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Borough of Woodland Park, NJ
Passaic County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[1972 Code § 19-1]
The Council hereby finds that the uncontrolled and unregulated excavation, filing and removal of soil has resulted and will result in conditions detrimental to the public safety, health and general welfare, deterring substantially the effort of the municipality to promote and effectuate the general purpose of municipal planning.
[1972 Code § 19-2]
For the purpose of this chapter:
DEVELOPER
shall mean any person who, either directly or through an agent or independent contractor, engages or intends to engage in land subdivision or in the construction of two (2) or more dwelling houses, business or industrial buildings, in any subdivision, for the purpose of sale to or occupancy by another person or persons.
EXCAVATOR
shall mean any person who within any period of twelve (12) consecutive months, shall move soil in or upon more than ten thousand (10,000) square feet of land area.
LOT
shall mean any parcel of land or portion thereof, the boundary lines of which can be ascertained by references to the maps and records, either in the office of the Tax Assessor of the municipality or in the office of the Passaic County Register.
MOVE
shall mean to dig; to excavate; to remove; to deposit; to place; to fill; to grade; to regrade; level or otherwise alter or change the location or contour; to transport; to supply. This term shall not be construed to include plowing, spading, cultivation, harrowing or discing of soil, or in any other operation usually and ordinarily associated with the tilling of soil for agricultural or horticultural purposes.
OWNER
shall mean any person who owns, in fee simple, any lot, or having other interest or estate therein as will permit exercise of effective possession thereof or dominion thereover.
REDISTRIBUTION
shall mean any change or alteration in the grade of any property.
SOIL
shall mean earth, sand, clay, loam, gravel, humus, rock or dirt, without regard to the presence or absence of organic matter.
TOPSOIL
shall mean soil that, in its natural state, constitutes the top layer of earth and is composed of two (2%) percent or more, by weight of organic matter and has the ability to support vegetation.
[1972 Code § 19-3.1]
No owner, developer or excavator shall excavate any soil or change or alter the grade of any property within the municipality without having first obtained a permit from the Mayor and Council. This section shall not apply to the excavation of soil for use on the premises from which it is taken, provided that this does not involve any substantial change in the topography of the premises; or the excavation of soil in connection with the construction or alteration of the basement or foundation of a building.
[1972 Code § 19-3.2]
Applications in duplicate shall be submitted to the Mayor and Council with an inspection fee made payable to the municipality in the amount of two hundred fifty ($250.00) dollars which fee shall not be refundable in the event of a refusal of the soil permit as hereinafter provided. The application shall also be accompanied in duplicate by the following:
a. 
A map of the premises showing the present contour lines and the proposed future contour lines resulting from the intended excavation or redistribution of soil.
b. 
The grades resulting from the intended removal or redistribution of soil in relation to the topography of the premises. This information may be included in the map required by the preceding paragraph.
c. 
The proposed dates for the commencement and completion of the work.
d. 
Name and address of the owner of the land.
e. 
Lot and block numbers of the lands as shown on the current tax map of the municipality.
f. 
Reason for removing the soil.
g. 
Type and quantity of soil to be removed.
h. 
Location to which soil is to be removed.
i. 
Any other pertinent data as the Director of Public Works may deem necessary.
[1972 Code § 19-4]
Accompanying the application shall be two (2) copies of a topographical map prepared and certified by a licensed civil engineer and land surveyor, in duplicate, showing:
The present grades on a one hundred (100) foot grid layout.
The proposed grades at the points when the work has been completed.
The quantity, in cubic yards, of soil involved in the work.
The grades of all abutting streets and lots.
Proposed slopes and lateral supports.
Present and proposed surface water drainage.
Such other pertinent data as the Board of Public Works may require.
[1972 Code § 19-5.1]
Upon receipt of the application and supporting items including the topographical map, the Mayor and Council shall cause to be immediately referred to the Planning Board a copy for the Planning Board's prompt review and report and recommendations to the Mayor and Council. Pursuant to statute, the Planning Board's recommendations shall not be binding upon the Mayor and Council.
[1972 Code § 19-5.2]
In considering the application, the Mayor and Council and the Planning Board shall be guided by the following factors:
Soil erosion by water and wind.
Drainage.
Soil fertility.
Lateral support slopes and grades of abutting streets and lands.
Land values and uses.
Any other factor which is relevant to the coordinated, adjusted and harmonious development of the municipality.
If, after considering the above factors and weighing the report of the Planning Board, the Mayor and Council by majority vote determine that the proposed removal or redistribution of soil will not be detrimental to the health, safety or welfare of the municipality or its inhabitants, they shall issue the necessary permit. Otherwise, they shall deny the application and shall notify the applicant. Notice of the grant or denial of the application shall be given to the applicant within thirty (30) days after the application is filed.
[1972 Code § 19-6]
If the application is denied, the applicant may appeal the decision of the Mayor and Council by filing a notice in writing to that effect with the Clerk within thirty (30) days after receiving notice of the decision. The Mayor and Council shall set a time and place for a public hearing and shall so notify the applicant. The Mayor and Council may overrule their decision by a three-fourths (3/4) vote of the entire membership of the Council and the vote of the Mayor. The decision thereafter rendered after such public hearing shall be final.
[1972 Code § 19-7]
Prior to the commencement of operations, a permit fee shall be paid to the municipality calculated in accordance with the following schedule:
Up to and including five hundred (500) cubic yards of soil to be removed, the fee shall be five ($5.00) dollars.
Above five hundred cubic yards of soil to be removed, the fee shall be five hundred ($500.00) dollars plus the sum of five thousand ($5,000.00) dollars up to and including one hundred twenty-five thousand (125,000) cubic yards, which sum shall be paid quarterly in advance.
For all excavation in excess of one hundred twenty-five thousand (125,000) cubic yards, in addition to the above sums, the fees shall be paid per cubic yard over one hundred twenty-five thousand (125,000) cubic yards, pursuant to the following:
A sum computed at the rate of five ($.05) units per cubic yard, multiplied by the number of cubic yards to be moved in excess of one hundred twenty-five (125,000) thousand cubic yards.
[1972 Code § 19-8]
The removal of lawn sod shall be permitted on the condition that the owner or lessee of the land from which the lawn sod is removed, shall, within two (2) months, replace any soil which has been removed with the sod.
[1972 Code § 19-9]
Before the permit is issued the applicant shall file with the Engineer a bond executed by the applicant as principal and a surety company licensed to do business in the State of New Jersey as surety. The amount of the bond shall be determined by the Director of Public Works, but in no event shall be less than one thousand ($1,000.00) dollars and shall be conditioned as follows:
That the permittee will complete the work authorized by the permit in conformity with the terms of the permit and the provisions of this chapter on or before the date of completion set forth in the application.
That the applicant will repair any public street, structure or land which may be damaged as a result of the work authorized by the permit.
[1972 Code § 19-10]
Soil removal or redistribution conducted under a permit issued under this chapter shall be in accordance with the following regulations:
All soil removal operations shall be conducted only during the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on weekdays, and from 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon on Saturdays, with the exception of drilling and blasting which shall be conducted only during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on weekdays.
It shall be unlawful to conduct moving, grading or excavating operations at any other time or times than specified herein or on any Sunday or any of the following legal holidays:
January 1st;
Lincoln's Birthday;
Washington's Birthday;
Good Friday;
Memorial Day;
Independence Day;
Labor Day;
Columbus Day;
General Election Day;
Veteran's Day;
Thanksgiving;
Christmas.
At the request of the permittee, made to the Planning Board of the municipality, permission may be given for work on Sunday or on the above holidays when the nature of the terrain or grade is potentially hazardous and work is necessary to relieve the hazard.
To prevent air pollution, nuisance, dust, dirt or other contaminant within or on the premises of any residence, dwelling, building or porch, patio, terrace, swimming pool or other recreational facility of any property within the municipality, place of business, research or processing facility, public building or their equipment, all reasonable means shall be employed by the permittee or the person in charge of the soil removal, grading or excavation or grading or excavating operation, which regulations shall at a minimum be all of the means within the State regulations for control of such dust and pollution as shall be applicable.
Operations shall be conducted so that there shall be no sharp declivities, pits or depressions.
Lands shall be graded so as to conform to the approved contour lines and grades and shall be cleared of debris.
The top layer of soil to a depth of six (6) inches shall not be removed from the premises, but shall be set aside and respread over the premises when the remainder of the soil has been removed.
Adequate measures shall be taken to prevent erosion or the depositing of soil upon surrounding lands, streets or municipal facilities.
No developer or excavator shall remove to any point beyond the boundary lines of the lot any topsoil whatsoever, unless and until topsoil not inferior in quality to that to be removed shall first have been replaced uniformly to a depth of not less than six (6) inches, measured from the proposed final grades as shown on the topographical map, over the entire surface or area of the lot, excepting only portions thereof as shall be or shall have become, since the date of filing of the topographical map, permanently covered by a building or structure, street, pavement, curb, sidewalk, driveway or other paved area or by any body of water or waterway. In no event shall the developer or excavator remove from the lot more topsoil than that comprising the surplus or excess remaining after the replacement of the topsoil as above mentioned.
No developer or excavator shall, at any time in the course of the work, dig or excavate more than six (6) inches below the proposed final grades as shown on the topographical map unless: The soil permit specifies otherwise and the performance bond, hereinafter referred to, makes specific provision for replacement, on or before the completion date set forth in the soil permit, of soil of sufficient quantity and kind to restore the final grades to those shown on the topographical map; or after issuance of the soil permit, the developer or excavator, before digging or excavating below the minimum level, shall apply to the Department of Public Works and be granted an amendment of the application and topographical map then in effect, which amendment may be granted upon such terms as the Director of Public Works may deem necessary to assure adherence to the purposes and objectives of this chapter.
No developer or excavator shall deposit soil upon, fill in, or raise the grade of any lot without first making provisions for: the use in the work of soil or such other materials as will not result in deviation from the proposed final grades or the uniformity thereof by reason of abnormal shrinkage or settlement and the collection and storage upon the lot of the original topsoil to the end that the topsoil shall not be buried beneath soil or other material of inferior quality, and the uniform replacement of the topsoil so stored over the entire area or surface of the fill soil or other material so that the final grade or grades of the replaced topsoil shall be in accordance with the proposed final grades shown on the topographical map. In the event that this provision is not practicable, provision shall be made for the uniform placement over the entire area or surface of the fill soil or other material, excepting only portions thereof as shall be or shall have become permanently covered by a building or structure, street pavement, curb, sidewalk, driveway or other paved area, or by any body of water or waterway, of a layer of topsoil, to a depth of not less than six (6) inches, measured from the proposed final grades as shown on the topographical map.
[1972 Code § 19-11]
Nothing in this chapter shall be construed so as to prevent the municipality from taking injunctive proceedings to restrain removal of top soil as described in this chapter.
[1972 Code § 19-12.1]
On or before the tenth day of each month there shall be filed with the Municipal Engineer a certification by a professional engineer as to the volume of soil removed during the previous month. The violation of this provision shall automatically revoked the permit.
[1972 Code § 19-12.2]
No permit shall extend for a longer period than five (5) years. Any work not completed in accordance with the permit in accordance with the time limit set in the permit shall not be completed unless and until a new permit is applied for and issued in accordance with the terms of this chapter.