[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Sea Cliff 9-17-1979 by L.L. No. 19-1979; amended in its entirety 12-17-1990 by L.L. No. 3-1990. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
No person shall be permitted to erect or maintain or cause to be erected or maintained any fence or wall, other than a wall which is an integral part of a structure, of a height of more than four feet, with the exception of open-wire fences of an approved type, which shall not exceed five feet in height. The height of a fence or wall shall be measured from the ground level on the lower side of such fence or wall. All fences shall be constructed with the finished side facing away from the property on which such fence is erected.
[Added 2-1-2010 by L.L. No. 1-2010]
No person shall be permitted to erect or cause to be erected any barbed-wire or similar type fence. Any such fence in existence on the effective date of this chapter shall be permitted to remain, provided that such fence is maintained, repaired and required in such manner as to warrant its continued existence as evaluated and determined based upon the criteria set forth in § 64-3.1B.
[Amended 2-1-2010 by L.L. No. 1-2010]
The provisions of §§ 64-1 and 64-1.1 notwithstanding, fences and walls in excess of the prescribed heights, fences with the finished side facing the property on which such fence is erected, retaining walls extending more than three inches above the ground that they support, and retaining walls closer to one another than the prescribed distance, may be permitted upon application to the Planning Board of the Village of Sea Cliff for a special permit to erect or maintain such fence or wall. The fee for such special permit shall be as set forth in Appendix Chapter A142. Such fee shall accompany each application, which shall be in writing and shall be filed with the Building Superintendent. The form, documents and information to be submitted with such application shall be as prescribed by the Building Superintendent.
While it is generally in the best interests of the Village of Sea Cliff to require fences and walls to comply with the restrictions set forth in § 64-1, there are situations which warrant exceptions to these requirements. This section provides criteria, objectives, standards and guidelines to be considered in determining whether an exception should be granted, giving reasonable consideration to the needs, objectives and purposes of the applicant as balanced against the physical and visual environment of the Village and the safety, health and welfare of the adjoining property owners and the Village and its residents. To achieve this goal, the Planning Board of the Incorporated Village of Sea Cliff is hereby empowered to review all applications for exceptions for determination based upon the criteria as set forth herein.
In determining whether or not to issue the permit for an exception as provided for in § 64-3, the Planning Board shall consider, along with all other factors which the Board deems relevant, the type of fence to be used, including the design and component materials; location; setback from property lines, streets, and corners; height; purpose, including necessity for privacy, safety or shielding from noise, traffic or other potentially annoying factors; whether the fence is new or the replacement of an existing fence; the consent or objection of adjacent property owners; whether the fence will accomplish the proposed purpose; practicality of alternatives to accomplish the same purpose with less adverse effect; effects on the adjacent properties; obstructions to light, air and visibility of adjacent properties which will result; appropriateness of design to the character of the neighborhood; effect on clear and safe passage of pedestrians and vehicles; whether an obstruction to view will be created which creates a danger to pedestrians or traffic disproportionate to the benefit to be derived; means of fastening and support; likelihood of accident or danger due to location; and whether the structure will be permanent or temporary.
No fence, hedge, wall or planting shall be erected or maintained on any corner lot or other property which may cause danger to traffic upon any street or public place in the Village by obscuring the view. The owner or owners of record of the property involved shall remove or trim any such fence, hedge, wall or planting within 15 days after the mailing (by certified mail, return receipt requested) of a notice directing the same, by or on behalf of the Board of Trustees, to said owner or owners at the address of record set forth on the current tax assessment rolls of the Village of Sea Cliff. In the event that such notice shall not be duly and timely complied with, such work as shall be necessary to remove or correct the violation shall be performed on behalf of the Board of Trustees and the entire cost thereof, including any attorney's fees incurred, shall be assessed by the Board of Trustees upon the real property in question. The expenses and fees so assessed shall constitute a lien and charge upon such real property until paid or otherwise satisfied or discharged and shall be collected in the same manner and at the same time as other charges, taxes and assessments of the Village of Sea Cliff.
Any person aggrieved by any decision of the Planning Board may apply to the Supreme Court of the State of New York for review by a proceeding under Article 78 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules. Such proceeding shall be instituted within 30 days after the filing of the decision of the Planning Board in the office of the Village Clerk.
The Planning Board is hereby authorized to adopt, promulgate, amend and repeal rules and regulations governing its procedure and the transaction of its business and for the purpose of fully implementing the provisions of this chapter. Such rules and regulations, and any amendment thereto, shall be subject to approval by the Board of Trustees and, once approved, shall be made a part of this Code with the same force and effect as all other laws of the Incorporated Village of Sea Cliff.
[Added 12-11-2006 by L.L. No. 3-2006]
It shall be the duty of every property owner to keep any wall located on his property and adjacent to or within six feet of any property line of his premises, and any wall located on Village property and adjacent to or within six feet of any property line of his premises, in a safe condition and to make such repairs and correct such conditions as the Board of Trustees or its authorized representative shall direct.
All walls or portions thereof which are structurally unsafe, or which are otherwise dangerous to human life or which, in relation to existing use, constitute a hazard to safety by reason of inadequate maintenance, dilapidation, obsolescence or abandonment are, severally, for the purpose of this article, unsafe walls. All such unsafe walls are hereby declared to be illegal and shall be abated by repair and rehabilitation or by demolition in accordance with the procedures of this article.
The Superintendent of Buildings shall examine or cause to be examined every wall reported as unsafe or dangerous and shall make a written report of such examination. A copy of the report shall be submitted to the Board of Trustees. For the purposes of this article, the Superintendent of Buildings shall include the Superintendent of Buildings and such other persons as the Board of Trustees shall designate by resolution from time to time.
Whenever the Superintendent of Buildings shall find any wall or any portion or portions thereof to be an unsafe wall as defined in this article, he shall serve written notice of the unsafe condition on the property owner. This notice shall contain a description of the property and the wall, a statement of the particulars in which the wall is unsafe, and an order requiring the said wall to be made safe, or, at the discretion of the Village, removed. The notice shall require the owner, within a stated time commensurate with the type and condition of the wall, either to complete the specified repairs or improvements or, at the discretion of the Village, to demolish and remove the wall or the specified portion or portions thereof. The notice shall further provide that in the event the property owner shall fail, neglect or refuse to comply with such notice within the stated time limit, an application will be made at a Special Term of the Supreme Court of Nassau County for an order determining the wall to be a public nuisance and directing that it be repaired or taken down and removed.
The notice shall be served on the property owner personally or by leaving the notice at the residence of such owner or owners with a person of suitable age and discretion or by posting the same conspicuously on the premises at which the wall is located and mailing a copy thereof addressed to such owner or owners at the address of record set forth on the current tax assessment rolls of the Village of Sea Cliff. Where there are two or more owners of any such property, service upon one of them shall be sufficient.
Repairs and the correction of conditions made at the direction of the Board of Trustees or its authorized representative shall be carried out under the supervision of the Board of Trustees or such representative. All costs incurred shall be paid solely and entirely by the property owner. For purposes of this article, the Superintendent of Buildings shall be such an authorized representative, as well as such other persons as the Board of Trustees may designate by resolution from time to time. Under no circumstances shall the Village incur any obligation to a property owner to share the cost of repairs or the correction of conditions under this section.
When a wall, or any portion or portions thereof, must be repaired or replaced, the Village shall have the right to modify the location of the wall, or any portion or portions thereof, including the relocation of the wall or any portion or portions thereof, to Village property, notwithstanding that the wall was originally, either completely or partially, on the owner's property, provided the function and purpose of the wall will not be adversely affected by the relocation.
In the event the property owner requires more time to commence or complete the required repairs or to correct the unsafe conditions, any approval of an extension of time shall only be valid if granted, in writing, by the Village.
In the event the property owner shall fail, neglect or refuse to comply with the notice to complete the repairs or correct the conditions or to demolish and remove the wall or any specified portion or portions thereof within the stated time limit, a survey of the wall shall be made by the Superintendent of Buildings and an architect or engineer to be named by the Board of Trustees and an engineer or architect appointed by the property owner. The engineer or architect appointed by the Board of Trustees shall be compensated by the Village, and the engineer or architect appointed by the property owner shall be compensated by the property owner. In the event of the refusal or neglect of the property owner to appoint an architect or engineer, the Superintendent of Buildings and the architect or engineer named by the Board of Trustees shall make the survey and report to the Board of Trustees. A signed copy of the report shall be posted on the property. The Board of Trustees shall thereupon take such action as it shall deem necessary and proper, including application to the Supreme Court of Nassau County if such action is warranted by the circumstances.
Upon the issuance of a court order authorizing the Village to perform such work as shall be necessary to repair or correct the conditions, or to demolish and remove the wall or any specified portion or portions thereof, such work shall be performed on behalf of the Board of Trustees, and the entire cost thereof plus any attorney's fees incurred, shall be paid by the owner of the property on which, or adjacent to which, the wall is located.
In cases of emergency in which the Superintendent of Buildings finds that there is actual and immediate danger of failure or collapse so as to endanger human life or health, he shall promptly cause such wall or portion thereof to be made safe or removed. For this purpose, he may at once enter the property on which the wall stands, or abutting land or buildings, with such assistance and at such cost as may be necessary. He may vacate or prohibit access to the adjacent area and protect the public by appropriate barricades or such other means as may be necessary and, for this purpose, may close a public or private way.
All costs and expenses incurred by the Village in connection with any of the above proceedings, including any attorney's fees incurred, and 100% of the cost of repairing or correcting the conditions or demolishing and removing the wall or any specified portion or portions thereof shall be assessed by the Board of Trustees upon the real property on which, or adjacent to which, the wall is located. The owner of the property shall be served with a written notice by the Village Clerk, sent by regular mail and by certified mail, return receipt requested, indicating the total costs and expenses incurred by the Village in connection with such proceedings and the portion thereof payable by the property owner. If the property owner shall fail to pay such costs and expenses within 10 days of the postmark date of such notice, the Village Clerk shall thereupon notify the Village Assessor, who shall immediately fix and determine a special assessment against the real property involved in the amount of such costs and expenses, and present such assessment to the Board of Trustees for confirmation. Upon confirmation, the expenses and fees so assessed shall constitute a lien and charge upon such real property until paid or otherwise satisfied or discharged, the lien shall have the same priority as a Village tax, and shall be collected in the same manner and at the same time as other charges, taxes and assessments of the Village of Sea Cliff. Collection and cancellation of such special assessment shall be in accordance with the provisions of the Village Law. This remedy shall be in addition to any other penalty provided for under this Code.
No permit fee shall be charged or payable regarding any repairs or the correction of conditions made at the direction of the Board of Trustees or its authorized representative pursuant to this article. The permit application shall be made by the Village of Sea Cliff, and the provisions of §§ 64-3 and 64-3.1 shall not apply.
For any premises adjoining a state and/or county road, approval of the appropriate authority, if required, must be presented before a permit will be issued for construction of the wall.
The Superintendent of Buildings is hereby authorized to promulgate standards and conditions for the construction of walls in the Incorporated Village of Sea Cliff, including the materials required and the method of construction. Such standards and conditions, and any amendments thereto, shall be subject to approval by the Board of Trustees and, once approved, shall be made a part of this Code with the same force and effect as all other laws of the Incorporated Village of Sea Cliff.