City of Oneonta, NY
Otsego County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Common Council of the City of Oneonta 5-1-2007 by Ord. No. 1-2007. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Bars, cabarets and nightclubs — See Ch. 71.
Food-handling establishments — See Ch. 138.
Housing — See Ch. 158.
Licenses and permits — See Ch. 166.
Littering — See Ch. 170.
Noise — See Ch. 178.
Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 254.
Zoning — See Ch. 300.

§ 241-1 Purpose and intent.

The sidewalk cafe regulations as set forth in this chapter are designed to permit those cafes in areas where they are appropriate to enhance the downtown Oneonta experience and to promote and protect the public health, safety and general welfare. Specific purposes of this chapter are:
A. 
To ensure adequate space for pedestrians on the sidewalk adjacent to the sidewalk cafes.
B. 
To preserve and enhance the character of neighborhoods throughout the City and to protect the adjacent residential areas.
C. 
To simplify administrative and strengthen enforcement procedures for sidewalk cafes that are effective, efficient and enforceable.
D. 
To promote the most desirable use of land and to provide compensation to the City for use of City-owned land for sidewalk cafe purposes.

§ 241-2 Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the following terms shall include each of the meanings set forth:
A. 
Commercial districts: Those areas of the City of Oneonta designated by the Zoning Districts § 300-30, CBD-A; § 300-31, CBD-B; § 300-32, CBD-C; § 300-33, CBD-W/W; and § 300-42, CBD-B/W/W.
B. 
Sidewalk cafe: Those exterior facilities adjacent to and a part of establishments selling food and drink that require the use of some City-owned property for operation, are temporary in nature and open to the elements except for optional awnings and/or temporary low walls or fences. This definition shall include only those facilities which, if they hold New York State liquor licenses also operate as a "restaurant" within the meaning and definition of the State Liquor Authority.
C. 
Regular café permit: Written authorization issued by the City Clerk, in consultation with the Code Enforcement Officer, pursuant to this chapter, permitting the operation of a sidewalk café.
[Amended 3-20-2012 by Ord. No. 1-2012]
D. 
Low impact café permit: Written authorization issued by the City Clerk, pursuant to this chapter, permitting the operation of a sidewalk café having no more than one table and two chairs, per 12 linear feet of building frontage, excluding doorways and entrances, none of which extending more than five feet from its exterior wall which abuts the sidewalk.
[Added 3-20-2012 by Ord. No. 1-2012]

§ 241-3 Permit required; restrictions.

[Amended 3-20-2012 by Ord. No. 1-2012]
A. 
No sidewalk café shall be allowed to operate in any outdoor area unless a permit has been obtained from the City Clerk.
B. 
A request for a regular café permit shall be made, in writing, to the City Clerk upon a blank form prepared and furnished by the City and shall include:
(1) 
The name, address and telephone number of the applicant.
(2) 
The name, address and telephone number of the restaurant to be the subject of the application.
(3) 
The dates, days and hours of operation of the proposed cafe.
(4) 
Whether alcoholic beverages are to be served. If alcoholic beverages are to be served, a certification from the New York State Liquor Authority shall be submitted with the application authorizing the use of an outdoor area for the consumption of alcoholic beverages. Only beer and wine may be served in these areas, unless the establishment is designated as a "restaurant," as such is defined by the State Liquor Authority.
(5) 
The number of tables and chairs desired for this area and a rendering of the portions of tables relative to entrances, exits and the sidewalk.
(6) 
A description of the facilities and equipment to be used, including whether live or mechanically produced music is to be played and the other devices needed for amplification of sound, when applicable.
(7) 
A site plan, drawn to scale, showing proper clearance around ingress and egress to building and to fire safeguards; also proper amount of clearance on the sidewalk for pedestrian traffic.
(8) 
Proof of insurance, in amounts required by the City Attorney.
(9) 
An indication of all fixtures such as fencing, decking or planters to be used and an indication of whether or not they will be removed when the café is closed.
(10) 
A survey map indicating property lines and that property which is owned by the applicant and that which is City-owned.
(11) 
Any other information that the City Clerk and/or Code Enforcement Officer may find reasonably necessary for the fair determination as to whether a permit should be issued.
C. 
Completed applications shall be circulated by the Clerk's office to the Engineering Department, Oneonta Fire Department and Oneonta Police Department for comment.
D. 
A request for a low impact café permit shall be made, in writing, to the City Clerk upon a blank form prepared and furnished by the City and shall include:
(1) 
The name, address and telephone number of the applicant.
(2) 
The name, address and telephone number of the restaurant to be the subject of the application.
(3) 
Proof of insurance, in amounts required by the City Attorney.
(4) 
Any other information that the City Clerk and/or Code Enforcement Officer may find reasonably necessary for the fair determination as to whether a permit should be issued.

§ 241-4 Standards for issuance of permit.

A. 
The City Clerk and Code Enforcement Officer shall issue a permit upon a finding that:
(1) 
The proposed sidewalk cafe will not unreasonably interfere with the pedestrian traffic or use of the City-owned portion of property to be used.
(2) 
The applicant has met all other applicable provisions in this chapter and those in the New York State Building Code, City of Oneonta Housing Code (Chapter 158) and the City of Oneonta Zoning Code (Chapter 300).
B. 
Notwithstanding the foregoing, the City Clerk and Code Enforcement Officer may deny a permit upon a finding that:
(1) 
The establishment or operator of the sidewalk cafe has, during the preceding 12 months, violated any applicable rule, regulation, ordinance, local law or statute passed by the City of Oneonta.
(2) 
The proposed sidewalk cafe will have an undue adverse effect upon nearby property, the character of the neighborhood, traffic conditions, parking or any other matters affecting the public health, safety and welfare or convenience.
C. 
Notwithstanding the foregoing, the City Clerk and Code Enforcement Officer may request the applicant and any other interested parties appear at an administrative hearing before the Board of Public Safety to assist in making permitting determinations.

§ 241-5 Effective time of permit.

Any permit issued for a sidewalk cafe shall be effective from the first day of April to the 30th day of November of each year. The applicant must reapply each subsequent year.

§ 241-6 Fees.

Upon the filing of the application for a sidewalk cafe, the applicant shall also submit the nonrefundable application fee established by resolution from time to time by the Common Council of the City of Oneonta.

§ 241-7 Requirements of permit.

A. 
Posting of permit. The permit holder shall post the sidewalk cafe permit on the establishment so that it is clearly visible from the street.
B. 
Trash; condition of premises. Property shall be kept clean and refuse free, and any outside trash containers shall be emptied at least once per day into operator's regular business receptacle. At the expiration of the term of the permit, all City-owned property shall be delivered up to the City in the same condition as prior to the granting of the permit, damage by natural elements excepted. Public property shall not be altered in any way during the term of the permit. Further, the applicant shall sign an agreement to repair, at the expense of the applicant, any damage caused by non-natural elements to the sidewalk in the operation of the cafe.
C. 
Serving of alcoholic beverages. Alcoholic beverages will not be served at the sidewalk cafe after 10:30 p.m., and all tables and chairs will be removed no later than one hour after the final serving time.
D. 
Hours of operation. Sidewalk cafes shall be open for business not before 7:30 a.m. and shall close by 11:00 p.m.
E. 
Music; lighting; outdoor cooking. Sidewalk cafes shall be allowed to provide music, so long as it is not of the type and volume as to violate any applicable and appropriate law or ordinance such as the City's Noise Ordinance (Chapter 178) or create a nuisance to surrounding residents or property owners. Lighting shall be minimal and shielded to prevent spillover to adjacent properties. No outdoor cooking of any type is permitted in sidewalk cafes.
F. 
Fixtures; furnishing; signage. All fixtures and furnishings shall be of a temporary nature, capable of being brought in at closing time, and must be brought in from public space and stored during nonoperational hours. No objects, except a retractable awning and lighting fixtures may be permanently attached to the exterior. All planters, railings and fences must be temporary and not exceed a height of four feet. No additional signage shall be permitted to be affixed to a cafe temporary structures or accessories. Any permanent changes to the property are subject to site plan review and approval.
G. 
Clear paths. Sidewalk cafes shall maintain a minimum of five feet or 50% of the total sidewalk area for clearance, whichever is greater, to provide adequate and unobstructed pedestrian movement, such measurement being made from the outermost point of the cafe to the unobstructed inner edge of the curb, excluding brick or grass carpets, United States mailboxes, fire hydrants, bus shelters, street trees, etc. The actual amount of clearance space needed will be based upon two factors: the location and the volume of pedestrian traffic. A larger pedestrian right-of-way may be required based on the proposed location and the volume of pedestrian traffic experienced there. The City Clerk and Code Enforcement Officer may, at their discretion, alter the requirements of this section.

§ 241-8 Liability of permit holder; insurance.

The person or persons to whom a permit is issued shall be liable and shall indemnify the City for any loss, damage or injury sustained by any person whatever by reason of the negligence of the person or persons to whom the permit shall have been issued. The applicant for a permit shall present to the City Clerk a certificate of insurance, naming the City of Oneonta as additional insured prior to the issuance of the permit, in the amounts specified by the City Attorney.

§ 241-9 Enforcement and revocation of permit.

The City Clerk and Code Enforcement Officer shall be responsible for monitoring and enforcing compliance with the terms of this chapter and applicable rules and regulations.
A. 
Grounds for revocation. The City Clerk and Code Enforcement Officer, upon joint consultation and decision, may, at any time, for just cause or any violation of this chapter, revoke any permit granted under the provisions of this chapter.
B. 
Service of notice. Notice of such revocation and the reason therefor, in writing, shall be served by the City Clerk upon the person named in the application by mailing the same to the address given on the application via certified and regular mail.
C. 
Effect of revocation. Whenever any permit shall be revoked, the applicant shall cease operation of the sidewalk cafe and no refund or any unearned portion thereof shall be made.

§ 241-10 Appeals.

When a permit is denied or revoked the applicant may request a hearing for such revocation or denial to the Board of Public Service. Such request shall be in writing and received by the City Clerk within 20 days from the date of such revocation or denial.

§ 241-11 Severability.

If any section, paragraph, subdivision, clause or provision of this chapter shall be adjudged invalid, such adjudication shall apply only to the section, paragraph, subdivision, clause or provision so adjudged, and the remainder of this chapter shall be deemed valid and effective.

§ 241-12 Penalties for offenses.

Any person violating any provision of this chapter may be punished as provided in § 1-18 of this Code.