Borough of Hawthorne, NJ
Passaic County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners (now Municipal Council) of the Borough of Hawthorne 11-23-1953 by Ord. No. 958 (Ch. 220 of the 1989 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Fire Department — See Ch. 25, Art. III.
Uniform construction codes — See Ch. 185.
Fees — See Ch. 220.
Laundries — See Ch. 298.
Sewers and sewage disposal— See Ch. 399.
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 450.
Swimming pools — See Ch. 456.
Zoning — See Ch. 540.
This chapter shall be known as the "Borough of Hawthorne Water Ordinance."
A. 
Whenever in this chapter the following words, clauses or terms are used, they shall be construed to mean and shall have the meanings herein defined unless otherwise specifically stated or unless some other meaning is obviously and clearly intended:
AGENT
The occupant (in the absence of instructions from the owner of any property or premises, or his duly authorized agent, to the contrary) of any property or premises, insofar as his relations to the Department may be concerned, with respect to water uses and existing services.[1]
BOROUGH
The Borough of Hawthorne.
DEPARTMENT
The Water Department of the Borough of Hawthorne.
MAIN or MAINS
All pipes, other than supply pipes and service pipes, used for conveying or distributing water in the Borough.
OFFICE
The office of the Department.
OWNER
Any person, persons, firm, corporation or association actually owning any property or premises which is or can be prospectively supplied with water, or his or their duly authorized agent.
PREMISES
A single-family dwelling, or a two-family dwelling, or an apartment house occupied by more than one family, or a building occupied for industry, business or other purposes by one or more persons, together with the land appurtenant thereto and such outbuildings as are used exclusively in connection therewith, or any part of a building with the land appurtenant thereto when sold as a separate unit.
SERVICE PIPE
The pipe extending from the curbline into privately owned property or premises for supplying water thereto.
SUPPLY LINE
A pipe connected to the main and extending thence to and including the curb cock or valve at the curbline of the street.
WATER DEPARTMENT OF THE BOROUGH OF HAWTHORNE
The Water Department of the Borough of Hawthorne functioning under the direction of the Director of Public Works, either directly or by his duly authorized representative or agent, and the property, organization and operation of the water supply system, waterworks and each and every part thereof in the Borough, collectively or separately.
[Amended 12-1-1993 by Ord. No. 1595]
WATER RATES
Rates or prices to be charged for water furnished by the Department to any consumer.
[1]
Editor's Note: The former definition of "Board," which immediately followed this definition, was repealed 12-1-1993 by Ord. No. 1595.
B. 
Whenever any word in this chapter importing the plural number shall be used in describing or referring to any matter or person, any single matter or person shall be deemed to be included although words signifying the singular number may not be used. And when any matters or persons shall be referred to in this chapter by words importing the singular number only, or the masculine gender, then the several matters or persons and females as well as males and bodies corporate shall be deemed to be included, provided that these rules of construction shall not be applied where this chapter shall contain any express provision excluding such construction, or where the subject matter or context may be repugnant thereto.
The water mains, supply lines or pipes, curb cocks, stopcocks and meters of the Department shall be under the exclusive control of the Department and its authorized agents and employees, and all other persons are forbidden to disturb, tamper with, injure, tap, change, obstruct access to or interfere with said water mains, supply lines or pipes, curb cocks, stopcocks or meters in any way.
The owner or occupant of any premises where a meter is installed shall be held responsible for its care and protection from freezing or hot water and from other injury thereto or interference with by any person or persons. In case of any injury to the meter or in case of its stoppage or imperfect working, he shall give immediate notice to the office of the Department. All Borough water used on any premises must pass through a meter installed by the Department. No bypass around the meter shall be made or maintained.
[Amended 12-20-1989 by Ord. No. 1510]
Where pipes are provided for fire protection on any premises or where hose connections for fire apparatus are provided on any pipe, each connection or opening on said pipes, except sprinkler heads, shall have a fire hose with Borough of Hawthorne standard thread constantly attached thereto, and no water shall be taken or used through such pipes, openings or hose for any purpose other than for extinguishing fires except for the purpose of testing said fire apparatus. For said tests, the Water Department may grant a special permit, and each such test must be conducted under the supervision of the Water and Fire Departments.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Original § 114-7, Sprinkling, flushing or cleaning streets, etc., which immediately followed this section, was deleted 12-20-1989 by Ord. No. 1510.
[Amended 12-2-2009 by Ord. No. 2000-09]
Fire hydrants are to be opened and used only by the Water or Fire Departments of the Borough or by any person who may be specifically authorized by the Department, provided that such person shall utilize backflow protection as required by the Department.
No person shall in any manner obstruct or prevent free access to or tamper with or injure or damage by causing or permitting a vehicle to come into contact with any fire hydrant or place or store temporarily or otherwise any object, material, snow, debris or structure of any kind within a distance of 10 feet of any hydrant. Any such obstruction, when discovered, may be removed at once by the Department at the expense of the person responsible for the obstruction, and he shall be liable to a fine as herein provided.
Meters shall be sealed by the Department, and no one except an authorized employee of the Department shall break or injure such seals.
Meters controlling the services, other than fire-line meters, are and shall remain the property of the Department, and all meters shall be at all times under its control.
[Amended 12-2-2009 by Ord. No. 2000-09]
Under no circumstances shall curb cocks be opened or closed by any person not an authorized employee of the Department.
Service pipes running from the curb cock and between the cellar wall and meter likely to be exposed to freezing temperatures must be effectively protected from freezing. All service pipes must be installed at a depth not less than four feet. Thawing out of service pipes when the freezing has occurred on the house side of the curb stop shall be the responsibility of the owner and payment for same shall be by the owner.
Excessive or unnecessary use or waste of water, whether caused by carelessness or by defective or leaky plumbing or fixtures, is strictly prohibited.
[Amended 12-1-1993 by Ord. No. 1595]
No person shall hinder or refuse to admit any officer, inspector, foreman or other authorized employee of the Department, upon presentation of a badge or other credentials, to any premises supplied with Borough water for the purpose of making inspection thereof, including the examination of the entire water supply and plumbing system upon said premises.
No person not an authorized officer or employee of the Department shall have, wear or exhibit any badge or credential of the Department. It shall be the duty of each and every officer and employee of the Department, upon resignation or dismissal, forthwith to surrender and deliver at the office all badges and credentials of the Department.
The Department may, at its discretion, shut off the water from the premises of any owner or tenant guilty of violating any of the provisions of this chapter upon giving said owner or tenant at least twenty-four-hours' notice of such intended action, which action may be in addition to the imposition of a fine as herein provided.
Applicants for Borough water or any service in connection therewith shall not make any misstatement or misrepresentation of fact with respect to such application, and they and all owners and users of Borough water shall be bound and governed by all the provisions of this chapter.
[Amended 2-2-1977 by Ord. No. 1290]
Supply lines shall be furnished, installed and maintained by and at the expense of the Department and shall remain the property of the Department. Mains and supply lines furnished and installed by a contractor, where so designated, shall be in accordance with the specifications provided by the Borough Engineer for furnishing material and installing the lines. Said lines, upon acceptance by the Borough Engineer, shall become the property of the Department. Service pipes shall be furnished and installed from the curb cock to the premises, all in accordance with the requirements of the Department, by the owner or his authorized agent and shall be kept in repair by the owner of said premises. When new service pipes are installed to any premises, the curb cock shall be left closed and shall thereafter be opened only by the Department during the regular working hours of the Department upon the request of the owner of such premises, which request must be in writing if so required. Under no circumstances shall curb cocks be opened or closed by any person not an authorized employee of the Department or any person not designated by the Department.
[Amended 12-1-1993 by Ord. No. 1595]
Extensions to or changes in existing mains or the construction of new mains within the Borough may be initiated by the Municipal Council or upon petition from property owners or citizens upon forms provided by the Department. The Municipal Council shall prescribe the terms and conditions upon which such petition will be granted and shall require the written acceptance and guaranty thereof by the applicant. If it is granted, the Municipal Council will direct the Department to proceed as promptly as practicable with the work. Unless otherwise stipulated, the work will be done at the expense of the applicant.
[Amended 12-2-2009 by Ord. No. 2000-09]
Application for a permit to use Borough water in the construction or repair of buildings or for any other purpose shall be made, in writing, to the Department by either the owner of such premises or the contractor for the work to be done upon forms provided for that purpose. The character of the work contemplated and the estimated quantities of the work to be done shall be specified, and such form shall be fully and correctly filled in. An estimate of the value of the water to be used at the established rates then will be prepared by the Department and a bill rendered for same. The holder of such a permit shall not open or close curb cocks or otherwise interfere with the same, and in case water has been turned on or used by such holder before payment of said bill, the water will be turned off by the Department pursuant to the conditions of such permit. The Department will, upon request, furnish and install a meter for the construction or repair of buildings upon the payment of the fee therefor and, in addition, a deposit to insure the return of the meter in good condition. Appropriate backflow protection shall be used as approved by the Department.
Where a building used for industry or business is leased to several lessees, each of the leased portions thereof shall be furnished water through a separate meter.
[Amended 12-2-2009 by Ord. No. 2000-09]
No unauthorized check valve or similar apparatus shall be installed on any premises. Should any premises have a check valve or similar apparatus that has not been installed in accordance with the Uniform Construction Code,[1] the owner of the premises shall be responsible for any damage caused as a result of such installation. In addition, if such apparatus is found upon any inspection of the premises, it shall be removed at once upon written notice, and, upon failure to do so, said premises shall become subject to the penalties provided in this chapter as well as any penalties that may be imposed under the Uniform Construction Code.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 185, Construction Codes, Uniform.
No premises using water from any other source shall be connected with the Borough mains in any manner contrary to the rules and regulations of the State Department of Health and Senior Services or any of its subdivisions.
Where it is desired to permanently discontinue the use of Borough water on any premises, a request (in writing if so desired by the Department) stating the reasons therefor must be made by the owner to the Department. The Department will turn off the water at the curb cock, and the charges for water for said premises will thereafter be abated. In case of the temporary vacancy by the owner or occupant of any premises, the water will be turned off at the curb by the Department upon written request therefor stating the period of such discontinuance and will be turned on again upon request of the owner or his agent. Where the premises are left unoccupied or vacant, no rebate will be allowed for water registered by the meter unless the water be turned off at the curb cock.
In the event that it becomes expedient to shut off the water from any section of the Borough because of accidents or fire or in order to make repairs or extensions or for other necessary purposes, the Department will endeavor to give timely notice to those affected thereby and will, so far as practicable, use its best efforts to prevent inconvenience or damage arising from such cause; but failure to give such notice or to receive the same will not render the Department responsible or liable for damages to property or any refund that may result therefrom or from any other cause. Whenever any notice is required to be given by the Department, it shall be given in person, by telephone or by mailing a copy thereof, postage prepaid, at the post office in the Borough of Hawthorne, to the last known address of the person, firm or corporation or association to be notified as the same appears on the books of the Department, and the notice so given shall be conclusively deemed to have been given at the time of such mailing. In no case will the Department be liable for damage caused by defective or leaking plumbing or fixtures.
[Amended 12-17-1969 by Ord. No. 1161; 9-4-1974 by Ord. No. 1245; 2-2-1977 by Ord. No. 1290; 5-20-1981 by Ord. No. 1361; 3-2-1984 by Ord. No. 1391; 12-20-1989 by Ord. No. 1510]
Fees and rates for various water services are as set forth in Chapter 220, Fees.
No owner or consumer furnished with water by the Department shall sell, resell or offer for sale any of such water without first receiving consent of the Borough.
Application for the introduction of Borough water or for change in an existing water supply to any premises shall be made, in writing, by the owner thereof or his authorized agent upon the forms provided by the Department and all conditions thereon duly subscribed to therein. Upon the receipt thereof, the Department will make or cause to be made an inspection of the premises and, unless the application is rejected for cause will render a bill to the owner of such premises. Upon payment in full of such bill, the Department will proceed with the work as promptly as practicable. No additional connections or alterations to existing connections will be made to any premises unless and until charges of every nature due the Department from such owner or against such premises are first paid.
Provision shall be made for the convenient installation of the meter as shown on the application for water connection. In all cases where meters are to be installed, an inspection of the premises will be made by the Department to determine the size, proper location and the manner in which such meter shall be installed and protected. The decision of the Department in regard to these matters shall be final.
Tests will be made by the Department of the accuracy or condition of meters on any premises upon written request of the owner or his agent, on payment in advance of the fee therefor. If the meter is found to register over 3% fast, another meter shall be substituted therefor and the fee refunded, and the Department may adjust the water bill upon such basis as to it may seem just and reasonable.
[Amended 9-4-1974 by Ord. No. 1245; 12-2-2009 by Ord. No. 2000-09; 6-7-2017 by Ord. No. 2188-17]
A. 
Payment of bills. Bills for water supplied for any quarterly period or fraction thereof will be dated on the last day of such period or on the day when the water is turned off and are due and payable on the day when dated. All charges for water must be paid within 30 days after becoming due and payable. If not so paid, interest from the due date, at the rate set forth by statute, shall be added to and collected with such charges, and water may be turned off from any premises until such charges and interest are paid. The nonreceipt of a bill will be no excuse for failure to pay. Where water is turned off because of nonpayment of charges, it will not be turned on again until such charges have been paid, including the fee for turning on.
B. 
Exceptional circumstances. Where exceptional circumstances are demonstrated by a person receiving a water bill, the Administrator or his designee may authorize a reduction in the amount billed for a given billing period or, if appropriate, two successive billing periods. For purposes of this section, an "exceptional circumstance" shall be defined as a billing period, or two successive billing periods, where the same could not be reasonably discovered by the person receiving the bill, where billing for water usage was exceptionally high when compared to like billing periods of the customer, and not the result of high water usage by the customer. An exceptionally high water bill is one that is at least 50% higher than comparable relevant billing periods and caused by leak that has since been repaired, or other circumstance where the customer was not reasonably aware of aberrantly high water usage. The request for a reduction in water bill must be presented within 30 days of receipt. The customer shall complete an application created by the Administrator or his designee setting forth a basis for a reduction. One such application for reduction due to exceptional circumstance may be granted in any five-year period. The determination as to whether or not to grant a reduction and amount thereof shall be in the discretion of the Administrator or his designee.
Under the laws of the State of New Jersey, all charges for water, including interest, are liens upon the premises or property on account of which such charge is incurred until paid and satisfied.
It is the duty of all persons using water supplied by the Department to ascertain and to satisfy themselves that it is being supplied through a meter furnished by the Department. Any neglect so to do will not relieve such persons or the premises from any liability therefor, and the Municipal Council shall determine the amounts of water so used and the rates therefor.
[Amended 7-21-1954 by Ord. No. 969; 12-1-1993 by Ord. No. 1595]
Whenever by reason of any emergency, necessity for the protection of the health and welfare of the inhabitants, drought, scarcity or shortage or threatened scarcity or shortage of water, lowering of the underground water tables, recession of the underground waters, repairs to any Borough water utility or well, accident to or the disability of any water utility or well, inability of the water utilities or wells to furnish an adequate supply of water, the adoption by the Municipal Council of a water conservation program or for any other reason which the Municipal Council deems necessary or for the best interest of the Borough and its inhabitants to protect the Borough's water supply, the Municipal Council may, at any time, restrict the use of Borough water by an order or directive duly published or by proclamation issued by the Mayor of the Borough, and no person shall use Borough water in violation of said order, directive or proclamation, and for any violation thereof shall become subject to the provisions of § 530-15 of this chapter, but without the notice as therein provided and, in addition thereto, shall become liable and subject to the imposition of the fine and penalties provided in § 530-34 of this chapter.
[Amended 9-4-1974 by Ord. No. 1245; 12-20-1989 by Ord. No. 1510; 6-6-2007 by Ord. No. 1902-07]
Any person who shall violate any provision hereof shall be liable, for each offense, to a fine not to exceed $2,000 or imprisonment for a term not to exceed 90 days or a requirement to perform community service for a period not to exceed 90 days. Each day or part thereof during which such violation shall continue shall constitute a separate offense.