[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Stratford as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicted:
- Any circus or carnival presented in the open, including a place where one or more amusement devices are provided, and any circus, carnival or other plastic or fabric or other portable shelter involving an assembly of 100 or more persons.
- AMUSEMENT DEVICE
- Any means, mechanical or otherwise, of conveying or transporting a member of the public for thrills and entertainment, including but not limited to Ferris wheels, whips, rides, merry-go-rounds and animal rides.
- The operator, operator's agent or possessor of such amusement device.
- PERMITTING COMMITTEE
- A committee consisting of the Chief of Police, Fire Chief, Building Inspector and Planning Administrator. All members of the Permitting Committee shall sign the application for permits.
No person shall exhibit or provide any amusement or amusement device unless he has obtained a permit from the Permitting Committee no less than 10 days before exhibiting or providing such amusement or amusement device in the Town of Stratford. All members of the Permitting Committee shall sign the application for permit. As a condition of the issuance of said permit, the amusement and amusement device shall be inspected by the Building Inspector and the Fire Chief, who shall investigate and inspect said amusement and amusement device, as required under Section 29-136 of the Connecticut General Statutes. Said applicant shall further comply with all state regulations, specifically those provided under Section 29-140 of the Connecticut General Statutes and submit proof of the possession of all state-required permits.
Before a permit shall be issued, the owner shall furnish to the permit committee proof of financial responsibility to satisfy claims for damages on account of any physical injuries or property damage suffered by any person by reason of any act or omission on the part of the owner, his agents or employees.
For mechanical rides or devices capable of accommodating three or more persons, the following minimum amounts shall apply: for bodily injury, $100,000 per person and $1,000,000 per accident; for property damage, $50,000. The character and form of the financial responsibility shall be as the State Insurance Commissioner has determined to be necessary for the protection of the public.
When fire and/or police protection is necessary or required at any place of public amusement, sport contest or any other exhibition or contest which is being held or is to be held in the Town of Stratford, the amount of such protection shall be determined by the Fire Marshal of the Town of Stratford and shall be furnished by the Chief of the Fire Department, who may utilize paid or volunteer firemen or both, paid by the person or persons operating, conducting or promoting such game, exhibition or contest. Nothing in this section shall affect the jurisdiction of the Department of State Police as may be applicable with respect to such game, exhibition or contest or the jurisdiction of the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles as may be applicable pursuant to the provisions of Section 14-16a of the Connecticut General Statutes.
A condition for the issuance of a permit to operate an amusement device or a carnival is that the proposed activity to be permitted be sponsored or cosponsored by a local charitable, educational, civic, religious or patriotic organization.
The fee for issuance of a permit to operate amusement devices shall be $25 for each week of operation or part thereof. When such device is to be operated solely for the entertainment of children of the age of 12 years or less, the fees shall be waived.
Any violation of the provisions of these regulations shall be punishable by a fine of not less than $50 nor more than $100 for each day such violation shall continue.
The Permitting Committee shall prescribe a form of application and shall establish such regulations for the issuance of permits as will assure the responsibility of the permittee and the protection of the public.
For the purposes of this article, the following words and phrases shall have the meanings respectively ascribed to them by this section:
- LOCATION OWNER
- Any person in whose place of business any mechanical or electronic amusement device is placed for use by the public.
- MECHANICAL AMUSEMENT DEVICE
- Any mechanical, electrical or electronic device used or designed to be operated for entertainment or as a game of skill by the insertion of a piece of money, coin, token or other article into said device or by paying money to have it activated. Such term shall include but not be limited to such devices as pinball or pin-game machines, an arcade game, a video game, bowling, billiard games and other similar mechanical and/or amusement devices. This shall not include a juke-box, rides or any such device maintained within a residence for the use of the occupants thereof and/or their guests.
- Any person who owns or distributes any mechanical/electronic amusement device.
Every operator shall obtain a license, issued by the Chief of Police, permitting them to place licensed mechanical or electronic amusement devices within the Town.
Every location owner shall obtain a license from the Chief of Police for maintaining three or more mechanical or electronic amusement devices in operation in their place of business.
Applications for the licenses required by this article shall be made to the Chief of Police. Each such application shall contain the following information, under oath:
The name of the applicant; if the applicant is a partnership, the application shall list the names of all partners. If the applicant is a corporation, club or association, the application shall list the names of the officers of such corporation, club or association.
The residence of the applicant. If the applicant is a corporation, club or association, the application shall specify the address of its place of business.
The age of the applicant. If the applicant is a corporation, club or association, the application shall specify the date of organization of such corporation, club or association and in what state.
Whether the applicant or, if the applicant is a corporation, club or association, its officers have ever been convicted of a crime involving moral turpitude.
The address where the mechanical or electronic amusement device is to be displayed or operated and the business or activity conducted at that place.
Each applicant for, or holder of, an operator's permit or location owner shall notify the Chief of Police promptly of any change in the information set forth in the application.
The Chief of Police shall investigate the character and record of the applicant for an operator or location owner's license and the location wherein it is proposed to operate the mechanical or electronic amusement device described in the application. He shall not approve the application unless he finds that the applicant is over 21 years of age and is a person of good moral character and that the business or activity carried on in such location is a bona fide and lawful one.
In case of the denial of an application or refusal to issue or renew a license because of the disapproval of the Chief of Police, the Chief of Police shall notify the applicant of such action, and the Chief of Police shall set a day and place for a hearing thereon, giving the applicant reasonable notice in advance thereof and an opportunity to be represented by counsel at such hearing. In the event of disapproval or denial of the application, appeal may be taken from the decision of the Chief of Police to the Superior Court within 15 days of notification of such disapproval.
An operator shall pay an annual license fee of $12 for each amusement device. An annual license fee shall be paid by the location owner at the rate of $12 per amusement device.
License fees shall become due on the day on which the license is issued and shall be prorated from the first day of the month in which the amusement device is placed in operation, to and including the 30th day of September following. Fees for renewal of licenses shall become due on the first day of October of each year.
A license under this article shall be issued by the Chief of Police only in the name of the application. One mechanical or electronic amusement device may be substituted for another similar device under the issued license, provided that immediate notification is given to the Chief of Police, but in the event of a sale or transfer of business by the location owner, a new location owner's license shall be obtained by the transferee.
Location owner's licenses shall be posted permanently and conspicuously at the location of the mechanical or electronic amusement device on the premises where the mechanical or electronic amusement devices are to be placed or maintained.
The Chief of Police may revoke any license issued under this article for cause, after due notice in writing to the licensee and a hearing held not less than 10 days after the date of such notice. Cause shall be deemed to include but shall not be limited to conviction for a crime involving moral turpitude subsequent to the issuance of the license, false information in the application knowingly given or any violation of this article. In the event of revocation, appeal may be taken from the decision of the Chief of Police the Superior Court within 15 days of notification of such revocation.
Each location owner, agent, permittee, manager or person in control of premises shall have good order in the place of business and shall not permit any of the mechanical or electronic amusement devices to be used for gambling.
No location owner, agent, permittee, manager or person in control of premises shall harbor, in the place of business, persons 15 years of age or under or allow them to congregate therein for the purpose of playing any such mechanical or electronic amusement device unless accompanied by parents or guardians or unless such owner, agent, permittee, manager or person in control of premises has been provided a consent form signed by the parent or legal guardian of such child authorizing his or her presence on said premises.
No permit premises shall remain open between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 9:00 a.m.
Any violation of the provisions of this article shall be punishable by a fine of not less than $50 nor more than $100.