Borough of Mendham, NJ
Morris County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Mendham 11-4-1974 as Ch. 85 of the 1974 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Environmental Commission — See Ch. 15.
Shade Tree Advisory Committee — See Ch. 54.
Land use procedures — See Ch. 124.
Subdivision of land and site plan review — See Ch. 195.

§ 179-1 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to provide measures to control, minimize and protect against soil erosion and resulting sedimentation which can occur during periods of land disturbance.

§ 179-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
DIVERSION
A channel with or without a supporting ridge on the lower side constructed across or at the bottom of a slope.
EROSION
The wearing away of land by the action of wind, water, gravity or ice.
EXCAVATION OR CUT
Any act by which land or rock is cut into, dug, quarried, uncovered, removed, displaced or relocated.
EXISTING GRADE
The vertical location of the existing surface of land prior to grading, excavation or other activity which may, or does, change that vertical location.
GRADING
Any stripping, cutting, filling or stockpiling of land, or any combination thereof.
LAND
Any ground, soil or earth, including marshes, swamps, drainageways and areas not permanently covered by water, within the municipality.
LAND DISTURBANCE
Any activity involving the clearing, grading, transporting, filing or excavation of land or any other activity which causes land to be exposed to the danger of erosion.
MULCHING
The application of plant or other suitable materials on the soil surface to conserve moisture, hold soil in place and aid in establishing plant cover.
NATURAL GROUND SURFACE
The existing ground surface of land prior to any grading, excavation or other land disturbance.
PERSON
Any natural person or legal entity.
SEDIMENT
Solid material, both mineral and organic, that is in suspension, is being transported or has been moved from its site or origin by air, water or gravity as a product of erosion.
SEDIMENT BASIN
A barrier or dam built across a waterway or at suitable locations to retain rock, sand, gravel, silt or other material.
SOIL
All unconsolidated mineral and organic material of whatever origin that overlies bedrock and can be readily excavated.
SOIL CONSERVATION DISTRICT
The Morris County Soil Conservation District which is a governmental subdivision of this state organized in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 24, Title 4 of the New Jersey Revised Statutes (N.J.S.A. 4:24-1 et seq.).
STANDARDS
Standards for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control in New Jersey as promulgated by the State Soil Conservation Committee.
[Added 12-28-1976 by Ord. No. 16-76]
STRIPPING
Any activity which removes or significantly disturbs the vegetative surface cover of land, including clearing and grubbing operations.
VEGETATIVE PROTECTION
Stabilization of erosive or sediment-producing areas of land by covering the soil with either one or more of the following:
A. 
Permanent seeding or permanent plantings producing long-term vegetative cover of land.
B. 
Short-term seeding or short-term plantings producing temporary vegetative cover of land.
C. 
Sodding, producing areas covered with a turf of perennial sod-forming grass.
WATERCOURSE
Any natural or artificial watercourse, stream, river, creek, ditch, channel, canal, conduit, culvert, drain, gully, ravine, wash or other waterway in which water flows in a definite direction or course, either continuously or intermittently, within a definite channel, and shall include any area adjacent thereto subject to inundation by reason of overflow or floodwater.

§ 179-3 Approvals; restrictions.

A. 
Application requirements and procedure.
[Amended 12-28-1976 by Ord. No. 16-76]
(1) 
No application to the Planning Board, Zoning Board of Adjustment or Construction Official of the Borough for any of the following approvals shall be granted unless and until a soil erosion and sediment control plan shall have been submitted to and approved by the Planning Board, or if an application is properly before the Board of Adjustment, the Board of Adjustment shall have the right to review and approve the plan:
[Amended 5-16-1994 by Ord. No. 8-94]
(a) 
Preliminary (tentative) approval of a major subdivision.
(b) 
Final approval of a major subdivision.
(c) 
Site plan approval.
(d) 
Zoning variance or special exception, involving the disturbance of more than 5,000 square feet of surface area of land.
(e) 
Planned unit development proposal.
(f) 
Building permit when more than 5,000 square feet of surface area of land is involved, except that a soil erosion and sediment control plan shall not be required for a single-family dwelling unit.
[Amended 6-7-1999 by Ord. No. 115-99]
(2) 
Review and decision shall be made within a period of 30 days of submission of a complete application unless, by mutual agreement, in writing, between the municipality and the applicant, this period is extended for an additional 30 days. Failure of the municipality to make a decision within such period or such extension thereof shall constitute certification that the soil erosion and sedimentation control plan meets the required standards.
(3) 
The applicant shall be provided with written notice of such decision by the Borough. A copy of such decision, including the name of the applicant, the site location by street address and block and lot number and the proposed land use, shall be sent to the Morris County Soil Conservation District. The municipality shall also make available such other information as may be required by the District.
B. 
In situations where none of the above subdivision or site plan approvals are required, it shall be unlawful for any person to create or cause any land disturbance which poses the risk of or which may reasonably be anticipated to result in material, substantial, harmful or otherwise detrimental soil erosion or sedimentation of or to any land or watercourse unless and until a soil erosion and sediment control plan shall have been submitted to the Planning Board for review and recommendation to the Municipal Council. The Municipal Council must approve any soil disturbance where subdivision or site plan approval is not required.
[Amended 6-7-1999 by Ord. No. 115-99]
C. 
Exemptions. The following activities shall be exempted from the provisions of this section:
[Added 6-6-2005 by Ord. No. 17-05]
(1) 
Construction of one single-family home.
(2) 
Clearing or grading of any land for agricultural or horticultural purposes.

§ 179-4 Scope and contents of plan. [1]

A. 
The soil erosion and sediment control plan shall comprise a map and written report, together with whatever other instruments, writings, drawings, plans or specifications are necessary or appropriate under the circumstances, which fully and adequately describe both temporary and permanent measures to be employed to control, minimize and protect against soil erosion and sedimentation from a proposed land disturbance, taking into account the particular nature and characteristics of the land, the surrounding area, the watercourse, the land disturbance and the planned development involved. The plan shall cover all stages and aspects of the proposed land disturbance and planned development from grading, stripping, excavation and other site preparation through and including both final grading and the installation of permanent improvements. It shall accordingly include a timing schedule or schedules indicating both:
(1) 
The anticipated starting and completion dates of each step in the land disturbance and development sequence and the time of exposure of each land area prior to the completion of effective erosion and sediment control measures.
(2) 
The sequence of installation of planned erosion and sediment control measures as related to the disturbance and development sequence referred to in Subsection A(1) above, including anticipated starting and completion dates of such installations.
B. 
Soil erosion and sediment control measures may, as a minimum, utilize and meet applicable standards as hereinabove defined.
[Added 12-28-1976 by Ord. No. 16-76]
C. 
In addition, to the extent applicable in particular situations, the following measures or considerations shall be incorporated in the soil erosion and sediment control plan:
(1) 
The smallest practical area of land shall be exposed at any one time during development, and the duration of such exposure shall be kept to a practical minimum.
(2) 
Whenever feasible, natural vegetation and the natural ground surface shall be retained and protected.
(3) 
Temporary vegetative protection, plant cover and/or mulching shall be used to protect critical erosion areas during development.
(4) 
Diversions and outlets, both temporary and permanent, shall be constructed and/or installed to accommodate the increase runoff caused by the changed soil and surface conditions during and after development.
(5) 
Disturbed soil shall be stabilized as quickly as practicable.
(6) 
Until the disturbed area is stabilized, sediment in the runoff water shall be trapped and removed by the use of debris basins, sediment basins, desilting basins, silt traps or other acceptable methods.
(7) 
Whenever feasible, development shall preserve salient natural features and existing grades, thereby keeping grading, stripping and excavation to a minimum.
(8) 
Adequate provisions shall be made to minimize surface water from damaging slopes and embankments. Cutoff ditches or diversions may be utilized for this purpose.
(9) 
Fill shall be placed and compacted so as to minimize sliding or erosion and shall not encroach on watercourses.
(10) 
Fill placed adjacent to a watercourse shall have suitable protection against erosion for all-weather stream flow conditions and particularly during periods of flooding.
(11) 
During grading operations, methods for dust control will be exercised.
(12) 
During grading, excavation and other construction activities, slopes and embankments shall be stabilized by mulching with straw sprayed with an asphalt mixture or jute matting staked in position or a seeding of annual ryegrass or other acceptable method.
(13) 
Permanent (final) vegetative protection, plant cover, lawn or ground cover and mechanical erosion control devices and measures shall be installed or constructed, and completed, as soon as practically possible.
(14) 
Permanent improvements, such as roads, catch basins, curbs and the like, shall be installed or constructed, and completed, as soon as practically possible.
[1]
Editor's Note: Former § 179-4, Waiver of submission of plan, which immediately preceded this section, was repealed 12-28-1976 by Ord. No. 16-76.

§ 179-5 Implementation.

A. 
In considering and approving a soil erosion and sediment control plan, the Planning Board or Zoning Board of Adjustment:
[Amended 5-16-1994 by Ord. No. 8-94]
(1) 
Shall have the right, among other things, to fix the time schedule for exposure of land areas and for the construction and installation of improvements (or the taking of other measures) to prevent soil erosion and sedimentation, and may require that such work or measures be completed prior to any site development work.
(2) 
Shall provide for the posting of performance guaranties and maintenance bonds in the same manner as provided in Chapter 195, Subdivision of Land and Site Plan Review.
(3) 
May refer the plan to the Soil Conservation District, and/or to any other qualified governmental agency or agencies, for review and may take no action on the plan until after a report has been received from said district or such other agency or agencies.
(4) 
May impose lawful conditions or requirements necessary or desirable to proper implementation of the plan and of the purpose and intent of this chapter.
B. 
After a soil erosion and sediment control plan has been approved, it shall be unlawful for the applicant therefor (or any person performing services in implementing the plan) knowingly to deviate from, change, amend or modify the plan in any way, except in accordance with the provisions of Subsection C below.
C. 
Minor changes, amendments or modifications to a soil erosion and sediment control plan required as a result of conditions in the field during construction may be approved by the Borough Engineer, who shall, in turn, notify the Planning Board or Zoning Board of Adjustment thereof. Major changes, amendments or modifications to such a plan shall require the approval of the Planning Board or Zoning Board of Adjustment.
[Amended 5-16-1994 by Ord. No. 8-94]

§ 179-6 Maintenance.

Any person carrying out soil erosion and sediment control measures under this chapter, and all subsequent owners of the property upon which such measures have been carried out, shall adequately maintain all permanent control measures, devices and plantings in good order for a period of two years after completion of the approved plan implementation. Maintenance bonds therefor shall be posted in connection therewith as provided for in § 179-5.

§ 179-7 Enforcement.

A. 
No approval of occupancy of any building shall be granted unless all measures required under the soil erosion and sediment control plan have been either completed or substantially provided for in accordance with this chapter. Approval for occupancy may be granted notwithstanding that permanent (final) vegetative protection, plant cover or lawn or ground cover has not been installed if such permanent protection and cover has not and cannot be installed because of conditions of weather and the installation thereof is enforced by appropriate provisions in the bond or other security and improvement agreements which shall provide for installation within such time limits as may be reasonable upon direction of the Borough Engineer, as soon as weather conditions shall permit.
B. 
The Borough Engineer and/or the Borough Zoning Officer shall enforce the requirements of this chapter and shall inspect the work being undertaken in connection with a plan. In the event of a failure to comply with any condition or thing in the plan, the Borough Engineer or Zoning Officer may, among other things, revoke the building permit or certificate of occupancy, issue stop orders and generally take such action as may be justified under the circumstances.
C. 
Prior to approval of occupancy, a formal report of compliance with the provisions of a certified plan for permanent measures to control soil erosion and sedimentation shall be filed with the municipal agent authorized to issue certificates of occupancy. A copy of this report shall be sent to the Morris County Soil Conservation District.
[Added 12-28-1976 by Ord. No. 16-76]

§ 179-8 Fees.

[Amended 6-7-1999 by Ord. No. 15-99; 3-18-2002 by Ord. No. 02-02]
An application fee and an inspection fee as set forth in Chapter 102, Fees, shall be imposed for each plan submitted. The applicant shall supplement the inspection fee from time to time, if necessary, as directed by the Board having jurisdiction over the application, the Borough Engineer or the Planning Board Engineer. Should the total inspection fee paid to the Borough be greater than the actual costs of inspection, the difference shall be refunded or returned. Should the total cost of inspection be greater than the inspection fee paid hereunder, the difference shall be paid to the Borough prior to the issuance of any certificate of occupancy or the release of any performance guarantees.

§ 179-9 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 12-28-1976 by Ord. No. 16-76]
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall be liable to legal action and penalties as provided by Section 15, Chapter 251, Public Laws of New Jersey 1975 (N.J.S.A. 4:24-53).