[Adopted 1-11-2017 by L.L. No. 2-2017]
This article is enacted to regulate the manner in which excavations may be made in or under the streets, highways, sidewalks and public places in the Village of Wappingers Falls to protect the health, safety and welfare of the public during periods of excavations and to ensure the quality and safety of Village thoroughfares. In this regard, the Village has enacted the following sections which are intended to replace §§ 74-13 through 74-15 of the Code of the Village of Wappingers Falls. Upon passage of this article, §§ 74-13 through 74-15 are repealed.
No person, firm, corporation or other legal entity, except officials and employees of the Village of Wappingers Falls in the conduct of their official duties or contractors employed by the Village of Wappingers Falls, shall open or cause to be opened by cutting or excavating the surface or soil of any Village street, highway, public place or sidewalk without first obtaining a permit therefor issued by the Village Highway Superintendent or their designee.
An application for an excavation permit for a Village street, highway, public place or sidewalk shall be made to the Village Highway Superintendent upon a form to be provided for that purpose. The application shall require the name and address of the applicant and shall identify the party on whose behalf the work is to be performed; the location of the property; a description of the work, including the proposed burying and installation process; the size and purpose of the excavation to be made; description of traffic control plans; the dates when the work is to be performed; the type of pavement of surface to be disturbed; the materials to be used in replacement and a description of the restoration process, together with detailed plans showing the location of the work to be performed along with technical drawings showing the utility to be buried; and such additional information as the Village Highway Superintendent may require.
The applicant shall be liable to the Village for any expenses incurred by the Village to correct deficiencies in the site or to bring the site into compliance with specific permit conditions.
The Village may correct any work performed that does not comply with the conditions of the approved permit, and the charges therefor shall be charged against the applicant's bond or security deposit. The applicant shall remain liable for any expenses in excess of the bond or security deposit, and the Village may commence an action against the applicant to collect same, together with associated costs, including, without limitation, attorneys' fees.
Except as otherwise provided herein, no permit shall be issued unless, as a condition precedent thereto, the applicant shall have filed with the Village Clerk an indemnity bond naming the Village as a beneficiary or public liability insurance naming the Village as an additional insured, providing the following limits of liability:
The indemnity bond or insurance policy shall be endorsed to eliminate the exclusion of underground damage and shall provide for broad form property damage coverage.
The indemnity bond or insurance policy shall provide that the Village will be held harmless from any loss, injury or damage arising out of action taken pursuant to the permit or as a result of any negligence or fault or action of the applicant, his or her contractor, servants or agents in connection with the work to be performed. A provision shall guarantee payment for all the costs and expenses made or incurred by the Village, its officers, agents and employees in defending any action brought against the Village by reason of any action taken pursuant to said permit. The indemnity bond or insurance policy shall additionally provide that all work shall be performed in accordance with the conditions of the permit and all applicable laws, rules, and regulations applicable thereto.
The indemnity bond or insurance policy shall be approved by the Village Highway Superintendent and/or the Village Attorney for conformity with the provisions of this article. The bond or insurance policy shall not be deemed to limit the applicant's legal liability for actions taken or arising out of the issuance of the permit.
Each indemnity bond or insurance policy shall specifically provide coverage to the Village for a period of one year after the completion of the work performed under such permit.
Except as otherwise provided herein, no permit shall be issued unless, as a condition precedent thereto, the applicant shall have deposited with the Village Clerk a performance bond in the amount set forth on the Village Highway Work Permit Schedule, adopted from time to time by the Village Board. The performance bond shall be paid in cash, by bank or certified personal check. The performance bond shall be retained as security for the faithful performance by the entity of all terms and conditions of any permit issued to it. The Village shall return to the applicant all moneys on deposit 30 days after completion of all work, less any moneys expended by the Village Highway Superintendent to correct deficiencies in the applicant's performance of the permit specifications.
Referral to consultants.
If, upon review of an application for a permit pursuant to this article, the Village Highway Superintendent determines that because of the magnitude and/or complexity of the work proposed, the potential liability to the Village may exceed the limits set forth in Subsections A and B above, or the form of bond submitted by the applicant differs from the forms previously approved by the Village, the Village Highway Superintendent may refer any such application to the Village's engineers, attorneys or other consultants (collectively "consultants") for review and consideration. Prior to any such referral, the applicant shall submit an additional $500 as an initial deposit, to be held in escrow by the Village. The applicant shall replenish the escrow account as may be necessary to cover the actual and reasonable expense of the Village for the completion of any review pursuant to this Subsection C.
If, following review of the application and related materials, the consultant(s) determine that additional insurance or security is reasonably required to protect the Village from and against damage or liability resulting from issuance of the permit or work performed in connection therewith, then the applicant shall be required to post such additional insurance or security prior to issuance of the permit.
A permit as provided for in this article shall be required to replace, change, alter, raise, lower or cut a curb, sidewalk or gutter or to excavate a public place and shall be granted under the same terms and conditions as are otherwise applicable to excavations hereunder, provided that where such work is to be begun and completed within one day, the Village Highway Superintendent may grant a permit without requiring a bond or policy of insurance. Such exceptions shall not apply to excavations more than six inches in depth below the surrounding surface or where such excavation is made between the gutter and the curbline in any major highway or where barricades will be required by this article or by the Village Highway Superintendent to protect the public.
In case of emergency, a temporary written permit may be granted by the Village Highway Superintendent, who shall report the granting and issuance of such temporary emergency permit and the reason for granting the same to the Village Board at its next regular meeting. An emergency, within the meaning of this article, shall include only the location and repair of water or gas leaks or other dangerous and wasteful conditions, but shall not include any condition of which the time element alone shall be the grounds thereof. Any public service corporation which has a bond filed, as herein required, may proceed to excavate, locate and repair any leak or other dangerous condition upon discovery without waiting for such emergency permit, but shall apply for and receive such emergency permit before refilling such excavation and in all other ways shall comply with the requirements herein set forth.
All work shall be performed in compliance with the requirements of this article, and any other applicable laws, regulations or policies of the Village of Wappingers Falls, State of New York or otherwise.
In advance of the start of any physical work, the contractor shall be responsible for contacting underground utilities at 1-800-245-2828 and comply with all requirements set forth by Dig Safely New York pursuant to 12 NYCRR 53 (Industrial Code Rule 53).
All work performed under a permit shall be completed as expeditiously as possible. The Village Highway Superintendent shall be notified within four hours of the completion of work under any permit. If work is completed on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday or at the close of the business day, then the completion of the work shall be reported within four hours after the office of the Highway Superintendent is open for the transaction of regular business. The applicant shall remain responsible to maintain barricades, warning lights and other required warning devices until the Superintendent has completed the repair of the excavation or until released from such obligation by the Highway Superintendent. Except in emergency situations, no work shall be commenced on a Friday or the day before a legal holiday unless written permission is obtained from the Highway Superintendent.
During construction, the Highway Superintendent may order the applicant to stop work if the work being performed does not comply with conditions of the approved permit.
Any work performed that does not comply with the conditions of the approved permit may be corrected using Village forces (Highway Department) and charged against the applicant's performance bond.
Anyone working within the Village's highway right-of-way shall wear, at a minimum, an ANSI Class II safety vest. Where there is a threat of falling objects, a hard hat must also be worn.
Anytime work is being performed within the Village's highway right-of-way, work zone traffic control signs must be used in accordance with the current New York State Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.
Any damage caused to the Village's infrastructure shall be repaired or replaced by the applicant, at the applicant's expense, to the Highway Superintendent's satisfaction. Failure to satisfactorily correct any such damage shall be a violation of the permit, and the Village shall be entitled to perform any corrective work and seek reimbursement as provided for herein.
In an emergency, when a permit cannot first be obtained because the office of the Highway Superintendent is closed, proper excavations may be made, provided that an application for a permit as required herein shall be obtained within four hours after the office of the Highway Superintendent is opened. An emergency shall be deemed to exist when failure to take prompt action may result in danger to the life or property of the public. In the event of an emergency, the Village Superintendent may issue a permit immediately, requiring only such information as he or she deems necessary.
During excavations, a serviceable portion of any thoroughfare shall be kept open for travel and the applicant shall, upon the direction of the Highway Superintendent, provide one or more flagpersons to direct the flow of traffic. The Highway Superintendent may require a detour be established and maintained by the applicant.
All installations along the edge of a road must be kept as far as possible from the edge of pavement or driving lane.
The laying of cable/conduit over any culvert/drainage pipe shall be prohibited.
All pavement crossings must be done perpendicular to the center line of pavement with boring/directional drilling being the preferred method over open cut.
All cables/conduits must be buried to a minimum depth of 24 inches.
Caution tape must be placed 12 inches above the cable/conduit prior to backfill completion.
No equipment or open trenches may remain in the right-of-way overnight.
Notice of intent to dig must be given to the Highway Department no less than 48 hours prior to commencing work unless excavation is for an emergency repair, in which case an application and fees paid shall be done as soon as possible.
Open cut trenches crossing paved areas shall be filled with a minimum thickness of three inches of compacted asphalt or, if the existing pavement is thicker than three inches, to a depth that matches existing pavement thickness.
Excavations shall not be performed between December 1 and April 1, unless authorized by the Highway Superintendent or in the event of an emergency.
Upon completion of the work and prior to return of any security, the applicant shall provide the Highway Superintendent with complete and accurate as-built plans.
All projects shall be inspected during the course of work by the Village Highway Superintendent to assure the Village that construction operations are in conformity with general specifications and standards and with any special conditions imposed in the issuance of the permit. Inspection fees shall be charged as provided in § 132-29 below.
All excavation, trenching and backfilling operations shall conform to the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) Standard Specifications.
All excavation, trenching and backfilling operations for which a permit shall have been issued hereunder shall be backfilled in compacted layers of clean, NYSDOT Item 4 (304.12) in a good and workmanlike manner and shall be adequately resurfaced with surfacing similar to the surrounding surfacing as required by the Village Highway Superintendent and in conformance with Figures 1 and 2 of this article.
Editor's Note: Figures 1 and 2 are included as an attachment to this chapter.
Upon the issuance of a permit, the applicant shall properly barricade the area of proposed excavation and shall place and maintain windproof lights and such signs and warning devices as are reasonably necessary to protect the public. The Village Highway Superintendent shall have the power to impose such additional terms and conditions as will provide for the public health, safety and welfare under the particular circumstances of each permit. If the applicant fails to comply with the provisions of this article, any conditions attached to its permit and/or the directions of the Village Superintendent, the Village Superintendent may, as the agent of the applicant, install such devices and take such action as he or she deems necessary. The applicant shall be liable for any expenses incurred by the Village under such circumstances.
Access to adjoining property shall be maintained at all times and fire hydrants shall be left clear for base connections during time of construction on existing roads. At no time shall the length of excavated trench exceed 1,000 feet, and the flow of traffic shall not be impeded during periods of construction where at all possible. The road shall be left in a passable condition at the end of each day's work, with appropriate safety and warning devices in place and operational.
The Highway Superintendent shall have the right to revoke or cancel any permit at any time should the applicant fail to comply with the terms and conditions thereof or with the terms and conditions of this article.
In the event any permit shall be revoked, the excavation shall be immediately refilled by the applicant under the direction of the Village Highway Superintendent, whether the contemplated work is completed or not.
No excavation permit shall be issued except upon the payment of a fee to defray the administrative costs of this article. The permit fee shall not be refundable for any reason. This permit application fee is in addition to any other charge imposed hereunder. The permit fee shall include up to three inspections of the work by the Village: initial site visit, prepaving inspection and final inspection. If additional site inspections are required by the Highway Superintendent, a fee of $75 per inspection may be assessed and charged against the permitee's performance bond, at the discretion of the Highway Superintendent. Inspection fees shall be deducted from the security deposit prior to permit close-out and return of security, if applicable.
All work performed under such permit shall be performed as expeditiously as possible, and all excavations shall be refilled as soon as possible and within the time limit for which such permit shall have been issued. In the event any excavation shall remain unnecessarily open or is allowed to remain open after the expiration of said permit, the Village Highway Superintendent shall cause such excavation to be filled and report the cost thereof to the Village Board, who shall recover said amount from the applicant.
All work shall be commenced within 90 days of permit issuance. Failure to commence work within 90 days shall result in expiration and forfeiture of such permit.
All work shall be completed within one year of permit issuance. Any permit issued hereunder shall automatically expire on the one-year anniversary of issuance unless renewed following payment of all applicable fees.
Any person who shall violate any provisions of this article shall be guilty of an offense and shall be subject to a fine of not more than $1,000 or to imprisonment for not more than 15 days, or both. Every violation of any provision of this article shall be a separate and distinct violation, and in the case of a continuing violation, every day's continuance thereof shall be a separate and distinct offense.
In addition to any other remedies set forth herein authorizing the Village to enforce the provisions of this chapter establishing penalties, and setting forth additional remedies, the person charged with the responsibility to enforce the provisions of this chapter may impose civil fine or agree to a civil alleged violator may appeal to the Village Board.