Township of East Whiteland, PA
Chester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of East Whiteland as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Building construction — See Ch. 65.
Driveway construction — See Ch. 79.
Street opening permits — See Ch. 171.
Subdivision and land development — See Ch. 175.
Zoning — See Ch. 200.
[Adopted 9-27-1973 by Ord. No. 40-73]

§ 159-1 Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
EXCESS TOPSOIL
That portion of the surface soil replaced by a new building, structure or addition thereto or replaced by any paved area used for parking or vehicular movement.
HARVESTING
The systematic removal of topsoil for sale purposes.
TOPSOIL
The top dark layer of the soil profile. It is organic in nature and is leached of soluble minerals and clay.

§ 159-2 Restrictions.

No topsoil shall be removed for sale purposes or for any other reason from any property in East Whiteland Township except for the following:
A. 
During or immediately prior to building construction on any site, excess topsoil may be removed and sold. Upon completion of the construction, the entire amount of topsoil, with the exception of the excess, shall be replaced on the site.
B. 
Contractors who are harvesting on the effective date of this article may continue their operations until June 1, 1974. To qualify under this provision, a contractor must have a legitimate agreement with the property owner made no later than June 1, 1973. Any extension of this date must be obtained by special permit from the Board of Supervisors at a public meeting.

§ 159-3 Standards for harvesting operations.

All harvesting operations must comply with the following standards:
A. 
The contractor shall be required to leave at least two inches of topsoil on the ground being harvested. The soil shall be piled in wind rows and unless the soil is to be removed immediately for sale or use, it shall be covered with canvas or other appropriate material which shall prevent dust blowing from the wind rows.
B. 
Within 15 days after harvesting the soil, the contractor shall seed the ground to effectively prevent erosion or the harmful diversion of surface water.

§ 159-4 Adverse effects.

The stripping, piling, removal, replacement or harvesting of topsoil is to be done in such a manner as will not create heavy dust or cause mud or flooding of any roads, properties or streams.

§ 159-5 Permit required.

A permit must be obtained from the Township before any topsoil can be stripped, piled, removed or replaced. The application submitted shall contain the following information:
A. 
Location of construction or harvesting site.
B. 
Name and address of property owner.
C. 
Signature of property owner.
D. 
Name and address of contractor or harvester.
E. 
Type of construction or harvesting.
F. 
Depth of existing stratum or topsoil; at least three core samples three inches into the subsoil must be taken per acre.
G. 
Plan, accurately dimensioned and prepared by a qualified engineer, showing areas where topsoil will be removed and areas where topsoil will be restored and showing existing and final grades. The engineer must certify on the plan that no drainage or flooding conditions will be created.

§ 159-6 Enforcement notice.

[Amended 11-21-2000 by Ord. No. 132-2000]
The Township Building Inspector, Codes Enforcement Officer, Engineer and any employee of the Township designated for the purpose shall be authorized to enforce the provisions of this article. If it appears that a violation of this article has occurred, the Township Codes Enforcement Officer shall issue an enforcement notice to the property owner, contractor, harvester or other person stripping the topsoil in violation of the terms of this article. Such notice shall be personally delivered or sent via certified mail to the owner of record of the parcel where the violation has occurred, to any person who has filed a written request to receive enforcement notices regarding that parcel, and to any other person requested in writing by the owner of record. The enforcement notice shall state the following:
A. 
The name of the owner of record and any other person against whom the Township intends to take action.
B. 
The location of the property where the violation has occurred.
C. 
The specific violation of this article.
D. 
The date before which steps for compliance must be commenced and the date before which steps must be completed.
E. 
That failure to comply with the notice within the time specified constitutes a violation with possible sanctions imposed.

§ 159-7 Application for permit; fee.

[Amended 11-21-2000 by Ord. No. 132-2000]
All applications submitted under the provisions of this article shall be approved or denied by the Township Building Inspector. There shall be a fee as set from time to time by resolution of the Board of Supervisors for any permit issued.

§ 159-8 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 11-21-2000 by Ord. No. 132-2000]
Any person who violates or permits the violation of any provision of this article, including the owner, general agent or contractor of property or premises where such violation has been committed or shall exist; the lessee or tenant of the property or entire premises where such violation has been committed or shall exist; the owner, general agent, contractor, lessee or tenants of any part of the property or premises in which part such violation has been committed or shall exist; and the general agent, architect, contractor or other person who knowingly commits, takes part or assists in any such violation or who maintains any property or premises in which such violations shall exist, shall, upon being found liable therefor in a civil enforcement proceeding commenced by the Township before a District Justice, pay a fine for each such violation in an amount not less than $100 and not more than $1,000, plus all court costs, including reasonable attorney's fees incurred by the Township. No judgment shall be imposed until the date of the determination of a violation by the District Justice. If the defendant neither pays nor timely appeals the judgment, the Township may enforce the judgment pursuant to the applicable rules of civil procedure.

§ 159-9 Exceptions.

This article shall not apply to the following:
A. 
Quarries.
B. 
Road construction.
C. 
Sanitary landfills.

§ 159-10 Most restrictive regulations to prevail.

Where applicable, regulations of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection will have supersedence if they are more restrictive than the provisions of this article.
[Adopted 12-30-1974 by Ord. No. 47-74]

§ 159-11 Purpose; title.

The purpose of this article is to regulate modification of natural terrain and alteration of drainage by providing for certain erosion and sediment control measures within East Whiteland Township (the "Township") to protect public health, safety and welfare. This article shall be known as the "East Whiteland Township Soil and Erosion, Sedimentation and Grading Control Ordinance." It implements Title 25, Rules and Regulations, Part I, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Environmental Protection, Subpart C, Protection of Natural Resources, Article II, Water Resources, Chapter 102, Erosion Control.

§ 159-12 Regulations.

A. 
Permit required; inspections.
(1) 
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to engage in activities which disturb the topography and vegetation of land without first securing a grading permit. The following activities are specifically covered:
(a) 
Alteration of existing grade by excavation, paving, filling or stripping.
(b) 
Disturbance of natural overland or subsurface flow of storm water by diversion, blockage, or alteration of flow rate through grading and/or denudation.
(c) 
Obstruction of the natural drainage of land by construction, erection or installation of dams, retaining walls, ditches, culverts, drain pipes, bridges and other structures.
(2) 
Issuance of a permit shall be conditional upon approval of an erosion and sedimentation control plan to accompany the application for permit as detailed in § 159-13.
B. 
During the course of an activity for which a permit has been issued, inspections shall be conducted periodically to ensure that the approved control plan is implemented in accordance with the control standards outlined in § 159-14. Persons designated by the Township to perform such inspections shall be given free access to the site of the activity and to all information necessary to determine the level of compliance with this article. Underground features such as pipes, subgrades, base course and other structures installed as part of the approved control plan shall not be covered until inspected and approved by the Township Engineer.
C. 
Enforcement.
[Amended 11-21-2000 by Ord. No. 132-2000]
(1) 
The Township Building Inspector, Codes Enforcement Officer, Engineer and any employee of the Township designated for the purpose shall be authorized to enforce the provisions of this article. Whenever it appears that an activity covered by Subsection A above is carried out in violation of this article, the Township Codes Enforcement Officer shall issue an enforcement notice to the property owner, contractor, harvester or other person who disturbs the topography and vegetation of land without a permit. Such notice shall be personally delivered or sent via certified mail to the owner of record of the parcel where the violation has occurred, to any person who has filed a written request to receive enforcement notices regarding that parcel, and to any other person requested in writing by the owner of record. The enforcement notice shall state the following:
(a) 
The name of the owner of record and any other person against whom the Township intends to take action.
(b) 
The location of the property where the violation has occurred.
(c) 
The specific violation of this article.
(d) 
The date before which steps for compliance must be commenced and the date before which steps must be completed.
(e) 
That failure to comply with the notice within the time specified constitutes a violation with possible sanctions imposed.
(2) 
In addition to sending an enforcement notice, the Township may institute, in addition to other remedies provided by law, any appropriate actions or proceedings to prevent such unlawful activity; to restrain, correct or abet such violation; to prevent the use of the applicable premises; or to prevent any illegal act, conduct, business or use in or about such premises; or to impose prescribed penalties for such violation.

§ 159-13 Application for permit.

A. 
Procedure.
(1) 
Any person, firm or corporation proposing to engage in activity requiring a permit hereunder shall apply for same by written (four copies) application. A separate application shall be required for each grading permit.
(2) 
The applicant is encouraged to consult with municipalities which can be affected by, or can affect, the proposed land development. He should also consult Chapter 200, Zoning, and Chapter 175, Subdivision and Land Development, of the Code of Township of East Whiteland which regulate the development of land within the Township.
B. 
Data required for permit shall be as follows:
(1) 
The application for a permit shall be accompanied by four sets of plans showing:
(a) 
An area plan, or plans describing existing and proposed features of the area surrounding the site of the work, including topography, existing vegetation, water courses, man-made features, the affected watersheds and other pertinent natural features. The plan(s) may be in the form of recent USGS map(s) with the property and required features located thereon.
(b) 
A topographical survey plan of the site, at a suitable scale of no less than one inch equals 50 feet and contour interval of no more than two feet, prepared by a registered engineer or surveyor, and including also a boundary line survey, the location and description of vegetative cover, soil types (available from Chester County Soil Conservation District) and any other pertinent existing natural or man-made features.
(c) 
An improvement plan at the same scale as Subsection B(1)(b) showing and describing all changes to the site including cuts, fills, structures, paving and utilities. [This may be combined with Subsection B(1)(b) on simple projects.]
(2) 
A written description of soil erosion and sediment control measures (with appropriate plans and specifications), in accordance with the standards of § 159-14.
(3) 
A time schedule indicating the anticipated starting and completion dates of the development sequence, and the time of exposure of each area prior to the completion of effective erosion and sediment control measure.
(4) 
Special requirements.
(a) 
When the area of the site to be disturbed exceeds one acre, or when smaller sites are environmentally sensitive because of the presence of watercourses or unusual drainage conditions, the Township Engineer may require any or all of the following additional information. This information shall be supplied when the area to be disturbed exceeds five acres, and it shall then be prepared by a registered professional civil engineer or other professional qualified in hydrology:
[1] 
A plan shall indicate present and proposed sources storage and disposition of water being channeled through or across the site, together with elevations, gradients, and maximum flow rates. The applications shall describe the work to be performed, the materials to be used, and the manner or method of performance, including provisions for protecting and maintaining existing drainage facilities, whether on public or private property.
[2] 
Calculations to determine runoff shall be based on the Soil-Cover Complex Method, which is available from the USDA Soil Conservation Service, West Chester. The design criteria for storm water piping shall be in accordance with the standards of § 159-14. The coefficient of runoff used for all areas upstream of any drainage structure shall be computed on the basis of the projected land use contained in the Township Comprehensive Plan.
(b) 
If load-bearing fill is proposed, a soils investigation report shall be submitted. The investigation shall consist of test borings, laboratories testings and engineering analyses to correlate surface and subsurface conditions with the proposed grading plan. The report shall indicate data regarding the nature, distribution and bearing capabilities of existing soils and rocks on the site; conclusions and recommendations to ensure stable soil conditions; and groundwater control, as applicable. The Township may require such supplemental reports and data as is deemed necessary by the Township Engineer.
(5) 
Three copies of the above required items shall be supplied with each application for a permit. One of the copies shall be submitted to the Chester County Conservation District for review and comment.
C. 
Approval. The Township shall approve and sign all permits. Fees shall be collected directly by the Township.
D. 
Fees.
[Amended 11-21-2000 by Ord. No. 132-2000]
(1) 
A fee as set from time to time by resolution of the Board of Supervisors is required upon initial submission of an application under this article except that where the application involves less than an acre of area, the fee shall be waived.
(2) 
Cost of all inspections will be billed to the Applicant as inspections are completed at the rate per inspection as set from time to time by resolution of the Board of Supervisors, and no permit will be issued until all payments have been made. If an applicant has paid a permit fee under another ordinance of East Whiteland Township or under a state regulation for the same activity, said fee shall be applied to any permit fee collectible under this article.

§ 159-14 Control standards.

A. 
General provisions.
(1) 
All erosion, sedimentation and grading activities shall be so performed as not to endanger or damage public or private property, or to cause physical damage or personal injury. All precaution shall be taken to prevent damage of adjoining streets, sidewalks, buildings and other structures as a result of settling, cracking, erosion, or sedimentation. The permittee is responsible for any damage or personal injury caused by his activity authorized by the permit.
(2) 
Temporary measures shall be instituted to prevent or control erosion during the course of implementation of an activity for which a permit has been issued.
(a) 
Temporary ditches, dikes, vegetation and/or mulching should be used to protect critical areas exposed during the period.
(b) 
Sediment basins should be installed and maintained to remove sediment from runoff waters.
(3) 
All watercourses, drainage ditches, culverts, drain pipes and drainage structures shall be kept open and free flowing at all times.
(4) 
The owner of any property on which any work has been done pursuant to a permit granted under this article shall continuously maintain and repair all graded surfaces and antierosion devices such as retaining walls, drainage structures or means, plantings and ground cover, installed or completed. Each permit holder shall advise transferees of property covered by a permit in writing of the requirements of this section, prior to entry of a binding agreement of sale for such property.
(5) 
The applicant for a permit under this article shall agree to the granting and recording of easements for drainage facilities, including the acceptance of the discharge of water from the property of others, provisions for maintenance of slopes and swales, and access for the maintenance of antierosion devices.
(6) 
All plans and specifications accompanying applications for permits shall include provisions for both temporary and permanent erosion and sediment control.
(7) 
All plans, in addition to any requirements hereunder, shall also meet all of the requirements of Appendix B to Chapter 170, "Post Construction Stormwater Management."
[Added 6-14-2006 by Ord. No. 182-2006]
B. 
Grading.
(1) 
No grading operations shall reduce the existing topsoil layer to a depth of less than two inches or the prevailing average depth, whichever is smaller. Where excavations deeper than the topsoil depth are involved, the topsoil layer shall be removed, saved, and protected from erosion prior to the excavation, and replaced subsequently as the top layer of the final grading.
(2) 
All surfaces shall be seeded, sodded, planted or otherwise protected from erosion within 60 days, and shall be watered, tended and maintained until growth is well established. The disturbed area and duration of exposure shall be kept to a practical minimum.
(3) 
Precautions shall be taken to prevent the unnecessary removal of trees and their protection by suitable tree wells, as determined by the Township Engineer.
(4) 
When required, adequate provisions shall be made for dust control measures as determined by the Township Engineer.
(5) 
All fill material shall be compacted to a degree necessary to ensure stability under intended usage.
(6) 
Wherever load bearing fill is to be used, each layer of compacted fill shall be tested to determine its dry density per ASTM D 1556. The density of each layer shall not be less than 95% of maximum dry density as determined by ASTM D 9557.
(7) 
Fills toeing out on natural slopes steeper than four horizontal to one vertical shall not be made unless approved by the Township Engineer after receipt of a report by a registered professional engineer, qualified in soils analysis, certifying that he has investigated the property, made soil tests, and that in his opinion such steeper slopes will safely support the proposed fill.
(8) 
Natural and/or existing slopes exceeding five horizontal to one vertical shall be benched or continuously stepped into competent materials, as determined by the Township Engineer, prior to placing all classes of fill.
C. 
Drainage.
(1) 
All runoff shall be disposed of without damage to the site of activity or adjacent properties, roads or structures.
(2) 
The amount of runoff to be accommodated shall be as specified by either Chapter 175, Subdivision and Land Development, of the Code of the Township of East Whiteland or the Chester County Soil Conservation District.
(3) 
The design, installation and maintenance of erosion and sediment control measures, as required by this article or Chapter 175, Subdivision and Land Development, shall be accomplished in accordance with the standards and specifications established by the Chester County Soil Conservation District and USDA Soil Conservation Service, except as otherwise stipulated in this or other applicable Township ordinances.
(4) 
All drainage facilities shall be designed in the most practical fashion to control surface water runoff in such a manner as to prevent erosion and flooding. Such facilities shall be designed to retard the rate of stormwater runoff to approximately the same rate as that existing prior to construction of the project.

§ 159-15 Inspections.

A. 
All inspections shall be the responsibility of the Township Engineer or, in his absence, a qualified person appointed by the Township.
B. 
Inspections will be carried out on a random basis, except for the final inspection and for inspections of underground devices and structures which shall be inspected just prior to their being covered. A set of "as-built" plans shall be on file at the site, and if required by Subsection C hereof, they shall be authenticated by a registered professional engineer.
C. 
Engineering calculations shall accompany all as-built plans which involve structural or mechanical field changes, and shall serve as supporting evidence that structures meet design standards and specifications as contained herein.
D. 
Compaction test reports shall be kept on file at the site at all times.
E. 
A final inspection shall be conducted by the Township Engineer to certify compliance with this article. Satisfactory compliance with this article shall be necessary before issuance of an occupancy permit if applicable.

§ 159-16 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 10-9-1989; 7-2-1996 by Ord. No. 111-96]
Any person who violates or permits the violation of any provision of this article, including the owner, general agent, or contractor of a building or premises where such violation has been committed or shall exist; the lessee or tenant of an entire building or entire premises where such violation has been committed shall exist; the owner, general agent, contractor, lessee or tenants of any part of a building or premises in which part such violation has been committed or shall exist; and the general agent, architect, contractor or other person who knowingly commits, takes part or assists in any such violation or who maintains any building or premises in which such violations shall exist, shall, upon being found liable therefor in a civil enforcement proceeding commenced by the Township before a District Justice, pay a fine for each such violation in an amount not less than $100 and not more than $1,000, plus all court costs, including reasonable attorney's fees, incurred by the Township. No judgment shall be imposed until the date of the determination of a violation by the District Justice. If the defendant neither pays nor timely appeals the judgment, the Township may enforce the judgment pursuant to the applicable rules of civil procedure.

§ 159-17 Revocation or suspension of permit.

Any permit issued under this article may be revoked or suspended by the Township, after notice for:
A. 
Failure to carry out the control measures described in the application at the appropriate times as specified in the applicable time schedule or within such reasonable extension as may be granted by the Township Engineer;
B. 
Violation of any condition of the permit;
C. 
Violation of any provision of this article or any applicable law, ordinance, rule or regulation relating to the work; and
D. 
Existence of any condition or the doing of any act constituting or creating a nuisance, hazard or endangering human life or the property of others.

§ 159-18 Performance bond.

The Township Engineer, before issuing a permit for a project which exceeds five acres, shall require cash bond or corporate surety bond in a form satisfactory to him conditioned upon the faithful performance of the control measures and other conditions specified in the permit within the time specified, or within any extension thereof granted by the Township Engineer in the amount of the total estimated cost of all control measures and safeguards for adjoining properties. Said bond may be combined with a bond filed under Chapter 175, Subdivision and Land Development, of the Code of the Township of East Whiteland. Each bond shall be maintained and renewed annually and shall be executed by a surety or guaranty company qualified to transact business in the state.

§ 159-19 Remedies.

In case of any paving, filling, stripping, grading or regrading; any disturbing, modifying, blocking or diverting the natural overland or subsurface flow of stormwater; or any construction, erection and installation of any dam, ditch, culvert, drain pipe, bridge, or other structure or obstruction affecting the drainage of any premises, in violation of this article, or any regulations made pursuant thereto, the proper Township authorities, in addition to or proceedings to prevent such unlawful activity; to restrain, correct or abate such violation; to prevent the use of the applicable premises. In addition, upon the failure of any permit holder to complete the control measures specified in his application, the Township may, after revoking such permit, proceed to complete such measures itself, and recover the cost thereof from the permittee or his surety.