from less than extraordinary external force exerted upon it.
[Amended 2-28-1990 by Ord. No. 12-1990; 9-11-1991 by Ord. No. 65-1991]
I. 
No newsrack shall be placed on any sidewalk in such a manner so as to impede uninterrupted pedestrian passage and access on and over such sidewalk, given the width and configuration of such sidewalk.
[Amended 9-11-1991 by Ord. No. 65-1991]
J. 
No newsrack shall be placed within:
[Amended 9-11-1991 by Ord. No. 65-1991]
(1) 
Any crosswalk or crossing laid across the public streets or highways or on the sidewalk adjacent to the terminus of such crosswalk.
(2) 
An area in or adjacent to a driveway, so as to impede normal vehicular passage into and out of such driveway.
(3) 
Five feet of any fire hydrant.
(4) 
The area upon the sidewalk, which is at the corner between the terminus of the crosswalks of intersecting streets.
(5) 
Any enclosed bus shelter or behind or in front of seating provided for waiting public transportation patrons.
(6) 
Designated loading zones.
K. 
Each newsrack must be within 12 inches from the curb of the sidewalk where it is placed and must face inward toward pedestrians on the sidewalk and not to the street.
[Amended 9-11-1991 by Ord. No. 65-1991]
L. 
Notwithstanding the provisions of this chapter, newsracks to be installed on the Boardwalk or any ramp or walkway leading to the Boardwalk shall be installed only in the number, manner and at such locations as herein are provided.
(1) 
Newsracks must be in a cluster display, being of a pedestal/modular device. All newsracks on the Boardwalk are to be uniform and of the same type of design and shall be installed on brackets as prescribed by the City.
(2) 
There shall be no newsracks on the ocean side of the Boardwalk.
(3) 
Newsracks shall only be placed at the street ends where there is standard pipe Boardwalk rail and shall be in a line three inches in front of said rail, which line shall extend no further than the distance between the curblines of said streets.
(4) 
Newsrack dispensers of the model required shall be provided by the distributor at his own expense.

§ 184-3 Registration.

A. 
No person or entity shall install or maintain any newsrack which, in whole or in part, rests upon, in or over any public sidewalk or Boardwalk without first notifying the City Engineer of the following:
[Amended 2-28-1990 by Ord. No. 12-1990; 9-11-1991 by Ord. No. 65-1991[1]]
(1) 
The number of newsracks to be installed or maintained in the City by the applicant; and
(2) 
The name, address and telephone number of the owner and/or distributor that is to install or maintain such newsrack.
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also provided that within 21 days of the passage of this ordinance, all distributors of newsracks shall be in compliance with this ordinance; thereafter, the appropriate penalties or actions by the City shall apply.
B. 
No more than one notification shall be required per applicant, regardless of the number of newsracks the applicant maintains in the City.
C. 
All registrations shall be renewed on or about July 1 of each year.
D. 
The annual registration fee shall be $5 per newsrack.
E. 
A written statement must be filed with the City Engineer setting forth that the person or entity installing, placing or maintaining a newsrack or newsracks on the sidewalks or Boardwalk will defend, indemnify and hold harmless the City against any liability for any and all claims for damage to property or injury or death of persons arising out of or resulting from installation, ownership or maintenance of such newsrack or newsracks.
[Amended 2-28-1990 by Ord. No. 12-1990; 9-11-1991 by Ord. No. 65-1991[2]]
[2]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also provided that within 21 days of the passage of this ordinance, all distributors of newsracks shall be in compliance with this ordinance; thereafter, the appropriate penalties or actions by the City shall apply.
F. 
The statement shall also set forth that said person or entity has, and at all times maintains, a policy of liability insurance in a minimum amount of $500,000 for the injury or death of any number of persons, per occurrence, and $100,000 for property damages, per occurrence. Such coverage will name the City of Atlantic as an additional insured. All such policies and certificates of insurance shall be issued by companies authorized to do business in the State of New Jersey and shall be approved as to form by the City Solicitor. Such policy or certificate shall provide that it cannot be cancelled until 30 days' written notice of cancellation shall be filed with the City Solicitor's office.
[Amended 9-11-1991 by Ord. No. 65-1991[3]]
[3]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also provided that within 21 days of the passage of this ordinance, all distributors of newsracks shall be in compliance with this ordinance; thereafter, the appropriate penalties or actions by the City shall apply.

§ 184-4 Enforcement.

[Amended 2-28-1990 by Ord. No. 12-1990]
Instruction and enforcement of this chapter shall be the duty of the office of the City Engineer, which office shall promptly report evidence of violations of this chapter to the City Engineer.

§ 184-5 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 2-28-1990 by Ord. No. 12-1990; 11-25-2008 by Ord. No. 104]
A. 
It shall be the duty of the City Engineer to determine whether a violation of this chapter has occurred and thereafter to notify the distributor to correct the violation within 10 days. Such notification and direction shall be in writing and shall specify the nature of the violation and whether it warrants removal of the newsrack. If not corrected within 10 days, the City Engineer shall direct correction, and notification shall be served upon the distributor in the same manner as a summons or shall be telephoned to the distributor at the telephone number designated by the distributor as provided in § 184-2D hereof and confirmed in a written notice mailed certified mail, return receipt requested, to the address designated by the distributor as provided in § 184-2D hereof. During such ten-day period, the distributor shall have the right to a hearing before the City Engineer or his duly designated representative to determine whether such violation has occurred and whether the nature of such claimed violation warrants removal prior to final determination. At such hearing, the distributor shall have the right to examine the evidence upon which the City Solicitor's office acted, to cross-examine any witness who may have appeared before it and to offer any evidence which may tend to show that the subject newsrack does not violate any provisions of this chapter and that the claimed violation is not of a nature which warrants removal prior to final determination. The Hearing Officer shall promptly review such evidence, notify the distributor of its decision with respect thereto and afford the distributor a reasonable opportunity to comply with such determination.
B. 
If said violation is not corrected within such ten-day period or such further reasonable period as is contained in the superseding notice by the City Engineer, the Director of Public Works shall be notified and requested by the City Engineer to remove such newsrack and place it in storage in a secure place. The cost of the removal and storage shall be billed to the distributor, and, in the event of nonpayment, a civil suit for money damages may be brought by the City Solicitor's office.
C. 
If such newsrack is not claimed within 60 days of the date of the original notification, it shall be disposed of by the City.
D. 
In the event that a distributor desires to abandon a newsrack, he shall completely remove the newsrack and mount and restore the public right-of-way to a safe and sightly condition, leaving no hole or projection in the pavement. If a newsrack has no publication in it for a period of seven consecutive days, the distributor shall be notified to properly remove the same and if he does not do so within 10 days after such notification, the City shall do so and charge the costs thereof to said distributor.
E. 
Any distributor or other person aggrieved by a finding, determination, notice or action taken under the provisions of this chapter may appeal and shall be apprised of his right to appeal to a Board which shall consist of the Business Administrator, the Director of Public Works and the City Engineer or their duly designated representatives. An appeal shall be made in writing and must be within 10 days after receipt of written notice of any protested decision or action by filing with the office of the City Solicitor a letter of appeal briefly stating therein the basis for such appeal. A hearing thereon shall be scheduled to be held on a date no more than 10 days after receipt of such letter. The appellant shall be given at least five days' notice of the time and place of the hearing. The Board shall give the appellant or any other interested person a reasonable opportunity to be heard in order to show cause why the determination or action appealed from should not be upheld. The burden of proof shall be upon the appellant to show that such determination or action was not supported by substantial evidence. The Board shall make a final determination at the conclusion of the hearing or as soon thereafter as is practicable. In the event that a distributor is successful in reversing a determination that the claimed violation was of a nature warranting removal pending a final determination, no fee shall be imposed for removal and storage of the newsrack which was the subject of the appeal, and failure to comply with such determination shall not serve as a basis for prosecution under Subsection F hereof. Any determination of the Board shall be subject to judicial review by a court of competent jurisdiction.
F. 
Any person, firm or corporation violating any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction in the Municipal Court, be punished by a fine not exceeding $2,000 or by imprisonment not exceeding 90 days, or both. Every day that a violation of this chapter exists shall constitute a separate offense.
G. 
Nothing contained in this chapter shall be interpreted to limit or impair the exercise by the City of its police power, in the event of an emergency, to remove any newsrack which presents a clear and present danger of imminent personal injury or property damage to users of the public streets or sidewalks of this City.

§ 184-6 Construal of provisions.

This chapter, while regulating newsracks in public rights-of-way, is not to be construed as a sanction of them. The First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States has been interpreted by the courts as prohibiting the banning of newsracks. Therefore, nothing contained in this chapter shall be construed as the City's acquiescence in, liability for or assuming the risks of the placement of newsracks in the City, whether they are in conformity with the provisions of this chapter or not.