Township of Upper Merion, PA
Montgomery County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of Upper Merion Township as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Garbage, rubbish and refuse — See Ch. 91.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 127.
Fees — See Ch. A173.
[Adopted 9-28-1964 by Ord. No. 64-143]
It shall be unlawful to store or deposit abandoned or junked automobiles, trucks, other vehicles or parts thereof on any public or private property, vacant or occupied, within Upper Merion Township, where the same is found to be a nuisance in fact.
A. 
Any person, firm, association or corporation carrying on the business of or maintaining a storage place or deposit for one or more abandoned or junked automobiles, trucks or other vehicles or parts thereof within Upper Merion Township shall secure a license and pay a license fee as provided for in Chapter A173, Fees, payable on or before January 1 of every year.
[Amended 2-22-1988 by Ord. No. 88-529]
B. 
Such license shall not be issued until the following conditions have been complied with:
(1) 
The storage area, whenever it is fronted by a public highway, is shielded by a six-foot-high opaque fence or other permanent structure or is similarly shielded by shrubs or trees which, in the judgment of the Township Manager and Township Engineer, will provide sufficient screening, provided that where the storage area is located further than 150 feet from the public highway fronting same, no fence shall be required.
(2) 
The storage area is set back 50 feet from any and all streets abutting the property.
(3) 
Such other conditions and specifications as the Supervisors, by resolution, may prescribe to protect the health, safety and general welfare of Upper Merion Township.
C. 
The above license fee shall be deemed revoked should any of the conditions set forth in Subsection B above, including the conditions and specifications authorized by Subsection B(3), be violated, and said violation shall constitute a violation of this article.
D. 
Any individual, firm, association or corporation that shall fail or refuse to obtain such a license shall be subject to the fines and penalties set forth in § 107-3 of this article.
E. 
When used in this article, "abandoned or junked" automobile, truck or vehicle shall mean any one or more of the following:
(1) 
A vehicle for which a certificate of junk has been issued by the Pennsylvania Secretary of Revenue or the official designated by any other state to issue such certificates.
(2) 
Any vehicle in or on which it is found that any of the following exists:
(a) 
Its engine or motor or essential motor parts have been removed for more than 30 days.
(b) 
Its tires or any tire have been deflated or its wheels have been removed for more than seven days.
(c) 
It bears no official inspection sticker or any such sticker is not current by more than 30 days, provided that a vehicle under repair which is bona fide intended for future use or a vehicle placed upon any premises at the direction of any police officer or any vehicle which is being disassembled by the owner thereof for parts, which parts the owner intends to and does install in other vehicles owned and operated by him in his business, shall not be deemed within the foregoing definition.
F. 
All persons, firms, associations, partnerships or corporations carrying on an activity for which a license is required under this article shall have six months from the effective date of this article to comply with its terms.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Original Sections III through VI, which immediately followed this section, concerning unlawful offensive activities, unlawful unsafe buildings, notification of nuisances or unsafe buildings, correction of conditions and the collection of costs, were repealed 5-10-1971 by Ord. No. 71-273. For current provisions, see Art. II, Offensive Activities, of this chapter.
[Amended 12-31-1991 by Ord. No. 91-593]
Any person who shall violate any of the provisions of this article or who shall fail to comply with any notice from the Supervisors aforesaid, upon conviction thereof, shall forfeit and pay a fine as set forth in Article III, General Penalty Provisions, of Chapter 1, General Provisions, the same to be collected by summary proceedings brought in the name of the township. A new and separate offense shall be deemed to be committed for each day that such violation exists after notice to abate has been received or after conviction therefor. In default of the payment of any fine and costs imposed under the provisions of this section or upon failure to pay the costs of abating a nuisance as aforesaid, the person or persons so charged may be sentenced and committed to the county jail for a period not exceeding 30 days.
[Adopted 5-10-1971 by Ord. No. 71-273]
It shall be unlawful to throw, deposit or dump or to maintain any accumulation of solid waste materials in or on any property, vacant or occupied, or to litter on or along any road within Upper Merion Township, except as hereinafter provided. "Solid waste" shall mean garbage, refuse and other discarded materials, including but not limited to solid and liquid waste materials resulting from industrial, commercial, agricultural and residential activities.
A. 
It shall be unlawful to dump or deposit solid waste as aforesaid unless:
(1) 
The property has been designated as a disposal area by the Board of Supervisors of Upper Merion Township.
(2) 
The access to and use of the property is conducted in strict compliance with any such rules and regulations as may be promulgated by the Board of Supervisors.
(3) 
The use to be conducted shall not be contrary to the public health, safety and general welfare.
(4) 
Approval of such property as a disposal area and of such use must be had and received from the Department of Health of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
(5) 
A permit has been issued by the Board of Supervisors of Upper Merion Township.
B. 
Any applicant for a permit as aforesaid from Upper Merion Township shall make application for an annual license for which a fee as provided in Chapter A173, Fees, shall be charged. In addition to the penalties hereinafter set forth, said license may be revoked at any time by the Board of Supervisors in the event of a violation by the licensee of any of the provisions of this article or the rules and regulations promulgated hereunder.
[Amended 2-22-1988 by Ord. No. 88-529]
[Added 10-20-2005 by Ord. No. 2005-749]
A. 
Specific prohibited acts. The following actions are specifically prohibited regardless of the sound level which is emitted, unless otherwise exempted in this chapter:
(1) 
No person shall own, possess, harbor or control any animal or bird which howls, barks, meows, squawks or makes other sounds continuously and/or incessantly for a period of 10 minutes or makes such noise intermittently for 1/2 hour or more to the disturbance of any person at any time of the day or night, regardless of whether the animal or bird is situated in or upon private property; provided, however, that at the time the animal or bird is making such noise, no person is trespassing or threatening to trespass upon private property in or upon which the animal or bird is situated or is otherwise teasing or provoking the animal or bird.
(2) 
Except for periodic testing, no person shall intentionally sound or permit the sounding outdoors of any fire, burglar or civil defense alarm or any similar stationary emergency signaling device intended for public notification.
(3) 
No person shall operate or permit the operation of the sounding of any horn or signaling device on any truck, automobile, motorcycle, emergency vehicle or other vehicle on any street or public place within the Township except for an emergency or to avert danger.
(4) 
Except for lawful hunting under commonwealth regulations, no person shall operate or permit the operation of explosives or fireworks, or the firing of guns or other explosive devices so as to be audible across a property boundary or on a public space or right-of-way, without first obtaining a permit from the Board of Supervisors. This provision shall not be construed to permit conduct prohibited by other statutes, ordinances or regulations governing such activity.
(5) 
No person shall engage in or allow motor vehicle racing on any street or in public rights-of-way.
(6) 
No person shall sell anything by outcry within any area of the Township therein zoned primarily for residential uses. The provisions of this section shall not be construed to prohibit the selling by outcry of merchandise, food and beverages at licensed sporting events, parades, fairs, circuses and other similar licensed public entertainment events.
(7) 
No person shall operate or permit the operation of a mechanical device used for indoor climate control, such as air conditioner, heater or other ventilation device, that produces noise due to improper operating condition, lack of standard noise-reducing equipment, lack of maintenance, or otherwise not being used within the manufacturer's specifications.
(8) 
No person shall operate or permit the operation of recreational vehicles on property owned, leased, occupied or otherwise controlled by such person and/or on a public street or in a public park in such a manner as to cause excessive or offensive sound levels, when measured at or beyond the boundaries of the lot, parcel, tract or property on which such use or operation takes place.
[Added 12-4-2014 by Ord. No. 2014-834]
(a) 
For the purpose of this section, "excessive or offensive sound levels" shall mean a noise, detected by a person using his or her unaided hearing faculties across a real property line or within a public space, which is loud enough to cause complaints so as to disturb the peace of the community.
(b) 
The term "recreational vehicle" means any and all motorized vehicles designed or redesigned (whether or not required to be licensed by the commonwealth) to be used on surfaces other than paved or unpaved public or private streets, including but not limited to all-terrain vehicles, trail bikes, dirt bikes, mini-bikes, go-carts, dune buggies, snowmobiles, quads and the like, regardless of the number of wheels or lack of wheels. Recreational vehicles shall not include farm equipment or equipment manufactured for home lawn/garden work or maintenance or any vehicles which are powered exclusively by electricity (i.e., those with noninternal combustion engines).
B. 
Time and place restrictions on activities. The following actions are specifically prohibited between the hours of 9:00 p.m. of one day and 7:00 a.m. of the following day on weekdays, and 9:00 p.m. of one day and 8:00 a.m. of the following day on Saturday and Sunday, regardless of the sound level which is emitted, unless otherwise exempted in this chapter.
(1) 
Play or permit the operation or playing of any radio, television, phonograph, drum, musical instrument, music player, sound amplifier or similar device which produces, reproduces or amplifies sound in such a manner as to be plainly audible across a property line or from within another dwelling unit. Nor shall these activities take place in a motor vehicle in such a manner as to be plainly audible at 100 feet.
(2) 
Load or unload trucks or other motor vehicles or open, close or otherwise handle boxes, crates, containers, building materials, garbage cans or other objects in such a manner as to be plainly audible across a property line.
(3) 
Rebuild or test or otherwise work on any motorcycle, motor vehicle, motorboat or aircraft in such a manner as to be plainly audible across a property line.
(4) 
Operate or permit the operation of any equipment used in construction, repair, alteration or demolition work on buildings, structures, streets, alleys or appurtenances thereto except when done according to the regulations set forth in § 67-3A(1) of the Upper Merion Township Code.
(5) 
Except when necessary to provide access to and from a property, operate or permit the operation of any power equipment rated five horsepower or less used for home or building repair or grounds maintenance, including, but not limited to, power saw, power generator, sander, lawn mower, garden equipment or snow removal equipment, unless done so within the regulations set forth in § 107-5 of the Upper Merion Township Code.
(6) 
Operate or permit the operation of any power equipment rated more than five horsepower, including, but not limited to, chain saws, pavement breakers, log chippers, power generators, powered hand tools, except when done according to the regulations set forth in § 107-5 and § 67-3A(1) of the Upper Merion Township Code. In addition, if such activity is inherent to the occupying land use, then the performance standards outlined in Chapter 165, Zoning, of the Upper Merion Township Code also apply.
(7) 
Operate or permit the operation of any model aircraft powered by internal combustion engines, whether tethered or not, or the firing or operating of model rocket vehicles or other similar noise-producing devices.
(8) 
Collect or permit the collection of garbage, waste or refuse, unless done so according to the regulations set forth in § 107-5 of the Upper Merion Township Code.
(9) 
Yell, shout, whistle, sing or otherwise create noise in public areas in such a way that disturbs the quiet, comfort or repose of persons in any dwelling, hotel or other type of residence.
(10) 
Operate or permit the operation of a recreational vehicle, as defined by § 107-4.1A(8); regardless of whether the operator is upon the private property of the operator or on the private property of some third person who has granted permission to the operator to be operating the recreational vehicle on his/her/its property.
[Added 12-4-2014 by Ord. No. 2014-834]
C. 
Exemptions. The following uses and activities shall be exempt from the noise regulations of this section.
(1) 
Noise of safety signals, warning devices, emergency pressure relief valves, or other sound needed to alert people about an emergency;
(2) 
Noise resulting from any authorized emergency vehicle when responding to an emergency call or from any source acting in time of emergency;
(3) 
Noise resulting from emergency work;
(4) 
Noise resulting from public festivals, celebrations, lawful fireworks, and noisemakers, when permitted by the Township or used for celebration of an official holiday authorized by the Township, commonwealth, or federal government;
(5) 
Routine and customary ringing of bells and chimes by a place of worship;
(6) 
Noise resulting from any athletic, recreational, or other such outdoor activity from an official Township, school district, or other organized league recognized by the Township;
(7) 
A snow plow in operation;
(8) 
Blasting, only if performed in accordance with a permit issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, the Township or any other governmental agency having jurisdiction. Such blasting may occur only between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, unless specifically authorized at different times by the DEP permit;
(9) 
Any train or aircraft operating pursuant to commonwealth or federal regulations.
(10) 
Noise resulting from the operation of a recreational vehicle, as defined by § 107-4.1A(8), by a Township, county, or commonwealth employee or agent acting in an official capacity; provided, however, that the recreational vehicle is being operated within the manufacturer's specifications and with all standard noise-reducing equipment in use, unmodified and in proper working condition.
[Added 12-4-2014 by Ord. No. 2014-834]
[Amended 10-19-1995 by Ord. No. 95-639; 1-8-1998 by Ord. No. 98-665]
A. 
Any building and grounds maintenance work not requiring a permit but not limited to landscaping, street sweeping and trash collection and occurring in residential districts or any property which adjoins a residential district may proceed only between the hours of 0700 and 2100 hours, prevailing time.
B. 
Exceptions.
(1) 
Work which produces no more than the hearing threshold (3db above ambient) at the property line.
(2) 
Work of an emergency nature.
(3) 
On Saturdays and Sunday, such work may proceed only between the hours of 0800 and 2100 hours (8:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.), prevailing time.
(4) 
Upon written approval of the Board of Supervisors, these times may be modified for specific jobs and specific locations.
It shall be unlawful to use, maintain, occupy or own any unsafe or dangerous structure, building or appurtenance on public or private grounds anywhere within Upper Merion Township.
Whenever it is determined by the Board of Supervisors that any person, partnership, association or corporation has violated the provisions of this article set forth above, the Supervisors shall serve notice in writing to the person or persons responsible for these violations, ordering the cessation of the violation, the removal of any dangerous structure, etc., the removal of any solid waste material which has been dumped or accumulated or other restoration of any property damaged, injured or impaired by virtue of an activity, etc., which is offensive to the general public. Such notice shall sufficiently describe the condition complained of and shall require the same to be made safe, to be corrected or to be removed.
In the event that any person, partnership, association or corporation, after receiving notice set forth above, shall fail, neglect or refuse to comply with the order of the Supervisors requiring the correction, removal or abatement of the condition complained of in said notice, the Board of Supervisors may abate or cause to be abated such condition and collect from the person responsible the cost of such removal, together with any such penalties as set forth herein.
[Amended 12-31-1991 by Ord. No. 91-593]
A. 
Any person, partnership, association or corporation which shall violate any of the provisions of this article or which shall fail to comply with any notice from the Supervisors set forth above shall, upon conviction thereof, pay a fine or penalty as set forth in Article III, General Penalty Provisions, of Chapter 1, General Provisions, to be collected by summary proceedings brought in the name of the township. For each day that such violation shall exist, a new and separate offense shall be deemed to have been committed. Such fines and penalties shall be collected as like fines or penalties are now by law collected or by an action of assumpsit without the filing of a claim. Upon judgment against any person by summary conviction or by proceedings by summons or default of the payment of the fine or penalty imposed and the costs, the defendant may be sentenced and committed to the Montgomery County Prison for a period not exceeding 30 days.
B. 
Notwithstanding the foregoing and the exercise of the powers contained herein, the township may institute appropriate proceedings in courts of equity to enforce any provisions of this article.
The provisions of Ordinance No. 17 and Ordinance No. 70-261 of Upper Merion Township are hereby repealed in their entirety. In addition, Sections III, IV, V and VI of Ordinance No. 64-143 are likewise repealed.
[Added 12-4-2014 by Ord. No. 2014-834]
A. 
Any person, partnership, association or corporation which shall violate § 107-4.1A8 or § 107-4.1B(10) or which shall fail to comply with any notice from the Supervisors set forth above shall, upon conviction thereof, pay a fine or penalty as set forth in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article III, General Penalty Provisions, to be collected by summary proceedings brought in the name of the Township. For each instance of such violation or each day such a violation shall exist, a new and separate offense shall be deemed to have been committed. Such fines and penalties shall be collected as like fines or penalties are now by law collected or by an action of assumpsit without the filing of a claim. Upon judgment against any person by summary conviction or by proceedings by summons or default of the payment of the fine or penalty imposed and the costs, the defendant may be sentenced and committed to the Montgomery County Prison for a period not exceeding 30 days.
B. 
Notwithstanding the foregoing and the exercise of the powers contained herein, the Township may institute appropriate proceedings in courts of equity to enforce any provisions of this article pertaining to recreational vehicles.