Borough of Old Forge, PA
Lackawanna County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Old Forge 12-21-1970 by Ord. No. 13-1970 (Ch. 126 of the 1994 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Health and sanitation — See Ch. 189.
Housing — See Ch. 194.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 247.

§ 262-1 Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply:
BUSINESS BUILDING
Any structure, whether public or private, that is adapted for occupancy for the transaction of business, for rendering of professional service, for amusement, for the display, sale or storage of goods, wares or merchandise or for the performance of work or labor, including hotels, apartment buildings, tenement houses, rooming houses, office buildings, public buildings, stores, theaters, markets, restaurants, grain elevators, abattoirs, warehouses, workshops, factories and all outhouses, sheds, barns and other structures on premises used for business purposes.
CODE ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
The person designated to enforce this chapter or any duly authorized representative.
[Amended 5-31-1994]
OCCUPANT
The individual, partnership, association or corporation that uses or occupies any business building or part or fraction thereof, whether the actual owner, agent or custodian shall have the responsibility as occupant.
OWNER
The actual owner, agent or custodian of the business building, whether an individual, partnership, association or corporation. The lessee shall be construed as the owner for the purpose of this chapter when business building agreements hold the lessee responsible for maintenance and repairs.
PERSON
An individual, partnership, association or corporation.
RAT ERADICATION
The elimination or extermination of rats within buildings by any or all of the accepted measures, such as poisoning, fumigation, trapping and clubbing.[1]
RAT HARBORAGE
Any condition which provides shelter or protection for rats, thus favoring their multiplication and continued existence in, under or outside of any structure.
RATPROOFING
Applies to a form of construction to prevent the ingress of rats into business buildings from the exterior or from one building or establishment to another. It consists essentially of treatment with material impervious to rat gnawing of all actual or potential openings in exterior walls, ground or first floors, basements, roofs and foundations that may be reached by climbing or by burrowing.
[1]
Editor's Note: Original Section (1)(E), the definition of "Health Officer," which immediately followed this definition, was repealed 5-31-1994. See now the definition of "Code Enforcement Officer."

§ 262-2 Ratproofing required.

It is hereby ordained and required that all business buildings in the Borough of Old Forge shall be ratproofed, freed of rats and maintained in a ratproof and rat-free condition to the satisfaction of the Code Enforcement Officer.

§ 262-3 Notice; failure to comply.

A. 
Upon receipt of written notice and/or order from the Code Enforcement Officer, the owner of any business building specified therein shall take immediate measures for ratproofing the building; and unless said work and improvements have been completed by the owner in the time specified in a written notice, in no event to be less than 15 days, or within the time to which a written extension may have been granted by the Code Enforcement Officer, then the owner shall be deemed guilty of an offense under the provisions of this chapter.
B. 
Whenever the Code Enforcement Officer notifies the occupant or occupants of a business building in writing that there is evidence of rat infestation of the building, said occupant or occupants shall immediately institute rat-eradication measures and shall continuously maintain such measures in a satisfactory manner until the premises are declared by the Code Enforcement Officer to be free of rat infestation. Unless said measures are undertaken within five days after receipt of notice, it shall be construed as a violation of the provisions of this chapter, and the occupant shall be held responsible therefor.

§ 262-4 Responsibilities of owners.

The owners of all ratproofed business buildings are required to maintain the premises in a ratproof condition and to repair all breaks or leaks that may occur in the ratproofing without a specific order of the Code Enforcement Officer.

§ 262-5 Inspections.

From and after passage of this chapter, the Code Enforcement Officer is empowered to make unannounced inspections of the interior and exterior of business buildings to determine full compliance with this chapter. The Code Enforcement Officer shall make periodic inspections at intervals of not more than 45 days of all ratproofed buildings to determine evidence of rat infestation and the existence of new breaks or leaks in their ratproofing. When any evidence is found indicating the presence of rats or openings through which rats may again enter business buildings, the Code Enforcement Officer shall serve the owners or occupants with notice and/or orders to abate the conditions found.

§ 262-6 Closure of occupied buildings.

Whenever, in the opinion of the Code Enforcement Officer, conditions inside or under occupied business buildings provide extensive harborage for rats, said Code Enforcement Officer is empowered, after due notification in accordance with § 262-3A, to close such business buildings until such time as the conditions are abated by ratproofing and harborage removal, including, if necessary, the installation of suitable concrete floors in basements or replacement of wooden first or ground floors with concrete or other major repairs necessary to facilitate rat eradication.

§ 262-7 Condemnation and destruction of unoccupied buildings.

Whenever, in the opinion of the Code Enforcement Officer, conditions inside or under unoccupied business buildings provide extensive harborage for rats, said Code Enforcement Officer is empowered to require compliance with the provisions of § 262-3A above, and, in the event that said conditions are not corrected in a period of 60 days or within the time to which a written extension may have been granted by the Code Enforcement Officer, the Code Enforcement Officer is empowered to institute condemnation and destruction proceedings.

§ 262-8 Restoration and sealing of new openings required.

It shall be unlawful under the provisions of this chapter for the occupant, owner, contractor, public utility company, plumber or any other person to remove and fail to restore in like condition the ratproofing from any business building for any purpose; further, it shall be unlawful for any person or agent to make any new openings that are not closed or sealed against the entrance of rats.

§ 262-9 Construction, repair and remodeling.

It shall be unlawful for any person hereafter to construct, repair or remodel any building, dwelling, stable or market or other structure whatsoever unless such construction, repair, remodeling or installation shall render the building or other structure ratproof in accordance with the provisions of this chapter. The provisions of this section apply only to such construction, repairs, remodeling or installation as affect the ratproof condition of any building or other structure.

§ 262-10 Storage of foodstuffs; denial of license or permit.

It shall be unlawful for any person hereafter to occupy any new or existing business buildings wherein foodstuffs are to be stored, kept, handled, sold, held or offered for sale without complying with § 262-9 of this chapter, and, unless the provisions of this section are complied with, no Borough license or permit to conduct or carry on such business as defined above will be issued.

§ 262-11 Storage of animal feed.

All food and feed within the Borough of Old Forge for feeding chickens, cows, pigs, horses and other animals shall be stored in rat-free and ratproof containers, compartments, rooms or buildings.

§ 262-12 Storage of garbage and refuse. [1]

A. 
Within the corporate limits of the Borough of Old Forge, all garbage or refuse consisting of waste animal or vegetable matter upon which rats may feed and all small dead animals shall be placed and stored until collected in covered metal containers of a type prescribed by the Code Enforcement Officer. It is further declared unlawful for any person to dump or place or permit the dumping or placing on any premises, land or waterway of any dead animals or any waste vegetable or animal matter of any kind.
B. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to place, leave, dump or permit to accumulate any garbage, rubbish or trash in any building or any premises, improved or vacant, or on any open lot or alley in the Borough of Old Forge in such a manner that the same shall or may afford food or harborage for rats.
[1]
Editor's Note: See also Ch. 290, Solid Waste.

§ 262-13 Storage of lumber, containers and similar materials.

It shall be unlawful for any person to place or permit to accumulate on any premises, improved or vacant, or on any open lot or alley in the Borough of Old Forge any lumber, boxes, barrels, bottles, cans, containers or similar materials unless the same shall be placed on open racks that are elevated not less than 18 inches above the ground and evenly piled or stacked.

§ 262-14 Growth of weeds. [1]

It shall be unlawful for any person to permit any weeds to grow in excess of six inches in height on any premises, improved or vacant, or in any open lot or alley in the Borough of Old Forge.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).

§ 262-15 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 5-31-1994[1]]
Any person, firm, association or corporation who or which shall violate any provision or provisions of this chapter, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not more than $1,000, plus costs of prosecution, and, in default of payment of such fine and costs, by imprisonment for not more than 30 days.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).