Township of Whitemarsh, PA
Montgomery County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Whitemarsh 7-13-1972 as part of Ord. No. 266.[1] Amendments noted where applicable.]
[1]
Editor's Note: The provisions of this ordinance not included herein are included in Ch. 111, Vehicles and Traffic.
No person shall make or cause to be made or file any report of alarm or request for the services of the Police Department of Whitemarsh Township, knowing such report, alarm or request to be false.
[Amended 3-18-1982 by Ord. No. 425; 12-8-1988 by Ord. No. 565]
Any person or persons, corporation, partnership or other entity whatsoever violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be sentenced to pay a fine not to exceed the maximum fine of $600, plus costs of prosecution, and, in default of payment of such costs and prosecution, imprisonment for a term not exceeding 30 days; provided, however, that if the District Justice determines that the defendant is without the financial means to pay the fines and costs immediately or in a single remittance, such defendant shall be permitted to pay the fines or costs in installments and over such periods of time as the District Justice deems to be just.
[Added 9-11-2008 by Ord. No. 859; amended 11-20-2008 by Ord. No. 870]
A. 
Definitions. For purposes of this section, the following words shall have the meanings ascribed to them herein:
NOISE
Any sound which is unwanted or which causes or tends to cause an adverse psychological effect on human beings.
NOISE DISTURBANCE
Any sound which annoys, disturbs or perturbs a reasonable person with normal sensitivities, or any sound which injures or endangers the comfort, repose, health, hearing, peace or safety of other persons.
PERSON
Any individual, association, partnership or corporation, including any officer, employee, department, agency or instrumentality of the United States, a state or any political subdivision of that state.
B. 
General prohibitions. It shall be unlawful for any person engaging in construction, loading or landscaping activities to make, continue to make or cause any excessive or unusually loud noise or to create a noise disturbance within the limits of the Township of Whitemarsh.
C. 
Specific prohibitions.
(1) 
The following acts are declared to be loud, disturbing or excessive noise and/or noise disturbance in violation of this section:
(a) 
Construction noise. Operating or causing to be operated any motorized or powered equipment used outdoors in commercial construction, repair, alteration or demolition work on buildings, structures, streets, alleys or appurtenances thereto in any land use category so as to cause a noise disturbance as follows: between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. the following day, except that construction noise shall be prohibited before 9:00 a.m. and after 5:00 p.m. on Saturdays and shall be prohibited during all hours on Sundays.
(b) 
Loading operations. Loading, unloading, opening or otherwise handling boxes, crates, containers, garbage cans or other similar objects in such a manner as to cause a noise disturbance, as follows: between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. the following day, except that construction noise shall be prohibited before 9:00 a.m. and after 5:00 p.m. on Saturdays and shall be prohibited during all hours on Sundays.
(c) 
Landscape contractor noise. Operating or causing to be operated any gas-powered equipment used in connection with a landscaping business, including the use of gas-powered leaf blowers, as follows: between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. the following day, except that construction noise shall be prohibited before 9:00 a.m. and after 5:00 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.
(2) 
Nothing herein shall prohibit any person from conducting activities associated with commercial construction, repair, alteration or demolition, or loading operations or landscaping activities when such activities do not involve the use of equipment causing a noise disturbance as defined herein.
D. 
Exemption for owner's construction. Any person who engages in construction activities in connection with property owned by such person shall be exempt from the prohibitions set forth in Subsections B and C of this section, provided such construction activities are not conducted earlier than 7:00 a.m. or later than 9:00 p.m. on weekdays, Monday through Friday, not earlier than 8:00 a.m. or later than 9:00 p.m. on Saturdays and not earlier than 8:00 a.m. nor later than 6:00 p.m. on Sundays.
E. 
Enforcement.
(1) 
It shall be the duty of the Police Department and the Code Enforcement Officer of the Township of Whitemarsh to enforce the provisions of this section.
(2) 
A violation of this section shall be cause for summons and complaint to be issued forthwith; provided, however, that in lieu of a summons and complaint, enforcement personnel may issue a notice, in writing, which may be served personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the last known address of the person or persons in charge of or in control of the construction or loading activities. The notice shall state the nature of the violation and a specific time period for the correction and abatement of the violation. Failure to comply with the notice so issued shall constitute a violation of this section. For purposes of the foregoing notice, the address of the person or persons in charge of or in control of the construction or loading activities specified in any permit issued for such activities shall be presumed to be the correct mailing address for such person or persons.
(3) 
Failure of any person to comply with the provisions of this section shall constitute an offense punishable under Chapter 51, as amended, of the Code of the Township of Whitemarsh.
(4) 
The operation or maintenance of any noise source in violation of any provision of this section shall be deemed and is declared to be a public nuisance and may be subject to abatement summarily by a restraining order or injunction issued by a court of competent jurisdiction or in any other manner available for the abatement of public nuisances.
(5) 
Any remedy available pursuant to this section shall be considered separate and not exclusive of any other remedy available hereunder.
(6) 
Nothing in this section shall be construed to impair any cause of action or legal remedy therefor of any person for injury or damage arising from any violation of this section.
F. 
Waiver. The Board of Supervisors, or its designee, may waive the prohibitions set forth in this section when compliance with any provision is shown to the satisfaction of the Board of Supervisors to be unreasonable or to cause undue hardship due to peculiar conditions pertaining to the activity in question, provided that any such waiver shall not be contrary to the public interest or modification of the provisions of this section can be demonstrated to provide sufficient protection from a public nuisance. Any waiver pursuant to this section shall be permitted only upon written request submitted by the person subject to the prohibitions contained herein. The Board of Supervisors or its designee shall grant or deny such written request for waiver within 30 days of receipt of such request and shall give written notice to the person submitting the request.
[Added 4-10-2014 by Ord. No. 940]
A. 
Definitions. For the purpose of this section the following terms shall be defined as follows.
DUMPSTER
A trademarked brand of a large metal bin for disposal of refuse, to be temporarily located on a property, designed to be hoisted onto a specially equipped truck for emptying or hauling away of the refuse contained therein, or any similar device such as a "Bagster."
PORTABLE STORAGE UNIT (PSU)
Any portable structure, not self propelled, designed to store personal belongings outside of a principle structure on a property, whether constructed of inflexible or flexible material. By way of illustration only, such structures shall include, but shall not be limited to, those structures known and labeled as "PODS®" or "PACK-RAT."
UNIT
Either a portable storage unit or a dumpster, as those terms are defined above.
B. 
Applicability. The provisions of this section pertaining to permitting, duration, time limitations, time extensions and number of units allowed on a property shall not apply to work performed in accordance with duly issued demolition and/or construction permits. Units used in conjunction with such permits shall be removed from the property when the work subject to the permit is completed.
C. 
Permit required; application; fee. Before placing a unit on a property, the property owner must submit an application and receive a permit from the Township Code Enforcement Department. There shall be a fee for obtaining a permit in accordance with Chapter A121.
D. 
Duration. Any unit placed in the public right-of-way at the applicant's address shall be so located for a maximum of 30 days, including the days of delivery and removal. A unit located at the applicant's address, if placed outside the public right-of-way, shall be so located for a maximum of 60 days, including the days of delivery and removal. At the expiration of either period, permittee may request an extension of the permit for not more than two additional thirty-day periods by submitting a written request for an extension, for cause, from the Township Code Enforcement Department. The cost of extending a permit is payable at the time of filing the application for an extension, in accordance with Chapter A121.
E. 
Exceptions. No extensions shall be granted in excess of 90 days, including the initial term of the permit, except upon written application of the property owner setting forth sufficient information to justify the extension, and stating the duration of the requested extension.
F. 
Location.
(1) 
The placement of a unit in the public right-of-way or the front yard of a residential property is prohibited, except as provided in Subsection F(2), below. Units must be placed, whenever possible, in the driveway of the property at the furthest accessible point from the street. The required off-street parking space(s) shall at all times be maintained if a unit is placed in a parking area. The applicant must obtain prior approval of the location of the unit by the Township Code Enforcement Department if the property does not have a driveway.
(2) 
In those situations where placement of a unit on a property as provided for in Subsection F(1) is not feasible, a property owner shall be permitted to place a unit in a public right-of-way, provided that such placement shall not obstruct any lane of travel, and provided further that the unit is marked with hazard warning placards as directed by the Township Code Enforcement Department. Additionally, placement of a unit in the public right-of-way must be approved by the Police Department, in addition to the Township Code Enforcement Department.
G. 
Number and size of units. No more than one portable storage unit and one dumpster may be placed on a residential property at one time. If placed in the public right-of-way the unit may not exceed 30 cubic yards; otherwise the unit may not exceed eight feet six inches in height, 10 feet in width, or 22 feet in length. If more units than permitted are needed at the property the applicant must provide in writing sufficient information to justify the need for the additional number of units.
H. 
Condition of units. The applicant, as well as the person or entity supplying the unit, shall be responsible for ensuring that the unit is maintained in reasonably good condition, free from evidence of damage caused by other than normal wear and tear. In no event shall a use of a unit marked with graffiti or containing holes, tears, or punctures be permitted.
I. 
Restoration. Upon the removal of the unit, it is the applicant's responsibility to restore any damage to the street, right-of-way or property caused by the unit to pre-unit conditions.
J. 
Storage of certain materials in portable storage units prohibited. No portable storage unit shall be used to store solid waste, construction debris, demolition debris, recyclable material, business inventory, commercial goods, or any illegal or hazardous material. Upon reasonable notice to the applicant, the township may inspect the contents of any portable storage unit, at any reasonable time, to ensure that it is not being used to store prohibited materials.
K. 
Removal of units. Any unit that is not removed at the end of the time for which it may lawfully remain in place, or immediately upon the direction of the Township Code Enforcement Department for removal of such unit for safety reasons, may be removed by the Township immediately, without notice, and the cost of such removal, together with the cost of the administration of its removal, may be assessed against the property of which the unit was located and may be filed as a lien against such property.
L. 
Violations; penalty. Any person or entity violating the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a summary offense, and, upon conviction before the local District Justice, shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not less than $300 nor more than $1,000, plus court costs.
M. 
Repealer. All ordinances of the Township of Whitemarsh or parts thereof which are inconsistent with this section shall be and the same are hereby repealed, but only to the extent of such inconsistency.
N. 
Severability. If any section, subsection, paragraph, clause, phrase or provision of this section shall be adjudged invalid or held to be unconstitutional or unenforceable, the same shall not affect the validity of this section as a whole or any part or provision hereof other than the part so adjudged or held to be invalid, unconstitutional or unenforceable, and the remaining provisions of this section shall continue in full force and effect.
O. 
Effective date. This section shall become effective on the earliest date permissible in accordance with the provisions of the Township Charter.