[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Washington as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 10-8-1998 by Ord. No. 37-1998; amended in its entirety 12-11-2008 by Ord. No. 42-2008]
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:21-7, all improvements as defined in N.J.S.A. 40A:21-3n, to commercial or industrial structures of 2,500 square feet or more, being used as provided in § 229-2B below, shall be exempt from local real property taxes, on the improved portion only, for a period of five years, if, after proper timely application has been made, the governing body determines that the improvement meets the intent and criteria established by this article without compromising the equity of the tax structure.
Applicants must apply for tax exemptions on improvements within 30 days of completion of construction of the improvement.
All applications for five-year tax exemptions and abatements under this chapter shall be filed with the Clerk of the Township, who shall forward the application to the Township Tax Collector, who shall deem the application complete prior to forwarding to the governing body for consideration. A copy of the application shall also be forwarded by the Township Clerk to the County Tax Assessor.
[Amended 10-25-2017 by Ord. No. 31-2017]
No applications will be approved for fit-outs to structures which were not previously fully completed and occupied.
No applications will be approved for changing a structure from one construction code use group to another.
For multi-unit projects, such as condominium ownership, the project as a whole must be approved at the onset of development and not on a per-unit basis. The agreement for abatement may permit projects to be built in phases; however, the five-year time period commences with the occupancy of the first unit in each phase.
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:21-9, to be considered for tax abatement, a project must contain a minimum of 5,000 square feet of floor space per use. Applicants shall provide the governing body with an application setting forth:
A general description of the project for which abatement is sought;
A legal description of all real estate necessary for the project;
Plans and drawings and other documents as may be required by the Tax Assessor, ABED or governing body to demonstrate the structure and design of the project;
A description of the number, classes and types of employees to be employed at the project site within two years of the completion of the project;
A statement of the reasons for seeking tax abatement on the project, why the applicant is choosing Washington Township for their project, and a description of the benefits to be realized by the applicant if abatement is granted;
Estimates of the cost of completing such project;
A statement showing the real property taxes currently being assessed at the project site; estimated tax payments that would be made annually by the applicant on the project during the period of tax abatement; and estimated tax payments that would be made by the applicant on the project during the first full year following the termination of the tax abatement agreement;
A description of any lease agreements between the applicant and proposed users of the project, and a history and description of the user's business. Any lease and/or agreement must contain a clause which shows the owner of the premises will pass through any benefits achieved from the proposed abatement;
A check in the amount of $250 payable to the Township of Washington, representing a nonrefundable application fee, shall be paid to the Clerk of the Township of Washington;
Proof of payment of taxes through the current quarter;
A certification to be filed with the office of the Township Clerk, signed by the owner and developer of the property/project which is the subject of the tax abatement application certifying, under the penalty of perjury, and later to be placed in the Tax Abatement Agreement, the following information:
That the person making the certification has the authority, or is vested with the authority, to make the representations;
That the actual tradespeople/workforce/labor to be employed for the construction of all improvements, including all new buildings, additions to existing structures, and all additional site improvements, shall be not less than 30% of the total tradespeople/work force/labor utilized for construction of the project during its entire duration, which will be defined as from the date of the issuance of the first construction permit through the date of the issuance of a final certificate of occupancy;
An acknowledgement that a breach of this provision by the owner/developer will result in a forfeiture of tax abatement status for said property, and that the discovery of such breach, during the course of the tax abatement shall also require a repayment of all abated taxes in full to the Township of Washington;
This provision stating that this requirement shall also be binding upon all successors-in-interest to said property/project which is the subject of the tax abatement application, and that written notification of this provision must be provided to all successors-in-title or -interest to said property, including the repayment requirement upon discovery of the breach of this provision by the Township.
Such other pertinent information as the Tax Assessor, ABED or governing body may require.
Tax abatement applications will be considered for approval for uses such as:
Electronics and small parts assembly and/or manufacture.
Scientific or industrial research engineering laboratory, testing or experimental laboratory or similar establishments for research or product development.
Administrative activities and offices.
Light manufacturing of beverages, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, printing and publishing, confections, food projects (exclusive of meat and fish packing, sauerkraut, vinegar, yeast and the rendering or refining of fats and oils), ceramics, clothing, plastics, electrical goods, furniture and wood products, hardware, tools, dies, patterns, professional and scientific instruments, handcraft products, electronics and small parts assembly and/or manufacture.
Wholesale business establishment.
Indoor storage building or warehouse.
Contractor's equipment storage yard or building or rental of equipment commonly used by contractors.
Frozen food lockers and indoor storage.
Milk or soft-drink distribution station or storage house.
The manufacture, compounding, processing, packaging or treatment of the following previously prepared materials: cork, feathers, cellophane, ceramics, felt, fur, glass, hair, horn, paper, pharmaceuticals, plastics, shells, iron and steel, aluminum, leather, plaster, metals, precious and/or semiprecious stones, wood, yarns, containers or novelties from paper or cardboard, natural or synthetic rubber, tobacco, textiles, or textile products and perfumes.
The manufacture of musical instruments, toys, novelties and electrical or electronic devices; home, commercial and industrial appliances and instruments, including the manufacture of accessory parts or assemblies; dental and medical equipment; watches and clocks; optical goods; drafting equipment and canvas products.
Experimental, research or testing laboratories.
Carpet or rug cleaning; laundry, dry-cleaning and dyeing plant.
Wholesaling and distributing activities.
Light metal processing as follows: cleaning, finishing, grinding, heat treating, plating, polishing, rustproofing and sharpening; metal stamping and extrusion of small products; similar metal-working processes.
Job printing and newspaper or book publishing.
Baking and food and dairy processing.
Corporate and professional offices.
Recreational facilities, including, but not limited to, theaters and bowling alleys.
Artists' and photographers' studios.
Motels-hotels and related facilities such as restaurants, meeting rooms and auditorium spaces and swimming pools.
General service and repair shops, including carpenter, cabinet making, furniture repair, plumbing or similar shop.
Office of a builder, carpenter, caterer, cleaner, contractor, decorator, electrician, furrier, mason, painter, plumber, roofer, upholsterer and similar nonnuisance business, excluding open storage of materials and excluding open storage of motor vehicles.
Veterinary hospital, provided that all animals are kept in a permanent enclosed structure and are not within 150 feet of any existing residential use or zone.
Laboratory, dental and medical.
Business and instructional school, including trade school.
Nursing homes, rest home or home for the aged.
The Township of Washington by ordinance enacted by the Township Council has designated and may continue to designate, in its sole discretion, certain areas defined as "Redevelopment Zones." Proposed projects in active Redevelopment Zones shall comply with all of the polices and procedures set forth in this article in order to be considered for tax abatement.
In order to provide opportunities for growth and to encourage development within the designated Redevelopment Zones, the following exceptions to the aforementioned policies and procedures shall be in effect only for those projects located within a recognized Redevelopment Zone:
There shall be no minimum square footage requirement for any project located in a current Redevelopment Zone in order to be considered for abatement;
Retail uses that conform with the rules and guidelines of the Redevelopment Zone where the proposed project is located shall be considered for tax abatement at the discretion of ABED and the governing body.
Upon approval of an ordinance authorizing an agreement for tax abatement for a particular project or projects, the governing body may enter into written agreements (the "Agreements") with the applicants for abatement of local property taxes. The agreement shall provide for the applicant to pay to the municipality, in lieu of full property tax payments, an amount to be computed pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:2 1-10.
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:21-21, the Township shall provide timely reports, as required therein, to the Department of Community Affairs and the Department of the Treasury.
[Adopted 7-10-2008 by Ord. No. 32-2008]
In case of the destruction or loss of a tax title certificate which was issued by the Township of Washington at a tax sale held in Washington Township, the tax collector of Washington Township shall issue and execute a new certificate of tax sale in place of the one which has been destroyed or lost. There shall appear on the new certificate a statement that it is a duplicate of the original one which was destroyed or lost and the date of said original certificate and the date of the tax sale upon which it was issued and the name and title of the officer who issued same.
The time limit within which the right to redeem from any such tax sale in which a duplicate certificate has been issued shall be the same as though the original certificate had not been lost or destroyed.
The duplicate certificate shall be valid and effectual to all intents and purposes as though it were the original; and in the event the original certificate is thereafter found, the same shall be cancelled forthwith by the proper officer of the Township of Washington.
See § 80-44.