Borough of Lansdale, PA
Montgomery County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Council of the Borough of Lansdale 2-28-2007 by Ord. No. 1751 (Ch. 85 of the 1972 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Property maintenance — See Ch. 304.
This chapter shall be known as the "Graffiti Ordinance of the Borough of Lansdale" and shall apply to all graffiti occurring within the limits of this jurisdiction.
The following words, terms or phrases, when used in this chapter, shall have the meaning ascribed to them in this section.
AUTHORIZED PERSON
A Lansdale Borough Police Officer or a Code Enforcement Officer of the Borough of Lansdale.
BROAD-TIPPED INDELIBLE MARKER
Any felt-tipped marker or similar implement which contains fluid which is not water soluble and which has a flat or angled writing surface 1/2 inch or greater.
CONSENT
Voluntary agreement by a person.
GRAFFITI
Any unauthorized inscription, word, figure, painting or other defacement that is written, marked, etched, scratched, sprayed, drawn, painted, or engraved on or otherwise affixed to any surface of public or private property by any graffiti implement, to the extent that the graffiti was not authorized in advance by the owner or occupant of the property, or, despite advance authorization, is otherwise deemed a public nuisance by the Borough Council. Graffiti includes every name, identification, description, crude drawing, announcement, display, illustration, insignia, or symbol (including any letter, word, numeral, emblem, or combination thereof) other than advertising, which is otherwise provided for by Borough ordinances, which without authorization is marked, written, drawn, painted, scratched or affixed directly to or upon any subject or structure.[1]
GRAFFITI IMPLEMENT
An aerosol paint container, a broad-tipped marker, gum label, paint stick or graffiti stick, etching equipment, brush or any other device capable of scarring or leaving a visible mark on any natural or man-made surface.
MINOR
A person who has not reached the age of 18 years of age.
OWNER
Any and all persons with legal and/or equitable title to real property in Lansdale Borough.
PERSON
Any individual, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company or organization of any kind.
PROPERTY
Any real estate, including improvements thereon, and tangible property, including but not limited to news boxes, newsstands, utility poles, public telephone, tree planters and other items of street furniture.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
It shall be unlawful for any person to apply graffiti to any natural or man-made surface on any public property or, without the permission of the owner or controlling occupant, on any private property.
No minor shall have in his or her possession any aerosol container of spray paint or broad-tipped indelible marker while on any public property, highway, street, alley, sidewalk or park, or while on any private property unless the owner or person in possession of the property knows of the minor's possession of the aerosol container or marker and has consented to the minor's possession while on his or her property.
No person owning or occupying any property within the Borough of Lansdale, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, shall permit any graffiti to accumulate or otherwise remain on any property so as to be visible to the public.
Upon discovery of graffiti, any authorized person shall issue written notice to the owner, occupant or other responsible agent of any premises whereon graffiti is present in violation of the provisions of this chapter, directing and requiring such person to remove such graffiti. In the event that graffiti is not removed within 30 days from the date of mailing of this first notice, a second notice to remove and request for consent to allow the Borough to enter upon the property for the purpose of graffiti removal at the owner's expense shall be issued.
A. 
Graffiting/defacement. Any person who violates or permits a violation of this chapter shall, upon conviction in a summary proceeding brought before a Magisterial District Judge under the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure, be guilty of a summary offense and shall be punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000, plus court costs and reasonable attorneys' fees incurred by the Borough in the enforcement proceedings. Upon judgment against any person by summary conviction, or by proceedings by summons on default of the payment of the fine or penalty imposed and the costs, the defendant may be sentenced and committed to the Borough lockup for a period not exceeding 10 days or to the county jail for a period not exceeding 30 days. Each day or portion thereof that such violation continues or is permitted to continue shall constitute a separate offense, and each section of this chapter that is violated shall also constitute a separate offense.[1]
(1) 
In the case of a minor, the parents or legal guardian shall be jointly and severally liable with the minor for payment of all fines.
(2) 
Failure of the parents or legal guardian to make payment will result in the filing of a lien on the parents' or legal guardian's property that includes the fine and administrative costs.
(3) 
Upon an application and finding of indigence, the court may decline to order fines against the minor, parents or guardian.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
B. 
Restitution. In addition to any punishment specified in this section, any violator shall be liable to make restitution to the victim for damages or losses caused directly or indirectly by the violator's offense. The form and method of payment of said restitution shall be in a manner determined by the court. In the case of a minor, the parents or legal guardian shall be held jointly and severally liable with the minor as to the payment of restitution.
C. 
Graffiti cleanup. Any person who violates or permits a violation of this chapter shall, upon conviction in a summary proceeding brought before a Magisterial District Judge under the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure, be guilty of a summary offense and shall be punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000, plus court costs and reasonable attorneys' fees incurred by the Borough in the enforcement proceedings. Upon judgment against any person by summary conviction, or by proceedings by summons on default of the payment of the fine or penalty imposed and the costs, the defendant may be sentenced and committed to the Borough lockup for a period not exceeding 10 days or to the county jail for a period not exceeding 30 days. Each day or portion thereof that such violation continues or is permitted to continue shall constitute a separate offense, and each section of this chapter that is violated shall also constitute a separate offense.[2]
(1) 
If the owners, occupant or other responsible agent of the property fails to remove graffiti or give consent for removal within 30 days after the second notice of violation has been issued, the Borough may proceed to remove the graffiti itself or by contract.
(2) 
A bill for costs of removal shall be delivered to the property owners, occupant or other responsible agent and, in the event of nonpayment, the Borough may file a lien against the property in the amount of such costs. Liability for costs of removal shall be in addition to liability for any fine imposed and in addition to any applicable enforcement costs incurred by the Borough.
[2]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
Whenever the requirements of this chapter are in conflict with other requirements of the ordinances of the Borough of Lansdale, the most restrictive or those imposing the higher standards shall govern.