Township of Union, PA
Washington County
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[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Union 2-27-2017 by Ord. No. 2017-02. Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter shall be known and may be cited as Union Township's "Dust Control Ordinance of 2017."
The Board of Supervisors of Union Township, under, and by virtue of and pursuant to, the authority granted by the Second Class Township Code,[1] does hereby enact and ordain this chapter.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 65101 et seq.
Whereas the Board of Supervisors of Union Township has determined that fugitive dust emissions may be detrimental to the health, comfort, living conditions, welfare, and safety of the citizens of Union, it is hereby declared to be the policy of the Township to safeguard the citizens of Union from the same.
The following words, terms, and phrases, when used in this chapter, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, shall have the following meanings ascribed to them:
BOARD
Union Township Board of Supervisors.
DUST PALLIATIVE
A substance used to abate the dispersion of particulate matter into the air. Dust palliatives for use on roads and other surfaces may be water or other substances approved by PennDOT, the Department of Environmental Protection ("DEP") and/or the Township Engineer.
FUGITIVE DUST
An air contaminant of the outdoor atmosphere not emitted through a flue, including, but not limited to, industrial process losses, stockpile losses, re-entrained dust, and construction/demolition activities. Such fugitive dust shall be considered a nuisance as defined by the Second Class Township Code[1] and the Township's general Nuisance Ordinance.
PERSON
Any individual, public or private corporation for profit or not for profit, association, partnership, firm, trust, estate, department, board, bureau or agency of the commonwealth or the federal government, political subdivision, municipality, district, authority, or any other legal entity whatsoever which is recognized by law as the subject of rights and duties.
ROADS AND STREETS
This includes public and private roadways, paved and unpaved parking areas, racetracks of any kind, and land used for recreational purposes.
TOWNSHIP
Union Township, Washington County, Pennsylvania.
USED OIL
A petroleum-based or synthetic oil which is used in an internal combustion engine as an engine lubricant, or as a product for lubricating motor vehicle transmissions, gears, or axles, which, through use, storage, or handling, has become unsuitable for its original purpose due to the presence of chemical or physical impurities or loss of original properties.
WASTE OIL
Oil refined from crude oil or synthetically produced, used, and as a result of the use, contaminated by physical or chemical impurities. The term includes used oil or oil whose original purpose has been completed and which is directed to a disposal or processing facility or is otherwise disposed.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 65101 et seq.
A. 
After the effective date of this chapter a person responsible for any of the following activities or sources of fugitive dust shall take all reasonable actions to prevent particulate matter from becoming airborne:
(1) 
Construction or demolition of buildings or structures.
(2) 
Construction, grading, paving, and maintenance of roads and streets.
(3) 
Use of roads and streets, excluding fugitive dust from material in or on trucks, railroad cars, and other vehicular equipment.
(4) 
Site work, including movement of dirt, digging of foundations, trenches, retaining walls and clearing/burning of brush, trees, shrubs and wood (and related) materials.
(5) 
Stockpiling of materials.
(6) 
All other activities as determined by the Township Zoning Officer and Engineer.
B. 
No person shall create, cause or allow an unreasonable amount of fugitive dust to be generated from property owned, leased, occupied or controlled by such person. "Unreasonable" shall mean, but not be limited to, any amount which causes difficulty in breathing or visibility or, if measured with proper applicable equipment, constitutes a pollutant or environmental threat.
C. 
A person may not permit fugitive dust and other particulate matter to:
(1) 
Be emitted into the outdoor atmosphere from a source listed in Subsection A if visible at the point the fugitive dust passes outside the person's property; or
(2) 
Adversely affect any other person, their property, or their reasonable enjoyment of their property.
D. 
Prohibition.
(1) 
It shall be a violation of this chapter to fail to comply with, or to cause or assist in the violation of, any requirement of this chapter, or any laws, regulations, orders or permits issued pursuant to authority granted by a state, federal or local authority. No person shall willfully, negligently, or through the failure to provide and operate necessary control equipment or to take necessary precautions, operate any source of fugitive dust in such manner that the same:
(a) 
Exceeds the standards permitted herein or by any order or permit issued; or
(b) 
May reasonably be anticipated to endanger the public health, safety, or welfare.
(2) 
It shall be a violation of this chapter for any person to hinder, obstruct, delay, resist, prevent, or in any way interfere or attempt to interfere with the Township or its personnel in the performance of any duty hereunder, including the Township's inspection of any source.
E. 
Comply with all state and federal laws and regulations that concern dust, contaminants and particulates.
A person responsible for any source specified in § 119-5 shall take all reasonable actions to prevent fugitive dust from becoming airborne. These actions include, but are not limited to, the following:
A. 
Use, where possible, of water or approved dust palliatives for control of dust must be approved by the Township Engineer. The dust palliative used and the method of application must be one which is approved by the Township and/or its Engineer. The use of waste oil as a dust palliative is prohibited without specific written approval provided by the Township Engineer on a case-by-case basis.
B. 
Immediate removal of earth or other material from paved streets onto which earth or other material has been transported by trucking or earthmoving equipment, erosion by water, or other means and can reasonably lead to a violation of this chapter.
A. 
Active farming operation. The requirements of this chapter do not apply to fugitive dust arising from the production of agricultural commodities in their unmanufactured state on the premises of the farm operation.
B. 
Burden of proof. In any proceeding arising out of the provisions of this chapter, or arising out of an order issued or action taken pursuant hereto, any person who claims entitlement to any exemption which may be provided for, or who claims that a provision or interpretation other than the one resulting in the lowest permissible emission rate was intended to prevail pursuant to this chapter, shall bear the burden of proof and the burden of going forward with respect to such claim.
A. 
The Township shall receive, record and retain complaints made concerning fugitive dust. To the extent possible, the record made by the Township shall include the name and address of the complainant, the nature of the complaint, the source to which the complainant attributes the fugitive dust, and the date and time of the complaint.
B. 
To the extent possible, the complaint shall provide pictures, a signed statement and evidence said fugitive dust particles have crossed property lines. Complaints made without such evidence may be investigated by the Township at its discretion.
C. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly make a false complaint to the Township.
A. 
The Township Code Enforcement Officer shall have the power and duty to enforce the provisions of this chapter.
B. 
The Township may issue such orders as are necessary to aid in the enforcement of the provisions of this chapter. These orders shall include, but shall not be limited to: orders requiring persons to cease unlawful activities or cease operation of a fugitive dust source which, in the course of its operation, is in violation of any provision of this chapter; orders to take corrective action or to abate a public nuisance; orders requiring the testing, sampling, or monitoring of any fugitive dust source; or orders requiring production of information. Such an order may be issued if Union Township finds that any condition existing in or on the facility or source involved is causing or contributing to fugitive dust or if Union Township finds that any person is in violation of any provision of this chapter.
C. 
Union Township may, in its order, require compliance with such conditions as are necessary to prevent or abate fugitive dust or effect the purposes of this chapter.
D. 
The authority of Union Township to issue an order under this section is in addition to any remedy or penalty which may be imposed pursuant to this chapter. The failure to comply with any such order is hereby declared to be a public nuisance.
E. 
Any party who is believed to be in violation of the provisions of this chapter and fails to remedy said violation to the satisfaction of the Code Enforcement Officer shall be cited and a hearing held in front of the Magisterial District Judge.
A. 
Whenever the Township Code Enforcement Officer finds that fugitive dust is or may be resulting from a source in Union Township, the Township Code Enforcement Officer may order the owner or operator to take corrective action in a manner satisfactory to the municipality, or the Township Code Enforcement Officer may order the owner or operator to allow access to the land by the Township Code Enforcement Officer or a third party to take such action.
B. 
For purposes of collecting or recovering the costs involved in taking corrective action or pursuing a cost recovery action pursuant to an order or recovering the cost of litigation, oversight, monitoring, sampling, testing, and investigation related to a corrective action, Union Township may collect the amount in the same manner as civil penalties are assessed and collected following the process for assessment and collection of a civil penalty contained in § 119-12 of this chapter.
A. 
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter or any order of the Township issued pursuant to this chapter commits a summary offense and shall, upon conviction, be sentenced to pay a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $1,000 for each separate offense and, in default of the payment of such fine, may be sentenced to imprisonment for 90 days for each separate offense. Employees of the municipality authorized to conduct inspections or investigations are hereby declared to be law enforcement officers authorized to issue or file citations for summary violations under this chapter, and the Code Enforcement Officer is hereby authorized to prosecute these offenses. For purposes of this section, a summary offense may be prosecuted before any District Justice in Union Township. There is no accelerated rehabilitative disposition authorized for a summary offense.
B. 
Separate offenses. Violations of any requirement of this chapter occurring on separate days shall be considered separate offenses.
A. 
Penalty. The civil penalty so assessed shall not exceed $600 per day for each violation.
B. 
Determination of penalty. In determining the amount of the penalty, Union Township shall consider the willfulness of the violation; damage to air, soil, water, or other natural resources of Union Township or their uses; financial benefit to the person in consequence of the violation; deterrence of future violations; cost to the municipality; the size of the source or facility; the compliance history of the source; the severity and duration of the violation; degree of cooperation in resolving the violation; the speed with which compliance is ultimately achieved; whether the violation was voluntarily reported; other factors unique to the owners or operators of the source or facility; and other relevant factors.
C. 
Separate offenses. Violations of any requirement of this chapter occurring on separate days shall be considered separate offenses.
A violation of this chapter or of any order issued by the municipality under this chapter shall constitute a public nuisance. Union Township shall have the authority to order any person causing a public nuisance to abate the public nuisance. In addition, when abating a public nuisance, Union Township may recover the expenses of abatement following the process for assessment and collection of a civil penalty contained in § 119-12. Whenever the nuisance is maintained or continued contrary to this chapter or any order issued pursuant to this chapter, the nuisance may be abatable in the manner provided by this chapter. Any person who causes the public nuisance shall be liable for the cost of abatement.