[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Plainsboro 8-23-1982 as Ord. No. 0-82-8. Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- AUTOMATIC AMUSEMENT DEVICE
- Any machine which, upon the insertion of a coin, slug, token, plate or disc, may be operated by the public generally for use as a game, entertainment or amusement, whether or not registering a score, including but not limited to such devices as marble machines, pinball machines, skill ball, mechanical grab machines, video-type games or machines or similar devices that use a display screen for points, lines and dots of light that can be manipulated to simulate games or other types of entertainment and all games, operations or transactions similar thereto under whatever name they may be indicated.
- Any person in whose premises any automatic amusement device is placed or kept for operation.
- Any person, firm, corporation, partnership or association.
The purpose of this chapter is to license, regulate and control automatic amusement devices.
The purpose and objective of this chapter is to regulate the business of amusement devices so as to prevent nuisances to patrons and the public, fire hazards from overcrowding, poor ingress and egress at premises where amusement devices are located, the promotion of gambling, loitering or the creation of an unhealthy atmosphere for the residents of the community or other foreseeable undesirable effects of such devices.
Permit; license required. No person shall maintain, operate or possess in any store, building or other place where individuals may enter, excluding private residences, or in any building or other place wherein any club or organization meetings are held within the Township of Plainsboro any automatic amusement device without first obtaining a license therefor.
All applications for a license under this chapter shall be made and delivered to the Township Clerk on forms to be supplied for the purpose and shall be subscribed and sworn to by the applicant.
The application for the license shall contain the following:
Name and address of the applicant.
Name under which the place is being operated and the location of same.
Number and type of alcoholic beverage licenses, where applicable.
Number and type of machines sought to be licensed.
Location where each automatic amusement game is to be located.
Description of each automatic amusement game sought to be licensed.
Information indicating whether the applicant or transferee or any person connected, by way of employment, with the operation of the establishment wherein the game or device is to be installed has ever been convicted of or pleaded guilty to:
The Township Clerk may request of an applicant additional information supplementing the information given in the application.
Automatic amusement devices are only permitted as an accessory use to a permitted retail business use in the GB Business Zone, PCD and PMUD Zone; in hotels and conference centers (for registered guests only); in churches, fraternal or veterans' organizations, volunteer fire company or rescue squad; or in any private facility where devices shall be located on the interior of the premises of the organization or club and may only be used by members or guests of the organization or club.
Each device shall be located interior to a building and at least 10 feet from any point of egress of the premises in which located and shall be placed so that it does not obstruct or interfere with the free and unfettered passage of patrons or users of the premises. Relief from this provision must be sought from the Zoning Board of Adjustment.
Each device shall have unobstructed perimeter zone or distance of five feet around all sides of said device wherein the users of said device may use, watch or wait to use said device, except that the device may be installed with its back against a wall. Relief from this provision must be sought from the Zoning Board of Adjustment.
An automatic amusement device may only be used or operated during the hours of operation of the premises in which located, and provided that the operator or an employee of this operator is present in the premises.
Each device in a permitted retail business use in the GB Business Zone, PCD and PMUD Zone shall be located where it is clearly visible in the interior of the facility within which it is located.
For the first device located on the premises, there shall be a one-thousand-square-foot floor area; for a second device, an additional one-thousand-square-foot floor area shall be provided; for a third device, an additional four-thousand-square-foot floor area shall be provided; for a fourth device, an additional twenty-thousand-square-foot floor area shall be provided. For the purposes set forth herein, "floor area" shall be defined as provided for in § 101-1 of the Plainsboro Township Code.
The fee for all applications for licenses for premises used pursuant to this chapter shall be $25 annually in addition to all licensing or transfer fees.
The fee for a license to operate an automatic amusement device shall be $100 annually per device.
Any fees charged pursuant to Subsection B shall be prorated based on the number of months remaining in the year of licensing, but not less than 1/2 the amount as set forth in Subsection B of this section. The Township Committee may waive fees as established by this chapter for nonprofit organizations.
All licenses issued under this chapter shall be for a term of one year, commencing on January 1 and expiring on December 31 of the year of issuance.
A license may be transferred from one machine to another by giving notice to the Township Clerk to that effect and giving a description of the new machine. A license may be transferred from one place to another by giving notice to the Township Clerk to that effect and supplying the required information as to the new premises. There shall be a fee for all transfers from one place to another in the amount of $100 per place.
The Chief of Police or his designee may make an investigation of the applicant to determine the truth of the facts set forth in the application. The Fire Inspector or his designee may inspect the premises to determine whether said premises comply with existing fire regulations and the Fire Code of the township. The Chief of Police and the Fire Inspector, upon completion of their investigation and inspection, respectively, shall attach to the application their reports in writing. The report of the Chief of Police shall advise the Township Clerk as to the veracity of the facts as set forth in the application. The report of the Fire Inspector shall advise the Township Clerk as to the compliance or noncompliance of the premises to the fire regulations and Fire Code.
Upon receipt of said application and reports as set forth in the above section, the Township Clerk shall proceed to consider the application and shall either approve or disapprove the issuance of a license to said applicant.
The action by the Township Clerk in approving or disapproving said application shall be taken within 45 days from the date of said application. Failure to take such action within 45 days by the Township Clerk shall constitute an approval of said application.
If the application is approved, the Township Clerk shall issue the necessary license upon the receipt of the license fee or fees as herein provided.
If the application is disapproved, the applicant shall be notified, in writing, of the disapproval and the reasons therefor.
The applicant, upon being advised of a disapproval of his application, may, in writing, request a hearing before the Township Committee and shall be afforded an opportunity to dispute or disprove the reasons for said disapproval at said hearing. The applicant may be represented by an attorney at said hearing.
The Township Committee shall either affirm or reverse the decision in disapproving the application within 15 days after the date of said hearing, unless there is an extension of time agreed to by both the applicant and the Township Committee.
Revocation of license.
At any time after the granting of a license under this chapter, the Township Committee, in the exercise of its reasonable discretion, may revoke said license if the Township Committee determines a violation of any of the following:
Gambling on the premises.
False or incorrect material on the application or information furnished by the applicant.
Failure to maintain good and safe conduct on the premises.
The presence of the machines results in gambling, obscene and loud language disturbing to the public or to other patrons of the premises, creating a nuisance, excessive noise, litter, traffic or rowdyism by the patrons.
Any licensee found in violation of this section shall be issued a written notice of violation. Upon receipt of the notice, the licensee may request, in writing, a hearing before the Township Committee, which hearing shall be held within 14 days from receipt of the request. Until the Township Committee has acted on the matter, the license to operate automatic amusement devices shall be suspended.
Number of machines. The maximum number of mechanical amusement devices per establishment shall be four.
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by a fine not exceeding $500 or by imprisonment for a term not exceeding 90 days, or both. Each day that a violation occurs or is committed shall constitute a separate offense.