Borough of Bellefonte, PA
Centre County
By using eCode360 you agree to be legally bound by the Terms of Use. If you do not agree to the Terms of Use, please do not use eCode360.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Bellefonte 11-2-1970 by Ord. No. 660 (Ch. 1452 of the 1979 Codified Ordinances). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Historical Architectural Review Board — See Ch. 62.
Uniform construction code — See Ch. 235, Art. I.
Zoning — See Ch. 575.
In accordance with the provisions of an act entitled: "An Act authorizing counties, cities, boroughs, incorporated towns and townships to create historic districts within their geographic boundaries; providing for the appointment of Boards of Historical Architectural Review; empowering governing bodies of political subdivisions to protect the distinctive historical character of these districts; and regulating the erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of buildings within the historic districts," adopted by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth and approved by the Governor of the Commonwealth on June 13, 1961,[1] and to protect a portion of the Borough which recalls the rich architectural and cultural heritage of the Borough and the state, to awaken in our people an interest in our historic past and to promote the general welfare, education and culture of the Borough, there is hereby created in the Borough a historic district to be known as the "Bellefonte Borough Historic District."
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 8001 et seq., the Municipal Historic Districts Law.
A. 
The limits of the Bellefonte Borough Historic District are defined on the map attached to original Ordinance No. 660, adopted November 2, 1970, and such map and all notations, references and other data shown thereon are hereby incorporated by reference into this chapter as if the same were fully described herein.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: The map is on file in the Borough offices.
B. 
Where an uncertainty exists as to the boundaries of the Historic District as shown on the aforesaid map, the following rules shall apply:
(1) 
District boundary lines are intended to follow or be parallel to the center lines of streets, streams and railroads and lot or property lines as they exist on a recorded deed or plan of record in the County Recorder's office at the time of the adoption of this chapter (Ordinance No. 660, adopted November 2, 1970), unless such district boundary lines are fixed by dimensions as shown on the Historic District Map.
(2) 
Where the district boundary is not fixed by dimensions and where it approximately follows lot lines and where it does not scale more than 10 feet therefrom, such lot lines shall be construed to be such boundaries unless specifically shown otherwise.
(3) 
In unsubdivided land or where the district boundary divides a lot, the location of such boundary, unless the same is indicated by a dimension, shall be determined by the use of the scale appearing on the map.
(4) 
In any event, in the case of any uncertainty, the power to interpret the intent of the map as to the location of the district boundaries shall be vested solely in the Board of Historical Architectural Review, subject only to an appeal from the decision of such board as is now provided by law.
Immediately upon the adoption of this chapter (Ordinance No. 660, adopted November 2, 1970), the Borough Secretary shall forward a copy thereof to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. This chapter shall not take effect until such Commission has certified, by resolution, to the historical significance of the Bellefonte Borough Historic District and until it has been duly advertised, as required by law.
[Amended 7-18-1988 by Ord. No. 992; 10-3-2016 by Ord. No. 10032016-02]
The Building Code Official shall not issue a permit for any erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of a building or structure, or for the erection or construction of a fence, nor shall any person, corporation, or organization undertake modification or alteration of any structure or fence, or erect a structure or fence in the Historic District, until the Bellefonte Historical Architectural Review Board has reviewed the proposed alteration, modification, or construction project and Council has issued a certificate of appropriateness.
[Amended 7-18-1988 by Ord. No. 992; 10-3-2016 by Ord. No. 10032016-02]
A. 
For any property located in the Historic District, the property owner or legal representative shall make application to the Bellefonte Historical Architectural Review Board prior to making application to the Building Code Official or Zoning Officer for any project that proposes to erect, reconstruct, alter, restore, demolish or raze a building or structure, or for the erection or construction of a fence.
B. 
Upon receipt of an application for a building permit for work to be done in the Historic District, as set forth in § 330-4, the Bellefonte Historical Architectural Review Board shall act in accordance with the procedures set forth by this document or rules and procedures adopted by the board.
[Amended 7-18-1988 by Ord. No. 992; 10-3-2016 by Ord. No. 10032016-02]
Upon receipt by the Board of Historical Architectural Review of a notice that an application for the erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of a building or structure, or for the erection or construction of a fence, in the Historic District has been filed, the Board shall schedule a meeting to consider the advice and counsel which the Board shall give to Council. The person applying for the permit shall be advised of the time and place of the meeting and invited to appear to explain his reasons therefor. The Board may invite such other persons as it desires to attend such meeting.
[Amended 7-18-1988 by Ord. No. 992]
In determining the advice and counsel to be presented to Council concerning the issuance of a certificate of appropriateness authorizing a permit for the erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of all or a part of any building within the Historic District, the Board of Historical Architectural Review shall consider the following matters:
A. 
The effect of the proposed change upon the general historic and architectural nature of the district;
B. 
The appropriateness of exterior architectural or landscaping features which can be seen from a public street or way only; and
C. 
The general design, arrangement, texture, material and color of the building, structure or fence and the relation of such factors to similar features of buildings, structures or fences in the district, and to the properties immediately adjacent to the property for which a certificate is sought.
If the Board of Historical Architectural Review, on the basis of the information received at the meeting and from its general background and knowledge, decides to advise against the granting of a certificate of appropriateness, it shall indicate to the applicant for a building permit the changes in plans and specifications, if any, which, in the opinion of the Board, would protect the distinctive historical character of the Historic District. The Board shall withhold its report to Council for a period of five days following its decision to allow the applicant to decide whether or not to make the suggested changes in his plans and specifications. If the applicant determines that he will make the suggested changes, he shall so advise the Board, which shall advise Council accordingly.
[Amended 7-18-1988 by Ord. No. 992]
The Board of Historical Architectural Review, after the hearing provided for in § 330-6, and after the making of any changes in the plans and specifications as provided in § 330-8, shall submit to Council, in writing, its advice concerning the issuance of a certificate of appropriateness authorizing a permit for the erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of all or a part of any building or structure, or for the erection or construction of a fence, within the Historic District. The written report shall set forth the following matters:
A. 
The exact location of the area in which the work is to be done;
B. 
The exterior change to be made or the exterior character of the structure to be erected;
C. 
A list of the surrounding structures with their general exterior characteristics;
D. 
The effect of the proposed change upon the general historic and architectural nature of the district;
E. 
The general design, arrangement, texture, material and color of the building, structure or fence and the relation of such factors to similar features of buildings, structures or fences in the district or on adjacent properties, and to the district as a whole;
F. 
The opinion of the Board (including any dissent) as to the appropriateness of the work proposed as it will preserve or destroy the historic aspect and nature of the district; and
G. 
The specific counsel of the Board as to the issuance by Council or its refusal to issue a certificate of appropriateness.
[Amended 7-18-1988 by Ord. No. 992; 10-3-2016 by Ord. No. 10032016-02]
A. 
Upon receipt of the written counsel of the Board of Historical Architectural Review, as provided in § 330-9, Council shall consider, at a regular or special meeting, the question of issuing to the property owner a certificate of appropriateness authorizing a permit for the work covered by the application. The applicant shall be advised by the Borough Secretary of the time and place of the meeting at which his application will be considered and shall have the right to attend and be heard as to his reasons for filing the same. In determining whether or not to certify to the appropriateness of the proposed erection, reconstruction, alteration, restoration, demolition or razing of all or part of any building or structure, or the erection or construction of a fence, within the Historic District, Council shall be guided by the report of the Board. If Council approves the application, it shall issue a certificate of appropriateness authorizing the start of work after all other permits that are required by this chapter or any other ordinance or regulation have been legally obtained. If Council disapproves, it shall do so in writing, and copies shall be given to the applicant and to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. The disapproval shall indicate what changes in the plans and specifications would meet the conditions for protecting the distinctive historical character of the district.
B. 
Once issued, the property owner has one year to initiate the project or the certificate of appropriateness shall be considered abandoned. Once the project has been started, the property owner has one year to complete the project. If the project has not been completed within the allotted time, the Borough may contract to have the project completed at the property owner's expense. If the property owner cannot pay the costs associated with project completion, then the Borough may lien the property until such time that the liens can be satisfied.
Upon receipt of the written disapproval of Council, the Building Code Official shall disapprove the application for a building permit and so advise the applicant. The applicant may appeal from the disapproval as provided by law and the Building Code of the Borough.
[Amended 10-3-2016 by Ord. No. 10032016-02]
A. 
The Building Code Official shall have the power to institute any proceedings at law or in equity necessary for the enforcement of this chapter in the same manner as his enforcement of the Building Code as presently enacted or as the same may from time to time be amended.
B. 
It shall be unlawful for a person, firm or corporation to be in conflict with or in violation of any of the provisions of this code of fail to obey a lawful order of the Code Official.
[Added 10-3-2016 by Ord. No. 10032016-02]
Any person, firm, or corporation who shall violate any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be subject to a fine of not less than $300 nor more than $1,000 or imprisonment for a term not to exceed 30 days, at the discretion of the court. Each day that a violation continues after due notice has been served, in accordance with the terms and provisions hereof, shall be deemed a separate offense.