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Section 1212.03    Municipal Civil Infractions

SECTION 1212.03  MUNICIPAL CIVIL INFRACTIONS

  1. Purpose
    The purpose this section is to establish definitions, penalties, sanctions, and other
    regulations related to violations of Part Twelve (this Land Development Code) and
    Part Fourteen (Building and Housing Code) of the Codified Ordinances, which
    violations shall be known as Amunicipal civil infractions,@ in order to assist the City
    in the enforcement of the aforesaid codes and to serve as an alternative mechanism
    available to the City in lieu of criminal enforcement.

  2. Discretion to Use Civil Infractions
    Unless a violation of Part Twelve (this Land Development Code) or Part Fourteen
    (Building and Housing Code) of the Codified Ordinances is specifically designated
    within the specific section of the particular code to be a misdemeanor, it is within the
    complete discretion of an authorized enforcement official of the City to deem the
    violation to be a municipal civil infraction or to deem the violation to be a criminal
    infraction.

  3. Penalties for Municipal Civil Infractions, Sanctions, and Remedies
    1. Civil Fines. The following civil fines shall apply in the event of a
      determination of responsibility for a municipal civil infraction, unless a
      different fine is specified in connection with a specific Code provision:
      1. The civil fine for a first offense violation shall be in an amount of
        $75.00, plus applicable costs, for each offense.
      2. The civil fine for a first offense violation of any condition of record
        of a final decision of a Board or Commission of the City shall be in
        an amount of $250.00, plus applicable costs, for each offense.
      3. The civil fine for the violation of this Land Development Code (Part
        Twelve), including violations of Section 1207.02, "Tree and
        Vegetation Protection" or Section 1207.03, "Wetland/Stream
        Corridor Protection," or violations of Part Fourteen (Building and
        Housing Code) of the Codified Ordinances that involve irreparable
        damage to the environment shall be in an amount up to $1,000, plus
        applicable costs, for each offense.

    2. Repeat Offense. The civil fine for any offense which is a repeat offense shall
      be doubled in amount, plus applicable costs, for each offense.

    3. Continuing offense. Each act of violation, and on each day upon which any
      such violation shall occur, shall constitute a separate offense.

    4. Remedies not exclusive. In addition to any remedies provided for in this
      Code, any equitable or other remedies available may be sought.

    5. Not a lesser offense. A municipal civil infraction shall not be a lesser
      included offense of a criminal offense or of an ordinance violation which is
      not a municipal civil infraction.

    6. When any work has begun prior to obtaining a Zoning Certificate, the
      application fees shall be doubled as a penalty.

  4. Commencement of Municipal Infraction Action
    1. A municipal civil infraction action shall be commenced upon the issuance by
      an authorized enforcement official of a municipal civil infraction violation
      notice directing the person alleged to be responsible to appear at the City of
      Hudson Police Department of the Community Development Department
      office.

    2. The form of notices used to issue municipal civil infraction violation notices
      shall be in accordance with forms prescribed by the City Solicitor.

    3. The basis for issuance of a municipal civil infraction violation notice shall be
      as set forth below:
      1. An authorized enforcement official who witnesses a person violate an
        ordinance, the violation of which is a municipal civil infraction, shall
        prepare and subscribe, as soon as possible and as completely as
        possible, an original and three (3) copies of a notice.
      2. An authorized enforcement official may issue a notice to a person if,
        based upon investigation, the official has reasonable cause to believe
        that a person is responsible for a municipal civil infraction.
      3. An authorized enforcement official may issue a notice to a person if,
        based upon investigation of a complaint by someone who allegedly
        witnessed the person violate an ordinance, a violation of which is a
        municipal civil infraction, the official has reasonable cause to believe
        that the person is responsible for a municipal civil infraction and if
        the City Solicitor, Prosecutor, or other attorney for the City approves
        in writing the issuance of the notice on this basis.

    4. A municipal civil infraction violation notice shall be served in the following
      manner:
      1. Except as otherwise provided below, the authorized enforcement
        official shall personally serve a copy of the notice upon the alleged
        violator.
      2. In a municipal civil infraction action involving the use or occupancy
        of land or a building or other structure, a copy of the notice need not
        be personally served upon the alleged violator but may be served
        upon an owner or occupant of the land, building or structure by
        posting the copy on the land or attaching the copy to the building or
        structure. In addition, a copy of the notice shall be sent by first class
        mail to the owner of the land, building or structure at the owner's last
        known address.
      3. A notice served as provided in paragraph (2), above, for a violation
        involving the use or occupancy of land or a building or other
        structure, shall be processed in the same manner as a notice served
        personally upon an alleged violator.

  5. Authorized Enforcement Official
    1. The City Manager is hereby authorized to appoint any person or persons as
      Aauthorized enforcement officials for purposes of carrying out the
      enforcement duties and responsibilities specified in this Chapter and Part
      Fourteen (Building and Housing Code) of the Codified Ordinances.


    2. An authorized enforcement official is authorized to enforce all provisions of
      this Code and Part Fourteen (Building and Housing Code) of the Codified
      Ordinances, whether or not any particular provision specifies or designates a
      different enforcing official. Where a particular officer is designated in any
      Code provision, that officer's authority shall continue in full force and effect,
      and shall not be diminished or impaired by the terms of this Chapter, and the
      authority of the authorized enforcement official shall be in addition and
      supplementary to the authority granted to such other specific officer.

    3. The authorized enforcement official=s duties shall include the following:
      1. Investigation of code violations;
      2. Issuance and service of municipal civil infraction violation notices;
      3. Appearance in court or other judicial or quasi-judicial proceedings in
        the administration of this Chapter.

  6. Police Department to Serve as Violations Bureau
    1. The City of Hudson Police Department shall serve as the civil infraction
      Violations Bureau for the purpose of accepting admissions of responsibility
      for municipal civil infractions in response to municipal civil infraction
      violation notices.

    2. Payments made to the City of Hudson Police Department shall be retained
      and accounted for as fines and costs, respectively, and shall be deposited in
      the General Fund.

  7. Authority of City of Hudson Police Department
    1. The Police Department is authorized to accept payment of fines and costs in
      response to municipal civil infraction violation notices.

    2. The Police Department shall not accept payment of a fine or costs from any
      person who denies having committed a municipal civil infraction charged in
      a municipal civil infraction violation notice.

    3. The Police Department shall not have authority or jurisdiction to determine,
      or attempt to determine, the truth or falsity of any fact or matter relating to an
      alleged violation.

  8. Election of Person Charged with Violation
    1. Any person receiving a municipal civil infraction violation notice shall be
      permitted to dispose of the charge alleged in the notice by making payment
      of the fine and/or costs to the City of Hudson Police Department or the
      Community Development Department office. The unwillingness of any
      person to dispose of a violation at the Police Department shall not prejudice
      the person or in any way diminish the person=s rights, privileges and
      protection accorded by law.

    2. A person electing to have the alleged violation processed at the Police
      Department shall appear at the Police Department and Community
      Development Department to pay the specified fine and/or costs within the
      time specified for appearance in the municipal civil infraction violation
      notice. Such appearance may be made by mail, in person or by
      representation, provided if appearance is made by mail, the person charged in
      the notice shall have the responsibility for timely delivery of the fine and/or




      costs within the time specified in the municipal civil infraction violation
      notice.

  9. Procedure for Persons Electing Not to Respond to Municipal Civil Infraction
    Violations Notice
    In the event a person elects not to admit responsibility and pay the specified civil fine
    and/or costs prescribed for the respective violation, the City Prosecutor shall
    determine whether to proceed to a court of competent jurisdiction with a civil remedy for the alleged violation or to issue a criminal misdemeanor complaint.