Town of Leonardtown, MD
St. Marys County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Commissioners (now Mayor and Council) of the Town of Leonardtown 6-11-1973. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Critical areas — See Ch. 60.
Fees, charges and rates — See Ch. 69.
Floodplain management — See Ch. 78.
Stormwater management — See Ch. 125.
Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 128.
Water and sewers — See Ch. 150.
Zoning — See Ch. 155.

§ 131-1 Title.

This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Subdivision Regulations for the Town of Leonardtown, Maryland."

§ 131-2 Interpretation.

In their interpretation and application, the provisions of this chapter shall be held to be the minimum requirements adopted for the protection of the public health, safety and welfare.

§ 131-3 Intent.

To protect the public, among other purposes, such provisions are intended to provide for a permanently wholesome community environment, adequate municipal services and safe streets.

§ 131-4 Applicability.

This chapter shall not apply to any lot or lots forming a part of a subdivision created and recorded prior to the effective date of this chapter, nor is it intended by this chapter to repeal, abrogate, annul or in any way impair or interfere with private restrictions placed upon property by deed, covenant or other private agreement or with restrictive covenants running with the land to which the Town is a party. Where this chapter imposes a greater restriction upon land than is imposed or required by such existing provisions of law, ordinance, contract or deed, the provisions of this chapter shall control.

§ 131-5 Powers of Commission.

[Amended 3-14-1994 by Ord. No. 78]
In accordance with Article 66B of the Annotated Code of Maryland, the Planning and Zoning Commission of Leonardtown, Maryland, is hereby enabled to regulate the subdivision of land within the corporate limits of the Town.

§ 131-6 Purpose.

These regulations are enacted to preserve and promote the public health, safety and welfare of the inhabitants of Leonardtown and of the public generally and to encourage and facilitate the orderly growth and expansion of the Town.

§ 131-7 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
COMMISSION
The Leonardtown Planning and Zoning Commission.
DEVELOPER
Any person, partnership, firm, corporation or cooperative enterprise undertaking or participating in the development of a subdivision.
LOT
A portion of a subdivision or parcel of land for building development, whether immediate or future.
MASTER PLAN
A plan for the physical development of Leonardtown, Maryland, or any amendment or extension of the plan or addition to the plan adopted by the Leonardtown Planning and Zoning Commission.
STREET
A public dedicated way which affords the principal means of access to abutting property, including a street, avenue, place, drive, road, court, highway, pike, cul-de-sac and any other public way except an alley.
A. 
A street intended for the purpose of vehicular traffic to and from residences.
B. 
A street used for heavier volumes of primarily residential traffic and often serves to distribute traffic from minor streets to business streets or major highways.
C. 
A street used to handle both private cars and commercial vehicles, with provision often made for on-street parking spaces. Often such streets serve as the main street in smaller towns.
SUBDIVISION
The division of a lot, tract or parcel of land into two or more lots, plats, sites or other divisions of land for the purpose, whether immediate or future, of sale or of building development, provided that this definition of a "subdivision" shall not include a bona fide division or partition of agriculture land not for development purposes.

§ 131-8 Procedures.

A. 
No person shall subdivide any tract of land which is located wholly or in any part of the Town of Leonardtown nor shall any person sell, exchange or offer for sale or purchase or offer for purchase any parcel of land which is a part of a subdivision of a larger tract of land, nor shall any person offer for recordation any deed conveying such a parcel of land or any interest therein unless he first shall have made or caused to have made a plat thereof, which plat shall be recorded before or at the time such sale, exchange, or purchase is effected and shall be in accordance with all of the following requirements of these regulations.
B. 
Any developer contemplating the subdivision of land shall, previous to offering a lot or lots for sale or beginning any construction, make application to the Deputy State Health Officer of St. Mary's County, Maryland, for a certificate of approval of the proposed site, the minimum size of lots and the requirements of water supply and sewerage disposal.
C. 
The developer shall prepare a preliminary plan of the entire subdivision and present the same to the Town for review, comments and direction.
D. 
The Planning and Zoning Commission reserves the right to refer any and all proposals it deems necessary and appropriate to any agency of the Town and/or county and/or state for review and recommendation.
E. 
The developer shall prepare a preliminary subdivision plat and street profiles and shall present four prints of each to the Commission for approval, each print of the plan to contain the signature of the designee of the Deputy State Health Officer for St. Mary's County.
F. 
The Commission shall approve or disapprove the preliminary subdivision plat and street profiles or approve them with modifications, noting thereon any changes that will be required. One copy shall be returned to the developer, one copy shall be retained for the files of the Commission, and one copy of the plan shall be referred to the Deputy State Health Officer for his files.
G. 
The Commission, in studying the preliminary subdivision plat, shall take into consideration the requirements of the community and the best use of the land being subdivided. Particular attention shall be given to width, arrangement and locations of streets, surface drainage, lot sizes and arrangements, building restriction lines, as well as any Master Plan requirements such as parks, school sites, boulevards and main highways. Adequate street connections shall be required to ensure free access to adjoining subdivisions and lands.
H. 
The developer, following tentative approval of the preliminary subdivision plat and street profiles, shall file with the Commission original drawings of the final subdivision plat and street profiles. These shall be checked by the Commission as to accuracy and required information, as well as the permanent monuments established on the site as certified on the plat. The required number of reproductions thereof for record and filing shall then be made by the Commission at the expense of the subdivider from the final subdivision plat and street profile drawings.
I. 
In accordance with Article 66B of the Annotated Code of Maryland, the Planning and Zoning Commission shall approve or disapprove a final plat, if all subdivision regulations have been complied with, within 30 days after the submission thereof to it; otherwise such plat shall be deemed to have been approved, and a certificate to that effect shall be issued by the Commission on demand; provided, however, that the applicant for the Commission's approval may waive this requirement and consent to an extension of such period. The ground of disapproval of any plat shall be stated upon the records of the Commission. Every plat approved by the Commission shall, by virtue of such approval, be deemed to be an amendment of or an addition to or a detail of the plan and a part thereof. Approval of a plat shall not be deemed to constitute or effect an acceptance by the public of any street or other open space shown upon the plat. The Planning and Zoning Commission may, from time to time, recommend to the local legislative body amendments of the Zoning Ordinance or Map or additions thereto to conform to the Commission's recommendations for the zoning regulation of the territory comprised within approved subdivisions.
[Amended 3-14-1994 by Ord. No. 78]
J. 
The final subdivision plat and street profiles shall be approved by the Commission if found by it to be in conformity with the requirements of Article 17, §§ 71, 72 and 73, of the Annotated Code, State of Maryland, 1951 Edition,[1] and of these regulations. Approval of the final subdivision plat and street profiles shall be by resolution of the Commission and signature of the duly authorized officers inscribed thereon.
[1]
Editor's Note: See now §§ 3-108 and 3-304 of the Real Property Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland.

§ 131-9 General requirements.

A. 
The subdivider shall observe the following general requirements and principles of land subdivision:
(1) 
The plat shall conform to the Master Plan.
(2) 
All streets which are designated as part of the main street and road system on the Master Plan shall be coterminous with the adjoining links in said system and at the same or greater widths.
(3) 
In general, major streets shall have a minimum width of 60 feet, secondary streets a minimum width of 40 feet and parkways such width as may be designated by the Commission.
(4) 
As far as practicable, all proposed streets shall be continuous and in alignment with existing streets.
(5) 
Each block shall be planned to provide two rows of lots.
(6) 
Street corners at the end of a street or where acute angles occur shall be rounded with a radius of not less than 25 feet.
(7) 
In general, side lot lines shall be at right angles or radial to street lines.
(8) 
Reversed frontage of lots at street intersections shall be avoided where possible.
(9) 
Residence lots shall front on a public street.
(10) 
Corner lots shall have a minimum width to provide a twenty-foot side yard along the side street in case no lots within the block are arranged to front thereon or a twenty-five-foot side yard if the side street is used for frontage.
(11) 
Alleys with a minimum width of 20 feet and automobile parking spaces shall be provided in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 155, Zoning, on all lots designed for commercial use and for multiple dwelling units.
(12) 
No land designated as "residential" by the Zoning Plan and Ordinance shall be subdivided if such land is considered unsuitable for residential use by the Commission.
(13) 
In case a parcel is subdivided into larger tracts than for normal building lots, such parcels shall be divided so as to allow for the opening of major streets and the ultimate extension of adjacent minor streets.
(14) 
No subdivision plat shall receive the final approval of the Commission until there has been filed with the Commission complete street profile plans conforming with the requirements of the Commission.
(15) 
Monuments of an approved type shall be set as required and as shown on the final plat.
B. 
A variation of the general requirements may be permitted when, in the opinion of the Commission, a strict observance of these regulations will cause undue hardship.
C. 
The general principles and standards of subdivision design may also be varied in the case of a planned unit development. In such planned unit developments, the procedures for an exploratory application and a detailed planning application shall be followed, as detailed in the Zoning Ordinance, in lieu of the preliminary and final subdivision plats, outlined in §§ 131-10 and 131-11 below.

§ 131-10 Preliminary plats.

A. 
By the first of the month prior to the regularly scheduled monthly meeting, the subdivider shall present to the Commission a preliminary subdivision plat prepared by a competent surveyor or land planner. Seven copies of the preliminary subdivision plat and street profiles shall be filed with the Commission, at a scale of one inch equals 100 feet and at a recommended size of 24 inches by 36 inches, showing the following information:
[Amended 8-9-2004 by Ord. No. 114]
(1) 
The subdivision name.
(2) 
The name and address of the record owner, subdivider and surveyor or land planner.
(3) 
The location, names and present widths of adjacent streets and alleys.
(4) 
A vicinity map showing the location and names of adjacent subdivisions and the names of owners of adjacent acreage.
(5) 
The width and location of all streets and other public ways.
(6) 
Off-street parking spaces.
(7) 
The width and location of all building lines and easements.
(8) 
Lot lines with approximate dimensions.
(9) 
Building restriction lines, both front and side lines.
(10) 
Drainage and sedimentation proposals, to include:
(a) 
The existing topography and the proposed grading and earth disturbance, including proposed final topography, indications of the volume of material and surface area involved and any spoil or borrow area.
(b) 
Storm drainage provisions, including data on the velocities of flow at outfall and site conditions at points of discharge. A minimum ten-year frequency, 10 minutes' time of concentration, storm to calculate rainfall intensity shall be utilized.
(c) 
Erosion and sediment control provision, including design details and schedule of application.
(d) 
Time schedule of construction, indicating the anticipated start and completion of the project, the staging of the grading, storm drainage, utilities and erosion and sediment control.
(e) 
Certification by the developer that all land-clearing construction and development shall be done pursuant to the approved plans.
(f) 
Approval stamp and signature of the Town and Soil Conservation District or signatured letter of approval, forwarded to the Planning and Zoning Commission, to be affixed to the original plat.
(11) 
The proposed uses of property.
(12) 
Public areas proposed, if any.
(13) 
Existing contours or spot elevations, at suitable intervals as determined by the Commission, at two-foot increments, with five-foot increments for grades exceeding 15%.
(14) 
Date, North point and scale.
(15) 
Deed description or survey of plat boundary is to have an accuracy closure of not less than one to five thousand (1:5,000).
(16) 
The abstract of title of the land within the proposed subdivision setting forth all legal or equitable interest therein.
B. 
After filing with the Commission, the preliminary subdivision plat and profiles shall be approved or disapproved by the Commission or approved by the Commission with modifications. Approval shall also be obtained from the appropriate officer of the Health Department of St. Mary's County. Such approval or disapproval shall be indicated on the copies thereof, and the modifications, if any, shall also be indicated on the copies of the preliminary subdivision plats or annexed thereto. If approved, the preliminary subdivision plat shall contain a Town approval stamp. One copy of the preliminary subdivision plat and profile shall be returned to the developer, one copy retained for the files of the Commission and one copy for the Deputy State Health Officer of St. Mary's County. If the preliminary subdivision plat and profiles are approved or approved with modifications, the developer shall proceed promptly to prepare the final subdivision plat and profiles. Unless a final subdivision plat, including the modifications thereof, if any, made by the Commission, is filed with the Commission within six months after the approval of the preliminary subdivision plat, the Commission's approval thereof shall be deemed canceled.

§ 131-11 Final plats.

A. 
Seven copies of the final subdivision plat shall be submitted to the Planning and Zoning Commission by the first of the month prior to the regular monthly meeting. The final subdivision plat shall be clearly and legibly drawn. The Town receives one mylar and one paper copy with all signatures and recordation numbers.
[Amended 8-9-2004 by Ord. No. 115]
B. 
The final subdivision plat shall conform to the specifications contained in Article 17, §§ 71, 72 and 73 of the Annotated Code, State of Maryland, 1951 Edition,[1] and shall show:
(1) 
Design data plans of roads, drainage and sedimentation and sewage and water systems approved by the Town.
(2) 
The street and alley lines, lots, building lines, reservations, easements and areas to be dedicated to public use.
(3) 
Sufficient data to readily determine the location, bearing and length of every street line, lot line, block line and boundary line and to reproduce the same on the ground.
(4) 
The length of radii, arcs, tangents and chords, with chord bearings and central angles of street curves referenced to a curve table.
(5) 
The correct area of each lot in square feet.
(6) 
A properly executed dedication form and surveyor's certificate in accordance with forms as shown in § 131-12 of these regulations.
(7) 
Lots numbered in numerical order. In tracts containing more than one block, the blocks shall be lettered in alphabetical order. In case there is a resubdivision of lots in any block, such resubdivided lots shall be numbered with the prefix 500 and the same number as previously beginning with the lowest number lot affected.
(8) 
Permanent reference monuments shown thus:  shall be placed as required by the Commission. Such permanent reference monuments shall be stone or concrete at least 36 inches in length and six inches square with suitable center points and shall be set flush with the ground and to approved finished grade.
(9) 
The location of metal monuments 3/4 inch in diameter and 24 inches in length shown thus:  and located in the ground at all intersections of streets and alleys with plat boundary lines and at all points on street, alley and boundary lines where there is a change in direction or curvature. All monuments shall be properly set in the ground and to approved finish grade before the final plat is approved.
(10) 
Wherever federal or state survey monuments are available within 1/4 mile of the land to be subdivided for the establishment of state coordinates and state grid azimuth, the exterior boundary of the subdivision shall be shown on the final plat in terms of these coordinates, or, if the land to be subdivided is within 1/4 mile of an area in which local coordinates have been established to an accuracy satisfactory to the Commission and monumented, the boundary of the final plat shall be shown in terms of these coordinates.
(11) 
The final plat shall be accompanied by the computation of the traverse of the boundary of the subdivision showing a closure accuracy of not less than one to ten thousand (1:10,000) signed by the engineer or surveyor, when required by the Commission.
(12) 
The names and locations of adjoining subdivisions and the location and ownership of subdivided property and the location and ownership of acreage.
(13) 
The name of the subdivision, which shall be subject to the approval of the Commission, location, North point and scale.
(14) 
A copy of the restrictions and covenants.
(15) 
A certificate stating that the requirements of §§ 59 to 62, Article 17, of the Annotated Code of Maryland, 1951 Edition,[2] as far as it concerns the making of a plat and setting of the markings, have been complied with shall be put on the plat and signed by the owner/owners of the land shown thereon. The plat shall be signed and sealed by a registered land surveyor.
[2]
Editor's Note: See now §§ 3-108 and 3-304 of the Real Property Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
[1]
Editor's Note: See now §§ 3-108 and 3-304 of the Real Property Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
C. 
Prior to the approval of the final subdivision plat, the developer shall pay to the Commission a planning fee (to be determined by the Town) per lot for engineering services in connection with the investigation and approval of the same.
D. 
The required number of reproductions, tracings and prints for recording, filing and for the record of the Commission and the Deputy State Health Officer shall be obtained by the Commission at the expense of the developer.
E. 
The following shall be required for the purpose of and as a precondition to the signing of the record plat by the Planning Commission.
[Amended 7-10-2006 by Ord. No. 125]
(1) 
An approved plat, with eight copies to be submitted to the Planning and Zoning Commission for recording.
(2) 
A street layout and their relationship to the nearest Town road shall be submitted (one copy) for use of law enforcement and fire protection agencies.
(3) 
Surety bonds guaranteeing performance of the public works agreement and to cover the cost of construction of roads, street signs and sewerage and water shall be submitted, together with surety bonds to cover the payment of all labor and materials associated with such construction.
(a) 
The length of each performance and payment bond will normally be a maximum of three years.
(b) 
All payment and performance bonds must contain an escalator clause to cover the yearly increase in the costs of construction.
(c) 
A schedule of proposed construction must accompany each bond.
(d) 
After review of plans and specifications for the proposed facilities, the amount of each bond shall be based on the Town estimate, plus a ten-percent contingency charge.
[1] 
A bond to cover the cost of construction of roads and street signs shall be submitted to the Town.
[2] 
A bond to cover the cost of construction of sewerage and water facilities shall be submitted to the Town.
(e) 
Any assurance other than a surety bond given by the developer to ensure construction of the facilities must be approved by the Leonardtown Town Commissioners.[3]
[3]
Editor's Note: Pursuant to the 1989 Charter, the Commissioners of Leonardtown are now the Mayor and Council of the Town of Leonardtown.
(f) 
Before the payment bond is released, the developer shall certify in writing that, in accordance with contractual arrangements, contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers have been paid.
(4) 
Public works agreement.
(a) 
A public works agreement will be entered into between the developer and the Town guaranteeing that the public improvements will be installed in accordance with the plans, specifications and schedules approved by the Planning Commission prior to final plat approval. The public works agreement shall include a guarantee of all work and materials installed by the developer pursuant to the agreement for a period of two years, and shall provide for a maintenance bond for a period of two years after the Town's acceptance of public improvements.
(b) 
The public works agreement shall contain provisions by which the developer agrees that the security may be applied by the Town to complete the improvements as agreed and for a maintenance period of two years, after completion of construction of such improvements for the purpose of:
[1] 
Guaranteeing and securing the correction of any defect in material or workmanship furnished for such improvements, latent in character and not discernable at the time of final inspection or acceptance by the Town.
[2] 
Guaranteeing against any damage to such improvements by reason of the settling of the ground, base or foundation thereof. The agreement shall also provide that the security may be applied by the Town for any amounts incurred correcting such defects.

§ 131-12 Forms.

A. 
Forms for dedication for individuals shall appear as follows:
WE _________________, and ____________________________, his wife, owners of the property shown and described hereon, hereby adopt this plan of subdivision, establish the minimum building restriction lines and dedicate the streets, alleys, walks and parks to public use, however, excepting from this dedication any lands designated "two-foot reservations," such lands to be deemed to be dedicated automatically at such times as street extensions adjacent thereto are dedicated in adjoining property.
There are no suits of action, leases, liens or trusts on the property included in this plan of subdivision, except the following:
And all the lienors and other parties in interest thereto have below indicated their assent to this plan of subdivision.
Witnessed:
Date:
______________________________,
LS
______________________________,
LS
We assent to this plan of subdivision.
Witnessed:
Date __________________________
______________________________,
LS
______________________________,
LS
(NOTE: Omit any wording which may not apply. In case the owner is unmarried, this fact should be stated.)
B. 
Forms for dedication for corporations shall appear as follows:
(Same as foregoing form for individual except as indicated below.)
We, (insert name of corporation), a (name of state) corporation, by (insert name), President, and (insert name), Secretary, owners of property, etc., etc.
______________________________
Date
  Name of Corporation
Attest:
______________________________
By
  Secretary
       President
C. 
Engineer's certificates shall appear as follows:
I hereby certify that the plan shown hereon is correct and conforms to the specifications; that it is a subdivision of part of (or all of) the lands conveyed by (insert the name of former owner) to (insert the name of present owner) by deed dated _____________________________ and recorded in the Land Records of _____________________________ in Liber___________________________ at Folio _____________________________ and that stones marked thus:  and iron pipe marked thus:  have been placed as indicated to the approved finish grade.
Date ________________ Signature
(Surveyor or Engineer)

§ 131-13 Special requirements for residential subdivision.

A. 
Every plat for the subdivision of any lot, tract or parcel of land that is a part of an existing subdivision previously recorded in a plat book in the County Land Records shall be subject to the requirement of this section, in addition to the other requirements of these regulations.
B. 
Lots covered by any such plat shall be of substantially the same character as to suitability for residential use, area, street frontage, alignment to streets and restrictions, as other land within the existing subdivision and particularly with reference to similarly situated lots in the locality.
C. 
Where a proposed park, playground or other public use shown in the Master Plan is located in whole or in part within a subdivision, the subdivision shall dedicate or reserve, at the option of the Commission, adequate space for such purpose in such area within the subdivision when the Commission finds the requirements to be reasonably necessary to the public health and welfare.
D. 
Where deemed essential by the Commission, upon consideration of the particular type of development proposed in the subdivision, the Commission may require the dedication or reservation of such other areas or sites of a character, extent and location suitable to the needs by such development.
E. 
Wherever a preliminary plat or final plat proposes the dedication of land to public use and the Commission finds that such land is not required or suitable for public use, the Commission may either refuse to approve the preliminary plat or final plat or it may require the rearrangement of lots to include such lands.
F. 
Upon motion of the Commission or upon petition of any citizens' organization or neighboring property owners, the Commission shall, prior to acting upon the preliminary subdivision plat for any such subdivision, hold a hearing thereon at such time and place and upon such notice as the Commission may designate. All interested parties shall be entitled to appear at any such hearing.

§ 131-14 Restrictions and covenants.

A. 
No final subdivision plat shall be approved until a copy of all restrictions and covenants proposed for the land within the subdivision has been filed with the Commission and such restrictions and covenants have been found by it to be adequate for the protection of public health, safety, morals and welfare and the Commission has received adequate assurance that such restrictions and covenants and no others, will be included in all sale contracts or deeds to the land within the subdivision.
B. 
Restrictions and covenants should be so written that they may be amended to meet changed conditions after approval by a majority of the front-foot ownership within the portion of the subdivision affected.
C. 
The Commission may agree with the applicant upon use, height, area or bulk requirements or restrictions governing buildings and premises within the subdivision, provided that such requirements or restrictions do not authorize the violation of the then-effective Zoning Ordinance of the Town.[1] Such requirements or restrictions shall be stated upon the plat prior to the approval and recording thereof and shall have the same force of law and be enforceable in the same manner and with the same sanctions and penalties and subject to the same power of amendment or repeal as though set out as part of the Zoning Ordinance and Map of the Town.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 155, Zoning.

§ 131-15 Improvements.

A. 
No final grading, sidewalk or pavement construction or any installation of utilities shall be permitted in the bed of any proposed street in any subdivision until the street grade has been officially established and the plat of the same approved by the Commission in final form and placed on record.
B. 
The streets and other ways to be improved and graded by the developer, and all water, sewer and other utility mains, manholes, piping or other facilities and public improvements to be installed by the developer shall not be undertaken until the developer has provided the performance and payment security as provided by § 131-11E.
[Amended 7-10-2006 by Ord. No. 125]
C. 
All sewer and water systems shall be connected to the Town sewer and water systems.
D. 
Underground installation of utilities (including telephone lines, cable television, electricity and others) shall be required for all subdivisions of 10 lots or more. Subdivisions of fewer than 10 lots shall be subject to Planning and Zoning Commission review and recommendations regarding utility installations.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Art. II, General Requirements and Specifications for Street Improvements, which immediately followed this section, was superseded 6-10-1985 by Ord. No. 51-C. See Ch. 128, Streets and Sidewalks, Art. VIII.

§ 131-16 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 3-14-1994 by Ord. No. 78]
Whoever, being the owner or agent of the owner of any land located within a subdivision, transfers or sells or agrees to sell or negotiates to sell any land by reference to or exhibition of or by other use of a plat of a subdivision before such plat has been approved by the Leonardtown Planning and Zoning Commission and recorded or filed in the office of the County Clerk shall forfeit and pay a penalty of not less than $200 nor more than $1,000 for each lot or parcel so transferred or sold or agreed or negotiated to be sold; and the description of such lot or parcel by metes and bounds in the instrument of transfer or other document used in the process of selling or transferring shall not exempt the transaction from such penalties or from the remedies herein provided. The Town Commissioners may enjoin such transfer or sale or agreement by action for injunction brought in any court of equity jurisdiction or may recover the said penalty by civil action in any court of competent jurisdiction.