[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Washington 11-5-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-03. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Prohibited conduct — See Ch. 176.
Curfew — See Ch. 188.
Littering — See Ch. 284.
Parades and similar assemblies — See Ch. 322.
Signs — See Ch. 383.
Editor's Note: This ordinance was adopted as Ch. 323 but was renumbered to maintain the alphabetical organization of the Code.
The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this chapter, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning:
- CODE ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
- The officer of the Township or the Township Committee's designee.
- Defacing of public or private property by any means, including painting, drawing, writing, etching, inscription, burning, or carving, with paint, spray paint, ink, knife, or any other method without written permission of the owner of the property.
- Any person owning, leasing, occupying or having control or possession of any property in the Township.
- OWNER OF RECORD
- Any person who is specified as the owner of the property by the records of the Township Assessor's office.
Any person violating any provision of this chapter shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $2,000, or by imprisonment not to exceed 90 days, or both, or any different amounts adopted by statute. Enforcement of this chapter may also be pursued through the Township Administrative Municipal Court for adult offenders.
The intent of this chapter is to help prevent the spread of graffiti vandalism and to establish a program for the removal of graffiti from public and private property. Graffiti is a public nuisance and is destructive to the rights and values of property owners as well as the entire community.
All property which is defaced by graffiti is hereby declared to be a public nuisance and, in the interest of public health, safety, morals, and general welfare, shall be abated as set forth by ordinance or state law.
Whenever any graffiti is found on a property, the Township Code Enforcement Officer may cause a written order to be sent to the owner of the property upon which the graffiti exists. The written order shall direct the owner to:
Remove the graffiti within 10 calendar days or such longer periods as determined for good cause by the Township Committee at the owner's expense or, when known, the offender's expense; or
Provide written consent and agreement for the Township to enter upon the property to remove the graffiti within 10 calendar days or such longer period as determined for good cause by the Township Committee at the expense of the owner or, when known, the offender's expense.
The owner and/or offender shall be advised, in the written order, of his right to a hearing before the Township Administrative Municipal Court hearing officer. If a hearing is requested and the hearing officer determines that the graffiti must be removed by the owner and the owner fails to comply with the order of the hearing officer, the Township may cause the graffiti to be removed or corrected at the expense of the owner or known offenders in addition to an administrative fine set forth by the Township Administrative Municipal Court fine schedule. Collection of the expenses associated with the removal of the graffiti when on public roadways and property due to parades and similar assemblies shall be removed by the Township and charged against the applicant's escrow established and collection of the expenses associated with the removal of graffiti on private property and the administrative fine shall be according to the provisions of the Township Administrative Municipal Court procedures.
If the owner fails to remove the graffiti or request a hearing before the Township Administrative Municipal Court within 10 calendar days, or such longer period as determined for good cause by the Township Code Enforcement Officer after written notice is given, the Township will remove the graffiti at the expense of the owner, in addition to an administrative fee determined by the Township.
It shall be unlawful for any person to deface public or private property through the use of graffiti.
It shall be unlawful for any person to possess, while on public or private property without the consent of the owner of such property, any paint, spray paint, broad-tipped marker, etching equipment, or other substance or article adapted, designed, or commonly used for committing or facilitating the commission of the offense of graffiti with the intent to use the substance or article, or with the knowledge that some person intends to use the substance or article, in the commission of such offense set forth in Subsection A of this section.
It shall be unlawful for any person or entity owning property, acting as manager or agent for the owner of the property, or in possession or control of property to permit graffiti to remain on such property.