Connect with us


Lavallette Introduces Revised Ordinance Regulating Outdoor Cooking Facilities

A custom outdoor kitchen. (Credit: All Seasons Pools/ Flickr)

A custom outdoor kitchen. (Credit:
All Seasons Pools/ Flickr)

Lavallette officials have introduced an ordinance regulating outdoor cooking facilities after pulling an initial iteration of the proposal from consideration following concerns brought by residents as well as a local land use attorney who pointed out some issues that the measure may have caused unintentionally.

Lavallette has been perfecting its outdoor cooking ordinance for months. As it currently stands, the borough code is largely silent on outdoor cooking facilities, leaving those building new homes to question whether they need special planning board permission to install an outdoor kitchen, or can simply install one as they see fit. Pursuant to state code, a home cannot have a second “kitchen,” therefore the language of the outdoor kitchen ordinance had be modified to include more flexible phraseology, namely “outdoor cooking facility.”

Legally, a “kitchen” is defined around the existence of a stove – not an outdoor grill, refrigerator, sink or kegerator – meaning the ordinance can be passed in the future with minimal changes. Officials, however, were hopeful the ordinance would pass quickly since some property owners were waiting on permits and certificates of occupancy on their new homes.

Get Daily Island News Updates
Your email address:*
Please enter all required fields Click to hide
Correct invalid entries Click to hide

After hearing concerns from residents, as well as local attorney Michele Donato, who spoke at the previous meeting, council members introduced a modified ordinance.

“The changes that were made were pretty simple,” said Borough Attorney William Burns, explaining that the major sticking point with the original version of the ordinance was linked to setback requirements. The revised ordinance creates a uniform setback required for outdoor cooking facilities.

“No matter where the property is, or the zone, they are all the same setback,” which will be eight feet from the property line, he said.

State law, however, requires a 20-foot setback from a waterway, a condition that is out of the borough’s jurisdiction. Councilwoman Joanne Filippone said, however, that this regulation would affect only a minimal number of properties in town.

Burns also said revisions added a condition that no roofs would be allowed on outdoor cooking facilities, and that they can be built as a straight line or an L-shape but cannot be enclosed due to fire safety concerns.

Lavallette homeowners who reside in communities with additional homeowners’ association covenants would still need to obey their HOA regulations despite outdoor cooking facilities being legalized by the municipal government.

The council is expected to hold a public hearing and second vote on the ordinance at its April 1 meeting, which begins at 7 p.m. at borough hall.

Click to comment