No plan shall be finally approved unless the streets shown on such plan have been improved to a mud-free or otherwise permanently passable condition, or improved as may be required by this chapter, and any walkways, curbs, gutters, streetlights, fire hydrants, shade trees, water mains, sanitary sewers, storm sewers and other improvements as required by this chapter have been installed in accordance with this chapter. In lieu of the completion of any improvements required as a condition for the final approval of a plan, the applicant shall provide, for deposit with the Township, financial security in an amount sufficient to cover the costs of such improvements or common amenities, including, but not limited to, roads, stormwater detention and/or retention basins and other related drainage facilities, recreational facilities, open space improvements, or buffer or screen plantings which may be required.
When requested by the applicant, in order to facilitate financing, the Township Board of Supervisors shall furnish the applicant with a signed copy of a resolution indicating approval of the final plan contingent upon the developer obtaining a satisfactory financial security. The final plan or record plan shall not be signed nor recorded until the financial improvements agreement is executed. The resolution or letter of contingent approval shall expire and be deemed to be revoked if the financial security agreement is not executed within 90 days unless a written extension is granted by the Township Board of Supervisors; such extension shall not be unreasonably withheld and shall be placed in writing at the request of the developer.
Without limitation as to other types of financial security which the Township may approve, which approval shall not be unreasonably withheld, federal or commonwealth chartered lending institution irrevocable letters of credit and restrictive or escrow accounts in such lending institutions shall be deemed acceptable financial security for the purposes of this section.
Such financial security shall be posted with a bonding company or federal- or commonwealth-chartered lending institution chosen by the party posting the financial security, provided said bonding company or lending institution is authorized to conduct such business within the commonwealth.
Such bond or other security shall provide for, and secure to the public, the completion of any improvements which may be required on or before the date fixed in the formal action of approval or accompanying agreement for completion of the improvements.
The amount of financial security to be posted for the completion of the required improvements shall be equal to 110% of the cost of completion estimated as of 90 days following the date scheduled for completion by the developer. Annually, the Township may adjust the amount of financial security by comparing the actual cost of the improvements which have been completed and the estimated cost for completion of the remaining improvements as of the expiration of the 90th day after either the original date scheduled for completion or a rescheduled date of completion. Subsequent to said adjustment, the Township may require the developer to post additional security in order to assure that the financial security equals said 110%.
The amount of financial security shall be based upon an estimate of the cost of completion (including quantities and unit cost) of the required improvements, submitted by an applicant or developer and prepared by a professional engineer licensed as such by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The engineer shall certify the amount of security to be a fair and reasonable estimate of such cost. The Township Board of Supervisors, upon the recommendation of the Township Engineer, may refuse to accept such estimate for good cause shown. If the applicant or developer and the Township are unable to agree upon an estimate, then the estimate shall be recalculated and recertified by another professional engineer licensed as such in the commonwealth and chosen mutually by the Township and the applicant or developer. The estimate certified by the third engineer shall be presumed fair and reasonable, and shall be the final estimate. In the event a third engineer is so chosen, fees for the services of said engineer shall be paid equally by the Township and the applicant or developer.
If the party posting the financial security requires more than one year from the date of posting of the financial security to complete the required improvements, the amount of financial security may be increased by an additional 10% for each one-year period beyond the first anniversary date from posting of financial security or to an amount not exceeding 110% of the cost of completing the required improvements as reestablished on or about the expiration of the preceding one-year period by using the above procedure.
In the case where development is projected over a period of years, the Township Board of Supervisors may authorize submission of final plans by section or stages of development subject to such requirements or guarantees as to improvements in future sections or stages of development as it finds essential for the protection of any finally approved section of the development.
As the work of installing the required improvements proceeds, the party posting the financial security may request the Township Board of Supervisors to release or authorize the release, from time to time, of such portions of the financial security necessary for payment to the contractor or contractors performing the work. Any such requests shall be in writing addressed to the Township Board of Supervisors, and the Township Board of Supervisors shall have 45 days from receipt of such request within which to allow the Township Engineer to certify, in writing, to the Township Board of Supervisors that such portion of the work upon the improvements has been completed in accordance with the approved plan. Upon receipt of such certification, the Township Board of Supervisors shall authorize release by the bonding company or lending institution of an amount, as estimated by the Township Engineer, fairly representing the value of the improvements completed or, if the Township Board of Supervisors fails to act within said forty-five-day period, the Township Board of Supervisors shall be deemed to have approved the release of funds as requested.
The Township Board of Supervisors may, prior to final release at the time of completion and certification by its Engineer, retain 10% of the original amount of the posted financial security for the aforesaid improvements.
Where the Township Board of Supervisors accepts dedication of all or some of the requirements following completion, the Township Board of Supervisors may require the posting of financial security to secure structural integrity of said improvements as well as the functioning of said improvements in accordance with the design and specifications as depicted on the final plan for a term not to exceed 18 months from the date of acceptance of dedication. Said financial security shall be of the same type as otherwise required in this section with regard to installation of such improvements, and the amount of the financial security shall not exceed 15% of the actual cost of installation of said improvements.
If financial security has been provided in lieu of the completion of improvements required as a condition for the final approval of a plan as set forth in this section, the Township shall not condition the issuance of building, grading, or other permits relating to the erection or placement of improvements, including buildings, upon the lots or land as depicted on the final plan upon actual completion of the improvements depicted upon the approved final plan. Moreover, if financial security has been provided, occupancy permits for any building or buildings to be erected shall not be withheld following the improvement of the streets providing access to and from existing public roads to such building or buildings to a mud-free or otherwise permanently passable condition, as well as the completion of all other improvements as depicted upon the approved plan, either upon the lot or lots or beyond the lot or lots in question if such improvements are necessary for the reasonable use of or occupancy of the building or buildings.
The Township Board of Supervisors shall authorize and direct the Township Engineer to cooperate with the applicant in arranging for the Engineer's periodic presence at the site of the work and construction of the required facilities and improvements during such phases thereof as in the judgment of the Engineer will enable him to determine whether or not such construction is in general conformity with the final plan and all Township requirements.
No construction shall begin until after the preconstruction meeting between the developer, the contractor, the Township Engineer/inspector, and others as may be requested to attend. The preconstruction meeting will be scheduled upon request of the developer, and will only be held if all of the above-named participants are represented.
Notice shall be given to the Township at least 48 hours in advance of commencement of any construction operation to provide for required inspection. If construction is intermittent, separate notice will be required each time the contractor restarts work. If scheduled work is not canceled 24 hours prior to the scheduled time or if the work is otherwise not performed, the Engineer will be compensated for four hours' time at the developer's expense.
There will be full-time inspection for the installation of sanitary sewer, water, storm sewer, and roadway paving. General site work will be inspected on a part-time basis.
No underground pipes, structures, subgrades, binders or base courses shall be covered until inspected and approved by the duly authorized official of the Township. Failure in compliance with this regulation shall provide cause for uncovering of such work, at the developer's expense, to permit the required inspection.
In those cases where the Township Engineer deems necessary, the developer, through his contractor, shall retain the services of a certified soils engineer to perform moisture and density testing in order to determine compaction or the extent thereof as related to the requirements of such Township construction and materials specifications as have been or may be adopted by the Township Board of Supervisors.
The wearing course on all streets proposed to be dedicated to the Township shall not be placed until at least 75% of the lots within the development or a phase of the development have been built upon, or upon the expressed desire of the Township Board of Supervisors.
Whenever any work or materials are found not to comply with the final plan and/or applicable Township requirements, the Township Engineer or any other duly authorized Township representative will immediately notify the contractor. If the work in question is not corrected, a written noncompliance report will be issued to the contractor and the developer. A noncompliance report will serve as official notice that the work in question will not be accepted by the Township. Upon correction of the noncomplying work, a compliance report will be issued to the contractor and the developer.
When a contractor or developer wishes to make a change to the approved drawings, a request shall be submitted in writing to the Township Engineer. The Township Engineer will review the request and submit their recommendation to the Township. The Township Supervisors will act on the request and determine whether or not a plan revision is necessary.
Whether or not such construction or work shall have been accomplished in accordance with Township requirements shall be determined by the Township Engineer upon the basis of his on-site inspections during such phases thereof as in his judgment will enable him to make such determination. The Engineer shall submit a written report to the Township Board of Supervisors in regard thereto.
After final plan approval, upon the completion of all required improvements and prior to final inspection of improvements, the applicant shall submit a plan labeled "as-built plan" prepared by a professional engineer or professional land surveyor. This plan shall indicate that the constructed improvements are in conformance with the previously approved drawings and specifications and shall also note any and all deviations from the previously approved drawings and specifications. The plans, if prepared electronically, shall be so developed to be transmittable in an AUTOCAD format compatible with the Township GIS system. Also, two Mylar copies of the as-built plan shall be filed with the Township.
The as-built plan shall be drawn to the same scale as the final plan, certified by the designer of the plan, and approved by the Township Engineer. This plan shall indicate the actual location, dimensions, and/or elevations of all completed improvements, including, but not limited to:
Concrete monuments and other survey markers.
The edge of the cartway and top of the curb for both sides of each street.
Sanitary sewer mains, manholes and laterals (manhole inlet, outlet and top elevations).
Storm sewers, inlets and culverts.
Water mains, valves, fire hydrants and appurtenances.
Landscaping and screen planting.
Permanent sedimentation, erosion control and stormwater management structures.
When the developer has completed all of the required and necessary improvements and submitted the required as-built plan, the developer shall notify the Township Board of Supervisors, in writing, by certified or registered mail, of the completion of the aforesaid improvements and shall send a copy thereof to the Township Engineer.
The Township Board of Supervisors shall, within 10 days after receipt of such notice, direct and authorize the Township Engineer to inspect all of the required improvements.
The Township Engineer shall, thereupon, file a report, in writing, with the Township Board of Supervisors, and shall promptly mail a copy of the same to the developer by certified or registered mail. The report shall be made and mailed within 30 days after receipt by the Township Engineer of the authorization for inspection by the Township Board of Supervisors.
The report shall be detailed and shall indicate approval or rejection of said improvements, either in whole or in part, and if said improvements, or any portion thereof, shall not be approved or shall be rejected by the Township Engineer, said report shall contain a statement of reason for nonapproval or rejection.
The Township Board of Supervisors shall notify the developer, within 15 days of receipt of the Township Engineer's report, in writing by certified mail or registered mail, of the action of the Board with relation thereto.
If the Township Board of Supervisors or the Township Engineer fails to comply with the time limitation provisions contained herein, all improvements will be deemed to have been approved and the developer shall be released of all liability, pursuant to its performance guaranty bond or other security agreement.
If any portion of the said improvement shall not be approved or shall be rejected by the Township Board of Supervisors, the developer shall proceed to complete the same, and upon completion, the same procedure of notification as listed above shall be followed.
Nothing herein, however, shall be construed in limitation of the developer's right to contest or question, by legal proceedings or otherwise, any determination of the Township Board of Supervisors or the Township Engineer.
All improvements shall be deemed to be private improvements and only for the benefit of the specific proposal until such time as the same have been offered for dedication and formally accepted by the Board of Supervisors. No responsibility of any kind with respect to improvements shown on the final plan shall be transferred until the improvements have been formally accepted. All requests for dedication shall be made in accordance with Township rules and regulations, shall include all information required by the Township for processing such a request, and shall be accompanied by any required filing fee. If a developer requests that the Township accept dedication of streets, the developer shall prepare traffic studies meeting all PennDOT requirements to support the establishment of stop intersection, speed limits, and other traffic controls and shall reimburse the Township for all costs associated with the enactment of ordinances and installation of signs and traffic control devices.
In the event that any improvements which may be required have not been installed as provided in this chapter or in accordance with the approved final plan, the Township Board of Supervisors shall have the power to enforce any corporate bond, or other security by appropriate legal and equitable remedies. If proceeds of such bond, or other security are insufficient to pay the cost of installing or making repairs or corrections to all the improvements covered by said security, the Township Board of Supervisors may, at its option, install part of such improvements in all or part of the subdivision or land development and may institute appropriate legal or equitable action to recover the moneys necessary to complete the remainder of the improvements. All of the proceeds, whether resulting from the security or from any legal or equitable action brought against the developer or both, shall be used solely for the installation of the improvements covered by such security, and not for any other Township purpose.
The Township Board of Supervisors shall prescribe that the applicant shall reimburse the Township for the reasonable and necessary expense incurred in connection with the inspection of improvements. The applicant shall not be required to reimburse the Board of Supervisors for any inspection which is duplicative of inspections conducted by other governmental agencies or public utilities. The burden of proving that any inspection is duplicative shall be upon the objecting applicant. Such reimbursement shall be based upon a schedule adopted by resolution of the Township Board of Supervisors upon enactment of this chapter, or as such schedule may be amended. A copy of this fee schedule shall be available for review at the Township office. Such expense shall be reasonable and in accordance with the ordinary and customary fees charged by the Township's professional consultant for work performed for similar services in the community, but in no event shall the fees exceed the rate or cost charged by the professional consultant to the Township for comparable services when fees are not reimbursed or otherwise imposed on applicants.
If the applicant disputes the amount of any such expense in connection with the inspection of improvements, it shall be done in accordance with § 235-26 of this chapter.