[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Independence as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 12-4-2002 by Ord. No. 4-2002]
The Township Secretary or such official as the Township Supervisors may designate from time to time ("designated official") is hereby appointed as the designated official 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 the Township of Independence where the amount recoverable for the fire loss to the structure under all applicable policies exceeds $7,500, unless the insuring agent is furnished by the designated official with a Township certificate pursuant to Act 98 of 1992, as amended, and unless there is compliance with Act 98 of 1992, as amended, and the provisions of this article.
Editor's Note: See 40 P.S. § 636 et seq.
Where, pursuant to Act 98 of 1992, as amended, the designated official issues a certificate indicating that there are no delinquent taxes, assessments, penalties or user charges against real property, the insuring agent may pay the claim of the named insured; provided, however, that if the loss 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 pursuant to Act 98 of 1992, as amended:
The insuring agent shall transfer from the insurance proceeds to the designated official of the Township in the aggregate of $2,000 for each $15,000 of a claim and for each fraction of that amount of a claim; this subsection is to be applied such that if the claim is $15,000 or less, the amount transferred to the Township shall be $2,000.
If at the time of a proof of loss agreed to between the named insured and the insuring agent, the name 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 Township from the insurance proceeds the amount specified in the estimate.
The transfer of proceeds shall be on a pro rata 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 official shall return the amount of the funds transferred to the Township in excess of the estimate to the named insured, if the Township has not commenced to remove, repair or secure the building or other structure.
Upon receipt of proceeds under this section, the Township shall perform the following:
The designated official shall place the proceeds in a 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 Township. Such costs shall include, without limitation, any engineering, legal or administrative costs incurred by the Township 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 Township 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 official shall contact the named insured, certify that the proceeds have been received by the Township, and notify the named insured that the procedures under this subsection shall be followed.
When repair, removal or securing of the building or other structure has been completed in accordance with all applicable regulations and orders of the Township, and the required proof of such completion received by the designated official, and if the Township has not incurred any costs for repair, removal or securing of the building or other structure, the fund shall be returned to the named insured. If the Township has incurred costs for repair, removal or securing of the building or other structure, the costs shall be paid from the fund, and if excess funds remain, the Township shall transfer the remaining funds to the named insured.
To the extent that interest is earned on proceeds held by the Township pursuant to this section and not returned to the named insured, such interest shall belong to the Township. 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 section shall be construed to limit the ability of the Township to recover any deficiency. Furthermore, nothing in this subsection shall be construed to prohibit the Township and the named insured from entering into an agreement that permits the transfer of funds to the named insured if some other reasonable disposition of the damaged property has been negotiated.
The Township of Independence may, by resolution, adopt procedures and regulations to implement Act 98 of 1992, as amended, and this article and may, by resolution, fix reasonable fees to be charged for municipal activities or services provided pursuant to Act 98 of 1992, as amended, and this article, including but not limited to issuance of certificates and bills, performance of inspections and opening separate fund accounts. Said fees shall be the responsibility of the named insured.
Any person who has violated or knowingly permitted the violation of the provisions of this article shall be subject to the appropriate penalties set forth in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article II. No judgment shall commence or be imposed, levied or be payable until the date of the determination of a violation by the District Justice.
If the violator neither pays the fine and court costs, nor timely appeals the judgment, the Township may enforce the judgment.
All judgment, costs and reasonable attorney's fees collected for violations of this article shall be paid over to the Township.
[Adopted 7-10-2019 by Ord. No. 1-2019]
The Township desires to provide for reimbursement to the Independence Township Volunteer Fire Department for any and all costs and/or expenses incurred by the Department which may be obtainable by the Department by submitting claims only to the individual property owners' insurance carriers.
It is the finding of the Board of Supervisors of Independence that individual property owners may maintain insurance coverage within their own casualty insurance policies, homeowners' policies and/or other applicable policies that would provide reimbursement to the Independence Township Volunteer Fire Department for firefighting and other services rendered to the individual property owners' properties in response to emergency service requests.
The Independence Township Volunteer Fire Department is hereby authorized and directed, by and through its officers and authorized representatives, to ascertain what insurance coverage may be applicable and available under any given circumstance, and to take all necessary and affirmative steps to apply for and receive reimbursement from any insurance carriers where a property owner is or may be insured to reimburse the Fire Department for any costs and/or expense incurred for services, supplies and/or equipment used for or provided to the property owner by the Fire Department.
Under no circumstances shall any property owner ever receive a bill from the Independence Township Fire Department for fire protection or other services provided by the Fire Department.
This article shall be liberally construed to accomplish its purpose to compensate and/or reimburse the Independence Township Volunteer Fire Department from insurance proceeds only for the costs and/or expenses incurred while providing services pursuant to their duties for the Fire Department.