[HISTORY: Adopted by the Council of the City of Northfield 10-17-1971 by Ord. No. 7-1972 (Ch. 97 of the 1974 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
It shall be unlawful for any landowner, company, firm, corporation or other person to excavate any soil for use on or off the premises where it is found unless a permit is obtained under further provisions of this chapter. It shall be similarly unlawful for any landowner or lessee to permit another person to conduct such operations on his property.
Exceptions. The following are exceptions to this chapter and shall not be considered to be operations as covered under provisions of this chapter:
Excavations for purposes of construction of a foundation or basement for a structure intended solely for a single-family dwelling, within the permitted soil-type areas.
Excavation and grading for yards, sidewalks, drainage ditches, sewage disposal systems or other minor yard improvements.
Sanitary landfill operations which are in conformance with municipal and/or state codes.
New streets, roadways and driveways where regulated by other ordinances.
Gravel pits and sand pits permitted and regulated under other ordinances of this municipality.
Excavations made by the City of Northfield, the County of Atlantic or the State of New Jersey for public improvements such as streets, highways, drainage, sewers or other similar projects. It is not intended to include in this exception private contractors working under contract for any of these governmental units.
Underground utility lines within the bounds of the public streets and roadways.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- 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 dwelling units, business or industrial buildings and facilities related thereto, or any land subdivision for the purpose of sale or occupancy by any person or persons.
- ESTABLISHED GRADE
- The contour of the land as it exists prior to the proposed excavation or operation.
- EXCAVATE or MOVE
- To dig, remove, move, deposit, fill, grade, regrade, level the soil or otherwise alter or change the contour of land or to transport soil to or from such an operation. This shall not be construed to include plowing, spading, cultivating, harrowing or disking of soil or any other operation usually and ordinarily associated with tilling of the soil for agricultural or horticultural purposes.
- Any person who shall excavate, move, deposit or remove soil as these terms are defined herein or in the public usage.
- LOT or LAND
- Any parcel of land or portion thereof, the boundary lines of which can be ascertained by reference to the maps and records, or either, in the offices of officials of the City of Northfield or in the office of the County Clerk of the County of Atlantic.
- Any person seized in fee simple of any lot or having such other interest or estate therein as will permit exercise of possession thereof or dominion thereover.
- Any individual, firm, association, partnership or corporation or any group of two or more of them or anyone acting in behalf of said person.
- Subsoil and topsoil.
- Includes all soil usually found lying beneath the top layer of soil, be it sand, silt, gravel, clay, aggregate or a combination of two or more of the foregoing.
- Soil which, in its natural state, constitutes the top eight-inch layer of earth and has the ability to support vegetation.
- WOODED AREAS
- Areas containing numerous trees having attained a diameter of four inches at a height of four feet from the ground as determined by the Municipal Engineer.
Original application shall be made to the Municipal Clerk on forms supplied by him.
The Municipal Engineer shall review the completed application and submit his recommendations to the Planning Board within 30 days of receipt.
The Planning Board shall, within 45 days of receipt of the Engineer's final recommendations, rule upon an application by finding of a majority vote.
The Planning Board or Municipal Engineer may require the applicant to submit a plan for the conservation of soil during and after the excavating operation. The Cape Atlantic Conservation District office must be consulted for advice in reviewing an application for excavating operations which would take place in soil-type areas classified 9443, C858, C85+, 9736 or 9746 by soil conservation maps. The Planning Board or Municipal Engineer may consult, at its or his discretion, the Cape Atlantic Conservation District office, or require the applicant to do so and submit findings, in reviewing any other application for excavation to occur in soil-type areas not already specified.
The Planning Board or Municipal Engineer may require from the applicant such maps, contour maps, topography studies, surveys and other data as may be needed to reach a decision.
The following information, in addition to and in concurrence with the provisions of this chapter, shall be considered by the Planning Board prior to final action on an application:
Need for mechanical and vegetative means for controlling erosion and sedimentation, such as terraces, dikes, benches, etc.
Drainage as affected by the operation.
Sharp declivities or pits to be formed.
Soil fertility and the ability to support desirable plant and tree growth.
Lateral support and grades of abutting streets and lands.
Road damage, traffic and weather conditions.
Public health, safety and welfare.
Whether the operation will be a detriment to the land's utilization for purposes permitted under existing ordinances regulating land use.
Hazards of dust, mud and sedimentation on streams and nearby properties.
The physical characteristics and limitations of the soil for the uses to which the land may be put.
The time of year during which the excavation will be undertaken.
Effect of the excavation or filling on native trees or other vegetative cover.
Such other factors as may bear upon or relate to the coordinated, adjusted and harmonious physical development of the community.
An adverse decision on the application by the Planning Board shall include the findings of fact upon which the decision is based.
An adverse decision by the Planning Board may be appealed within 10 days to the Board of Adjustment, which shall hold a public hearing upon notification by personal service or certified mail to the Planning Board, Municipal Engineer, neighboring landowners within 200 feet of bounds of lands of the proposed operation, and to other interested citizens by publication in the press.
The Board of Adjustment shall rule on all cases appealed under the provisions of this chapter within 60 days after receipt of notice, in writing, of the appeal.
A performance bond shall be posted by the applicant before beginning work to ensure the completion or satisfactory termination of incomplete work, for reimbursement of expenses incurred by the municipality in repairing public facilities and roads affected by the operation, and for correction of unsatisfactory work.
Amounts of performance bonds shall be set by the Planning Board upon recommendation by the Municipal Engineer.
The minimum bond shall be $200 plus $0.10 per cubic yard after 600 cubic yards; maximum to be $5,000 aggregate.
The bonding company and form of bond shall be subject to the approval of the City Solicitor.
Fees shall be paid by the applicant to the Municipal Clerk at the time of original application. In the event an application is disapproved, estimated municipal expenses incurred in processing the application shall be deducted from the fee and the balance shall be returned to the applicant within five days of final action.
Schedule of fees: $10 plus $0.03 per cubic yard after 100 cubic yards; maximum to be $100 total fee.
Fees for inspection by the Municipal Engineer shall be paid to the City of Northfield by the permit holder before release of the performance bond.
Work must commence within 60 days of issuance of a permit, unless otherwise specified in the permit.
The Planning Board may, at its discretion, require all or any part of the operation to be completed prior to erection of any structures or dwellings.
The Planning Board, with the advice of the Municipal Engineer, shall determine a time limit within which all work must be completed, and such time limit shall be a condition of the permit. Upon expiration of the time limit and if the permit is not renewed, the City Council may declare the bond forfeited and proceed to complete all or part of the work.
Inspection shall be made by the Municipal Engineer at his discretion or on request of the Planning Board, to ensure that the provisions of this chapter and the permit are fully complied with.
Granting of a permit shall be construed as permission for the Municipal Engineer or his agent to inspect premises of the operation and enter thereon as necessary for complete inspection.
The Planning Board may require boundary stakes and grade stakes to be erected by the grantee for purposes of inspection.
There shall be left upon the surface of the land from which soil is removed not less than six inches of topsoil, which must be composed solely of the original top layer or its qualitative equivalent or better as determined by an agent of the Cape Atlantic Conservation District.
The Municipal Engineer may require that stored soil and other denuded areas be seeded according to the recommendations of the county agricultural agent.
The excavator shall minimize compaction of all soil intended to support plant growth.
The Planning Board may require special soil erosion and sedimentation control measures during the period between November 1 and March 1 on recommendation of the Cape Atlantic Conservation District.
Stumps and other combustible debris are to be removed from the premises to an approved site.
Noncombustible debris is to be either removed from the premises to an approved site or buried with not less than three feet of settled earth for cover.
As many trees as practicable shall be left; regrading around tree roots shall be avoided where practicable.
No excavating, filling or other disturbance of the soil will be permitted within the stream encroachment lines as established by the New Jersey Division of Water Resources.
Natural watercourses shall be preserved and there shall be no interruption or impediment of natural drainage entering or leaving the property.
If soil has been heavily compacted, it must be loosened to a depth of 18 inches.
No new final grade or contour below the grade of adjacent properties or roads shall result unless specifically part of the approved plan upon which the permit was based.
Final grade minimum shall be 0.5%, if possible, to ensure proper drainage.
Slopes of not more than 13% shall be maintained to adjacent properties.
There shall be no sharp declivities or steep embankments, unless specifically approved as part of the project plan.
With slopes having a vertical height greater than 30 feet, the length of the slope shall be reduced by appropriate mechanical measures such as benches, interception and diversion ditches or retaining walls.
The finished site shall conform to the plan specifications as approved by the Planning Board.
The excavator shall clean up on a daily basis any dust, dirt or mud accumulated on the public roads as a result of his operation.
The ground at the site of operations must be oiled or watered to prevent dusting, according to specifications of the Municipal Engineer.
Trucks shall not be loaded above the level of their sides unless properly covered by a tarpaulin.
Every reasonable effort shall be made to avoid annoyance to residents of the municipality.
Roads to be traversed by trucks and other equipment used in the operation may be designated as a condition of the permit.
Permits shall be issued to a person or corporation and shall not be transferable.
Permits may be extended or renewed at the discretion of the Planning Board, provided that there have been no substantial changes in conditions following original issuance of the permit.
A renewal or extension of a permit shall be granted subsequent to payment of a fee of $10 and renewal of the original bond.
The penalty for violation of any provision of this chapter shall be as set forth in Chapter 1, General Provisions, § 1-15. Such fines or penalties shall be collected as like fines are now collected by law. In addition to the foregoing, a permit shall be revoked upon the date of filing of complaint by the municipality. Nothing herein shall be construed to prevent the municipality from securing injunctive relief to restrain soil removal as described herein.