[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of North Haledon 11-10-1982 by Ord. No. 14-1982; amended in its entirety 11-13-2002 by Ord. No. 14-2002 (Ch. 130 of the 1990 Code). Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
[Amended 10-15-2014 by Ord. No. 22-2014]
A certain document, three copies of which are on file in the office of the Construction Official of the Borough of North Haledon, being marked and designated as the "International Property Maintenance Code, 2000 Edition," as published by the International Code Council, Inc., be and is hereby adopted as the Property Maintenance Code of the Borough of North Haledon, in the State of New Jersey; for the control of buildings and structures as herein provided, and each and all of the regulations, provisions, penalties, conditions and terms of said Property Maintenance Code are hereby referred to, adopted, and made a part hereof as if fully set out in this chapter, with the additions, insertions, deletions and changes, if any, prescribed in § 455-2 of this chapter.
The following sections of the Property Maintenance Code are hereby amended as follows:
Section 101.1: Insert "Borough of North Haledon."
Section 103.6 is deleted.
Section 303.14: Insert "April 1 to October 1."
Section 602.3: Insert "September 1 to April 1."
Section 602.4: Insert "September 1 to April 1."
Sections 103.1 and 103.2 are deleted and replaced with the following language:
Section 103.3 is deleted.
Section 103.5 is deleted.
Section 104.2 is deleted.
Section 106.3: The first sentence is amended to read:
Section 106.4: The last sentence is amended to read:
[Amended 10-15-2014 by Ord. No. 22-2014]
Section 107 is deleted, and any reference thereto shall be deemed to refer to § 455-7 of the Code of the Borough of North Haledon.
Section 110.2 is amended to read:
Section 111 is deleted in its entirety.
In any case where the provisions of this chapter impose a higher or stricter standard than set forth in any other ordinance or regulation of the Borough or under the laws or regulations of the State of New Jersey or any of its agencies, then the standards as set forth herein shall prevail, but if the provisions of this chapter impose a lower or lesser standard than any other regulation or ordinance of the Borough or of the laws and regulations of the State of New Jersey or any of its agencies, then the higher standard contained in any such other ordinance, regulation or law shall prevail.
Compliance with this chapter shall not constitute a defense against any violation of any other ordinance of the Borough applicable to any structure or premises, nor shall any one act of compliance constitute a defense against any subsequent or other violation of this chapter.
Any alterations to buildings, structures or appurtenances thereto, or changes of use therein, which may be caused directly or indirectly by the enforcement of this chapter shall be done in accordance with all applicable sections of the Building Code of the municipality.
Nothing contained in this chapter or any requirement of compliance herewith shall be deemed to alter, impair or affect the application of Chapter 600, Zoning, or other ordinances regulating land use of the municipality.
Whenever the enforcement officer determines that there is or has been a violation of any provision of this chapter, he/she shall give notice of such violation to the person, persons or entities responsible therefor under this chapter.
Such notice shall be in writing and shall include a concise statement of the reasons for its issuance. Such notice shall be deemed to be properly and sufficiently served if a copy thereof is sent by registered or certified mail to the last known address of the person or entity upon which the same is served, as shown by the most recent tax lists of the municipality, or a copy thereof handed to such person or persons, or a copy thereof left at the usual place of abode or office of such persons or entities. Notice shall be given as aforesaid within or without the municipality.
The notice shall also state that unless the violation is abated, removed, cured, prevented or desisted from within 10 days of the date of service of such notice, exclusive of the date of service, a summons shall issue for such violation.
The enforcement officer may, at the time he/she issues the notice, extend the period for compliance with the violation stated in the notice for a period in excess of the aforesaid 10 days, if, in his/her judgment, the abatement, removal, prevention, cessation or cure of the condition violated cannot reasonably be effected within the ten-day period. In such cases, the enforcement officer shall state such reasonably required extended period in the notice, which shall then be applicable instead of the aforesaid 10 days.
In the event that the violation is not abated, removed, cured, prevented or desisted from or otherwise fully remedied within the ten-day period or within such extended period as set forth in the notice pursuant to the foregoing, a summons shall then issue against the person, persons or entities so notified.
[Added 5-19-2010 by Ord. No. 13-2010]
The Borough may notify, in writing, any property owner of the existence of any tree(s) located on said owner's property which may, for any reason, threaten public safety and require the removal or treatment of any such tree(s) or pruning of such tree limbs, at the property owner's expense, within 30 days of the date of such notice by a licensed contractor insured in an amount acceptable to the Borough. The Borough may remove, treat or prune or cause to have removed or treated such tree(s) or prune such tree limbs in the event of the property owner's failure to cause such removal, treatment or pruning, and the costs thereof shall be included in the next property tax bill rendered to the property owner. The Borough shall give reasonable notice of its intention to remove, treat or prune, or cause the removal, treatment or pruning of any tree(s), or part thereof, unless public safety requires immediate removal, treatment or pruning, in which case no notice shall be necessary.
[Added 9-18-2013 by Ord. No. 13-2013]
Whenever the enforcement officer finds that an emergency condition in violation of this chapter exists, which condition requires immediate attention in order to protect the public health or safety, he/she may, without a hearing, issue an order reciting the existence of such a hazardous or serious violation or emergency and requiring that such action be taken as he/she deems necessary to meet the emergency or to remedy the hazardous or serious violation. Notwithstanding the other provisions of this chapter, such order shall be effective immediately but, upon petition to the enforcement officer, shall be afforded a hearing as soon as possible. After such hearing and decision by the enforcement officer, depending upon his/her findings as to whether or not the provisions of this chapter have been complied with, the officer shall continue such order in effect, or modify or withdraw it, subject to the issuance of a summons for violation thereof if such order is continued.
In the event that the owner of the premises fails to correct said emergency condition within the period set forth in such order, the order may provide for the Borough of North Haledon to take such action as deemed necessary to remedy said emergency condition, and the cost of said remedy, together with any other charges incurred, shall be a principal lien against the real property upon which said costs and charges were incurred. The amount of the lien shall be computed by the Chief Financial Officer of the Borough of North Haledon and shall be the sum of the following:
The hourly rate(s) of the employee(s) performing the remedy, multiplied by the number of hours devoted to the remedy (An employee's hourly rate shall be computed by dividing his/her gross weekly salary by 40.);
The actual cost of material utilized; and
The charges of the Borough Attorney incurred in connection with the preparation and filing of the lien in the office of the Passaic County Clerk.
[Added 8-3-2016 by Ord. No. 16-2016]
Definitions. As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ABANDONED PROPERTY
- Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 55:19-81 is defined as follows: Any property that has not been legally occupied for a period of six months and which meets any one of the following additional criteria may be deemed to be abandoned property upon a determination by the public officer that:
- (1) The property is in need of rehabilitation in the reasonable judgment of the public officer, and no rehabilitation has taken place during that six-month period;
- (2) Construction was initiated on the property and was discontinued prior to completion, leaving the building unsuitable for occupancy, and no construction has taken place for at least six months as of the date of a determination by the public officer pursuant to this section;
- (3) At least one installment of property tax remains unpaid and delinquent on that property in accordance with Chapter 4 of Title 54 of the Revised Statutes of the date of the determination by the public officer pursuant to this section; or
- (4) The property has been determined to be a nuisance by the public officer in accordance with section 5 of P.L. 2003, c. 210 (N.J.S.A. 55:19-82). A property which contains both residential and nonresidential space may be considered abandoned pursuant to P.L. 2003, c. 210 (N.J.S.A. 55:19-78 et al.) so long as 2/3 or more of the total net square footage of the building was previously legally occupied as residential or commercial space and none of the residential; or
- Includes the title holder, any agent of the title holder having authority to act with respect to a vacant/abandoned property, any foreclosing entity subject to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 46:10B-51 (P.L. 2008, c. 127, Sec. 17 as amended by P.L. 2009, c. 296), or any other entity determined by the Borough of North Haledon to have authority to act with respect to the property.
- VACANT PROPERTY
- Any building used or to be used as a residence, commercial or industrial structure which is not legally occupied or at which substantially all lawful construction operations or occupancy has ceased, and which is in such condition that it cannot legally be reoccupied without repair or rehabilitation, including but not limited to any property meeting the definition of abandoned property in N.J.S.A. 55:19-54, 55:19-78, 55:19-79, 55:19-80 and 55:19-81; provided, however, that any property where all building systems are in working order, where the building and grounds are maintained in good order, or where the building is in habitable condition, and where the building is being actively marketed by its owner for sale or rental, shall not be deemed a vacant property for purposes of this chapter.
Registration requirements. Effective September 1, 2016, the owner of any vacant property as defined herein shall, within 30 calendar days after the building becomes vacant property or within 30 calendar days after assuming ownership of the vacant property, whichever is later; or within 10 calendar days of receipt of notice by the municipality, file a registration statement for such vacant property with the Property Maintenance Officer on a form provided by the Borough for such purposes. Failure to receive notice by the municipality shall not constitute grounds for failing to register the property.
Each property having a separate block and lot number as designated in official records of the municipality shall be registered separately.
The registration statement shall include the name, street address, telephone number, and email address (if applicable) of a person 21 years or older, designated by the owner or owners as the authorized agent for receiving notices of code violations and for receiving process in any court proceeding or administrative enforcement proceedings on behalf of such owner or owners in connection with the enforcement of any applicable code; and the name, street address, telephone number, and email (if applicable) of the firm and the actual name(s) of the fines individual principal(s) responsible for maintaining the property. The individual or representative of the firm responsible for maintaining the property shall be available by telephone or in person on a twenty-four-hour-per-day, seven-day-per-week basis. The two entities may be the same or different persons. Both entities shown on the statement must maintain offices in the State of New Jersey or reside within the State of New Jersey.
The registration shall remain valid for one year from the date of registration except for the initial registration which shall be prorated through December 31. The owner shall be required to renew the registration annually as long as the building remains a vacant and/or abandoned property and shall pay a registration or renewal fee in the amount prescribed in Subsection E of this section, for each vacant property registered.
The annual renewal shall be completed by January 1 each year. The initial registration fee shall be prorated for registration statements received less than 10 months prior to that date.
The owner shall notify the Property Maintenance Official within 30 calendar days of any change in the registration information by filing an amended registration statement on a form provided by the Property Maintenance Official for such purpose.
The registration statement shall be deemed prima facie proof of the statements therein contained in any administrative enforcement proceeding or court proceeding instituted by the Borough against the owner or owners of the building.
Access to vacant properties. The owner of any vacant property registered under this section shall provide access to the Borough to conduct exterior and interior inspections of the building to determine compliance with municipal codes, upon reasonable notice to the property owner or the designated agent. Such inspections shall be carried out on weekdays during the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., or such other time as may be mutually agreed upon between the owner and the Borough.
Responsible owner or agent.
An owner who meets the requirements of this section with respect to the location of his or her residence or workplace in the State of New Jersey may designate him or herself as agent or as the individual responsible for maintaining the property.
By designating an authorized agent under the provisions of this section, the owner consents to receive any and all notices of code violations concerning the registered vacant property and all process in any court proceeding or administrative enforcement proceeding brought to enforce code provisions concerning the registered building by service of the notice or process on the authorized agent. Any owner who has designated an authorized agent under the provisions of this section shall be deemed to consent to the continuation of the agent's designation for the purposes of this section until the owner notifies the Borough in writing of a change of authorized agent or until the owner files a new annual registration statement.
Any owner who fails to register vacant/abandoned property under the provisions of this section shall further be deemed to consent to receive, by posting on the building, in plain view, and by service of notice at the last known address of the owner of the property on record within the Borough by regular and certified mail, any and all notices of code violations and all process in an administrative proceeding brought to enforce code provisions concerning the building.
The initial registration fee for each building shall be $500. The fee for the first renewal is $1,500, and the fee for the second renewal is $3,000. The fee for any subsequent renewal beyond the second renewal is $5,000.
Requirements of owners of vacant/abandoned properties. The owner of any building that has become vacant/abandoned property, and any person maintaining or operating or collecting rent for any such building that has become vacant shall, within 30 days thereof:
Enclose and secure the building against unauthorized entry as provided in the applicable provisions of the Borough Code, or as set forth in the rules and regulations supplementing those codes; and
Post a sign affixed to the building indicating the name, address and telephone number of the owner, the owner's authorized agent for the purpose of service of process, and the person responsible for day-to-day supervision and management of the building, if such person is different from the owner holding title or authorized agent. The sign shall be of a size and placed in such a location so as to be legible from the nearest public street or sidewalk, whichever is nearer, but shall be no smaller than eight inches by 10 inches; and
Secure the building from unauthorized entry and maintain the sign until the building is again legally occupied or demolished or until repair or rehabilitation of the building is complete; and
Ensure that the exterior grounds of the structure, including yards, fences, sidewalks, walkways, rights-of-way, alleys, retaining walls, attached or unattached accessory structures and driveways, are well maintained and free from trash, debris, loose litter, and gross and weed growth; and
Continue to maintain the structure in a secure and closed condition, keep the grounds in a clean and well-maintained condition, and ensure that the sign is visible and intact until the building is again occupied, demolished, or until repair and/or rehabilitation of the building is complete.
Any person who violates any provision of this section or the rules and regulations issued hereunder shall be fined not less than $100 and not more than $1,000 for each offense. Every day that a violation continues shall constitute a separate and distinct offense. Fines assessed under this chapter shall be recoverable from the owner and shall be a lien on the property.
For purposes of this section, failure to file a registration statement within 30 calendar days after a building becomes vacant property or within 30 calendar days after assuming ownership of a vacant property, whichever is later, or within 10 calendar days of receipt of notice by the municipality, and failure to provide correct information on the registration statement, or failure to comply with the provisions of such provisions contained herein shall be deemed to be violations of this section.