[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Lumberton 1-18-2000 by Ord. No. 2000-2. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also supersedes former Ch. 199, Newsracks, adopted 10-4-1999 by Ord. No. 1999-19.
Intent and purpose. The provisions and prohibitions hereinafter contained and enacted are in pursuance of and for the purpose of securing and promoting the public health, morals and general welfare of persons in the Township of Lumberton in their use of private property and public rights-of-way through the regulation of placement, appearance, number, size and servicing of newsracks on private property and the public rights-of-way so as to:
Provide for pedestrian and driving safety and convenience;
Ensure no unreasonable interference with the flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic, including ingress to or egress from any place of business or from the street to the sidewalk;
Provide reasonable access for the use and maintenance of commercial stores, sidewalks, poles, posts, traffic signs and signals, hydrants, mailboxes and similar appurtenances and access to locations used for public transportation purposes;
Reduce visual blight on private property and the public rights-of-way, protect the aesthetics and value of surrounding properties and protect the quiet of residential areas;
Reduce exposure of the township to personal injury or property damage claims and litigation; and
Protect the right to distribute information protected by the United States and New Jersey Constitutions through use of newsracks.
Preservation of constitutional rights. It is not the intent of this chapter to in any way discriminate against, regulate or interfere with the publication, circulation, distribution or dissemination of any printed material that is constitutionally protected.
As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise clearly indicates:
- One side of a street between two consecutive interacting streets.
- The person responsible for placing and maintaining a newsrack on private property or in a public right-of-way.
- 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.
- PARKING LOT
- Any public or private area, paved or unpaved, designated for the purpose of providing parking to the public.
- The area between the sidewalk and the curb of any street, and where there is no sidewalk, the area between the edge of the roadway and the property line adjacent thereto. Parkway shall also include any area within a roadway that is not open to vehicular travel.
- Any person or persons or entity, including, but not limited to, a corporation, partnership, unincorporated association or joint venture.
- That portion of a street improved, designed or ordinarily used for vehicular travel, including the shoulders thereto.
- Any surface provided for the exclusive use of pedestrians, whether public or private.
- All the area dedicated to public use for public street purposes and shall include, but not be limited to, roadways, parkways, alleys and sidewalks.
No person shall install, use or maintain any newsrack which projects onto, into or which rests, wholly or in part, upon the roadway of any public street.
No person shall install, use or maintain any newsrack which in whole or in part rests upon, in or over any sidewalk, parking lot, parkway or private property:
When such installation, use or maintenance endangers the safety of persons or property;
When such site or location is used for public utility purposes, public transportation purposes or other governmental use;
When such newsrack unreasonably interferes with or impedes the flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic, including parked or stopped vehicles; the ingress in or egress from any residence or place of business; the use of poles, posts, traffic signs or signals, hydrants, mailboxes or other objects permitted at or near said location;
When such newsrack interferes with the cleaning of any sidewalk by the use of mechanical sidewalk cleaning machinery wherein such cleaning is the responsibility of the township; or
In any other manner inconsistent with or in violation of the provisions of this chapter.
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to erect, place, maintain or operate, on any parking lot, street, sidewalk, private property or any public way or place in the Township of Lumberton any newsrack without first having obtained a permit from the Zoning Officer or such other officer or employee as designated from time to time by the Township Committee specifying the exact location of such newsrack. One permit may be issued to include any number of newsracks and shall be signed by the applicant.
Application for such permit shall be made, in writing, to the Zoning Officer, or such other officer or employee as designated from time to time by the Township Committee upon such form as shall be provided by him or her and shall contain the name and address of the applicant, the proposed specific location of said newsrack and shall be signed by the applicant.
From the above application information, the Zoning Officer or such other officer or employee as designated from time to time by the Township Committee shall approve the locations. He shall be guided therein solely by the standards and criteria set forth in this chapter. In any case where the Zoning Officer or such other officer or employee as designated from time to time by the Township Committee disapproves of a particular location, such disapproval shall be without prejudice to the registrant designating a different location or locations.
Permits shall be issued for the installation of a newsrack or newsracks, and such newsrack or newsracks and the installation, use or maintenance thereof shall be conditioned upon observance of the provisions of this chapter. Permits shall be issued within three days (excluding Saturday, Sunday and legal holidays) after the application has been filed. A permit fee of $25 shall be required.
Such permits shall be valid for one year and shall be renewable pursuant to the procedure for original applications referred to in § 1999-5 and upon payment of the $10 permit fee.
Every owner of a newsrack who places or maintains a newsrack in a public right-of-way, including on a public parking lot, parkway, sidewalk, roadway or street, in the Township of Lumberton shall file a written statement with the Zoning Officer or such other officer or employee as designated from time to time by the Township Committee in a form satisfactory to the Township Attorney, whereby such owner agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the township, its officers and employees from any loss, liability or damage, including expenses and costs, for bodily or personal injury and for property damage sustained by any person as a result of the installation, use and/or maintenance of a newsrack within the Township of Lumberton.
Every person who places or maintains a newsrack in a public right-of-way, including on parking lots, parkways, sidewalks, streets or roadways or on private property, in the Township of Lumberton shall have his permit number, name, address and telephone number affixed to the newsrack in a place where such information may be easily seen. Prior to the designation of location by the Zoning Officer or such other officer or employee as designated from time to time by the Township Committee under § 199-9 herein, the registrant shall present evidence of compliance with this section.
Any newsrack which rests in whole or in part upon or on any portion of private property or a public right-of-way, including on the parking lots, parkways, sidewalks, streets or roadways, or which projects onto, into or over any part of a public right-of-way shall be located in accordance with the following provisions of this section:
No newsrack shall be used or maintained which projects onto, into or over any part of the roadway of any public street or which rests wholly or in part upon, along or over any portion of the roadway of any public street.
No newsrack shall be chained, bolted or otherwise attached to any fixture located in the public right-of-way, except to other newsracks.
Newsracks may be placed next to each other, provided that no group of newsracks shall extend for a distance of more than eight feet along a curb, sidewalk, parking lot, street, roadway or otherwise, whether on public or private property, and a space of not less than three feet shall separate each group of newsracks.
No newsrack shall be placed, installed, used or maintained:
Within five feet of any marked crosswalk.
Within 15 feet of the curb return of any unmarked crosswalk.
Within five feet of any fire hydrant, fire call box, police call box or other emergency facility.
Within five feet of any driveway, whether public or private.
Within three feet ahead or 25 feet to the rear of any sign marking a designated bus stop.
Within five feet of the outer end of any bus bench.
At any location whereby the clear space for the passageway of pedestrians is reduced to less than six feet.
Within three feet of or on any public area improved with lawn, flowers, shrubs, trees or other landscaping or within three feet of any display window of any building abutting the sidewalk or parkway or in such a manner as to impede or interfere with the reasonable use of such window for display purposes.
Within 100 feet of any other newsrack on the same side of the street in the same block containing the same issue or edition of the same publication.
On any or within 10 feet of any access ramp for disabled persons and/or parking spot for disabled persons.
Within six feet of any entrance/exit doorway to a commercial establishment, including emergency exits.
No more than six newsracks shall be located on private property and/or any public right-of-way within a space of 200 feet in any direction within the same block of the same street. In determining which newsracks shall be permitted to be located or to remain if already in place, the Zoning Officer or such other officer or employee as designated from time to time by the Township Committee shall be guided solely by the following criteria:
Any newsrack which, in whole or in part, rests upon, in or over any public sidewalk or parkway shall comply with the following standards:
No newsrack shall exceed four feet in height, 30 inches in width or two feet in thickness.
No newsrack shall be used for advertising signs for publicity purposes other than that dealing with the display, sale or purchase of the newspaper or news periodical sold therein.
Each newsrack shall be equipped with a coin-return mechanism to permit a person using the machine to secure an immediate refund in the event that the person is unable to receive the paid for publication. The coin-return mechanism shall be maintained in good working order.
Each newsrack shall have affixed to it in a readily visible place so as to be seen by anyone using the newsrack a notice setting forth the name and address of the distributor and the telephone number of a working telephone service to call to report a malfunction or to secure a refund in the event of a malfunction of the coin-return mechanism or to give the notices provided for in this chapter.
Each newsrack shall be maintained in a neat and clean condition and in good repair at all times. Specifically, but without limiting the generality of the foregoing, each newsrack shall be serviced and maintained so that:
It is reasonably free of dirt and grease;
It is reasonably free of chipped, faded, peeling and cracked paint in the visible painted areas thereof;
It is reasonably free of rust and corrosion in the visible unpainted metal areas thereon;
The clear plastic or glass parts thereof; if any, through which the publications therein are viewed are unbroken and reasonably free of cracks, dents, blemishes and discoloration;
The paper or cardboard parts or inserts thereof are reasonably free of tears, peeling or fading; and
The structural parts thereof are not broken or unduly misshapen.
Upon determination by the Zoning Officer, police officer or such other officer or employee as designated from time to time by the Township Committee that a newsrack has been installed, used or maintained in violation of the provisions of this chapter, an order to correct the offending condition shall be issued to the distributor of the newsrack. Such order shall be telephoned to the distributor and confirmed by mailing a copy of the order by certified mail, return receipt requested. The order shall specifically describe the offending condition, suggest actions necessary to correct the condition and inform the newsrack distributor of the right to appeal. Failure to properly correct the offending condition within 20 days after the mailing date of the order or to appeal the order within 20 days after its receipt shall result in the offending newsrack being summarily removed and processed as unclaimed property. If the offending newsrack is not properly identified as to owner under the provisions of § 199-10 hereof; it shall be removed immediately and processed as unclaimed property. An impound fee, which shall be measured by the township's cost and expense of impounding, shall be assessed against each newsrack summarily removed. The Zoning Officer or such other officer or employee as designated by the Township Committee shall cause inspection to be made of the corrected condition or of a newsrack reinstalled after removal under this section. The distributor of said newsrack shall be charged a twenty-five-dollar inspection fee for each newsrack so inspected. This charge shall be in addition to all other fees and charges required under this chapter.
Any person or entity aggrieved by a finding, determination, notice, order or action taken under the provisions of this chapter may appeal and shall be appraised of his right to appeal to the Lumberton Township Zoning Board of Adjustments. An appeal must be perfected within 20 days after receipt of notice of any protested decision or action by filing with the Zoning Board of Adjustments a letter of appeal briefly stating therein the basis for such appeal or other such forms as may be provided and required. A hearing shall be held at the next available meeting date, provided that the agenda permits, and the appellant shall be given at least five days' notice of the time and place of the hearing. The Zoning Board of Adjustments shall give the appellant, and any other interested party, a reasonable opportunity to be heard in order to show cause why the determination of the Zoning Officer should not be upheld. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Board shall make a final and conclusive decision. This decision shall be immediately appealable to a court of competent jurisdiction.
In the event that a newsrack remains empty for a period of 30 continuous days, the same shall be deemed abandoned and may be treated in the manner as provided in § 199-11 for newsracks in violation of the provisions of this chapter.