[Adopted 10-13-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-33]
The Mayor and Council hereby find and adopt, as if set forth more fully herein, the fact assertions of the "Whereas" clauses of this article as their findings of fact.
Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in the Borough Code, it shall be unlawful for an owner, lessor, sublessor, any other person(s) or entity(ies) with possessory or use right(s) in a dwelling unit, their principals, partner or shareholders, or their agents, employees, representatives and other person(s) or entity(ies), acting in concert or a combination thereof, to receive or obtain actual or anticipated consideration for soliciting, advertising, offering, and/or permitting, allowing, or failing to discontinue the use or occupancy of any dwelling unit, as defined herein, for a period of 30 days or less.
Nothing in this article will prevent formation of an otherwise lawful occupancy of a dwelling unit for a rental period of more than 30 days.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ADVERTISE or ADVERTISING
- Any form of solicitation, promotion, and communication for marketing, used to solicit, encourage, persuade, or manipulate viewers, readers, or listeners into contracting for goods and/or services in violation of this article, as same may be viewed through various media, including, but not limited to, newspapers, magazines, flyers, handbills, pamphlets, commercials, radio, direct mail, internet websites, or text or other electronic messages for the purpose of establishing occupancies or uses of rental property, for consideration, which are prohibited by this article.
- Soliciting, charging, demanding, receiving or accepting any legally recognized form of consideration, including a promise or benefit, a quid pro quo, rent, fees, other form of payment, or thing of value.
- DWELLING UNIT
- Any structure, or portion thereof, whether furnished or unfurnished, which is occupied, in whole or in part, or intended, arranged or designed to be occupied for sleeping, dwelling, cooking, gathering and/or entertaining, as a residential occupancy, by one or more persons. This definition includes an apartment, condominium, building, co-operative, converted space, or portions thereof, that are offered to use, made available for use, or are used for accommodations, lodging, cooking, sleeping, gathering and/or entertaining of occupants and/or guest(s), for consideration, for a period of 30 days or less.
- HOUSEKEEPING UNIT
- Constitutes a family-type situation involving one or more persons living together that exhibit the kind of stability, permanency and functional lifestyle equivalent to that of a traditional family unit, as further described in the applicable reported and unreported decisions of the New Jersey Superior Court.
- Any individual using, inhabiting, living, gathering, entertaining, being entertained as a guest, or sleeping in a dwelling unit, or portion thereof, or having other permission or possessory right(s) within a dwelling unit.
- Any person(s) or entity(ies), association, limited liability company, corporation, or partnership, or any combination, who legally use, possess, own, lease, sublease or license (including an operator, principal, shareholder, director, agent, or employee, individually or collectively) that has charge, care, control, or participates in the expenses and/or profit of a dwelling unit pursuant to a written or unwritten agreement, rental, lease, license, use, occupancy agreement or any other agreement.
- An individual, firm, corporation, association, partnership, limited liability company, association, entity, and any person(s) and/or entity(ies) acting in concert or any combination thereof.
- RESIDENTIAL OCCUPANCY
- The use of a dwelling unit by an occupant(s).
The residential occupancy of an otherwise lawful and lawfully occupied dwelling unit for a period of 30 days or less by any person who is a member of the housekeeping unit of the owner, without consideration, such as house guests, is permitted.
It shall be unlawful to advertise, solicit or promote by any means actions in violation of this article.
The provisions of this article shall be enforced by the Building Code Official, Fire Official, Health Department, other Subcode or Code Official, as their jurisdiction may arise, including legal counsel for the Borough or other persons designated by the Borough Council to issue municipal civil infractions directing alleged violators of this article to appear in court or file civil complaints.
A violation of this article is hereby declared to be a public nuisance, a nuisance per se, and is hereby further found and declared to be offensive to the public health, safety and welfare.
Any person found to have violated any provision of this article, without regard to intent or knowledge, shall be liable for the maximum civil penalty, upon adjudicated violation or admission, of a fine not exceeding $1,250. Each day of such violation shall be a new and separate violation of this article.
The penalty imposed herein shall be in addition to any and all other remedies that may accrue under any other law, including, but not limited to, eviction proceedings and/or injunction, reasonable attorney's fees or other fees and costs, in the Borough's Municipal Court or the Superior Court of New Jersey in the vicinage of Bergen County, or in such other court or tribunal of competent jurisdiction, by either summary disposition or by zoning or construction code municipal proceeding.
If any section, provision or clause of this article or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is judicially held invalid, a reviewing Court may "blue pencil" the ordinance to correct such invalidity and carry out the intent of this article. Such invalidity shall not affect any remaining portions or application of this article which can be given effect, without the invalid portion or application.
This article shall supersede and replace any other provisions of the Code of the Borough of Fort Lee, now or later enacted, which have or may be construed to have differing or contrary terms or conditions relating to the subject of this article. This article is not intended to alter the current or later enacted amendments to the Borough's Zoning Code.
This article shall become effective after second reading and 30 days after being published in a newspaper of general circulation within the Borough.