[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Lehigh 12-29-2000 by Ord. No. 2000-3. Amendments noted where applicable.]
For the purposes of this chapter, the following terms, phrases, words and their derivations shall have the meaning given herein. When not inconsistent with the context, words used in the present tense include future, words in the plural number include the singular number, and words in the singular number include the plural number, and the word "shall" is always mandatory and not merely directory.
- ABANDONED OR JUNKED MOTOR VEHICLE
- Any vehicle in nonserviceable condition or without having both a current inspection sticker and current registration plate.
- BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
- The Board of Supervisors of Lehigh Township, Northampton County, Pennsylvania.
- The unreasonable, unwarrantable or unlawful use of public or private property which causes injury, damage, hurt, inconvenience, annoyance or discomfort to any person in the legitimate enjoyment of his reasonable rights of person or property.
- A person owning, leasing, occupying or having charge of any premises within the Township.
- Any natural person, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company or organization of any kind.
- The Township of Lehigh, Northampton County, Pennsylvania.
- Any grass, weed or vegetation whatsoever which is not edible or planted for some useful, legal or ornamental purpose.
Nuisances, including but not limited to the following, are hereby declared to be illegal:
Storing or accumulating the following:
Garbage, ashes, refuse or rubbish.
Garbage: wastes resulting from the handling, preparation, cooking and consumption of food; wastes from the handling, storage and sale of produce. It shall be unlawful to place or permit to remain anywhere in the Township any garbage or other material subject to decay other than leaves or grass, excepting in a tightly covered container, excepting that a mulch heap is permitted, which is properly maintained for gardening purposes and does not materially disturb or annoy persons of ordinary sensibilities in the neighborhood. It shall be unlawful to any individual, firm or corporation to store more than 14 days of garbage as defined by this chapter which may pose a potential health and safety problem to the community.
Refuse/rubbish: combustible trash, including paper, cartons, boxes, barrels, wood, excelsior, wood furniture, bedding, noncombustible trash, including metals, tin cans, metal furniture, dirt, small quantities of rock and pieces of concrete; glass, crockery, other mineral waste; street rubbish, including street-sweeping dirt, catch-basin dirt, contents of letter receptacles; provided, refuse shall not include earth and wastes from building operations, nor shall it include leaves, cornstalks, stubble or other vegetable material generated in the course of harvesting agricultural crops. It shall be unlawful to cause or permit to accumulate any dust, ashes or trash of such a material that it can be blown away by the wind anywhere in the Township excepting in a covered container.
Ashes. Residue from fire used for cooking and for heating buildings.
Junk material including but not limited to unused or abandoned machinery, equipment or appliances, and any and all forms of waste and refuse or any type of materials, including scrap metal, glass, industrial waste and other salvable materials unless for resale, that can be seen from any public highway, road, street, avenue, lane or alley which is maintained by the Township or by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, or which can be seen from a neighboring property. A written complaint shall be required to be filed by the complainant in order for enforcement action to be taken against any nuisance which can only be seen from a neighboring property.
[Amended 6-14-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-2]
Storing or accumulating abandoned or junked motor vehicles that can be seen from any public highway, road, street, avenue, lane or alley which is maintained by the Township or by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania or which can be seen from a neighboring property. A written complaint shall be required to be filed by the complainant in order for enforcement action to be taken against any nuisance which can only be seen from a neighboring property. All such vehicles must be moved in 20 days or, if at a vehicle repair business, in 60 days.
[Amended 5-13-2003 by Ord. No. 2003-1; 12-13-2005 by Ord. No. 2005-6; 6-14-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-2]
Storing or accumulating more than three antique or collector motor vehicles for restoration which are neither sheltered by a building nor enclosed behind an evergreen or solid fence as permitted by applicable zoning ordinances; or storing or accumulating in a nonorderly fashion three or fewer antique or collector motor vehicles for registration.
Draining or flowing, or allowing to drain or flow by pipe or other channel, whether natural or artificial, any foul or offensive water or drainage from sinks, bathtubs, wash stands, lavatories, water closets, swimming pools, privies or cesspools of any kind or nature whatsoever, or any other foul or offensive water or foul or offensive drainage of any kind, from property along any public highway, road, street, avenue, lane or alley in the Township or from any property into or upon any adjoining property.
Draining or flowing, or allowing to drain or flow, any water or drainage from within dwellings situate upon property along any public highway, road, street, avenue, lane or alley in the Township into or upon the cartway or traveled portion for said drainage by means of a drainage ditch or otherwise.
Burning of tires, tar products, or garbage.
Maintaining or causing to be maintained any dangerous structure, including but not limited to abandoned or unoccupied buildings or parts of buildings in a state of dilapidation or disrepair.
Permitting the growth of any grass, weeds, noxious weeds, or any vegetation whatsoever not edible or planted for some useful, legal or ornamental purpose, to conceal any rubbish, garbage, trash or any other violation of this chapter.
Permitting or allowing any well or cistern to be, or remain, uncovered.
Pushing, shoveling or otherwise depositing snow upon the cartway or traveled portion of any public highway, road or street which is maintained by the Township or the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and allowing same to remain thereon.
Allowing or permitting any excavation, material excavated, or obstruction, on or adjoining any highway, street or road, to remain opened or exposed without the same being secured by a barricade, temporary fence, or other protective materials.
Interfering with the flow of a stream, creek or other waterway, by means of dam construction or otherwise, or removing the embankment of a stream so as to alter the natural flow of the stream.
Defacing public and private property. It shall be unlawful for any person, partnership, corporation or agent acting independently or under the direction of the principal to deface any private or public buildings, structures, signs, banners, or vehicles within the Township. Examples of defacing shall include but not be limited to the following examples: application of paint, inks and dyes, affixing of any printed materials such as signs or posters, destruction or removal or defacing in any manner.
Obstructing streets, etc. For any person to permit any mud, dirt, coal, wood, brick, excessive grass clippings, stone, gravel, clay, sand, rubbish or any other matter to remain upon the streets or in the gutter in front of his premises more than 24 hours after it has been deposited there except by special permission of the Township Board of Supervisors.
Loud music or noise, etc. For any person, except by permission of Township Board of Supervisors, to play, amplify or listen to music by any manner including home stereos, vehicular sound systems and portable "boom boxes," to beat any drum or drums, blow any horn or horns, or otherwise make any unusual noise, disturbing the peace after 11:00 p.m., which can be heard a distance of 150 feet from its source or such person's property line or for any person to make, continue or cause to be made or continued any unnecessary or unusually loud noise which annoys, disturbs, injures or endangers the comfort, health, safety or peace of others within and which can be heard a distance of 150 feet from its source or such person's property line between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.
Smoke. For any person to permit or cause the emission of smoke (from a fire ignited on a property) which smoke permeates from the property onto or over the property of another so that it becomes a nuisance, in fact, to any other person or persons.
Nuisances and hazards to public safety.
[Added 6-14-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-2]
No landowner, tenant or lessee shall use or allow to be used any land or structure in a way that results or threatens to result in any of the following conditions:
Transmission of communicable disease, including conditions that may encourage the breeding of insects or rodents.
A physical hazard to the public, or a physical hazard that could be accessible by children.
Pollution to groundwaters or surface waters, other than as authorized by a state or federal permit.
Risks to public health and safety, such as but not limited to explosion, fire or biological hazards to toxic substances.
It is the responsibility of every property owner to ensure that his actions and/or activities do not directly or indirectly threaten public health or safety. Property owners shall be obligated to take prompt remedial action to resolve or remove hazards to the public health and safety. This shall include, but is not limited to, removal, securing or restoration of structures that are structurally unsound or damaged by fire.
Whenever a condition constituting a nuisance is permitted or maintained, the Board of Supervisors shall cause written notice to be served upon the owner in one of the following manners:
By making personal delivery of the notice to the owners; or
By handing a copy of the notice at the residence of the owner to an adult member of the family with which he resides, but if no adult member of the family is found, then to an adult person in charge of such residence; or
By fixing a copy of the notice to the door at the entrance of the premises in violation; or
By mailing a copy of the notice to the last known address of the owner by certified mail; or
By publishing a copy of the notice in a local newspaper of general circulation within Northampton County, Pennsylvania, once a week for three consecutive weeks.
Such notice shall set forth in what respect such condition constitutes a nuisance, whether removal is necessary and required by the Township, or whether the situation can be corrected by repairs, alterations or by fencing or boarding, or in some way confining and limiting the nuisance.
Such notice shall require the owner to commence action in accordance with the terms thereof within 20 days and, thereafter, to comply fully with its terms with reasonable dispatch, with all material to be supplied and work to be done at the owner's expense, provided, however, if any of the provisions of § 103-2F, I, J, K, O, P or Q are violated, and if the circumstances require immediate corrective measures, such notice shall require the owner to immediately comply with the terms thereof.
[Amended 7-10-2012 by Ord. No. 2012-1]
This chapter regulates building, housing, property, maintenance, health, fire, public safety, air or noise pollution, and shall be enforced pursuant to 53 P.S. 66601(c.1)(2).
The Board of Supervisors may direct the removal, repair or alterations, as the case may be, to be done by the Township and to certify the costs thereof to the Township Solicitor, the cost of such removal, repair or alterations shall be a lien upon such premises from the time of such removal, cutting, repairs and alterations which date shall be determined by the certificate of the person doing such work, and filed with the Township Secretary/Treasurer.
The Township, by means of a complaint in equity, may compel the owner of the premises to comply with the terms of any notice of violation, or seek any such other relief as any such court of competent jurisdiction is empowered to afford.