Township of Middlesex, PA
Butler County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents

§ 175-190
Introduction and consideration. 

§ 175-191
Petitions. 

§ 175-192
Required referrals. 

§ 175-193
Posting of notice of hearing. 

§ 175-194
Public hearing. 

§ 175-195
Mediation. 

§ 175-196
Filing amendment with county planning commission. 

§ 175-197
Rehearing. 

§ 175-198
Landowner curative amendments. 

The Township Supervisors may introduce and consider amendments to this chapter and to the Zoning Map as proposed by a Supervisor, by the Planning Commission or by a petition of a landowner within the Township.

Petitions for amendment shall be filed with the Planning Commission, and the petitioner, upon such filing, shall pay an advertising deposit and a filing fee in accordance with a schedule affixed from time to time by resolution of the Township Supervisors. The Planning Commission shall review the proposed amendment and report its findings and recommendations in writing to the Township Supervisors and to the petitioner.

A. 

Referral to Township Planning Commission. Any proposed amendment introduced by a Township Supervisor without written findings and recommendations from the Planning Commission shall be referred to the Planning Commission for review at least 30 days prior to public hearing by the Township. The Planning Commission shall report its findings and recommendations in writing to the Township Supervisors within such reasonable time prior to the public hearing as the Township Supervisors may specify in the referring action.

B. 

Referral to County Planning Commission. The proposed amendment shall be submitted to the Butler County Planning Commission for recommendations at least 30 days prior to the public hearing on the amendment by the Township Supervisors.

In the case where a proposed amendment involves the rezoning of property, notice of said public hearing shall be conspicuously posted by the Township at points deemed sufficient by the Township along the perimeter of the tract to notify potentially interested citizens. The affected tract or area shall be posted at least one week prior to the date of the public hearing.

A. 

Before acting upon a proposed amendment, the Township Supervisors shall hold a public hearing thereon. Notice of such public hearing, containing a brief summary of the proposed amendment and a reference to the place where copies of the same may be examined, shall be published once each week for two successive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the Township. The first publication shall be no more than 30 days and the second notice shall be not less than seven days prior to the date of hearing.

B. 

If, after any public hearing held upon an amendment, the proposed amendment is changed substantially, or is revised to include land previously not affected by it, the Township Supervisors shall hold another public hearing, pursuant to public notice, before proceeding to vote on the amendment.

The Township may offer a mediation option as an aid in completing proceedings authorized by this article. In excercising such an option, the Township and the mediating parties shall meet the stipulations and follow the procedures set forth in § 175-179 of this chapter.

Within 30 days after enactment, a copy of the amendment to this chapter shall be forwarded to the Butler County Planning Commission.

If any petition for amendment is denied, another identical application shall not be filed within a period of one year from the date of denial, except upon acceptance of the Township Supervisors after the petitioner demonstrates a change of circumstances which would warrant a rehearing.

Any landowner who wishes to challenge, on substantive grounds, the validity of this chapter or Map or any provision thereof which prohibits or restricts the use or development of land in which he has an interest may prepare and submit a curative amendment to the Township Supervisors, in the form he proposes it be adopted, together with a written request that his challenge and proposed amendment be heard. The Township Supervisors shall hold a public hearing, pursuant to public notice, on the matter within 60 days of receiving the request at a regular monthly meeting.

A. 

Referral to Planning Commission. The curative amendment and challenge shall be referred to the Township Planning Commission and County Planning Commission at least 30 days prior to the public hearing for review and comment.

B. 

Public hearing. The Township Supervisors shall conduct a public hearing in accordance with procedures governing a hearing before the Zoning Hearing Board as stipulated by Section 908 of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code.

Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10908.

C. 

Evaluation of merits of curative amendment. If the Township Supervisors determine that a validity challenge has merit, the Township Supervisors may accept a landowner's curative amendment, with or without revision, or may adopt an alternative amendment which will cure the challenged defects. The Township Supervisors shall consider the curative amendments, plans and explanatory material submitted by the landowner and shall also consider:

(1) 

The impact of the proposal upon roads, sewer facilities, water supplies, schools and other public service facilities;

(2) 

If the proposal is for a residential use, the impact of the proposal upon regional housing needs and the effectiveness of the proposal in providing housing units of a type actually available to and affordable by classes of persons otherwise unlawfully excluded by the challenged provisions of this chapter or Map;

(3) 

The suitability of the site for the intensity of use proposed by the site's soils, slopes, woodlands, wetlands, floodplains, aquifers, natural resources and other natural features;

(4) 

The impact of the proposed use on the site's soils, slopes, woodlands, wetlands, floodplains, natural resources and natural features, the degree to which these are protected or destroyed, the tolerance of the resources to development and any adverse environmental impacts; and

(5) 

The impact of the proposal on the preservation of agriculture and other land uses which are essential to public health and welfare.

D. 

Declaration of invalidity by the court. If the Township does not accept a landowner's curative amendment brought in accordance with this section and a court subsequently rules that the challenge has merit, the court's decision shall not result in a declaration of invalidity for this entire Ordinance, but only for those provisions which specifically relate to the landowner's curative amendment and challenge.