[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Lower Salford as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Article I Fire Insurance Claims
[Adopted 3-18-1993 by Ord. No. 93-2]
The Township Manager or such official's designee is hereby appointed as the designated officer who is authorized to carry out all responsibilities and duties stated herein.
No insurance company, association or exchange (hereinafter the "insuring agent") doing business in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania shall pay a claim of a named insured for fire damage to a structure located within Lower Salford Township (hereinafter the "municipality"), where the amount recoverable for the fire loss to the structure under all policies exceeds $5,000, unless the named insured or insuring agent is furnished by the Municipal Treasurer with a municipal certificate pursuant to Section 508(b) of Act 98 of 1992 and unless there is compliance with Section 508(c) and (d) of Act 98 of 1992 and the provisions of this article.
Where, pursuant to Section 508(b)(1)(i) of Act 98 of 1992, the Municipal Treasurer issues a certificate indicating that there are no delinquent taxes, assessments, penalties or user charges against real property, the insuring agent shall pay the claim of the named insured; provided, however, that if the loss is agreed upon by the named insured and the insuring agent equals or exceeds 60% of the aggregate limits of liability on all fire policies covering the building restructure, the following procedures must be followed:
The insuring agent shall transfer from the insurance proceeds to the designated officer of the municipality in the aggregate of $1,000 for each $20,000 of a claim and for each fraction of that amount of a claim, this subsection to be applied such that if the claim is $20,000 or less, the amount transferred to the municipality shall be $1,000.
If at the time of a proof of loss agreed to between the named insured and the insuring agent, the named insured has submitted a contractor's signed estimate of the costs of removing, repairing or securing the building or other structure, the insuring agent shall transfer to the municipality from the insurance proceeds the amount specified in the estimate.
The transfer of proceeds shall be on a prorate basis by all companies, associations or exchanges insuring the building or other structure.
After the transfer, the named insured may submit a contractor's signed estimate of the costs of removing, repairing or securing the building or other structure, and the designated officer shall return the amount of the funds transferred to the municipality in excess of the estimate of the named insured, if the municipality has not commenced to remove, repair or secure the building or other structure.
Upon receipt of proceeds under this subsection, the municipality shall do the following:
The designated officer shall place the proceeds in the separate fund to be used solely as security against the total costs of removing, repairing or securing the building or structure which are incurred by the municipality. Such costs shall include, without limitation, any engineering, legal or administrative costs incurred by the municipality in connection with such removal, repair or securing of the building or any proceedings related thereto.
It is the obligation of the insuring agent when transferring the proceeds to provide the municipality with the name and address of the named insured. Upon receipt of the transferred funds and the name and address of the named insured, the designated officer shall contact the named insured, certify that the proceeds have been received by the municipality and notify the insured that the procedures under this subsection shall be followed.
When repairs, removal or securing of the building or other structure have been completed in accordance with all applicable regulations and orders of the municipality and the required proof of such completion received by the designated officer, and if the municipality has not incurred any costs for repairs, removal or securing, the fund shall be returned to the named insured. If the municipality has incurred costs for repairs, removal or securing of the building or other structure, the cost shall be paid from the fund, and if excess funds remain, the municipality shall transfer the remaining funds to the named insured.
To the extent that interest is earned on proceeds held by the municipality pursuant to this subsection and not returned to the named insured, such interest shall belong to the municipality. To the extent that proceeds are returned to the named insured, interest earned on such proceeds shall be distributed to the named insured at the time that the proceeds are returned.
Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to limit the ability of the municipality to recover any deficiency. Furthermore, nothing in this subsection shall be construed to prohibit the municipality and the named insured from entering into an agreement that permits the transfer of funds to the named insured of some other reasonable disposition if the damaged property has been negotiated.
The Board of Supervisors may by resolution adopt procedures and regulations to implement Act 98 of 1992 and this article and may by resolution fix reasonable fees to be charged for municipal activities of certificates and bills, performance of inspections and opening separate fund accounts.
[Amended 9-19-1996 by Ord. No. 96-3; 6-3-1998 by Ord. No. 98-4; 11-18-1999 by Ord. No. 99-16]
An owner of property, any named insured or any insuring agent who violates this article shall pay a civil penalty not to exceed $600 per violation. When the penalty imposed for the violation of this article is not voluntarily paid to the Township, the Township shall initiate a civil enforcement proceeding before a District Justice. The civil enforcement proceeding shall be initiated by a complaint or by such other means as may be provided by the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure. In addition to or in lieu of civil actions before a District Justice, the Township may enforce the ordinance in equity. In any case where a penalty for a violation of this article has not been timely paid and the person upon whom the penalty is imposed is found to have been liable therefor in civil proceedings, a violator shall be liable for the penalty imposed, including additional daily penalties for continuing violations, plus court costs and reasonable attorney's fees incurred by the Township in the enforcement proceedings.
The provisions of this article shall be severable, and if any of the provisions hereof shall be invalid or unenforceable, the remaining provisions of this article shall remain in effect.
All ordinances or parts of ordinances conflicting with any of the provisions of this article are hereby repealed insofar as same affects this article.
This article shall become effective immediately.