Township of North Versailles, PA
Allegheny County
By using eCode360 you agree to be legally bound by the Terms of Use. If you do not agree to the Terms of Use, please do not use eCode360.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the Township of North Versailles as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES

Peace and good order — See Ch. 210.

Zoning — See Ch. 300.

ARTICLE I
Obscene Acts and Materials (§ 75-1 — § 75-7) 

ARTICLE II
Adult Dancing Establishments (§ 75-8 — § 75-17) 

[Adopted 12-17-1979 by Ord. No. 769 (Ch. 13, Part 4, of the 1987 Code of Ordinances)]

§ 75-1
Definitions. 

§ 75-2
Obscene films, live theater productions and publications. 

§ 75-3
Massage parlors and model studios. 

§ 75-4
Presumption of knowledge of nuisance. 

§ 75-5
Actions taken; posting of bond. 

§ 75-6
Violations and penalties. 

§ 75-7
Forfeiture; cost of abatement; manner of collection. 

§ 75-1 Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:

KNOWLEDGE or KNOWLEDGE OF SUCH NUISANCE
Having knowledge of the contents and character of the patently offensive sexual conduct or other content which appears in a motion-picture film, publication, or live theater production, or knowledge of the acts of obscenity, assignation, or prostitution which occur in any place.
LIVE THEATER PRODUCTION
Any dramatic musical or comedic production performed in the presence of a live audience.
MASSAGE
Any method of treating the superficial soft parts of the human body, for remedial, hygienic or other purposes, consisting of rubbing, stroking, kneading, or any similar treatment, accomplished by hand or by the use of any instrument.
MASSAGE PARLOR
Any building or structure or portion thereof, located within the Township, which is open to members of the general public, with or without the payment of a fee, at which massage services are offered.
MATTER
A motion-picture film, live theater production, publication, or all three.
A. 

Shall mean:

(1) 

Any place there is conducted the business of furnishing figure models who pose in the nude for the purpose of being observed or viewed by any person, or for the purpose of being sketched, painted, drawn, sculptured, photographed, or otherwise similarly depicted for persons who pay a fee, or other consideration or compensation, or a gratuity, for the right or opportunity to so depict the figure model, or for admission to, or for permission to remain upon, or as a condition for remaining upon the place; or

(2) 

Any place where there is conducted the business of furnishing or providing or procuring, for a fee or other consideration, compensation or gratuity, figure models who pose in the nude to be observed or viewed by any person or to be sketched, painted, drawn, sculptured, photographed or otherwise similarly depicted.

B. 

Exception. The words "model studio" do not include:

(1) 

Any studio which is operated by any state college or junior college, public or private school, or any governmental agency wherein the person, firm, association, partnership, or corporation so operating has met the requirements established by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for the issuance or conferring of, and is in fact authorized thereunder to issue and confer, a diploma, degree or honorary diploma; or

(2) 

Any place where there is conducted the business of furnishing, providing or procuring figure models solely for any studio described in Subsection B(1) of this subsection, defined immediately hereinabove.

MOTION-PICTURE FILM
Any:
A. 

Film or plate negative;

B. 

Film or plate positive;

C. 

Film designed to be projected on a screen for exhibition;

D. 

Films, glass slides or transparencies, either in negative or positive form, designed for exhibition by a project on a screen; or

E. 

Videotape or any other medium used to electronically reproduce images on a screen.

A. 

Completely without clothing; or

B. 

With the human male or female genitals, public area or buttocks with less than a full opaque covering, or the showing of the female breast with less than a fully opaque covering of any portion thereof below the top of the nipple, or the covered male genitals in a discernibly turgid state.

OBSCENE MATTER
Any matter:
A. 

Which the average adult person, applying contemporary community standards, would find, when considered as a whole, appeals to prurient interests; and

B. 

Which depicts or describes patently offensive representations or descriptions of:

(1) 

Ultimate sexual acts, normal or perverted, actual or simulated; or

(2) 

Masturbation, excretory functions, or exhibition of the genitals or genital area; and

C. 

Which the matter, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, educational, or scientific value.

PERSON
Any individual, partnership, firm, association, corporation or other legal entity.
PLACE
Any building, structure or space, or any separate part or portion thereof, whether permanent or not, or unimproved ground.
PUBLICATION
Any book, magazine, article, pamphlet, writing, printing, illustration, picture, sound recording, or a motion-picture film which is displayed in an area open to the public, offered for sale or exhibited in a coin-operated machine.
SALE
A passing of title or right of possession from a seller to a buyer for valuable consideration, and shall include, but is not limited to, any lease or rental arrangement or other transaction wherein or whereby any valuable consideration is received for the use of, or transfer of possession of, obscene matter.
TOWNSHIP
The Township of North Versailles.

§ 75-2 Obscene films, live theater productions and publications.

A. 

Any and every place in the Township where obscene motion-picture films or live theater productions are publicly exhibited or possessed for the purpose of such exhibition; and any and every place in the Township where obscene publications are publicly disseminated or sold, or possessed for the purpose of such dissemination, is hereby declared to be a public nuisance.

B. 

Any and every obscene motion-picture film or live theater production which is publicly exhibited in the Township, and any and every obscene publication which is publicly displayed, disseminated or sold, or possessed for such purpose in the Township, is hereby declared to be a public nuisance, per se.

C. 

From and after service on the place, or its manager, or acting manager, or person then in charge of such place, of a true and correct copy of this article and a true and correct copy of the summons and complaint to abate a nuisance, all moneys paid thereafter as admission price to such exhibitions or productions, or purchase price of such publications, are also declared to be a public nuisance, as personal property used in conducting and maintaining a declared public nuisance.

§ 75-3 Massage parlors and model studios.

A. 

Every massage parlor or model studio, which, as a regular course of business, is used for the purposes of obscenity, assignation, or prostitution, and every such massage parlor or model studio in or upon which acts of obscenity, assignation, or prostitution, are held or occur, is declared to be a public nuisance which shall be enjoined, abated, and prevented.

B. 

From and after service on the place, or its manager, or acting manager, or person then in charge of such place, of a true and correct copy of this article and a true and correct copy of the summons and complaint to abate a nuisance, all moneys or other valuable consideration paid for services rendered to customers are also declared to be a public nuisance, as personal property used in conducting and maintaining a declared public nuisance.

§ 75-4 Presumption of knowledge of nuisance.

A. 

Upon and after receiving notice through service of a true and correct copy of this article and a true and correct copy of the summons and complaint to abate a nuisance or notice by the Township Secretary of the character of the obscene film, production, publication, or place, any and every person who shall own, legally or equitably, lease, maintain, manage, conduct or operate a place in the Township which is declared to be a public nuisance, as set forth and stated in § 75-2 or 75-3 of this article, is deemed to be a person who has knowledge of such nuisance for the purpose of this article, and may, thereafter, be responsible for its maintenance, and liable therefor.

B. 

The places and matters declared to be public nuisances under § 75-2 or 75-3 shall be abated as provided for herein.

§ 75-5 Actions taken; posting of bond.

A. 

The Township Secretary of the Township Board of Commissioners for the Township of North Versailles, or any citizen of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania residing within the Township, may maintain an action of an equitable nature in the name of the Township, in the latter case upon the relation of such citizen, to abate a nuisance.

B. 

No bond shall be required of the Township. If such action is instituted by a private citizen, a bond may be required in the amount of not less than $500, to secure to the defendants the proximate damages which may be sustained, including attorney's fees in the discretion of the Court, if it is found that there were no reasonable grounds for said action.

C. 

Immunity from liability is hereby granted all officials of the Township of North Versailles who may initiate or vote to institute and prosecute under this article.

§ 75-6 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 11-16-1987 by Ord. No. 857; 8-15-1988 by Ord. No. 867]
A. 

Civil.

(1) 

Money damages may be recovered:

(a) 

For compensation for loss or harm suffered in person or property by the Township or private citizen flowing from such nuisance; and

(b) 

As exemplary or punitive damages for the purpose of providing an example or to punish the offender, where it is shown that the offender has been guilty of malice. "Malice" means an intent to do a wrongful act, that is, an intent to maintain, permit, or allow a nuisance to exist.

(2) 

Preliminary and permanent injunctions may be issued to prevent the further maintenance of a nuisance and to prevent the further sale or exhibition of obscene motion-picture films, live theater productions and publications. The procedures for obtaining such injunctions shall be governed by the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure, preserving the right of trial by jury upon the application for permanent injunction. Upon the trial on the merits of the permanent injunction, if the court and/or jury finds a place to be a nuisance, the court may issue an order closing the place to all uses and purposes for the period of one year. If the offenders of persons owning, in control or in charge of such place certify that the nuisance has been abated and that the films, productions, or publications found to be obscene shall not be exhibited, sold or otherwise disseminated and, at the discretion of the court, post a bond in an amount not to exceed the value of the personal property possessed or contained at such place for the maintenance of the nuisance, the court may release such person or persons from the closure order. The release shall remain in effect for one year or until the nuisance is found to exist at the place before the expiration of one year. The bond shall be deposited with the court prior to the release of any closure order and shall be returned to the person posting said bond, without interest, at the expiration of one year, provided that the nuisance is not maintained or reestablished within that year. Prior notice of at least 30 days must be given the Township of the filing of a petition to return any bonds.

B. 

Penalties. Any person, firm or corporation who shall violate any provision of this article shall, upon conviction thereof, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $600, and/or to imprisonment for a term not to exceed 30 days. Every day that a violation of this article continues shall constitute a separate offense.

C. 

The remedies provided herein shall be cumulative. There may be criminal and civil prosecution for the same violations of this article, and neither shall be a bar to the other.

§ 75-7 Forfeiture; cost of abatement; manner of collection.

A. 

If the existence of the nuisance is established at trial, a judgment shall be entered which shall permanently enjoin the defendants, and any other person with notice or knowledge of the action and judgment, from maintaining the nuisance at said place and the defendants from maintaining such nuisance elsewhere, and the entire expenses of such abatement action shall be recovered by the plaintiff as costs.

B. 

The cost of abatement shall include the following: investigative costs; court costs; reasonable attorney's fees arising out of the preparation for, and trial of the case, and appeals therefrom, and other costs allowed on appeal; printing costs of trial and appellate briefs, and all other papers filed in such proceeding. Such cost of abatement may be made a special assessment against the place or the parcel of land upon which such place is located. Upon its determination by the Court, an in rem lien may be entered against such property and a personal obligation against any person, and shall be collected at the same time and in the same manner as ordinary municipal taxes are collected, and shall be subject to the same penalties and the same procedure and sale in the case of delinquency as provided for ordinary municipal taxes. All laws applicable to the levy, collection and enforcement of municipal taxes shall be applicable to such special assessment.

C. 

Upon judgment for the plaintiff in legal proceedings brought pursuant to this article, an accounting shall be made by such defendant or defendants of all moneys or valuable consideration received by them which have been declared to be a public nuisance under § 75-2 or 75-3 of this article. Such moneys or their equivalent and any valuable consideration received shall be forfeited to the general fund of the Township or to the Township as property of the Township if any valuable consideration received be not money.

[Adopted 11-18-1996 by Ord. No. 949 (Ch. 13, Part 8, of the 1987 Code of Ordinances)]

§ 75-8
Definitions. 

§ 75-9
Prohibited and restricted acts; construal of provisions. 

§ 75-10
License and fee. 

§ 75-11
Qualifications for obtaining license. 

§ 75-12
Hours of operation. 

§ 75-13
Permitted areas of operation. 

§ 75-14
Suspension or revocation of license. 

§ 75-15
Hearing on revocation or suspension of license. 

§ 75-16
Operation standards. 

§ 75-17
Violations and penalties. 

§ 75-8 Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:

ADULT DANCING ESTABLISHMENTS
Any business wherein employees, agents or independent contractors perform dance routines or adult-oriented dancing entertainment as characterized by an emphasis on the exposure of specific anatomical areas. This definition shall include any establishment, whether or not it is licensed by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board to serve alcoholic beverages.

§ 75-9 Prohibited and restricted acts; construal of provisions.

A. 

An adult establishment shall observe the following requirements:

(1) 

Any dancing which exposes to view by patrons or spectators on the premises at any time the bare female breast below a horizontal line across the top of the areola at its highest point, which shall include the entire lower portion of the human female breast, but shall not include any portion of the cleavage of the human female breast exhibited by a dress, blouse, shirt, leotard, bathing suit or other wearing apparel provided the areola is not exposed in whole or in part, is prohibited.

(2) 

Any dancing which exposes to view by patrons or spectators on the premises at any time the human genitals, pubic region or cleavage of the human buttocks is prohibited.

(3) 

Any dancing known as straddle dancing, lap dancing, face dancing or any similar type of dancing known by any other name in which an employee, agent or independent contractor, whether fully clothed or not, uses any part of his or her body, whether directly or through a medium, to massage, rub, stroke, knead, caress or fondle the genitals or pubic area of a patron while on the premises, or the placing of the genitals or pubic area of an employee, agent or independent contractor in contact with, or in approximate contact with, the face or any other area of the body of a patron while on the premises is prohibited.

(4) 

Any person engaged in displaying or exposing anatomical areas while dancing is prohibited from simulating sexual activity with any patron, spectator, employee, independent contractor or other person on the premises of an adult dancing establishment.

(5) 

No person in an adult dancing establishment shall engage in the display or exhibition of specific adult-oriented anatomical areas while performing or dancing, except while said person is positioned in or occupying an entertainment area consisting of a platform or other structure raised not less than 18 inches nor more than 36 inches above the immediately surrounding main floor area and encompassing an area of at least 100 square feet and while the person so displaying or exhibiting is positioned not less than three feet from any patron or spectator.

(6) 

No spectator or patron shall be present in the entertainment area described above during the course of any performance or dancing involving the display or exhibition of specific adult-oriented areas.

(7) 

No person maintaining, managing, owning or operating an adult dancing establishment shall allow or permit the construction, maintenance or use of areas partitioned or screened from public view that are designed to be occupied or are commonly occupied, alone or together, by any person or persons on the premises of such establishments for performances, private or otherwise, involving the display of or exhibition of specific adult-oriented anatomical areas while performing or dancing, or to permit any employee or patron to violate any provision of this article.

B. 

Nothing in this article pertaining to adult dancing establishments shall be construed to permit or authorize any act or activity that is prohibited by state law, and these sections are meant to be in addition to any acts or activities that are so prohibited.

§ 75-10 License and fee.

A. 

Every person who engages in operating an adult dancing establishment, as defined herein, shall obtain a license to operate such establishment and pay to the Township of North Versailles a license fee in the annual amount of $500. Such license must be renewed annually by application of the person to whom the license was originally granted. Said license fee shall be used by the Township of North Versailles to offset its expenses in exercising its police and regulatory powers involving adult dancing establishments.

B. 

Each application for an adult dancing establishment license shall be accompanied by a photograph or drawing of the signs to be displayed on the exterior of the establishment with an indication as to the dimensions of the same.

§ 75-11 Qualifications for obtaining license.

Every person or entity engaged in or having any interest in the operation of an adult dancing establishment before being issued a license shall be required to meet the following specifications:

A. 

Applicant must be free of convictions for the following: any felony; any conviction relating to prostitution; any conviction involving the presentation, exhibition and/or performance of an obscene production; and any conviction involving the maintenance of a nuisance with the same or similar business within the last two years. Applicant shall not have had any adult entertainment establishment license revoked for cause within the last two years.

B. 

Applicant must submit to fingerprinting by the Township Police Department or its designated representative.

C. 

Applicant and any person or entity having any connection to the establishment cannot owe any fees or taxes of any kind or nature to the Township of North Versailles.

D. 

Applicant's premises must meet all established health, zoning, fire, building, plumbing and BOCA codes and cannot provide direct interior access to residential living quarters. Applicant shall file a floor plan which clearly exhibits all entrances, exits, stairways and all rooms in the building and their intended uses.

E. 

In the event applicant does not own the premises to be licensed, a copy of the lease agreement between the applicant and the property owner shall be submitted along with the application to the Township.

§ 75-12 Hours of operation.

Adult dancing establishments shall be permitted to operate between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m. the following morning on Monday through Saturday. Such establishments are prohibited from operating on Sundays with the exception of 12:01 a.m. to 2:00 a.m.

§ 75-13 Permitted areas of operation.

Adult dancing establishments may be located within the Township of North Versailles in the specially created zone permitting such use as and known as Zone B-1 within the North Versailles Zoning Ordinance.

Editor's Note: The reference to 'Zone B-1' refers to the Zoning Ordinance in effect at the time Article II of Chapter 75 was adopted; see now Chapter 300, Zoning, for current provisions.
Such establishments are prohibited from being located or operated in any other zone within the Township of North Versailles.

§ 75-14 Suspension or revocation of license.

License suspension or revocation can occur upon:

A. 

Conviction by the licensee, his employees, agents or independent contractors for any offense occurring on the licensed premises involving or related to:

(1) 

The production, presentation, exhibition or performance of any entertainment that is deemed obscene.

(2) 

Disorderly conduct.

(3) 

Maintenance of a nuisance in connection with the same or similar business.

(4) 

Prostitution, solicitation for the purpose of prostitution or loitering for the purpose of prostitution.

(5) 

The sale, transfer, possession or use of any controlled substance.

(6) 

The display or exhibition by an employee, agent or independent contractor in the establishment of less than completely and opaquely covered human genitals or pubic region, the cleavage of the human buttocks or any portion of the human female breast below a horizontal line across the top of areola at its highest point, any part of the entire lower portion of the human female breast, excluding cleavage.

(7) 

Any violation of any other section of this Code.

(8) 

Any violation of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Code.

Editor's Note: See 47 Pa.C.S.A. § 1-101 et seq.

B. 

Noncompliance with any health, zoning, fire, building and/or plumbing codes adopted by the Township of North Versailles.

C. 

The filing of a false application.

D. 

A conviction for permitting the on-premises sale or consumption of alcoholic beverages in any adult dancing establishment not licensed to sell alcoholic beverages.

E. 

Any illegal on-premises conduct by patrons that results in a criminal conviction of a patron.

F. 

A violation by any licensee or his agents, servants or employees for any action occurring in, on or at the premises covered by the license, in violation of any provision of this article or any other ordinance of the Township of North Versailles, or of any criminal or penal statute of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania against gambling, disorderly conduct or any other criminal or penal offense; a judgment of conviction in any court of competent jurisdiction shall be conclusive evidence of such violation.

G. 

The occurrence in, on or at the premises covered by the license of any condition which is a nuisance or obnoxious to the morals and general welfare of the public.

§ 75-15 Hearing on revocation or suspension of license.

When North Versailles officials have reasonable cause to believe that a license should be revoked or suspended for any of the reason assigned herein, such official shall enumerate the same and notify the licensee in writing of the hearing date and time and alleged charges. The notice to the licensee shall be mailed to the address shown on the license. At the hearing, the evidence shall be transcribed. Following the hearing, North Versailles Commissioners shall make a decision which will be reduced to writing and forwarded to the licensee. Upon a decision by the Commissioners to revoke or suspend a license issued under this article, all business activity at that location shall cease immediately for the period of suspension or revocation.

§ 75-16 Operation standards.

A. 

Dressing rooms shall be provided for all dancers and performers.

B. 

A barrier including, but not limited to, a handrail, half-wall or other similar device must be constructed that separates the performing area from the patrons.

C. 

Employees shall not be permitted to loiter in an open doorway or entrance of the licensed premises.

D. 

All doors to the licensed premises must be closed, except for the limited time necessary to allow for ingress and egress during the hours of operation.

E. 

No one under the age of 21 shall be permitted as a patron or employee during the hours the premises are open for business.

F. 

No person who has been convicted of any prostitution-related offense within the last two years shall be employed.

G. 

Adult dancing entertainment activities or photographs of the same shall not be displayed within any licensed premises in such a manner as to be open to the general public view from outside the licensed premises.

§ 75-17 Violations and penalties.

Any person or entity convicted of a violation of this article shall, upon conviction thereof before a competent authority, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $1,000 for each offense plus costs and, in default of payment of such fine and costs, be imprisoned for a period not exceeding 30 days.