City of Scranton, PA
Lackawanna County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Scranton as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Alcoholic beverages — See Ch. 158.
Health and sanitation fees — See Ch. Ch. 226, Art. II.
[Adopted 7-18-2013 by Ord. No. 34-2013[1]]
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. 256, Food and Food Handlers, comprised of Art. I, Food-Handling Establishments, adopted 12-15-2009 by Ord. No. 112-2009, and Art. II, Adoption of Standards, adopted 12-8-2009 by Ord. No. 113-2009.

§ 256-1 Definitions.

For the purposes of this article, restaurants, food carts and food trucks shall constitute an establishment that serves and/or prepares food or drink and shall be defined as:
FOOD CART
A mobile kitchen that is set up on the street to facilitate the sale and marketing of street food to people from the local pedestrian traffic. Food carts are often found in large cities throughout the world and can be found selling food of just about any variety.
A. 
Food carts come in two basic styles. One allows the vendor to sit or stand inside and serve food through a window. Another uses all of the room inside the cart for storage and to house the cooking machinery, usually some type of grilling surface. The cart style is determined principally by the type of food served at the cart.
B. 
Food carts are different from food trucks because they do not travel under their own power. Some food carts are towed by another vehicle, while some alternatively are pushed by a human.
C. 
Health license certification is to be displayed at all times and made visible to the public/customer view.
A. 
A food truck or mobile kitchen is a mobile venue that is self contained, and owners employees work from inside, sell food, and all food trucks are driven from location to location. Some, including ice cream trucks, sell mostly frozen or prepackaged food; others are more like restaurants on wheels. Some may cater to specific meals, such as the breakfast truck, lunch truck or lunch wagon and snack truck, break truck or taco truck. Food trucks have propane tanks which are to be securely contained on the truck; generators are not to come off the truck and be placed on City streets or sidewalks. Trash is to be picked up after each time the truck is set to sell food. Grease is not to be discarded into City sewer grates.
B. 
Health license certification is to be displayed at all times and made visible for public/customer view.
RESTAURANT
Any eating or drinking establishment on a permanent foundation, whether or not it has a seating capacity, or any store, drinking or eating establishment licensed by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, regardless of seating capacity, including but not limited to bars, night clubs, restaurants, mini marts or grocery stores ("merchant").
A. 
Collectively refers to food carts and food trucks.
B. 
Health license certification is to be displayed at all times and made visible for public/customer view.

§ 256-2 Hours of operation; proximity of food carts and food trucks to merchant store buildings.

A. 
Merchants may operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Vendors may operate from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. daily, except in Center City (Lackawanna Avenue, Franklin Avenue, Mulberry Street and Jefferson Avenue) where they can operate at any time, subject to the provisions that a food cart or food truck is staffed, is open for business, is selling food and drink and is in compliance with all parking ordinances of the City of Scranton. Under no circumstances may a vendor leave the food cart or food truck unattended on the street or sidewalks at anytime. The vendor must vacate the parking spot at the conclusion of business each day or evening.
B. 
No vendor, operator or owner, even though licensed pursuant to Chapter 340 of the Code of the City of Scranton, shall locate or stand and transact his business within 100 feet of a restaurant's service area and entranceway for public ingress and egress. The service area includes outdoor dining that has been approved by the City.
C. 
The one-hundred-foot prohibition does not apply to vendors who are operating on privately owned premises, provided that the vendors have written permission to conduct business on the private property from the record-title owner of the premises.
D. 
The one-hundred-foot prohibition does not apply to establishments who sell pre-packaged food and beverages.

§ 256-3 City Health Inspector duties and qualifications.

A. 
The City Health Inspector shall conduct physical inspections of restaurants, food carts or food trucks serving and/or preparing food or drink located within the City of Scranton for compliance with Pennsylvania statutes, codes and regulations, as well as this article.
B. 
Duties.
(1) 
The City Health Inspector shall issue licenses to restaurants, food carts or food trucks within the City of Scranton in accordance with Title 7, Chapter 46 of the Pennsylvania Code; Title 7, Chapter 76 of the Pennsylvania Code; the Act of May 23, 1945, as amended by Act 179 of 2002; and/or the provisions of this article.
(2) 
The City Health Inspector shall perform duties and responsibilities, including, but not limited to, conducting inspections as outlined in § 256-4; preparing daily reports of inspection activities; keeping accurate records of inspections and licenses; handling food poisoning complaints in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Health Department; cooperating as needed with the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, the Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Environmental Resources; reporting to vehicle accidents and fires within the City if food or drink establishments are involved; and any other duties the Director of Licensing, Inspections and Permits may direct.
C. 
Qualifications.
(1) 
The City Health Inspector shall have knowledge of the following: food protection; inspection requirements and procedures; knowledge of all applicable statutes, codes and regulations governing food handling and preparation, including employee certification requirements; knowledge of proper installation, use and maintenance of equipment and utensils; knowledge of product sampling practices and techniques; interpretation of laboratory results and corrective actions; rights and duties of food establishment management and personnel; knowledge of proper sanitation and use of approved chemicals; and knowledge of proper procedures and regulation requirements for food products.
(2) 
In addition, the Health Inspector shall have knowledge of inspection and investigation procedures concerning public/private housing, mobile home/recreational vehicle parks, health and safety risks of substandard housing, codes, heating, cooling and ventilation systems, utility connections, and child safety hazards.
(3) 
The City Health Inspector shall possess or have the ability to obtain a valid motor vehicle operator's license as issued by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Motor Vehicles. The City Health Inspector shall possess, as a minimum, a high school degree or GED equivalent and certification as a certified food safety professional. Certification must be obtained within two months from date of employment as the City Health Inspector.

§ 256-4 Inspections.

A. 
It shall be the duty of the City Health Inspector to make periodic inspections of all restaurants, food carts or food trucks within the City of Scranton and file reports of such inspections in order to ensure maintenance of said facilities is in a clean and sanitary condition and in order to protect the public against violations of the provisions of Title 7, Chapter 46 of the Pennsylvania Code; Title 7, Chapter 76 of the Pennsylvania Code, the Act of May 23, 1945, as amended by Act 179 of 2002; and/or the provisions of this article.
B. 
Upon inspection, the City Health Inspector shall list all violations and variations from the above codes and laws, and all other facts regarding the same, and shall list corrections required to be made. Notice shall be given to the establishment, along with the time frame in which to cure any violations and variations. Thereafter, the City Health Inspector shall inspect each establishment, as needed, to ensure such corrective action is taken.

§ 256-5 License fees.

A. 
In addition to the fee of $1 exacted for the issuance of such license as provided for by the Pennsylvania Public Eating and Drinking Law, 35 P.S. 655.1 et seq., there shall be paid concurrently with said license fee and prior to the issuance of said license, the amount of $150 for eating and drinking establishments with a seating capacity of one to 25 persons (including establishments that provide takeout services) and $200 for eating and drinking establishments with a capacity of 26 persons or more.
B. 
In addition, any eating or drinking establishment licensed by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, including but not limited to bars, nightclubs, restaurants, mini marts and grocery stores, regardless of seating capacity, shall pay a fee in the amount of $200
C. 
The license fee for a food cart shall be $50 and for a food truck shall be $250.
D. 
The revenue from the license fees defrays the cost of inspections of such establishments and the costs of laboratory tests as required by Pennsylvania statutes, codes and regulations, as well as this article.

§ 256-6 Annual application.

A. 
All restaurants, food carts and food trucks shall be required to apply for a license on an annual basis, as required by the Public Eating and Drinking Law, 35 P.S. 655.1 et seq.
B. 
All restaurants, food carts and food trucks must file an annual business privilege and mercantile tax return to the Single Tax office in order to procure and display an annual business privilege/mercantile tax license.

§ 256-7 License renewal; late fees.

All licenses must be renewed within five business days from the expiration date of the establishment's current license. Failure to renew within the allotted time period shall result in the assessment of a late fee in the amount of double the cost of the license.

§ 256-8 Payment and proof of payment.

All payments of fees, including, but not limited to, license fees, late fees, inspection fees and reinstatement fees, shall be payable to the City of Scranton and are subject to appropriation by the Council of the City of Scranton. The City Treasurer shall issue an appropriate receipt evidencing such payment.

§ 256-9 Issuance of license.

After the City has received the appropriate payment for the license, including payment of any outstanding late fees, inspection fees and reinstatement fees, the City Health Inspector shall issue the appropriate license.

§ 256-10 Revocation, suspension and reinstatement of license.

A. 
Revocation and suspension. If the Director of Licensing, Inspections and Permits, the City Health Inspector, or any other duly appointed and authorized code enforcement officer shall determine that any provisions of Title 7, Chapter 46 of the Pennsylvania Code, known as the "Pennsylvania Food Code," and/or any provision of this article, have been or are currently being violated by an eating or drinking establishment, he or she may revoke or suspend said establishment's license, cause all business operations to cease immediately, and direct that the establishment be immediately vacated and closed.
B. 
Reinstatement. Reinstatement of a revoked or suspended license shall occur only when the act, default or omission which was grounds for the revocation or suspension has been remedied. Whether the act, default or omission has been remedied shall be determined by the Director of Licensing, Inspections and Permits, the City Health Inspector, or any other duly appointed and authorized code enforcement officer in accordance with the Pennsylvania Food Code and/or this article.
C. 
Reinstatement fee. The fee for reinstatement of a revoked or suspended license shall be double the original license fee, as well as payment of any outstanding fees.

§ 256-11 Violations and penalties.

A. 
Health license violation.
(1) 
If any person or persons, firm, or corporation shall conduct an eating or drinking establishment without first paying the fees outlined in § 256-5 and/or without being issued a license, or upon violating any provision of Title 7, Section 46 of the Pennsylvania Code, known as the "Pennsylvania Food Code," said person or persons, firm, or corporation shall, upon conviction of such violation before any District Judge within the City of Scranton, be subject to a fine of not less than $500.
(2) 
Each day that a violation continues shall constitute a separate offense.
B. 
Distance violation pursuant to § 256-2B.
(1) 
Upon citation by Licensing, Inspections and Permits personnel for violation(s) of § 256-2B herein, merchants shall be fined as follows:
(a) 
First offense: written warning.
(b) 
Second and each subsequent offense. $500 for each offense.
(2) 
Each day that a violation continues shall constitute a separate offense.