Charter Township of Oakland, MI
Oakland County
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A. 
It is the purpose of this Part 3 to carry out the provisions of the Land Division Act, Public Act No. 288 of 1967 (MCLA § 560.101 et seq.), by providing regulations governing the division of land, and by providing regulations governing the use of parcels and tracts created by land division.
B. 
It is the further purpose of this Part 3 to provide regulations designed to minimize confusion among purchasers and potential purchasers of parcels and tracts of land created by the process of division, and to promote the orderly development of the Township.
C. 
It is the intent of this Part 3 to recognize that the Land Division Act, as effective upon adoption of this Part 3:
(1) 
Authorizes the creation of parcels and tracts of record that may not be used as building sites or independent sites for residential use and/or other uses.
(2) 
Authorizes the creation of parcels and tracts of record that are landlocked, and the creation of parcels and tracts which do not have adequate vehicular access as the Township has, as a matter of policy, consistently required in order to ensure access by police, fire and other emergency vehicles.
(3) 
Provides incentive for the creation of new parcels intended to be building sites having driveways entering directly upon heavily traveled thoroughfares, rather than promoting new building sites which do not create new driveways onto thoroughfares, as implicitly found to be preferable under MCLA § 560.108(3)(a).
(4) 
Requires a municipality to review and approve divisions based upon applications which do not require more than approximate dimensions of parcels, and thus precludes meaningful determinations on the compliance of proposed parcels with applicable law and ordinance.
(5) 
Does not permit a municipality to specify conditions applicable to a division of land which may be needed in order to protect the long- and short-term interest of the public health, safety and general welfare, including, without limitation, conditions designed for the preservation of important natural resources; the avoidance of drainage, erosion, and other problems resulting therefrom; assurance that the establishment of divisions does not create other dangers or health and safety hazards due to steeply sloping topography; avoidance of parcels without adequate water and sanitary sewage disposal, and the like; assurance that there will be adequate distances between improvements on parcels and adjoining rights-of-way, adjoining buildings and other adjoining uses; and, the assurance that consumers in the market place are not financially harmed in connection with the purchase of parcels which may not be usable.
(6) 
Appears to promote the preservation of open space and farmland, however, such appearance is illusory in actual practice, thus creating confusion and unfounded expectations.
D. 
Thus, it is found that there are provisions and authorizations in the Land Division Act with regard to the creation of divisions that may result in confusion and otherwise permit actions or results the Township Board believes should be minimized in the interest of the public health, safety and general welfare. Some of the potentially adverse actions and results have been identified in correspondence of Governor John Engler to the Michigan Legislature.
E. 
It is the further intent of this Part 3 to recognize the relative advantageous procedures contained in laws and ordinances applicable to plats and condominiums, which contemplate more thorough review, the creation of more reliable and usable end-products for use by consumers, and which do not have such potential for the creation of confusion and dispute. Specifically, it is the intent of this Part 3 to promote the creation of new parcels of land by way of the creation of subdivisions and condominiums, which the Township Board finds and determines to be in the best interest of the present and future citizens and property owners in the Township, and in the best interest of clear, understandable and orderly development and use of land.
F. 
It is found by the Township Board that minimizing the creation of new parcels of property prior to the employment of subdivision and condominium regulations, while concurrently recognizing that there are circumstances in which properties simply are not well adapted to subdivision or condominium application, will serve to promote the public health, safety and general welfare.
The following terms shall have the meanings ascribed in this section, and terms not expressly mentioned shall have meanings as provided by dictionary and common usage, taking into consideration the context in which they appear and the rules applicable to the interpretation of legislation:
ACCESSIBLE
In reference to a parcel, that the parcel meets one or both of the following requirements:
A. 
Has an area where a driveway provides vehicular access to an existing road or street and meets all applicable location standards of the State Transportation Department or County Road Commission under Public Act No. 200 of 1969 (MCLA § 247.321 et seq.) and of the Township, or has an area where a driveway can provide vehicular access to an existing road or street and meet all such applicable location standards.
B. 
Is served by an existing easement that provides vehicular access to an existing road or street and that meets all applicable location standards of the State Transportation Department or County Road Commission under Public Act No. 200 of 1969 (MCLA § 247.321 et seq.) and of the Township, or can be served by a proposed easement that will provide vehicular access to an existing road or street and that will meet all such applicable location standards.
APPLICANT
The person having the fee interest in the property which is the subject matter of the application under this Part 3, or the authorized representative of such person.
BUILDING SITE
A parcel with existing structures proposed for use, and/or a parcel on which the improvement of new structures is proposed.
CHARACTER
The combination of traits which, when considered together, distinguish specified land and/or development from other specified land and/or development. In assessing character, the following may be considered, along with any other expressly identified factors:
A. 
Current zoning and land usage.
B. 
Size of parcel.
C. 
Percentage of a lot covered by structures and other impervious improvements.
D. 
Type of structure.
E. 
Type, extent, location and use of natural landscape.
F. 
Topography and soil.
G. 
Traffic flow and the relationship of traffic to pedestrian and vehicular thoroughfares.
H. 
Density of land uses.
I. 
Intensity of uses.
J. 
Type and location of utilities and other infrastructure improvement.
K. 
Police/fire protection.
L. 
Natural areas.
M. 
Natural features.
DIVIDE or DIVISION
The partitioning or splitting of a parcel or tract of land by the proprietor thereof or by his or her heirs, executors, administrators, legal representatives, successors or assigns for the purpose of sale or lease of more than one year, or of building development that results in one or more parcels of less than 40 acres or the equivalent, and that satisfies the requirements of this Part 3 and Sections 108 and 109 of the Act (MCLA §§ 560.108, 560.109). Division does not include a property transfer between two or more adjacent parcels, if the property taken from one parcel is added to an adjacent parcel; and any resulting parcel shall not be considered a building site unless the parcel conforms to the requirements of this Act or the requirements of this Part 3.
EXEMPT SPLIT
The partitioning or splitting of a parcel or tract of land by the proprietor thereof or by his or her heirs, executors, administrators, legal representatives, successors or assigns that does not result in one or more parcels of less than 40 acres or the equivalent. For a property transfer between two or more adjacent parcels, if the property taken from one parcel is added to an adjacent parcel, any resulting parcel shall not be considered a building site unless the parcel conforms to the requirements of the Act and the requirements of this Part 3.
FORTY ACRES
Includes either 40 acres, a quarter-quarter section containing not less than 30 acres, or a government lot containing not less than 30 acres.
LAND DIVISION ACT or ACT
Public Act No. 288 of 1967 (MCLA § 560.101 et seq.).
LOT
A measured portion of a parcel or tract of land, which is described and fixed in a recorded plat.
NATURAL FEATURE SETBACK
A distance from a natural feature designed to achieve independent benefits, and concurrently, benefits relating to the adjacent natural feature, all as defined and required under the Zoning Ordinance.
NEIGHBORHOOD
Those parcels or subdivision plats located in whole or in part within 1,320 feet of the parcel in question, found by the Township official or body conducting the review to relate to the creation, development or use of the parcel in question.
PARCEL
A continuous area or acreage of land which can be described as provided in the Land Division Act.
PARCEL USE CERTIFICATE
A permit issued under Article XI of this Part 3, following submission of an application and review by the Township, determining that a parcel conforms with applicable laws, ordinances and regulations for the purpose to which the parcel is proposed to be used, subject to the issuance of building permits and other permits or certificates required by governmental entities having jurisdiction.
PARENT PARCEL or PARENT TRACT
A parcel or tract, respectively, lawfully in existence on March 31, 1997.
PLAT or SUBDIVISION
A map or chart, and accompanying provisions and restrictions, created and recorded as provided in the Land Division Act, or predecessor statutes.
PRIVATE ROAD
An area of land approved by the Township for vehicular ingress and egress to and from land which does not abut a street, road or highway over which a governmental entity has taken jurisdiction for maintenance. "Private road" shall also mean an area of land established as a means of vehicular ingress and egress by documentation recorded at the Register of Deeds office on or before the effective date of the ordinance from which this Part 3 is derived, and lawful for use for such purposes under applicable law and ordinances.
TRACT
Two or more parcels that share a common property line and are under the same ownership.
WATERCOURSE
Any waterway or other body of water having well defined banks, including rivers, streams, creeks, and brooks, whether continuously or intermittently flowing, and lakes and ponds.
WETLAND
An area defined as a "wetland" in MCLA § 324.30301.
WIDTH (PARCEL OR TRACT WIDTH)
The distance along a line between the side boundaries of a parcel or tract, where such line is parallel to the front boundary of the parcel or tract, and is measured in the location at which such distance is the shortest.
[Amended 6-8-1999 by Ord. No. 81]
A. 
Any person who shall violate any provision of this Part 3 shall be responsible for a municipal civil infraction, and upon a determination of responsibility shall be subject to a civil fine as set forth in Chapter 1, Article I, Definitions; General Penalty, of the Code of the Charter Township of Oakland. In addition to ordering a person determined to be responsible for a municipal civil infraction to pay a civil fine, costs, damages and expenses, the Judge or Magistrate shall be authorized to issue any judgment, writ or order necessary to enforce or enjoin violation of this Part 3.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).
B. 
Each day a violation exists shall be deemed to be a separate offense.
C. 
In addition, a civil action in the Circuit Court may be initiated seeking relief deemed appropriate to the Township, including, without limitation, a declaration that a division or use of land should not be lawfully recognized or permitted to continue.