[HISTORY: Adopted by the Bloomfield Council as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Land development — See Ch. 315.
Article I Bloomfield Center
[Adopted 6-24-2001 by Ord. No. 01-12; amended in its entirety 5-15-2006 by Ord. No. 06-21 (Ch. 60 of the 1987 Code)]
The purposes of this article are to:
Foster the district's economic development, encourage the district's revitalization and strengthen the district's economic and commercial contributions to residents and property owners of the Township of Bloomfield (also referred to as the "Township")
Allow all those who live, work or invest in the district to contribute to the improvement of the district.
Foster the building of a nonpartisan private/public partnership to implement the improvement of Bloomfield Center.
Foster and create self-help programs to improve the local business climate.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- DISTRICT MANAGEMENT CORPORATION (also referred to as DMC)
- The Bloomfield Center Alliance, Inc., an entity incorporated pursuant to Title 15A of the New Jersey Statutes and designated by this article to receive funds collected by a special improvement assessment within the special improvement district, as authorized by this article and any amendatory supplementary ordinances.
- SPECIAL IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT (also referred to as DISTRICT or SID)
- That area within the Township of Bloomfield described by block and lot numbers and street addresses as set forth in Schedule A and designated by this article as an area in which a special assessment on property within the district shall be imposed for the purpose of promoting the economic and general welfare of the district and the Township.
The Council finds and declares that:
Bloomfield Center of the Township of Bloomfield has special needs and requires special services that can best be achieved through a private/public partnership implemented by a special improvement district (SID) and a district management corporation (DMC).
The continuation of a special improvement district and designation of a district management corporation will promote economic growth and implement, foster and encourage commercial development business vitality, expansion and self-help and improve the business climate and otherwise act in the best interest of the property owners in the district and in the best interest of the Township of Bloomfield.
The area within the Township of Bloomfield, as described by lot and block numbers and by street addresses as set forth in Schedule A of this article, will benefit from being designated as a special improvement district.
A district management corporation will provide the administrative, programming and other services to benefit the businesses, employees, residents and consumers in the special improvement district, and the district management corporation will assist the Township in promoting economic growth, employment and development.
A special assessment shall be imposed and collected by the Township with the regular property tax payment or payment in lieu of taxes or otherwise, and all of these payments shall be transferred to the district management corporation to effectuate the purpose of this article and any amendatory and supplementary statutes and to exercise the powers given to it by this article.
It is in the best interests of the Township and the public to create a special improvement district and to designate a district management corporation, except that no district management corporation shall be designated to receive any funds or to exercise any powers pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 40:56-67 et seq. and any amendatory or supplementary statutes, unless the Board of Directors of that corporation shall include at least one member of the Municipal Council of the Township of Bloomfield.
There is hereby created, designated and continued within the Township of Bloomfield a special improvement district to be known as the Bloomfield Center Special Improvement District consisting of properties designated and listed by tax lot and block number and street addresses on Schedule A attached hereto. The special improvement district shall be subject to special assessments on all affected property within the district, which assessment shall be imposed by the Township for the purposes of promoting the economic and general welfare of the district and the Township.
All properties within the special improvement district, except as otherwise noted in Subsection C, are deemed included in the assessing provisions of this article and are expressly subject to potential tax or assessment made for special improvement district purposes.
Only those properties within the special improvement district that are wholly residential properties or multifamily apartment dwellings or tax-exempt as listed by tax lot and block number and street addresses on Schedule B attached hereto are deemed excluded from the assessing or taxing provisions of this article and are expressly exempt from any assessment made for special improvement district purpose. All commercial, industrial or mixed-use commercial properties are hereby included in the assessment.
Editor's Note: Schedule B is on file in the Township's offices.
It is hereby determined that the operation and maintenance of the district may involve annual costs relating to services peculiar to the district that are distinguished from operation and maintenance services normally provided by the Township outside the district. Those annual costs shall be assessed or taxed to the benefited properties or businesses pursuant to this article and N.J.S.A. 40:56-65 et seq. The properties to be assessed or taxed to provide for the payment of such annual costs are described in § 99-4 hereof.
Each year, when the Council shall have acted on the estimated costs and/or on the budget of the district, the Tax Assessor shall prepare an assessment roll setting forth separately the amounts to be specially assessed against the benefited and assessable properties in the district. Descriptions of such properties and the name of the then current owners of such properties, so far as names are available, shall be included in each annual assessment roll. The assessment's roll, when so prepared, shall be filed in the Office of the Township Clerk and be there available for inspection. The Council shall annually meet to consider objections to the amounts of such special assessments at least 10 days after a notice of hearing has been published once in the official newspaper and mailed to the named owners of all tracts, parcels and lots of property to be assessed. The notice shall set forth the time and place of the meeting, and set forth the purpose of such meeting, but may refer to the assessment roll for further particulars. When the Council shall have approved the amounts of the special assessments set forth therein, or as may be changed by it, the Township Clerk shall forthwith certify a copy of the assessment roll with supplements to the roll to the Essex County Board of Taxation.
The special assessment rate in the special improvement district based upon the prior year's local, county and school tax or any payment made in lieu of taxes or otherwise shall not exceed 10%.
The nonprofit corporation, the Bloomfield Center Alliance, Inc., an entity incorporated pursuant to N.J.S.A. 15A:1-1 et seq., is hereby designated as the district management corporation for the district and designated by this article to receive funds collected by a special improvement assessment within the special improvement district. This management corporation, in addition to acting as an advisory board to the Council, shall have all powers necessary and requisite to effectuate the purpose of this article and the district, including, but not limited to:
Adopt bylaws for the regulation of its affairs and conduct of its business and to prescribe rules, regulations and polices in connection with the performance of its function and duties;
Employ such persons as may be required, and to fix and pay their compensation from funds available to the district management corporation;
Apply for, accept, administer and comply with the requirements respecting an appropriation of funds or a gift, grant or donation of property or money;
Make and execute agreements which may be necessary or convenient to the exercise of the powers and functions of the corporation, including contracts with any person, firm, corporation, governmental agency or other entity;
Administer and manage its own funds and accounts and pay its obligations;
Borrow money from private lenders for periods not to exceed 180 days;
Fund the improvement for the exterior appearance of properties in the district through grants or loans;
Fund the rehabilitation of properties in the district;
Accept, purchase, rehabilitate, sell, lease or manage property in the district;
Enforce the conditions of any loan, grant, sale or lease made by the district management corporation;
Provide security, sanitation and other services to the district, supplemental to those provided normally by the municipality;
Undertake improvements designed to increase the safety or attractiveness of the district to businesses which may wish to locate there or to visitors to the district, including, but not limited to, litter cleanup and control, landscaping, parking areas and facilities, recreational and rest areas and facilities, pursuant to pertinent regulations of the Township of Bloomfield;
Publicize the district and the businesses included within the district boundaries;
Recruit new businesses to fill vacancies in, and to balance the business mix of, the district;
Advise the Mayor and Township Council in connection with the acquisition and construction of improvements and the operation and maintenance thereof in the special improvement district, and making of a plan therefor and the recommendations, comments or requests of members of the public and of owners and occupants of property included within the special improvement district;
Advise the Parking Authority of the Township of Bloomfield regarding special parking arrangements for the district, such as meters, lots, bagging of meters (temporary or holiday);
Provide temporary decorative lighting in the district;
Organize special events in the district;
Review all applications, plans, specifications, etc. for the proposed demolition, construction, or alteration of any and all exterior improvements, including signage to buildings and facades within the special improvement district, for the purpose of providing advice and recommendations to those wishing to improve their properties. Recommendations produced under this section will be forwarded to the appropriate approving authority, namely the Township's Construction Code Official, Planning Board or the Zoning Board of Adjustment.
Advise the distribution and location of movable furniture, sculpture or pedestrian traffic control devices, landscaping and other facilities not otherwise located or fixed by the plans and specifications.
Review and approve signage and facade improvements for the district as provided in N.J.S.A. 40:56-71.
The SID will provide the lead in creating a unique identity such as seasonal special events, sidewalk sales and entertainment programs.
In order to receive any funds or exercise any of the powers granted herein, the Board of Trustees of the Corporation shall include at least one member of the governing body of the municipality of the Township of Bloomfield.
Notwithstanding the creation of a special improvement district, the Township of Bloomfield expressly retains all its powers and authority over the area designated as within the special improvement district.
Nothing contained herein shall be interpreted or construed to be a vacation, in whole or in part, of any municipal street or part thereof.
The district management corporation shall not make or enter into any contracts for the improvement of any publicly owned or operated facility or property within the special improvement district, nor adopt any regulation relating to public property in such district unless the Council of the Township of Bloomfield delegates to the Bloomfield Center Alliance, Inc., by ordinance, the contracting of work to be done on any street or streets or on any other municipal property within the special improvement district, provided the district management corporation, as the contracting unit, complies with the New Jersey Local Public Contracts Law, Public Law 1971, Chapter 198 (N.J.S.A. 40A:11-1 et seq.) and provided the plans and specifications for the work contracted shall be approved by the Municipal Engineer and the Council, by resolution, prior to initiation of any action for the awarding of a contract under the Local Public Contracts Law.
The district management corporation shall comply with all applicable ordinances or regulations of the Township of Bloomfield.
The fiscal year of the district shall be the same as the Township.
The district management corporation shall submit a detailed annual budget for the upcoming fiscal year by no later than December 31 for approval by resolution by the Council.
The budget shall be submitted with a report which explains how the budget contributes to goals and objectives for the special improvement district. The budget shall be reasonably itemized and shall include a summary of the categories of cost properly chargeable as follows:
The amount of such costs to be charged against the general funds of the Township, if any;
The amount of costs to be charged and assessed against properties benefited in the district in proportion to benefits against properties in the district;
The amount of costs, if any, to be specially taxed against properties in the district.
The budget shall be introduced, approved, amended and adopted by resolution passed by not less than a majority of the full membership of the Municipal Council. The procedure shall be as follows:
The budget shall be introduced in writing at a meeting of the Council. Approval thereof shall constitute a first reading, which may be by title. Mayor and Council, upon approval of the budget, shall fix the time and place for the holding of a public hearing upon the budget.
The budget shall be advertised after approval. The advertisement shall contain a copy of the budget and shall set forth the date, the time and place of the hearing. It shall be published at least 10 days prior to the date fixed therefor in the official newspaper of the Township.
No budget shall be adopted until a public hearing has been held thereon and all persons having an interest therein shall have been given an opportunity to present objections. The hearing shall be held not less than 28 days after the approval of the budget.
The public hearing shall be held at the time and place specified in the advertisement thereof but may be adjourned from time to time until the hearing is closed.
The budget, as advertised, shall be read at the public hearing in full, or it may be read by its title, if:
At least one week prior to the date of the hearing a complete copy of the approved budget, as advertised:
After closing the hearing, the governing body may adopt the budget by title, without amendments, or may approve amendments, as provided in Section K, before adoption.
The governing body may amend the budget during or after the public hearing. No amendment by the governing body shall be effective until the taxpayers and all persons having an interest therein shall have been granted a public hearing thereon, if the amendment shall:
Add a new item in an amount in excess of 1% of the total amount stated in the approved budget; or
Increase or decrease any item by more than 10%; or
Increase the amount to be raised pursuant to Section 16 of Public Law 1972, Chapter 134 (N.J.S.A. 40:56-80), or Section 19 of this amendatory and supplementary act, by more than 5% unless the same is made pursuant to an emergency temporary appropriation only. Notice of hearing on an amendment shall be advertised at least three days before the date set therefor. The amendment shall be published in full in the same manner as an original publication and shall be read in full at the hearing and before adoption.
Final adoption shall be by resolution, adopted by a majority of the full membership of the governing body, and may be by title.
Monies appropriated and collected for the annual costs of operating and maintaining a special improvement district shall be credited to a special account. The Council may incur the annual costs of improving, operating and maintaining a special improvement district during a fiscal year, though not specifically provided for by line item or other category in an approved estimate for such fiscal year, if in its discretion it shall be deemed necessary to provide for such annual improvements or operation or maintenance prior to the succeeding fiscal year and so long as the total amount of the account approved for that year is not exceeded by the expenditure. Any balances to the credit of the account and remaining unexpended at the end of the fiscal year shall be maintained and applied towards the financial requirements of the succeeding year.
The Council may retain a portion of the collected special assessment proceeds to offset the direct costs incurred in the required assessment and budget processes.
The Council shall pay over funds to the management corporation quarterly on the 15th day of February, May, August and November of each year. The Township shall not be obligated to pay over funds not received by the Township.
The district management corporation shall cause an annual audit of its books, accounts and financial transactions to be made and filed with the Council and for that purpose shall employ a certified public accountant of New Jersey. The annual audit shall be completed and filed with the governing body within four months after the close of the fiscal year of the corporation, and a certified copy of the audit shall be filed with the Director of Community Affairs within five days of the filing of the audit with the Council.
The district management corporation shall, within 30 days after the close of each fiscal year, make an annual report of its activities for the proceeding fiscal year to the Council and the Township Clerk.
Nothing contained herein shall prevent the Council at anytime subsequent to the adoption of this article, by ordinance, abandoning the operation of the special improvement district, changing the extent of the special improvement district, supplementing or amending the description of the district to be specially assessed or taxed for annual costs of the special improvement district, changing or repealing any plan, rules, requisitions or limitations adopted for the operation of the special improvement district or rescinding the designation of or redesignating a district management corporation.
Editor's Note: Former § 99-11, Effective date, which immediately followed, was repealed 4-19-2010 by Ord. No. 10-17.