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Township of East Manchester, PA
York County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
For the administration of this chapter a Zoning Officer and any duly authorized assistant(s) (who shall be referred to collectively hereafter as "the Zoning Officer"), who may not hold any elective office in the Township, shall be appointed by the Board of Supervisors. The Zoning Officer shall administer this chapter in accordance with its literal terms. The Zoning Officer shall issue all permits required by this chapter but he/she shall not have the power to permit any construction or any use or change of use which does not conform to this chapter and other applicable Township codes and ordinances.
A. 
It shall be the duty of the Zoning Officer to enforce the provisions of this chapter and all rules, conditions and requirements adopted or specified pursuant thereto. The Zoning Officer shall not issue a permit or certificate authorized or required under this chapter for work or a use which does not conform to the terms and conditions of this chapter.
B. 
The Zoning Officer shall have the right to enter any building or enter upon any land at any reasonable hour as necessary in the execution of their duties, provided that:
(1) 
The Zoning Officer shall have all powers conferred by this chapter or by law, including but not limited to the right to inspect and enter buildings, premises, or land under terms and conditions as provided and permitted by law. In any event, the Zoning Officer shall have the right to enter upon any land at any reasonable hour as necessary in the execution of his or her duties, and shall have the right to enter any building upon reasonable notice to both the owner and occupier of said building or premises.
(2) 
Notwithstanding the provisions or Subsection B(1) above, the Zoning Officer shall have the right to examine or cause to be examined, as a condition for the issuance of any permit or certificate of occupancy, all buildings, structures, signs, or land or portions thereof, for which an application has been filed for the issuance of a land use permit or certificate of occupancy before issuing any permit. Thereafter, the Zoning Officer may make such inspections prior to completion of the work for which the permit has been issued. Upon completion of the building, structure, sign, or change, and/or prior to the issuance of a certificate of occupancy, a final inspection shall be made, and all violations of approved plans or permit shall be noted, in writing, and shall be corrected prior to the issuance of a certificate of occupancy.
[Amended 11-10-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-3]
(3) 
Inspections shall be commenced in the presence of the owner or his representative or tenant.
C. 
The Zoning Officer shall maintain such files and records, open to the public, as shall be necessary for the performance of his or her duties, or as shall be required from time to time by the Board of Supervisors.
A. 
No building or structure in any district shall be erected, installed, have an addition added to, reconstructed or restored, demolished or structurally altered without a land use permit duly issued upon application to the Township. However, no such land use permit shall be required for building restoration costing less than $3,000. No land use permit shall be issued unless the proposed construction or use is in full conformity with all the provisions of this chapter. Any land use permit issued in violation of the provisions of this chapter shall be null and void and of no effect, without the necessity for any proceedings or revocations of nullification thereof; and any work undertaken or use established pursuant to any such permit shall be unlawful.
[Amended 11-10-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-3]
B. 
Every application for a land use permit shall contain the following information and be accompanied by the required fee.
(1) 
The actual shape, dimensions, radii, angles and area of the lot on which the building is proposed to be erected, or of the lot in which it is situated if an existing building;
(2) 
The block and lot numbers as they appear on the latest tax records;
(3) 
The exact size and location on the lot of the proposed building or buildings or alteration of an existing building and of other existing buildings on the same lot;
(4) 
The dimensions of all yards in relation to the subject building and the distances between such building and any other existing buildings on the same lot;
(5) 
The existing and intended use of all buildings, existing or proposed, the use of land, and the number of dwelling units the building is designed to accommodate; and
(6) 
Such topographic or other information with regard to the building, the lot or neighboring lots as may be necessary to determine that the proposed construction will conform to the provisions of this chapter.
C. 
No land use permit shall be issued for the construction or alteration of any building upon a lot without access to a street or highway.
D. 
No land use permit shall be issued for any building where the land development plan of such building is subject to approval by the Supervisors, except in the conformity with the plans approved by the Supervisors.
E. 
No land use permit shall be issued for a building to be used for any use by special exception in any district where such use is allowed only by approval of the Zoning Hearing Board unless and until such approval has been duly granted by the Zoning Hearing Board.
F. 
No land use permit shall be issued for the demolition of a structure or building where the demolition or destruction of such building or structure would be a violation or inconsistent with a pending or approved land development plan or stormwater management plan.
[Added 11-10-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-3]
G. 
No land use permit shall be issued for the demolition of a structure or building older than 75 years where such structure or building is deemed by the Board of Supervisors to have natural or historical significance after consultation with the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission and the York County Heritage Trust.
[Added 11-10-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-3]
H. 
The land use permit application and all supporting documentation shall be made in duplicate. On the issuance of a land use permit, the Zoning Officer shall return one copy of all filed documents to the applicant.
I. 
The Zoning Officer shall, within 15 business days after the filing of a complete and properly prepared application for a proposed single-family dwelling unit, duplex dwelling unit or accessory use or structure, or within 30 business days after the filing of a complete and properly prepared application for any other proposed use, building, structure or facility, either issue or deny a land use permit. If a land use permit is denied, the Zoning Officer shall state, in writing, to the applicant the reasons for such denial.
J. 
Every land use permit shall expire if the work authorized has not commenced within six months after the date of issuance, or has not been completed within 12 months from such date for construction costing less than $1,000,000 and has not been completed within 36 months from such date for construction costing in excess of such amount. If no zoning amendments or other codes or regulations affecting subject property have been enacted in the interim, the Zoning Officer may authorize, in writing, the extension of either above periods of an additional six months, following which no further work is to be undertaken without a new land use permit.
A. 
A land use permit shall be required for any proposed construction or development to be located entirely or partially within any identified floodplain area. Land use permits shall be issued as provided for in Chapter 108, Floodplain Management, of the Code of the Township of East Manchester, as amended from time to time.
[Amended 11-10-2009 by Ord. No. 2009-3]
B. 
In addition to the information required in § 255-75, applicants shall provide the following information plus any other pertinent information as may be required by the Zoning Officer:
(1) 
The proposed lowest floor elevation of any proposed building based upon National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1929;
(2) 
The elevation of the one-hundred-year flood;
(3) 
If available, information concerning flood depths, pressures, velocities, impact and uplift forces and other factors associated with a one-hundred-year flood; and
(4) 
Detailed information concerning any proposed floodproofing measures.
(5) 
A document, certified by a registered professional engineer or architect, which states that the proposed construction or development has been adequately designed to withstand the pressures, velocities, impact and uplift forces associated with the one-hundred-year flood. Such statement shall include a description of the type and extent of floodproofing measures which have been incorporated into the design of the structure and/or the development.
C. 
Prior to the issuance of any land use permit, the Zoning Officer shall review the application for the permit to determine if all other necessary government permits required by state and federal laws have been obtained, such as those required by the Pennsylvania Sewage Facilities Act (Act 1966-537, as amended);[1] the Pennsylvania Dam Safety and Encroachments Act (Act 1978-325, as amended);[2] the Pennsylvania Clean Streams Act (Act 1937-394, as amended);[3] and the U.S. Clean Water Act, Section 404, 33 U.S.C. § 1344. No permit shall be issued until this determination has been made.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 35 P.S. § 750.1 et seq.
[2]
Editor's Note: See 32 P.S. § 693.1 et seq.
[3]
Editor's Note: See 32 P.S. § 691.1 et seq.
D. 
No encroachment, alteration, or improvement of any kind shall be made to any watercourse until all adjacent municipalities which may be affected by such action have been notified by the Township and until all required permits or approvals have been first obtained from the Department of Environmental Protection, Bureau of Dams, Waterways and Wetlands. In addition, the Federal Insurance Administrator and Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, Bureau of Community Planning, or successor agency, shall be notified by the Township prior to any alteration or relocation of any watercourse.
A. 
The following shall be unlawful until a certificate of occupancy shall have been applied for and issued by the Zoning Officer:
(1) 
Occupancy and use of a building erected, installed, reconstructed, restored, structurally altered, moved, or any change in use of existing building.
(2) 
Certificates of occupancy shall be required only for buildings or structures proposed for human use or habitation.
(3) 
Certificates of use shall be required for all other principal buildings.
B. 
Application for a certificate of occupancy or use shall be submitted on a form furnished by the Township and shall provide all information required therein.
C. 
If the proposed use is in conformity with the provisions of this chapter, all other applicable codes and ordinances, and any requirements of any permits or approvals, a certificate of occupancy shall be issued by the Zoning Officer within 15 days after receipt of a properly completed application. If a certificate of occupancy is denied, the Zoning Officer shall state the reasons, in writing, to the applicant.
D. 
A certificate of occupancy or use shall be deemed to authorize and is required for both initial occupancy and the continuance of occupancy and use of the building or land to which it applies.
E. 
Upon written request by the owner, and upon fee payment, the Zoning Officer shall, after inspection, issue a certificate of occupancy or use for any building or use thereof or of land existing at the time of adoption of this chapter, certifying such use and whether or not the same and the building conforms to the provisions of this chapter.
F. 
A record of all certificates of occupancy shall be kept by the Zoning Officer, and copies shall be furnished on request to any agency of the Township or to any persons having a proprietary or tenancy interest in the building or land affected.
A. 
Fees. The Board of Supervisors shall set fees, payable in advance, for all applications, permits, or appeals provided for by this chapter to defray the cost of advertising, processing, inspecting, mailing notices, charges of a stenographer for taking the notes of testimony, and copying applications, permits and occupancy certificates. Land use permit fees shall not be required for any maintenance operations such as painting, roof repair, window replacement, installation of siding, replacement of defective structural members or similar maintenance measures.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: The fee schedule is available in the Township offices.
B. 
Zoning Hearing Board hearings.
(1) 
All costs related to any required public Zoning Hearing Board hearings are to be paid by the applicant. Fees for said hearings may include compensation for the Secretary and members of the Zoning Hearing Board, notice and advertising costs and necessary administrative overhead connected with the hearing. The costs, however, shall not include legal expenses of the Zoning Hearing Board, expenses for engineering, architectural or other technical consultants or expert witness costs.
(2) 
An applicant, by filing for a use by special exception, shall be obligated to pay all costs hereinabove provided. Payment of such costs shall be promptly submitted to the Township by the applicant upon the submission of bills therefor from time to time. Payment shall be by check or money order made payable to the Township of East Manchester.
(3) 
No land use permit or other requisite permit shall be issued by the Township Zoning Officer until all such fees and costs have been paid in full by the applicant.
C. 
Enforcement notice.
(1) 
If it appears to the Township that a violation of this chapter has occurred, the Township shall initiate enforcement proceedings by sending an enforcement notice as provided by this subsection.
(2) 
The enforcement notice shall be sent to the owner of record of the parcel on which the violation has occurred, to the occupant, tenant, or equitable owner, if known by the Township, to any person who has filed a written request to receive enforcement notices regarding that parcel, and to any other person requested, in writing, by the owner of record.
(3) 
An enforcement notice shall state at least the following:
(a) 
The name of the owner of record and any other person against whom the Township intends to take action.
(b) 
The location of the property and violation.
(c) 
The specific violation with a description of the requirements which have not been met, citing in each instance the applicable provisions of this chapter.
(d) 
The date before which the steps for compliance must be commenced and the date before which the steps must be completed. Compliance with sign regulations shall take place within 30 days of the required notice.
(e) 
That the recipient of the notice has the right to appeal to the Zoning Hearing Board within a prescribed period of time in accordance with procedures set forth in this chapter.
(f) 
That the failure to comply with the notice within the time specified, unless extended by appeal to the Zoning Hearing Board, constitutes a violation, with possible sanctions clearly described. In the case of a sign violation, possible sanctions shall be as follows: The Township may remove or cause removal of such sign and shall assess all costs and expenses incurred in said removal against the land or building on which the sign is located.
D. 
Penalties for violations. Any person, partnership or corporation who or which has violated or permitted the violation of provisions of this chapter shall, upon being found liable therefor in a civil enforcement proceeding before a Magisterial District Judge commenced by the Township, pay a judgment of not more than $500 plus all court costs, including reasonable attorneys' fees incurred by the Township as a result thereof. No judgment shall commence or be imposed, levied or payable until the date of the determination of a violation by the Magisterial District Judge. If the defendant neither pays nor timely appeals the judgment, the Township may enforce the judgment pursuant to the applicable rules of civil procedure. Each day that a violation continues shall constitute a separate violation, unless the Magisterial District Judge determining that there has been a violation further determines that there was a good faith basis for the person, partnership, or corporation violating this chapter to have believed that there was no such violation, in which event there shall be deemed to have been only one such violation until the fifth day following the date of determination of a violation by the Magisterial District Judge, and thereafter each day that a violation continues shall constitute a separate violation. All judgment costs and reasonable attorneys' fees collected for the violation of zoning ordinances shall be paid over to the Township.
In case any building, structure, landscaping or land is or is proposed to be erected, constructed, reconstructed, altered, converted, maintained or used in violation of any Township ordinance, the Board of Supervisors or, with the approval of the Board of Supervisors, an officer of the municipality, or any aggrieved owner or tenant of real property who shows that his property or person will be substantially affected by the alleged violation, in addition to other remedies, may institute any appropriate action or proceeding to prevent, restrain, correct or abate such building, structure, landscaping or land, or to prevent, in or about such premises, any act, conduct, business or use constituting a violation. When any such action is instituted by a landowner or tenant, notice of that action shall be served upon the Township at least 30 days prior to the time the action is begun by serving a copy of the complaint on the Board of Supervisors. No such action may be maintained until such notice has been given.
The Board of Supervisors may, from time to time, amend, supplement, change, modify or repeal this chapter or any part of this chapter, including the Zoning Map. When doing so, the Board of Supervisors shall proceed in the manner prescribed in this article.
[Amended 12-9-2014 by Ord. No. 2014-6]
A. 
Amendments generally. The Board of Supervisors may, from time to time amend, supplement or repeal any of the regulations and provisions in this chapter, as provided below. Such action may be taken after application by a landowner or upon recommendation by the Township Planning Commission.
(1) 
Landowner application. All applications by landowners for zoning amendments or Zoning Map amendments, not curative in nature, shall be submitted to the Township Zoning Officer not later than the last working day of the month preceding the Board of Supervisors meeting at which the application will be initially presented.
(a) 
Fees. A landowner application for amendment shall not be considered complete unless accompanied by a fee in such amount as fixed by resolution of the Board of Supervisors from time to time. Such fee shall be applied to the Township's actual costs, including attorney, engineering, and advertising fees, to review and/or take action on the requested zoning amendment. The Township reserves the right to require an escrow for additional fees if such costs are greater than the fee initially paid. Unused fees shall be returned to the landowner upon the dismissal or enactment of the amendment requested.
(b) 
Initial meeting. The regularly scheduled meetings of the Board of Supervisors are hereby established as the initial meetings at which landowner applications shall be considered by the Board of Supervisors. Upon receipt of a complete application, the Board of Supervisors shall consider the application at the following regularly scheduled meeting. If for any reason the Board of Supervisors does not meet at such regularly scheduled meeting, the Board of Supervisors shall consider the application at the subsequent regularly scheduled meeting. The action of the Board of Supervisors at the initial meeting shall be limited to either accepting or rejecting the application. If the application is accepted, it shall be referred to the Township Planning Commission for a report and recommendation as provided in this section. If the petition is rejected, the landowner who filed the application shall be so notified, in writing, and the filing fee shall be refunded.
(2) 
Public hearing. Prior to enacting any proposed zoning amendment, the Board of Supervisors shall fix a time and place for a public hearing at which parties of interest and residents shall have an opportunity to be heard, pursuant to public notice as provided herein. No time limit shall apply to the scheduling of such public hearing, or the occurrence of the public hearing, or to formal action of the amendment.
(3) 
Township Planning Commission. In the case of an amendment other than that prepared by the Township Planning Commission, the Board of Supervisors shall submit each amendment to the Township Planning Commission at least 30 days prior to the public hearing on such proposed amendment to provide the Township Planning Commission an opportunity to submit recommendations. In the case of an amendment prepared by the Township Planning Commission, the proposal shall be presented to the Board of Supervisors, which shall then proceed in the same manner as with a proposed zoning amendment which has already been reviewed by the Township Planning Commission.
(4) 
County Planning Commission. At least 30 days prior to the public hearing on any amendment by the Board of Supervisors, the Township shall submit the proposed amendment to the County Planning Commission for recommendations.
(5) 
Notice of public hearing.
(a) 
Notice of the time and place of such public hearing and a description of the amendment to be discussed shall be published once each week for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation within the Township; the first publication shall not be more than 60 days and the second publication shall not be less than seven days from the date of the hearing.
(b) 
If the proposed amendment involves a Zoning Map change, notice of the required hearing shall be conspicuously posted by the Township along the perimeter of the parcel to notify potentially interested citizens. The affected parcel or area shall be posted at least one week prior to the date of the hearing. Additionally, notice of the public hearing for a Zoning Map change shall be mailed by the Township at least 30 days prior to the date of the public hearing, by first class mail, to the addresses to which real estate tax bills are sent for all real property located within the area being rezoned, as evidenced by tax records within the possession of the Township. The notice shall include the location, date and time of the public hearing. A good faith effort and substantial compliance shall satisfy the requirements of this subsection. This clause shall not apply when the rezoning constitutes a comprehensive rezoning.
(6) 
Substantial change to amendment. If after any public hearing held upon a Zoning Map amendment, the proposed amendment is changed substantially, or is revised, to include land previously not affected by it, the Board of Supervisors shall hold another public hearing, pursuant to public notice, before proceeding to enact the amendment.
(7) 
Action by the Board of Supervisors. At the time and place specified, the Board of Supervisors shall conduct a hearing on said application to amend the zoning ordinance or Zoning Map of the Township and shall thereafter, at a subsequent regular meeting of the Board of Supervisors, either reject the proposed change or adopt an ordinance implementing the proposed change.
(8) 
Within 30 days after enactment of any amendment to this chapter, a copy of the amendment shall be forwarded to the County Planning Commission.
B. 
Curative amendments by landowner. A landowner who desires to challenge on substantive grounds the validity of this chapter or the Zoning Map or any provision thereof which prohibits or restricts the use or development of land in which he has an interest may submit a petition for curative amendment to the Board of Supervisors with a written request that his challenge and proposed amendment be heard and decided as provided in § 916.1 of the MPC.[1] The petition for curative amendment and challenge shall be referred to the Township Planning Commission and the County Planning Commission as provided in Subsection A of this section and § 609 of the MPC, and notice of the hearing thereon shall be given as provided in Subsection A of this section and §§ 610 and 916.1 of the MPC.[2]
(1) 
Petition and fee. No petition shall be accepted by the Zoning Officer which is not (i) complete on its face, containing all of the information and data required by the Zoning Officer to reasonably support the petition and signed by at least one record owner of property which would be affected by the proposed amendment; and (ii) accompanied by the fee provided in § 255-81A(1)(a) above. Upon receipt of a complete petition and payment of the fee, the Township shall cause the petition to be forwarded to the Township Planning Commission and the County Planning Commission.
(2) 
Public hearing. The Board of Supervisors shall hold a public hearing within 60 days of the request, and such hearing shall be conducted in accordance with § 255-85 of the Code and § 908 of the MPC,[3] and all references therein to the Zoning Hearing Board shall, for purposes of this section, be references to the Board of Supervisors. If the Township does not accept a landowner's curative amendment brought in accordance with this subsection and a court subsequently rules that the challenge has merit, the court's decision shall not result in a declaration of invalidity for this entire chapter and Zoning Map, but only for those provisions that specifically relate to the landowner's curative amendment and challenge.
[3]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10908.
(3) 
Acceptance. The Board of Supervisors, if it determines that a validity challenge has merit, may accept a landowner's curative amendment, with or without revision, or may adopt an alternative amendment, which will cure the challenged defects. The Board of Supervisors shall consider the curative amendments, plans and explanatory material submitted by the landowner and shall also consider:
(a) 
The impact of the proposal upon roads, sewer facilities, water supplies, schools and other public service facilities.
(b) 
If the proposal is for a residential use, the impact of the proposal upon regional housing needs and the effectiveness of the proposal in providing housing units of a type actually available to and affordable by classes of persons otherwise unlawfully excluded by the challenged provisions of this chapter or Zoning Map.
(c) 
The suitability of the site for the intensity of use proposed by the site's soils, slopes, woodlands, wetlands, floodplains, aquifers, natural resources and other natural features.
(d) 
The impact of the proposed use on the site's soils, slopes, woodlands, wetlands, floodplains, natural resources and natural features, the degree to which these are protected or destroyed, the tolerance of the resources to development and any adverse environmental impacts.
(e) 
The impact of the proposal on the preservation of agriculture and other land uses which are essential to public health and welfare.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10916.1.
[2]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. §§ 10609, 10610, and 10916.1, respectively.
C. 
Curative amendments by Township.
(1) 
If the Township determines that this chapter or any portion hereof is substantially invalid, the Township shall declare, by formal action, this chapter or portions hereof substantially invalid and propose to prepare a curative amendment to overcome such invalidity. Within 30 days of such declaration and proposal, the Board of Supervisors shall, by resolution, make specific findings setting forth the declared invalidity of this chapter, which may include the below listed invalidities, and begin to prepare and consider a curative amendment to this chapter to correct the declared invalidity(ies).
(a) 
References to specific uses which are either not permitted or not permitted in sufficient quantity.
(b) 
Reference to a class of use or uses that requires revision. 26
(c) 
Reference to this entire chapter that requires revisions.
(2) 
Within 180 days from the date of the declaration and proposal, the Township shall enact a curative amendment to validate or reaffirm the validity of this chapter pursuant to the provisions of § 609 of the MPC, in order to cure the declared invalidity of this chapter.