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Township of Chatham, NJ
Morris County
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[Ord. No. 2009-15 § I]
The purpose of this section is to regulate the outdoor application of fertilizer so as to reduce the overall amount of excess nutrients entering waterways, thereby helping to protect and improve surface water quality. This section does not apply to fertilizer application on commercial farms.
[Ord. No. 2009-15 § II]
For the purpose of this section, the following terms, phrases, words, and their derivations shall have the meanings stated herein unless their use in the text of this section clearly demonstrates a different meaning.
BUFFER
Shall mean the land area, 10 feet in width, adjacent to any waterbody, except that for any fertilizer application between 10 feet and 25 feet from any water body, a drop spreader must be used.
COMMERCIAL FARM
Shall mean a farm management unit producing agricultural or horticultural products worth $2,500 or more annually.
FERTILIZER
Shall mean a fertilizer material, mixed fertilizer or any other substance containing one or more recognized plant nutrients, which is used for its plant nutrient content, which is designed for use or claimed to have value in promoting plant growth, and which is sold, offered for sale, or intended for sale.
IMPERVIOUS SURFACE
Shall mean a surface that has been covered with a layer of material so that it is highly resistant to infiltration by water. This term shall be used to include any highway, street, sidewalk, parking lot, driveway, or other material that prevents infiltration of water into the soil.
PERSON
Shall mean any individual, corporation, company, partnership, firm, association, or political subdivision of this State subject to municipal jurisdiction.
PHOSPHORUS FERTILIZER
Shall mean any fertilizer that contains phosphorus, expressed as P2O5, with a guaranteed analysis of greater than zero; except that it shall not be considered to include animal (including human) or vegetable manures, agricultural liming materials, or wood ashes that have not been amended to increase their nutrient content.
TEST
Shall mean a technical analysis of soil conducted by an accredited soil-testing laboratory following the protocol for such a test established by Rutgers Cooperative Research and Extension.
WATERBODY
Shall mean a surface water feature, such as a lake, river, stream, creek, pond, lagoon, bay or estuary.
[Ord. No. 2009-15 § III]
No person may do any of the following:
a. 
Apply fertilizer when a runoff producing rainfall is occurring or predicted within 12 hours and/or when soils are saturated and a potential for fertilizer movement off site exists.
b. 
Apply fertilizer to an impervious surface. Fertilizer inadvertently applied to an impervious surface must be swept or blown back into the target surface or returned to either its original or another appropriate container for reuse.
c. 
Apply fertilizer within the buffer of any waterbody.
d. 
Apply fertilizer more than 15 days prior to the start of or at any time after the end of the recognized growing season which is USDA Plant Hardiness Zone 6b (March 1 to November 15).
[Ord. No. 2009-15 § IV]
No person may do the following:
a. 
Apply phosphorus fertilizer in outdoor areas except as demonstrated to be needed for the specific soils and target vegetation in accordance with a soils test and the associated annual fertilizer recommendation issued by Rutgers Cooperative Research and Extension.
b. 
Exceptions.
1. 
Application of phosphorus fertilizer needed for:
(a) 
Establishing vegetation for the first time, such as after land disturbance, provided the application is in accordance with the requirements established under the Soil Erosion and Sediment Control Act, N.J.S.A. 4:24-39 et seq. and implementing rules,
(b) 
Re-established or repairing a turf area.
2. 
Application of phosphorus fertilizer that delivers liquid or granular fertilizer under the soils surface, directly to the feeder roots.
3. 
Application of phosphorus fertilizer to residential container plantings, flowerbeds, or vegetable gardens.
[Ord. No. 2009-15 § V]
This section shall be enforced by the Building Department, Township Engineer or his designee and Police Department of the Township of Chatham.
[Ord. No. 2009-15 § VI]
Any person(s) found to be in violation of the provisions of this section shall be subject to one warning. After the first warning, the fine for a second violation shall not exceed $500. For each subsequent violation, the fine shall not exceed $1,000 per violation.