City of Nanticoke, PA
Luzerne County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Nanticoke as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 4-2-1990 by Ord. No. 12-1990 (Ch. 13, Part 3, of the 2004 Code of Ordinances)]
The City Council of the City of Nanticoke hereby declares the purpose of this article is to regulate the hours of operation of BYOB clubs in order to preserve the residential character of neighborhoods and to protect the rights of its citizens to the quiet enjoyment of the same. It is the express purpose of this article to strike a balance between the constitutional rights of the BYOB club owners and patrons and the constitutional rights of the residents of the City of Nanticoke.
The following words or phrases, when used in this article, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section:
ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES
Any and all beverages, including malt beverages, which contain alcohol, liquor or such other intoxicating substances as are further defined in the Pennsylvania Liquor Code, 47 P.S. § 1-101 et seq.
BYOB CLUB (otherwise known as "BRING YOUR OWN BOTTLE CLUB")
Any business facility such as a dance hall, club or association not licensed by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, wherein patrons 21 years of age and older may, after payment of a fee, cover charge or membership fee, consume alcoholic beverages which said patrons have carried into the premises. This definition does not include a facility which is rented for a limited period of time, not to exceed 12 hours, by individual(s) or an organization for the purpose of a private party in which alcoholic beverages are carried into the premises.
RESIDENCE
A building or structure wholly or partially used for living and sleeping space by human occupants.
RESIDENTIAL ZONE
Those classes of residential zones specified in the Nanticoke City Zoning Ordinance, Chapter 500 of this Code.
It shall be unlawful for any person or persons who own, operate, lease, manage or control a BYOB club to:
A. 
Remain open and/or to transact business between the hours of 2:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m., prevailing time, of each day and at any time on Sundays if said BYOB club is located in a residence zone or within 500 feet of a residence.
B. 
Transact business without possessing a valid club permit.
It shall be unlawful for any patron of a BYOB club to be present on the BYOB club premises between the hours of 2:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m., each day.
In the event any of the unlawful activities specified herein is conducted by or in the name of a corporation, partnership, joint venture, trust, firm or association, in addition to (corporate) entity liability, the officers, agents or principals of said corporation, partnership, joint venture, trust, firm or association shall be deemed in violation of this article as well as the person or persons engaged in the unlawful activity.
The unlawful activities specified herein shall constitute separate and distinct offenses for each and every day in which said activities are conducted.
[Amended 12-1-2004 by Ord. No. 16-2004]
A. 
Any person or persons desiring to operate or continue to operate a BYOB club shall file with the License Clerk of the City of Nanticoke an application for a BYOB club permit, which application shall include the following information: the name and address of the BYOB club; a statement whether the business premises is leased or owned by the BYOB club; the name and address of the lessor of the business premises, if applicable; the nature of the ownership of the BYOB club, i.e., corporation, partnership, joint venture, association; the names and address of the officers and/or agents of the BYOB club; the names and addresses of any and all persons who possess an ownership and/or financial interest in the BYOB club; and a notarized affidavit that the applicant has obtained all applicable licenses and paid all applicable taxes and fees for operating such a club.
B. 
The License Clerk shall determine whether the BYOB club fully and completely complies with the provisions and requirements of this article within 10 days following the date on which the application is received. If the License Clerk determines that the applicant fully and completely complies with the provisions hereof, the Clerk shall issue a BYOB club permit. If the License Clerk determines that the applicant does not fully and completely comply with the provisions hereof, the Clerk shall deny the issuance of a BYOB club permit and shall furnish written evidence of the same to the applicant together with the reason(s) for the denial.
C. 
The club shall pay an administrative fee, in an amount as established from time to time by resolution of City Council, for a BYOB club permit, which shall be effective for a period of one year following the date of issuance. The City of Nanticoke reserves the right to revoke the BYOB club permit upon failure of the club to fully and completely comply with the provisions of this and other applicable ordinances in the City of Nanticoke.
[Amended 12-1-2004 by Ord. No. 16-2004]
Any person, firm or corporation who shall violate any provision of this article, upon conviction thereof, shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $1,000 plus costs or to a term of imprisonment not to exceed 90 days, or both. Each day that a violation of this article continues shall constitute a separate offense.
[Adopted 9-2-2009 by Ord. No. 11-2009]
This article shall be known as the "Social Host Accountability Ordinance."
The following definitions shall apply regarding this article:
ALCOHOL
Ethyl alcohol, hydrated oxide of ethyl, or spirits of wine, from whatever source or by whatever process produced.
ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE
Includes alcohol, spirits, liquor, wine, beer, and every liquid or solid containing alcohol, spirits, liquor, wine or beer, and which contains 1/2 of 1% or more of alcohol by volume, and which is fit for beverage purposes either alone or when diluted, mixed or combined with other substances.
JUVENILE
Any person less than 18 years of age.
LOUD OR UNRULY GATHERING
A party or gathering of two or more persons at a residence or on other private property or rented public property upon which loud or unruly conduct occurs. Such loud or unruly conduct constitutes a public nuisance and includes but is not limited to:
A. 
Excessive noise;
B. 
Excessive traffic created by the gathering;
C. 
Obstruction of public streets and/or the presence of unruly crowds that have spilled into public streets;
D. 
Public drunkenness or unlawful public consumption of alcohol or alcoholic beverages;
E. 
Assaults, batteries, fights, domestic violence or other disturbances of the peace;
F. 
Vandalism;
G. 
Littering; or
H. 
Any other conduct which constitutes a threat to the public health, safety or quiet enjoyment of residential property for the general welfare.
MINOR
Any person less than 21 years of age.
PERSON RESPONSIBLE FOR THE EVENT
Includes, but is not limited to:
A. 
The person who owns, rents, leases or otherwise has control of the premises where the gathering occurs; a
B. 
The person in charge of the premises; and/or
C. 
The person who organized the event. If the person responsible for the event is a juvenile, then the juvenile and the parents or guardians of that juvenile will be jointly and severally liable for the civil fine and/or for the costs incurred for public safety services pursuant to this chapter.
PUBLIC SAFETY SERVICES AND/OR RESPONSE COSTS
The costs associated with responses by law enforcement, fire and other emergency response providers to loud or unruly gatherings, including but not limited to:
A. 
The portion of the cost of salaries and benefits of law enforcement, fire or other emergency response personnel for the amount of time spent responding to, remaining at, or otherwise dealing with loud or unruly gathering(s), and the administrative costs attributable to such response(s);
B. 
The cost of any medical treatment to or for any law enforcement, fire or other emergency response personnel who are injured responding to, remaining at or leaving the scene of a loud or unruly gathering; and
C. 
The cost of the use of any City equipment or property and the cost of repairing any City equipment or property damaged in responding to, remaining at or leaving the scene of a loud or unruly gathering.
UNDERAGE PERSON
Any person less than 21 years of age and shall have the same meaning as "minor," defined above.
The purposes of this article are:
A. 
To protect the public health, safety and general welfare;
B. 
To promote the reduction of underage drinking by imposing a civil fine on persons responsible for loud or unruly gatherings where alcohol is consumed by, served to or in the possession of underage persons;
C. 
To facilitate the enforcement of laws prohibiting the service to, consumption of or possession of alcoholic beverages by underage persons; and
D. 
To offset the municipal costs associated with providing fire, police and other emergency services to loud or unruly gatherings by imposing a civil fee upon social hosts and/or landowners who knowingly allow such loud or unruly gatherings to occur on their premises, at their residences, or at rented facilities where alcoholic beverages are served to, consumed by, or in the possession of underage persons.
The City Council of the City of Nanticoke finds as follows:
A. 
The City of Nanticoke has the authority to enact laws which promote the public health, safety and general welfare of its residents;
B. 
The occurrence of loud or unruly gatherings on private property where alcoholic beverages are served to, consumed by, or in the possession of underage persons is harmful to the underage persons themselves and is a threat to the public health, safety or quiet enjoyment of residential property and the general welfare;
C. 
The City of Nanticoke has made numerous and substantial efforts to enforce underage drinking laws; yet, despite these efforts, alcohol use by youth remains a serious problem in the City, contributing significantly to the incidence of adolescent crime, addiction, sexual assault, truancy, driving under the influence of alcohol, and motor vehicle crashes involving alcohol and causing injury and/or death;
D. 
Underage persons often obtain alcoholic beverages at gatherings held at private residences or at rented residential and commercial premises that are under the control of a person who knows or should know of the service to, possession by, and/or consumption of alcohol by underage persons. Persons responsible for the occurrence of loud or unruly gatherings on private property over which they have possession or control have failed to ensure that alcoholic beverages are not served to, consumed by, or possessed by underage persons at these gatherings;
E. 
Residents have failed to prevent the occurrence or reoccurrence of loud or unruly gatherings, including those where alcoholic beverages are served to, consumed by, or possessed by underage persons, on private property, which seriously disrupts neighboring residents' quiet enjoyment of their property; and
F. 
Control of loud or unruly gatherings on private property where alcoholic beverages are served to, consumed by, or in the possession of underage persons is necessary when such activity is determined to be a threat to the peace, health, safety or general welfare of the public.
A. 
No person shall knowingly permit or host a gathering at his or her place of residence or other private property, place or premises or host a gathering at a public place under his or her control where two or more persons under the age of 21 are present, where the gathering is loud or unruly, and where alcoholic beverages are in the possession of, being consumed by, or served to any underage person. Any person violating this section shall be subject to the following fines and penalties:
(1) 
Violation/civil fine. It shall be a civil violation for a person to knowingly conduct or allow a loud or unruly gathering where alcohol is served to, consumed by, or in the possession of an underage person or persons on premises owned by the person responsible for the event, on premises rented by or to the person responsible for the event, on premises where the person responsible for the event resides, or on premises where the person responsible for the event is in control of such premises during the loud or unruly gathering. The Nanticoke police may immediately issue a citation for this civil violation upon evidence of the violation. There is no requirement of a first warning in order for the police to issue this civil citation.
(a) 
Civil fine. A first violation of this section shall result in a citation with a three-hundred-dollar fine. A second violation shall result in a citation with a five-hundred-dollar fine. A third or subsequent violation shall result in a citation with a one-thousand-dollar fine.
(b) 
The City shall give notice of a violation of this section by issuing a citation to any and all responsible persons identified by the City within 30 days of the violation.
(c) 
The civil fine prescribed in Subsection (A)(1)(a) above is in addition to any civil cost recovery fee for public safety responses that may be assessed pursuant to Subsection A(2) of this section, below.
(d) 
In the event that the responsible person who is in violation of this section is a juvenile, then the juvenile and the parents or guardians of that juvenile will be jointly and severally liable for the civil violation and resulting fine.
(2) 
Imposition of civil cost recovery fee for public safety responses. In addition to any civil fine imposed for violation of this section, when any loud or unruly gathering where alcohol is served to, consumed by, or in the possession of underage person(s) occurs on private property, and a police officer at the scene determines that there is a threat to the public peace, health, safety or general welfare, the police officer shall give the person(s) responsible for the event warning that a second or follow-up violation of this section on the same date or on any later date will result in his/her/their liability for the cost of providing public safety services (i.e., fire, ambulance, police and other emergency providers). The requirement of a first warning does not limit the ability of public safety personnel to issue a civil citation for the imposition of civil penalties for cost recovery on the same day that the warning is given if the warning does not end the loud or unruly gathering. The cost recovery for public safety responses shall be separate and distinct from a citation and fine for a civil violation described in Subsection (A)(1)(a) of this section.
(a) 
The amount of cost recovery under this subsection shall be calculated pursuant to the definition of "public safety services and/or response costs" in § 155-10 of this article.
(b) 
In the event that the responsible person who is in violation of this section is a juvenile, then the juvenile and the parents or guardians of that juvenile will be jointly and severally liable for the imposition of civil penalties for the cost of providing public safety services.
(c) 
Civil cost recovery fee(s) will not be imposed in those situations where those present at the gathering call for emergency services for an actual emergency at the premises.
The amount of a civil fine and/or civil cost recovery fee for public safety responses shall be deemed a debt owed to the City by a person found in violation of § 155-13 and therefor liable for a fine under § 155-13A(1)(a) and/or fees under § 155-13A(2) and, if that person is a juvenile, then also his/her parents or guardians. Any person owing such fine and/or fee shall be liable in an action brought in the name of the City for recovery of such fine and/or fees. These recovery costs may include reasonable attorney's fees incurred in the action if the City prevails.
The civil fines and fees imposed by this article do not preclude other potential civil actions or criminal prosecution under any other provision of law, including but not limited to the Pennsylvania Crimes Code.