[Ord. 1121, 3/16/2015]
This Part 5 shall be known as the "Graffiti Ordinance of the Borough of Emmaus" and shall apply to all graffiti occurring within the jurisdictional limits of the Borough of Emmaus.
[Ord. 1121, 3/16/2015]
The following words, terms or phrases, when used in Part 5 of this chapter, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section.
Words and phrases, when used in Part 5, except for sections or chapters to which different or additional definitions apply, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in the Crimes Code, 18 Pa.C.S.A., as amended.
- Any person, persons, agency, or organization that shall serve as a representative and/or acts on behalf of any property owner or occupant of a premises.
- AUTHORIZED PERSON
- A police officer, community service officer, or Code Enforcement Officer of the Borough of Emmaus.
- The Borough of Emmaus.
- 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.
- Voluntary agreement by a person.
- A. Any inscription, work, symbol, figure, marking or design, including, but not limited to, tags, throw-ups and pieces, that is marked, etched, scrawled, stained, drawn or painted and stuck on or adhered to any surface on public or private property without the express permission of the owner or owner's agent of such property, including, but not limited to, any wall, underpass, overpass, trestle, tree, sign, pole, playground apparatus, utility box, building, structure, fixture, or other improvements, whether permanent or temporary, regardless of the content or nature of the material that has been applied, and which is visible from any public property or the public right-of-way, or from any private property rather than the property on which the graffiti exists.
- B. Graffiti shall not be construed to apply to easily removable chalk markings on the public sidewalks and streets used in connection with traditional children's play.
- GRAFFITI IMPLEMENT
- Any implement capable of marking a surface to create graffiti, including, but not limited to, aerosol or pressurized paint containers, markers, gum labels, paint brushes or etching tools, capable of scarring glass, metal, concrete, or wood.
- GUM LABELS
- Any material such as, but not limited to, decals, stickers, posters or labels which contain a substance commonly known as "adhesive" or "glue," which cannot be removed from the surface in an intact condition and with minimal effort.
- Any indelible or permanent marker or similar implement with a point, brush, applicator or other writing surface which contains ink that is not water-soluble.
- Any person under the age of 18 years.
- A letter delivered to the owner of the property or placed securely on the front door or other highly visible area of a property which is defaced with graffiti. Said letter or sticker shall contain a statement that the graffiti must be removed within 30 days after the letter has been posted on the property or received by the owner of the property.
- Any person or persons who occupy, rent, or own a property and conduct business or reside at that property for any amount of time.
- Any and all persons with legal and/or equitable title to real property in the Borough.
- PAINT STICK or GRAFFITI STICK
- Any device containing a solid form of paint, chalk, wax, epoxy, or other similar substance capable of being applied to a surface by pressure and, upon application, leaving a visible mark and that is not water-soluble.
- Includes any individual, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company, or organization of any kind.
- Forms of graffiti represented by detailed, multicolored murals, ranging in size.
- Includes any real estate, including improvements thereon; and tangible personal property, including, but not limited to, newsboxes, newsstands, utility poles, public telephones, tree planters, and other items of street furniture, and vehicles located thereon.
- A form of graffiti represented by stylized signatures of a writer's chosen name.
- A form of graffiti represented by large names or figures written in a bubble style, often with an outline written in a different color than the interior of the letters.
[Ord. 1121, 3/16/2015]
No person owning or occupying any property within the Borough of Emmaus, Lehigh 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 Part, directing and requiring such person to remove such graffiti. In the event that graffiti is not removed within 30 days from the date of the mailing of this first notice, a second notice shall be issued. The second notice shall again require and direct the responsible party to remove such graffiti. The second notice shall also request consent to allow the Borough to enter upon the property for purposes of graffiti removal at the owner's expense, if the owner fails to remove the graffiti. Failure to remove graffiti within 30 days of mailing of the second notice shall constitute a violation of this Part.
It shall be unlawful for any person to commit any overt act resulting in or attempting to result in application of graffiti.
It shall be unlawful for any person to intentionally, maliciously, or wantonly expose or tend to expose another to risk of violence, contempt or hatred on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, or sexual orientation by the use of what is commonly known as "graffiti."
It shall be unlawful for any parent, legal guardian, or other person having custody and care of any minor child under the age of 18 years to knowingly assist, aid, abet, allow, permit, or encourage said minor to violate the provisions of this Part, as herein defined, either by words, overt act, or by failing to act.
All persons directly or indirectly involved in acts of graffiti vandalism may be found to be equally responsible and guilty of the act, in addition to any individual who may personally deface the object or area, such as others in the group who knowingly make available the tools, writing materials, ladders, lookouts, materials or assistance, or who knowingly supply funds to acquire such materials for such purposes.
No minor shall have in his or her possession any aerosol container of spray paint 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 and has consented to the minor's possession while on his or her property.
No person, partnership, or corporation in the Borough of Emmaus shall sell, cause to be sold, furnish, or convey to any person under the age of 18 any aerosol container of spray paint.
Every person, partnership, or corporation who owns, conducts, operates, or manages a retail commercial establishment within the Borough of Emmaus selling aerosol containers of spray paints shall place a sign in the direct view of such persons responsible for accepting customer payment for aerosol containers of spray paint or broad-tipped indelible markers substantially in the following form:
"IT IS A VIOLATION OF THE LAW TO SELL AEROSOL CONTAINERS OF SPRAY PAINT TO PERSONS UNDER 18 YEARS OF AGE. THIS OFFENSE IS PUNISHABLE BY A FINE OR IMPRISONMENT. PUNISHMENT MAY BE IN THE FORM OF COMMUNITY SERVICE OR CLEANUP AT THE DISCRETION OF THE MAGISTERIAL DISTRICT JUDGE."
Every person, partnership or corporation within the Borough of Emmaus who owns, conducts, operates or manages a retail commercial establishment within the Borough selling aerosol containers of spray paints shall store or cause such aerosol containers to be stored either:
In the direct line of sight from the cash register work area or any work area that is normally continuously occupied while the store is open;
Under continuous electronic or mechanical surveillance or control; or
In a place not accessible to the public in the regular course of business without employee assistance, pending legal sale of such paint containers.
[Ord. 1121, 3/16/2015]
Any person who shall violate, fail, neglect, or refuse to comply with § 6-503, Subsection 1 or 2, or § 6-504 of this Part shall, upon summary conviction thereof, be sentenced to pay a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $1,000 and the costs of prosecution and, in default of payment thereof, shall undergo imprisonment in the Lehigh County jail for a period not exceeding 30 days.
Any person who shall violate § 6-503, Subsections 3 through 10, of this Part shall, upon summary conviction thereof, be sentenced to pay a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $1,000 and the costs of prosecution and, in default of payment thereof, shall undergo imprisonment in the Lehigh County jail for a period not exceeding 30 days.
If the owner, 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 graffiti, itself or by contract.
Except where the legal fees, administrative and filing costs exceed the cost of removal, a bill for costs of removal shall be delivered to the property owner, 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.