[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Independence 2-9-1987 by Ord. No. 87-2 (Ch. 125 of the 1984 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter is adopted to regulate the distribution of certain materials and peddling, soliciting and related activities within the Township of Independence. The licensing of persons engaged in the above-mentioned activities is required so that the identity of persons going door-to-door or otherwise distributing materials or food and beverages within the Township may be established, so that general regulations may be more effectively enforced for the protection and maintenance of the health, safety and welfare of the inhabitants of the Township and to prevent dishonest business practices and dishonest solicitation of funds in the Township.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- CHARITABLE ORGANIZATION
- Any benevolent, philanthropic, patriotic, not-for-profit or eleemosynary group, association or charitable purposes. "Charitable organizations" include and are not limited to the following organizations; fire departments, first aid squads and religious organizations.
- CHARITABLE PURPOSE
- Any charitable, benevolent, philanthropic, patriotic or eleemosynary purpose.
- The promise or grant of any money or property of any kind or value.
- ITINERANT MERCHANTS, TRANSIENT VENDORS and SALESMAN
- The category of peddler, hawker, vendor, solicitor or canvasser, as set forth herein.
- Includes all goods, wares, food, fruits, vegetables, farm products, magazines, periodicals and all kinds of articles of personal property for domestic use, including the distribution of product samples. Orders or contracts for a service, home improvement or alteration and market surveys shall be considered "merchandising" within the terms of this chapter.
- PEDDLER, HAWKER and VENDOR
- Any person who goes from house to house or from place to place without appointment, traveling on the streets and roads, engaged in the practice of merchandising of any nature whatsoever. The word "peddler" shall include the words "hawker" and "huckster."
- Includes the singular and plural and any person, firm or corporation, association, club, partnership, society or any other organization.
- SOLICITOR or CANVASSER
- Any person who goes from house to house or from place to place without appointment, traveling on the streets and roads, engaged in the practice of merchandising of any nature whatsoever. The words "solicitor" and "canvasser," however, shall not include wholesale salesmen calling on retail merchants.
- The Township of Independence.
It shall be unlawful for any peddler, solicitor, distributor, itinerant merchant, transient vendor, transient salesman, transient merchant, hawker or vendor to sell, offer for sale or distribute merchandise, printed material or services within the Township without first securing a license from the Clerk by filing an application for a license, paying a license fee and obtaining a license from said Clerk, in accordance with § 293-4.
At least 30 days prior to the date of period for which an applicant seeks a license hereunder, all applicants shall file with the Township Clerk a sworn written application, in duplicate, on a form to be furnished by said Clerk, which shall give the following information:
The name and description of the applicant, including date of birth, and driver's license number.
The permanent home address and full local address, if any, of the applicant.
The name and address of the employer or firm representing, together with credentials establishing the exact relationship.
A brief statement of the nature of the business and a description of the merchandise or service to be sold.
The length of time for which the license is desired.
The geographic area to be canvassed or solicited.
If a vehicle is to be used, a description of such vehicle and its license number.
The place where the goods or property to be sold or offered for sale are manufactured or produced, the place where such goods or property are located at the time such application is filed and the proposed method of delivery.
A photograph of the applicant, recently taken, which photograph shall clearly show the head and shoulders of the applicant and shall measure two inches by two inches.
Two business references located in the County of Warren, State of New Jersey, or, in lieu thereof, such other available evidence of the character and business responsibility of the applicant as will enable an investigator to properly evaluate such character and responsibility.
A statement as to whether the applicant has been convicted of any crime, misdemeanor or violation of any municipal ordinance, the nature of the offense and the punishment or penalty assessed therefor.
This chapter shall not apply to:
Any veteran or exempt fireman who holds a special state license.
Any person soliciting a vote or support for any political candidate or program.
Any person soliciting for a bona fide charitable, religious, patriotic, community service or philanthropic purpose or organization. Any such organization exempt from the requirements of this chapter by this section shall nevertheless notify the Chief of Police prior to the commencement of its solicitation activities of the proposed time and place for conducting of such solicitation activities. Nothing herein, however, should be construed to alter the exempt status under this chapter of any such charitable organization as defined by § 293-2.
Any person engaged in delivering wares, goods and merchandise or articles or things in the regular course of business to the premises of the person ordering or entitled to receive the same.
Wholesale salesmen calling on businesses.
Public utility or its employees, which said public utility is subject to regulation by the State Board of Public Utility Commissioners; provided, however, that said employees shall display the identification badge or card issued by their employer.
Any person selling fruits or farm products grown by himself with or without the help of others.
Approved raffles: the sale and distribution of raffle tickets for raffles approved by the Township.
Other activities: bazaars, fairs and/or flea markets which do not involve any selling or traveling from house to house or place to place or traveling on the streets and roads in the practice of merchandising.
The Township Clerk shall issue said license or permit within a period of 10 days of the date of receiving the application, provided that the application is complete and that there is nothing in the application to indicate that the applicant's character or business responsibility is other than satisfactory for carrying on said business with the Township of Independence. In the event that the application is rejected, the Township Clerk shall note such rejection on the application and return it to the applicant, along with his application fee.
The fees for licenses under this chapter shall accompany the application and shall be as follows:
No person duly licensed shall hawk, peddle or solicit before 9:00 a.m. or after 7:00 p.m., prevailing time, nor at any time on the day commonly called "Sunday."
No license issued under the provisions of this chapter shall be used at any time by any person other than the one to whom it was issued.
Licenses issued under the provisions of this chapter may be revoked by the Township Committee after notice and hearing for any of the following causes:
Fraud, misrepresentation or false statements contained in the application for license.
Fraud, misrepresentation or false statements made in the course of carrying on his business as peddler.
Any violation of this chapter.
Conviction of any crime or misdemeanor involving moral turpitude.
Conducting the business of peddling in an unlawful manner or in such a manner as to constitute a breach of the peace or constitute a menace to the health, safety or general welfare of the general public.
Notice of the hearing of revocation of a license shall be given in writing, setting forth specifically the grounds of complaint and the time and place of hearing. Such notice shall be mailed, postage prepaid, to the licensee at his last known address at least five days prior to the date set for the hearing.
Any person aggrieved by the action of the Clerk in the denial of an application for a license as provided in this chapter shall have the right of appeal to the Township Committee within 25 days after notice of the action complained of has been mailed to such person's last known address, by a written statement setting forth fully the grounds for the appeal. The Township Committee shall set the time and place for a hearing on such appeal, and notice of such hearing shall be given to the appellant. The decision and order of the Township Committee on such appeal shall be final and conclusive.
No licensee shall:
Attempt to peddle, solicit or distribute merchandise or printed material without first having identified himself as a peddler, solicitor or distributor registered with the Township and displayed his license.
Have exclusive right to any location in the public streets or operate in any congested area in such a manner as to impede the flow of traffic or of pedestrians or create a breach of the peace.
Enter or attempt to enter the land of any resident in the Township where such resident has posted a notice prohibiting such entry.
Refuse to leave any private dwelling or property after having been once requested to do so by the owner or occupant thereof.
Shout, cry out, blow a horn, ring a bell or use any sound-making or amplifying device on any of the streets, parks or public places of the Township or upon private premises where sound of sufficient volume is emitted or produced therefrom to be capable of being plainly heard upon the private premises, for the purpose of attracting attention to any merchandise or services, without first obtaining written authorization for the same from the appropriate Township official.
Distribute obscene merchandise or printed material or that which advocates unlawful conduct.
Litter the streets, public places or public or private property within the Township with any merchandise or printed material.
Every license or permit shall remain in force and be valid only for the time thereon expressed. All yearly licenses shall run until December 31 of any given year. All monthly licenses shall run from the first day of the month in which the license is issued.
For violation of any provision of this chapter, the penalty, upon conviction, shall be a minimum fine of $100 and a maximum penalty of one or more of the following: a fine not exceeding $2,000, imprisonment not exceeding 90 days or a period of community service not exceeding 90 days. Except as otherwise provided, each and every day in which a violation of any provision of this chapter exists shall constitute a separate violation.
The Township Clerk shall maintain a record of all licenses issued under the provisions of this chapter and shall record therein all convictions for violations of this chapter and other pertinent circumstances and incidents reported by the Chief of Police.