Village of Cooperstown, NY
Otsego County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Cooperstown 2014 by L.L. No. 3-2014. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Alcoholic beverages — See Ch. 18.
Noise — See Ch. 172.
Signs — See Ch. 227.
Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 240.
Zoning — See Ch. 300.

§ 178-1 Purpose.

The outdoor eating area regulations as established by this chapter are designed to permit outdoor eating areas, accessory and incidental to lawfully existing restaurants in the Business District, to be located on public property adjacent to lawfully existing restaurants and in locations where they shall be determined to be appropriate by these regulations and all applicable related ordinances. These general purposes shall include, among others, the following specific purposes:
A. 
To ensure adequate sidewalk space for pedestrians to pass outdoor eating areas and to ensure adequate access to adjoining properties, businesses, and on-street parking places.
B. 
To encourage the establishment of outdoor eating areas as one means of developing a pleasant and distinctive walking, eating and shopping atmosphere downtown.

§ 178-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
OUTDOOR EATING AREA
An exterior space accessory to a restaurant that allows for tables and seating for outdoor table service or self-service dining. Up to two benches without any table(s) does not constitute an outdoor eating area.

§ 178-3 License requirements.

An outdoor eating area located on a public sidewalk or public land must have the following:
A. 
An annual license agreement, valid April 1 to November 1 of a given calendar year, by and between the Village of Cooperstown and the applicant, the application fee for which shall be in such amount as determined from time to time by resolution of the Board of Trustees.
B. 
Liability insurance, in an amount determined from time to time by resolution of the Board of Trustees, which names the Village as an additional insured.
C. 
A valid certificate from the Board of Health and, in cases that involve the sale or consumption of alcoholic beverages, the State of New York.

§ 178-4 Application procedures.

Any application for an annual license for an outdoor eating area shall be made to the Village Clerk in writing, to be reviewed and acted upon by the Board of Trustees within 65 days. The application for a license for an outdoor eating area shall contain, at a minimum, the following:
A. 
The applicant's full name, local address, permanent address (if different), telephone number, and local emergency contact number (if different). Applicants are encouraged to provide an e-mail address;
B. 
The name, address and telephone number of the owner of the building where the restaurant is located, if different than the applicant's;
C. 
A site plan, drawn to scale, showing the applicant's property and the adjacent sidewalk area to be used; the designated outdoor eating area; the location of access points to be used by employees and/or patrons in entering or exiting the building in which the restaurant is located; all temporary structures, equipment and apparatus to be used in connection with its operation, including but not limited to tables, seating furniture, umbrellas, planters, temporary fences, lighting and electrical outlets (if any); provisions for the storage of such items; and the location of any fire hydrant, plug or standpipe, utility pole, parking meter station, planter or other permanent fixture between the adjacent building and the curb, including a clear indication of the presence of the required pedestrian passageway;
D. 
Descriptive or visual material indicating the appearance and materials of all components, including but not limited to tables, seating furniture, umbrellas, planters, temporary fences and decorations, to be used and explanation of how such furniture or fixtures shall be stored or secured during nonoperational hours;
E. 
A statement of the seating capacity of the proposed outdoor eating area and of the existing restaurant operated by the applicant in the adjacent building (an increase to the number of seats outdoors shall require a new application);
F. 
A signed statement attesting that the associated restaurant and/or applicant has not been subject to a zoning, vending, merchandise display, or outdoor eating area violation within the past 12 months;
G. 
A current valid certificate from the State Department of Health indicating that the applicant is in compliance with all applicable regulations;
H. 
Whether alcoholic beverages are to be served and, if so, a copy of the appropriate liquor license issued by the State of New York; and
I. 
The appropriate fee.

§ 178-5 Location.

A. 
An outdoor eating area may be located on the public sidewalk or certain other public lands immediately adjoining the indoor restaurant that operates the outdoor eating area or within 15 feet (at the closest point) of the indoor restaurant and separated from it by public or private sidewalk. The outdoor eating area shall extend no further than the actual frontage of the building in which the restaurant operates.
B. 
The proposed outdoor eating area shall not unduly impede pedestrian or vehicular traffic or the use of the Village-owned portion of the property adjacent to the premises. Outdoor eating areas on Main Street shall provide a sidewalk width of not less than eight contiguous feet clear of obstructions. Outdoor eating areas on Pioneer Street and Chestnut Street shall provide a sidewalk width of not less than five contiguous feet clear of obstructions. Obstructions shall include, but not be limited to, trees, planting boxes, light poles, traffic signal poles, fire hydrants, utility structures, parking meters, and street signs. Further, the location of outdoor eating areas shall not obstruct the clear sight distance for vehicles or access or crossings for those using wheelchairs.
C. 
No table, seating furniture, temporary fence, planters, decorations or other fixture used in conjunction with the operation of an outdoor eating area shall be located in such a way as to impede access to or from any building, property or legal on-street parking place or pose any type of safety hazard to the general public.

§ 178-6 Design standards.

A. 
Furnishings for outdoor eating may consist of movable tables, seating furniture, table umbrellas, temporary fences, and decorative accessories. Outdoor eating areas with no table service shall provide trash receptacles. Furnishings must be kept in a state of good repair and in a clean and safe condition at all times.
B. 
All items used in the outdoor eating area shall be temporary, moveable, not affixed in any way to Village property, and shall not cause damage to Village property, including but not limited to sidewalks, pavers, lamp posts, and parking meters.
C. 
All furnishing must be compatible in design, color and materials with the historic character of the Business District. No plastic tables or seating furniture shall be permitted.
D. 
Umbrellas over tables must be weighted and shall be of a single color with no advertising. Umbrellas must be positioned so as not to be a hazard to pedestrians when open and must be closed during hours when the outdoor eating area is not in operation.
E. 
Tables, seating furniture, and all other furnishings or accessories may be left in place overnight during seasonal operation but shall be removed from the sidewalk and stored indoors whenever the outdoor eating area is not in seasonal operation. It shall be the responsibility of the operator to secure furnishings and accessories that are left in place overnight.
F. 
Busing stations, food preparation stations, bars and music shall not be permitted in the outdoor eating area. No food or drink may be stored or prepared by the operator outside the adjacent building.
G. 
Outdoor eating areas shall be at the same elevation as the public sidewalk and any exceptions must be approved by the head of the Streets Department. Carpeting, artificial turf, platforms or other surfaces of any kind shall not be permitted at any time in the outdoor eating area, and no Village property shall be painted or marked.
H. 
No signage beyond what is permitted in the Sign Law for the adjacent restaurant shall be allowed at any outdoor eating area.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 227, Signs.
I. 
Exterior lighting may be directed onto the outdoor eating area but shall not intrude on adjacent properties. Wires must be adequately secured to prevent tripping hazards.

§ 178-7 Operation and service requirements.

A. 
The outdoor eating area shall be operated in a manner that does not create a public nuisance, cause a breach of the peace, constitute a danger to public health, safety, welfare or morals, nor interfere with the rights of neighboring property owners.
B. 
The outdoor eating area shall be operated and maintained in accordance with the approved plan submitted with the license application.
C. 
The outdoor eating area shall be operated by the same party that operates the adjacent indoor restaurant.
D. 
Restaurants that provide table service inside shall provide table service to customers seated outside. Restaurants that do not provide table service inside may operate outdoor eating areas where patrons carry food to tables located outside.
E. 
An outdoor eating area may operate during the regular business hours of the restaurant operating the outdoor eating area but no later than 10:00 p.m.
F. 
The operator is responsible for keeping the premises, including the public sidewalk and other furnishings of the outdoor eating area, clean at all times. At no time should trash or debris of any kind be blown, swept or otherwise deposited into the street, nor shall waste generated at outdoor eating areas with table service be deposited in public trash receptacles nor any trash receptacle located outdoors. Any presetting of tables with utensils, glasses, napkins and condiments shall be done in a manner that prevents items from blowing or falling from the table.
G. 
Noise shall be kept at such a level as to comply in all respects with the provisions of applicable ordinances.
H. 
The Village of Cooperstown reserves the right and power to temporarily order the discontinuation of the operation of outdoor eating areas at any time because of anticipated or actual problems or conflicts in the use of the sidewalk area. These situations include, but are not limited to, festivals, parades, marches, road races, repairs to the street or sidewalk, or any emergencies occurring in the area. To the extent possible, the operator shall be given prior written notice of the time period during which the operation of outdoor eating areas will not be permitted, but failure to give notice shall not affect the right and power of the Village to prohibit outdoor eating area operation at any particular time.

§ 178-8 Sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages.

A. 
The consumption of alcoholic beverages of any and all types and kinds in such outdoor eating areas is prohibited unless served by a restaurant whose license permits the outdoor sale of alcoholic beverages and the beverage is consumed within the confines of the outdoor eating area. It is the responsibility of the owner and/or operator of the premises who has obtained a permit hereunder for an outdoor eating area to ensure compliance with this provision.
B. 
Restaurants that do not have a license to sell alcoholic beverages within their premises shall not allow patrons to carry onto or consume alcoholic beverages in the outdoor eating area.

§ 178-9 Enforcement; penalties for offenses.

A. 
Officers and employees of the Police Department shall have the power to enforce all laws, rules and regulations relating to outdoor eating areas. This provision shall in no way restrict any other power granted by law to an officer or employee of any other agency.
B. 
Upon a finding that an applicant has violated any provision of this chapter, an officer or employee of the Police Department shall deliver written notice to the applicant to correct such violation. Upon failure to correct said violation within 24 hours of the verifiable delivery of such notice to the local address provided on the application, the Village Clerk shall revoke the applicant's license to operate an outdoor eating area. If the Village Clerk revokes a license for an outdoor eating area, the fee already paid for the license shall be forfeited.
C. 
In addition to the revocation of the license, the penalty for violating any provision of this chapter or any other applicable section of the municipal code shall be, in addition to any other sanctions provided, a fine not exceeding $250 for each violation. Each day of violation shall be deemed a separate offense.
D. 
Applicants who violate provisions of this chapter or local zoning, vending and/or merchandise display laws shall be prevented from applying for an outdoor eating area license for a period of one year from the date of the violation.

§ 178-10 Construction.

No part of this chapter or the local law itself shall be construed to be an amplification or derogation of the rights or responsibilities of property owners. Any remedies, rights or obligations provided to such property owners or their successors in interest under the law of real property or the laws of the State of New York shall be in addition to the remedies, rights, obligations or penalties provided hereunder.