Borough of Zelienople, PA
Butler County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Zelienople 10-10-1994 by Ord. No. 700 (Ch. 4, Part 1, of the 1995 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Construction codes — See Ch. 115.
Property nuisances — See Ch. 160, Art. II.

§ 96-1 Definitions.

A. 
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated, unless a different meaning clearly appears from the context:
BUILDING
An independent structure having a roof supported by columns or walls resting on its own foundation and includes dwelling, garage, barn, stable, shed, greenhouse, mobile home, plant, factory, warehouse, school or similar structure.
DANGEROUS BUILDINGS
All buildings or structures which have any or all of the following defects shall be deemed dangerous buildings:
(1) 
Those whose interior walls or other vertical structural members list, lean or buckle to such an extent that a plumb line passing through the center of gravity falls outside of the middle third of its base.
(2) 
Those which, exclusive of the foundation, show damage or deterioration to 33% of the supporting member or members or damage or deterioration to 50% of the nonsupporting enclosing or outside walls or covering.
(3) 
Those which have improperly distributed loads upon the floors or roofs or in which the same are overloaded or which have insufficient strength to be reasonably safe for the purpose used.
(4) 
Those which have been damaged by fire, wind or other causes so as to be dangerous to life, safety or the general health and welfare of the occupants or the public.
(5) 
Those which are so damaged, dilapidated, decayed, unsafe, unsanitary, vermin-infested or which so utterly fail to provide the amenities essential to decent living that they are unfit for human habitation, or are likely to cause sickness or disease, so as to work injury to the health, safety or general welfare of those living therein.
(6) 
Those which have parts thereof which are so attached that they may fall and injure property or members of the public.
(7) 
Those which lack illumination, ventilation or sanitation facilities or because of another condition are unsafe, unsanitary or dangerous to the health, safety or general welfare of the occupants or the public health.
(8) 
Those which, because of their location, are unsanitary or otherwise dangerous to the health or safety of the occupants or the public.
(9) 
Those existing in violation of any provision of the International Building Code, as amended, (Chapter 115, Article IV) and adopted by the Borough of Zelienople.
DWELLING
Any building which is wholly or partly used or intended to be used for living or sleeping by human occupants.
DWELLING UNIT
Any room or group of rooms located within a dwelling and forming a single habitable unit with facilities which are used or intended to be used for living or sleeping by human occupants.
EXTERMINATION
Control and elimination of insects, rodents or other pests by eliminating their harborage places, removing or making inaccessible materials that may serve as their food, poisoning, spraying, fumigation, trapping or by any other recognized and legal pest-elimination methods.
GARBAGE
Animal and vegetable wastes resulting from the handling, preparation, cooking and consumption of food.
INFESTATION
Presence, within or around a dwelling, of any insects, rodents or other pests.
OWNER
Person who, alone or jointly or severally with others:
(1) 
Shall have legal title to any dwelling or dwelling unit, with or without accompanying actual possession thereof; or
(2) 
Shall have charge, care or control of any dwelling or dwelling unit, as owner or agent of the owner, or as executor, executrix, administrator, administratrix or guardian of the estate of the owner. Any such person thus representing the actual owner shall be bound to comply with the provisions of this chapter and with rules and regulations adopted pursuant thereto to the same extent as if he were the owner.
PERSON
Any individual, firm, corporation, association or partnership or other legal entity.
PROPERTY
A piece, parcel, lot or tract of land.
RUBBISH
Combustible and noncombustible waste materials, except garbage, including residue from the burning of wood, coal, coke and other combustible material, paper, rags, cartons, boxes, wood, excelsior, rubber, leather, tree branches, yard trimmings, tin cans, metals, mineral matter, glass, crockery and dust.
STRUCTURE
Anything constructed or erected with a fixed or ascertainable location on the ground or in the water, whether or not affixed to the ground or anchored in the water, including buildings, walls, fences, platforms, docks, wharves, billboards, signs and walks.
B. 
Whenever the words "dwelling," "dwelling unit" and "premises" are used in this chapter, they shall be construed as though they were followed by the words "or any part thereof."

§ 96-2 Declared nuisances.

All dangerous buildings within the terms of § 96-1 of this chapter are hereby declared to be public nuisances and shall be repaired, vacated or demolished as herein provided.

§ 96-3 Time limits for repair or removal.

If a building or other structure is deemed to be a nuisance or dangerous structure, the Building Inspector or his designated representative shall forthwith cause written notice to be personally served upon the owner or his designated agent of such building or structure if the owner or his designated agent resides in the Borough. Such notice shall fully set forth all violations and shall require the owner of the building or structure to commence the repair or removal of such structure within 15 days of receipt of said notice and to complete such repair or removal within 60 days thereof, provided that, in any case where the notice prescribes the repair of any structure only, the owner thereof shall have the option to remove such structure instead of making the repairs thereto within the same time limit.

§ 96-4 Notice.

If the notice required in § 96-3 hereof cannot be personally served upon the owner of a nuisance or dangerous structure, or his designated agent, such notice shall be sent to the owner or his designated agent by registered mail at the last known address therefor.

§ 96-5 Hearings.

A. 
Any person affected by any notice which has been issued in connection with the enforcement of any provision of this chapter may request and shall be granted a hearing on the matter before the Zelienople Borough Council, provided that such person shall file with the Borough Manager a written petition requesting such hearing and setting forth a brief statement of the grounds therefor within 10 days after the day the notice was served. Upon receipt of such petition, the Borough Manager shall set a time and place for such hearing and shall give the petitioner written notice thereof. At such hearing, the petitioner shall be given an opportunity to be heard and to show why such notice should be modified or withdrawn. The hearing shall be commenced not later than 30 days after the day on which the petition was filed.
B. 
After such hearing, the Borough Council shall sustain, modify or withdraw the notice. If the Borough Council sustains or modifies such notice, it shall be deemed to be an order. Any notice served pursuant to this chapter shall automatically become an order if written petition for a hearing is not filed with the Borough Manager within 10 days after such notice is served.
C. 
Any aggrieved party may appeal the final order to the court of common pleas in accordance with the provisions of the Judicial Code.

§ 96-6 Removal of notice prohibited.

No person shall remove or deface the notice of dangerous building, except as provided in § 96-3.

§ 96-7 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 12-11-1995 by Ord. No. 715]
If the owner of any nuisance or dangerous structure to whom a notice as provided for in § 96-3 of this chapter has been sent fails to commence to repair or remove such structure or fails to file an appeal within 15 days of such notice, such owner shall be deemed to be in violation of the provisions of this chapter and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not less than $300 and no more than $1,000 plus costs and, in default of payment of said fine and costs, to a term of imprisonment not to exceed 30 days, provided that each day's continuance of the violation of the provisions of this chapter shall constitute a separate offense and the violator shall be fined not more than $300 per day each day that he is in violation of this chapter.

§ 96-8 Cost recovery for Borough's remedy of nuisance.

If the owner of any nuisance or dangerous structure to whom a notice to remove such structure has been sent fails to commence such removal or file an appeal to the decision of the Building Inspector within 15 days from the date of such notice, the Borough Council shall be empowered in accordance with § 1202 of the Borough Code[1] to cause such removal to be commenced and completed by the Borough or by a designated agency or agent of the Borough, and the costs and expenses shall be borne by the owner of such structure and shall be collected by summary proceedings or in the manner provided for in the collection of municipal claims or by an action in assumpsit or in equity without the filing of a municipal claim. All costs shall include, but not be limited to, all legal fees, engineering fees, administrative costs, demolition costs, a penalty of 10% of all costs, and interest at the rate of 6% per annum from the date of commencement of the work of removal of said structure.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 46202.