[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Freehold by Ord. No. O-77-7 (Ch. XIX-A of the Revised General Ordinances), as amended through Ord. No. O-78-18. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter shall be known as the "Freehold Township Soil Erosion and Sediment Control Ordinance."
The purpose of this chapter is to control soil erosion and sediment damages and related environmental damage by providing for and requiring provisions adequate for surface water retention and drainage and for the protection of exposed soil surfaces.
The following definitions shall apply in the interpretation and enforcement of this chapter unless otherwise specifically stated:
- CRITICAL AREA
- A highly erodible or severely eroded area which produces sediment.
- Detachment and movement of rock or soil fragments by water, wind, ice and/or gravity.
- EROSION AND SEDIMENT CONTROL PLAN
- A plan which indicates necessary land treatment measures, including a schedule of timing for the installation thereof, which plan will effectively minimize soil erosion and sedimentation. Such measures shall be at least equivalent to the standards.
- EXCAVATION or CUT
- Any act by which soil or rock is cut into, dug, quarried, uncovered, removed, displaced or relocated.
- FARM CONSERVATION PLAN
- A plan which provides for the use of land within its capabilities and treatment within practical limits according to a chosen use in order to prevent further deterioration of soil and water resources.
- FREEHOLD SOIL CONSERVATION DISTRICT
- A governmental subdivision of this state which encompasses the Township of Freehold and which has been organized in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 24, Title 4, New Jersey Revised Statutes.
- Any ground, soil or earth, including marshes, swamps, drainageways and areas not permanently covered by water, within the Township.
- LAND DISTURBANCE
- Any activity involving but not limited to clearing, grading, transporting and/or filling which causes land to be exposed to the danger of erosion.
- The application of plant residue or other suitable materials to the land surface to conserve moisture, hold soil in place, and aid in establishing plant cover.
- A certificate issued to perform work under this chapter.
- Solid material, both mineral and/or organic, that is in suspension, is being transported or has been moved from its site of origin by air, water or gravity as a product of erosion.
- SEDIMENT BASIN
- A barrier or dam built at suitable locations to retain rock, sand, gravel, silt or other material.
- All unconsolidated mineral and organic material of any origin.
- Those criteria for soil erosion and sediment control in New Jersey as promulgated by the State Soil Conservation Committee.
- Any activity which significantly disturbs vegetated or other stabilized soil surfaces, including clearing and/or grubbing operations.
Regulation. No land area shall be disturbed by any person within the Township unless and until that person shall have first submitted to the Township Engineer a plan to provide for the prevention of soil erosion and the control of sediment for such land area consistent with the provisions of this chapter and such plan shall have been approved and a valid permit shall have been issued by the Township Engineer. All plans for soil erosion and sediment control shall be reviewed and approved, when in conformance with the Standards for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control in New Jersey as promulgated by the New Jersey State Soil Conservation Committee, within a period of 30 days of submission of a complete application unless, by mutual agreement in writing between the municipality and the applicant, this period is extended for an additional 30 days. Failure of the municipality to make a decision within such period or such extension thereof shall constitute certification. The provisions of this section shall apply to all land except that exempted by § 282-7.
Data required. The applicant for a permit shall submit a separate soil erosion and sediment control plan for each site sought to be disturbed. Such plan shall contain, at least, the following information:
Location and description of existing natural and artificial features on the site and for a distance of 200 feet of the surrounding area adjacent to the site along every perimeter of the site. It shall include general topography and soil characteristics as well as a copy of the State Conservation Soil Survey.
Location and description of proposed changes to the site.
Proposed protective measures for soil erosion and sediment control which shall meet or exceed the standards. The aforesaid "standards" are adopted and included in this chapter by reference as if set forth at length herein. The standards referred to shall be on file at the offices of the Freehold Soil Conservation District and the Township Clerk.
A schedule of the sequence of installation of plan erosion and sediment control measures as related to the progress of the project, including starting and completion dates.
All proposed revisions of data required shall be submitted for approval.
Application. Application for a permit shall be made to the Township Engineer on forms supplied by the Township Clerk. In addition to those items set forth in Subsection B, the application form shall require the name and address of the applicant as well as a cost estimate for the installation of any required structure. The fee for processing the application shall be as provided in Chapter 150, Fees. The applicant shall be provided with written notice of such decision by the Township Engineer (or other authorized municipal agent). A copy of such decision, including the name of the applicant, site location by street address and block and lot number, and proposed land use, shall be sent to the Freehold Soil Conservation District. The municipality shall also make available such other information as may be required by the district.
General design principals. Control measures shall apply to all aspects of the proposed land disturbance and shall be in operation in all stages of the disturbance activity. The following principles shall apply to the soil erosion and sediment control plans:
Stripping of vegetation, grading or other soil disturbance shall be done in a manner which will minimize soil erosion.
Natural vegetation shall be retained and protected unless the work sought to be performed makes it impossible.
The extent of the disturbed area shall be kept to a minimum and shall employ the least amount of site as is practical.
The duration of the exposure of the site shall be kept within practical limits and with due consideration to the season and weather conditions but with a view to completion within the least amount of time possible.
Either temporary mulching or other suitable stabilization measures shall be used to protect exposed critical areas during construction or other land disturbance.
Drainage provisions shall accommodate increased runoff resulting from modified soil and surface conditions during and after development or disturbance.
Water runoff shall be minimized and retained on the site wherever possible to facilitate groundwater recharge and reduce peak discharges.
Sediment shall be retained on site to the maximum extent feasible.
Diversions, sediment basins and similar required structures shall be installed prior to any on-site grading or disturbance.
Maintenance. All permanent soil erosion and sediment control measures installed under this chapter shall be adequately maintained for a period of one year after the completion of the approved plan. The Township Engineer shall provide the applicant upon request a certificate indicating the date upon which the measures called for in the approved plan were completed.
Maintenance guarantees. At the completion of the disturbance contemplated in the permit, the applicant shall post a maintenance guarantee in a sum equal to 15% of the amount set forth in the application to install the soil erosion and sediment control measures required as a condition of the permit. This guarantee shall be in the form of cash or certified check and shall be expressly conditioned upon the maintenance by the permit holder of all of the permanent control measures installed for a period of one year and shall particularly guarantee the remedying of any defects in such installations which occur or become evident during that time period. At the completion of the one-year time period, the permit holder shall notify the Township Engineer in writing of the expiration of the time period, and upon satisfactory final inspection, the Township Engineer shall advise the Township Clerk as to his disposition of the funds on file.
If any person violates any of the provisions of this chapter or any standard promulgated pursuant to the provisions of this chapter or fails to comply with the provisions of a certified plan, the municipality or the district may institute a civil action in the Superior Court for injunctive relief to prohibit and prevent such violation or violations, and said Court may proceed in a summary manner. Any person who violates any of the provisions of this chapter or any standard promulgated pursuant to this chapter or fails to comply with the provisions of a certified plan shall be liable to a penalty as provided in Chapter 1, Article II, General Penalty, to be collected in a summary proceeding pursuant to the Penalty Enforcement Law (N.J.S.A. 2A:58-1 et seq.). The Superior Court, County Court, County District Court, and Municipal Court shall have jurisdiction to enforce said Penalty Enforcement Law. If the violation is of a continuing nature each day during which it continues shall constitute an additional separate and distinct offense.
The following activities are specifically exempt from this chapter:
Soil disturbance associated with existing single-family residential dwellings or an area of 5,000 square feet or less associated with existing two-family dwellings.
Use of land for gardening primarily for the home consumption of the person performing the gardening.
Agriculture use of lands when operated in accordance with the Farm Conservation Plan approved by the Freehold Soil Conservation District or when it is determined by the Freehold Soil Conservation District that such use will not cause excessive erosion or sedimentation.
The requirements of this chapter shall be enforced by the Township Engineer, the Building Inspector, the Zoning Officer or other authorized representative or agent of the aforesaid who shall also inspect or require adequate inspection of the work. If the authorized official finds existing conditions not as stated in the applicant's erosion or sediment control plan:
The municipality may issue a stop construction order if a project is not being executed in accordance with an approved soil erosion and sediment control plan;
No certificate of occupancy for a project shall be issued unless there has been compliance with the provisions of the approved plan for soil erosion and sediment control. A formal report of such compliance must be filed with the municipal agent authorized to issue certificates of occupancy. A copy of this report shall be sent to the Freehold Soil Conservation District; and
The applicant shall be required to have the approved soil erosion and sediment control plan on site during construction.
Appeals from decisions by authorized officials under this chapter may be made to the Township Committee in writing within 10 days from the date of such decision. The appellant shall be entitled to a hearing before the Township Committee within 30 days from the date of the appeal.