[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Pine Grove 6-18-2015 by Ord. No. 438. Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter shall be known as the "Pine Grove Borough Quality of Life Ordinance."
Lack of maintenance of properties, littering, improper storage of trash and rubbish, storage of inoperable/nonregistered vehicles, vendor operations without permits, and accumulation of snow and ice are costly problems that contribute to the deterioration of property values and general disorder in a community. These problems degrade the physical appearance of the Borough, which reduces business and tax revenue and inhibits economic development. The quality of life and community pride of the citizens of Pine Grove are negatively impacted by the occurrences and existence of these activities. Recognizing these are community problems, the purpose of this chapter is to promote the health, safety and general welfare of the Borough by helping to create a clean environment for the citizens of Pine Grove.
The provisions of this chapter shall apply to all existing and future properties and structures.
The following words, terms, and phrases, when used in this chapter, shall be defined as follows unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.
- AUTHORIZED LITTER RECEPTACLE
- A litter collection receptacle which is placed on the public right-of-way or on public property by the Borough for use by the public to deposit small quantities of hand held trash, but not household or commercial waste.
- Any material upon the premises that is a residue of structural demolition, or any other material that is not neatly stored, stacked, or piled in such a manner so as not to create a nuisance or become a harboring place or food supply for insects and rodents.
- Includes, but is not limited to, depositing of litter, depositing durable goods (refrigerators, washers, dryers, etc.) small appliances, furniture, carpets, tires, vehicles, vehicle parts and automotive products, and other such municipal waste, hazardous waste, residual waste and construction or demolition debris on public or private property, except as authorized by law.
- The animal or vegetable waste resulting from the handling, preparation, cooking, and consumption of food.
- HAZARDOUS WASTE
- Any waste material or a combination of solid, liquid, semisolid, or contained gaseous material that because of its quantity, concentration, physical, chemical, or infectious characteristics may:
- HOUSEHOLD HAZARDOUS WASTE (HHW)
- Waste which would be chemically or physically classified as a hazardous waste, but is excluded from regulation as a hazardous waste because it is produced in quantities smaller than those regulated by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, and because it is generated by persons not otherwise covered as hazardous waste generators by those regulations. Such HHW materials meet one of the following four classifications: toxic, flammable, reactive, or corrosive. HHW consists of numerous products that are common to the average household such as: pesticides and herbicides, cleaners, automotive products, paints, and acids.
- INDOOR FURNITURE
- Any and all pieces of furniture which are made for only inside use, including, but not limited to, upholstered chairs and sofas, etc.
- JUNKED VEHICLE
- Any vehicle which presents a hazard or danger to the public or is a public nuisance by virtue of its state or condition of disrepair.
- A. The following conditions, if present, are examples of a state or condition of disrepair:
- (1) Rusted and/or jagged metal on or protruding from the body of the vehicle.
- (2) Broken glass or windows on or in the vehicle.
- (3) Leaking of any fluids from the vehicle or deflated or flat tire(s).
- (4) Unsecured and/or unlocked doors hood, or trunk.
- (5) Storage or placement of the vehicle in an unbalanced condition, on concrete blocks, or other similar apparatus.
- (6) Harboring of rodents, insects, or other pests.
- B. The foregoing examples are not inclusive of all conditions which may constitute a state or condition of disrepair. See also "motor vehicle nuisance."
- Includes, but is not limited to, all waste material, garbage, trash, i.e., wastepaper, tobacco products, wrappers, food or beverage containers, newspapers, etc., municipal waste, human waste, domestic animal waste, furniture or motor vehicle seats, vehicle parts, automotive products, shopping carts, construction or demolition material, recyclable material, and dirt, mud and yard waste that has been abandoned or improperly discarded, deposited, or disposed,
- LOCAL RESPONSIBLE AGENT
- Any person residing or working within the County of Schuylkill designated to accept service on behalf of a legal owner or operator of a rental dwelling unit.
- MOBILE VENDOR
- A vendor or seller of food and/or goods from a vehicle or other conveyance upon the public streets or alleys of the Borough that does not typically remain stationary for more than approximately 10 minutes each hour.
- MOTOR VEHICLE
- Any type of mechanical device, capable or at one time capable of being propelled by a motor, in which persons or property may be transported upon public streets or highways, and including trailers or semitrailers pulled thereby.
- MOTOR VEHICLE NUISANCE
- A motor vehicle with one or more of the following defects:
- A. Broken windshields, mirrors, or other glass, with sharp edges.
- B. Broken headlamps, tail lamps, bumpers, or grills with sharp edges.
- C. Any body parts, truck, fire wall, or floorboards with sharp edges or large holes resulting from rust,
- D. Protruding sharp objects from the chassis.
- E. Missing doors, windows, hood, trunks, or other body parts that could permit animal harborage.
- F. One or more open tires or tubes which could permit animal harborage.
- G. Any vehicle suspended by blocks, jacks, or other such materials in a location which may pose a danger to the public, property owners, visitors, or residents of the property on which said vehicle is found.
- H. Any excessive fluids leaking from vehicle which may be harmful to the public or the environment.
- I. Disassembled body or chassis parts stored in, on or about the vehicle.
- J. Vehicles that do not display a current valid license and registration.
- K. Such other defects which the Fire Department determines to be a danger to the general public or property.
- L. Motor vehicles parked, drifted, or otherwise located which may interfere with flow of pedestrian or automobile traffic or impede emergency efforts.
- MUNICIPAL WASTE
- Any garbage, refuse, industrial, lunchroom, or office waste, and other material, including solid, liquid, semisolid, or contained gaseous material resulting from operation or residential, municipal, commercial, or institutional establishments or from community activities, and which is not classified as residual waste or hazardous waste as defined herein. The term does not include source separated recyclable materials or organic waste.
- NOTICE OF VIOLATION
- A written document issued to a person in violation of a Borough ordinance which specifies the violation and contains a directive to take corrective action within a specified time frame or face further legal action.
- Any condition, structure, or improvement which constitutes a danger or potential danger to the health, safety, or welfare of citizens of the Borough, or causes a blighting effect in Borough neighborhoods. See also "public nuisance."
- Every natural person, firm, corporation, partnership, association, or institution.
- PLANTER STRIP
- The nonconcrete space in the sidewalk area filled with dirt and/or grass.
- PRIVATE PROPERTY
- Any land and the improvements thereon owned by any person and includes front, side, and rear yards; vacant lots, buildings, and other structural improvements; walkways and alleyways; and parking areas, designed or used either whole or in part for private residential, industrial, or commercial purposes, whether inhabited, temporary, continuously uninhabited, or vacant, including any yard, grounds, walk, driveway, porch, steps, vestibule, or mailbox belonging to or appurtenant to such dwelling, house, building, or other structure.
- PUBLIC NUISANCE
- Any conditions or premises which are unsafe or unsanitary.
- PUBLIC OFFICER
- Any police officer, authorized inspector, or public official designated by the Borough to enforce the Borough ordinances, including, but not limited to, members of Borough Council, the Mayor, Health Officer, Code Enforcement Officer, and Borough Engineers.
- PUBLIC RIGHT-OF-WAY
- The total width of any land used, reserved, or dedicated as a street, alley, driveway, sidewalk, or utility easement, including curb and gutter areas.
- RECYCLABLE MATERIAL
- Material which would otherwise become municipal waste, which can be collected, separated, or processed, and returned to the economic main-stream in the form of raw materials or products. These materials may include, but not be limited to, aluminum cans, ferrous and bimetal cans, glass containers, plastic bottles and containers, mixed paper, white goods, major appliances, televisions, tires and large auto parts.
- RESIDUAL WASTE
- Any discarded material or other waste, including solid, semisolid, or contained gaseous materials resulting from construction, industrial, mining, and agricultural operations, excluding municipal water and sewer operations.
- Combustible and noncombustible waste materials, except garbage; the term shall include the residue from the burning of wood, coal, coke, and other combustible materials, paper, rags, cartons, boxes, wood, excelsior, rubber, leather, tree branches, yard trimmings, tin cans, metals, mineral matter, glass, crockery, and dust and other similar materials.
- SHADE TREE
- Unless otherwise specified, includes all trees, shrubs, and woody vegetation in the public right-of-way.
- SIDEWALK AREA
- The public right-of-way between the property line and the curbline or the established edge of the roadway.
- SOLID WASTE
- Any waste, including, but not limited to, municipal, residual, or hazardous wastes, including solid, liquid, semisolid, or contained gaseous materials.
- The containment of any municipal waste on a temporary basis in such a manner as not to constitute disposal as such waste, and it shall be presumed that the containment of any municipal waste in excess of three months constitutes disposal.
- TREE WELL
- The nonconcrete area surrounding a shade tree planted in a sidewalk area.
- Any planting that is cultivated and managed for edible or ornamental purposes such as vegetable gardens, trees, shrubs, hedges, flowers, etc.
- VIOLATION TICKET
- A form issued by a police officer or public officer to a person who violates a provision of this chapter. The violation ticket is an offer by the Borough of Pine Grove extended to a person to settle a violation by paying the fine in lieu of a citation being issued against the violator.
- A. All grasses, annual plants, and vegetation, which meet any of the following criteria:
- (1) Exceed eight inches in height.
- (2) Exhale unpleasant noxious odors or pollen such as ragweed, dandelion, and miscellaneous other vegetation commonly referred to as weeds or brush.
- (3) May conceal filthy deposits or serve as breeding places for mosquitoes, other insects, or vermin.
- (4) May cause a public nuisance.
- B. Weeds shall not include cultivated and managed vegetation planted for edible or ornamental purposes such as vegetable gardens, trees, shrubs, flowers, etc.
- An open space on the same lot with a structure,
Accumulation of rubbish or garbage. All exterior property and premises, and the interior of every structure shall be free from any accumulation of waste, trash, rubbish, or garbage.
Animal maintenance and waste/feces cleanup. People owning, harboring, or keeping an animal within the Borough of Pine Grove shall not permit any waste matter/feces from the animal to collect and remain on the property so as to cause or create an unhealthy, unsanitary, dangerous, or offensive living condition, all waste from animals must be cleaned up on a daily basis.
Disposal of rubbish or garbage/dumping. Improper disposal of rubbish or garbage, or dumping or disposing of rubbish or garbage on vacant, unoccupied, or other property.
High weeds, grass or plant growth. All premises and exterior property shall be maintained free from weeds or plant growth in excess of eight inches. All noxious weeds shall be prohibited. Weeds shall be defined as all grasses, annual plants, and vegetation. Cultivated flowers, gardens, trees, and shrubs shall not be included as a violation of this subsection.
Littering or scattering rubbish. No person shall throw, dump, place, sweep, or dispose of any waste, trash, garbage, or rubbish upon any public sidewalk, alley, street, bridges, public passageway, public parking area, or on any public property.
Motor vehicles. It shall be unlawful to store, park, or place any unregistered, uninspected, inoperative, unlicensed, or nuisance motor vehicle on any premises except as provided herein. No vehicle shall at any time be in a state of major disassembly, disrepair, or in the process of being stripped or dismantled, Painting of vehicles is prohibited unless conducted inside an approved spray booth. Nuisance vehicles may be stored within a garage or other enclosed building.
Operating or vending without the proper permit/license. It shall be unlawful for any person, business, partnership, or entity to operate, including, but not limited to, any business, vending cart, store, or establishment without the proper permits.
Outside placement of indoor appliances/furniture. It is prohibited to store or place any/all appliances or furniture including, but not limited to, ranges, refrigerators, air conditioners, ovens, washers, dryers, microwaves, dishwashers, mattresses, recliners, sofas, interior chairs, or interior tables on the exterior of any property for the purpose of sale or any other reason, except for the temporary purpose to perform maintenance on said property. Appliances placed for temporary purposes must have any doors removed before appliance is placed on the exterior of any property.
Ownership presumption of waste, trash, and/or recyclables for illegal dumping and illegal hauling. It shall be the responsibility of every owner and/or occupant to dispose of their waste, trash, or recyclables in a proper manner. Any business or person who is unable to show proof that they have legally disposed of any waste, trash, or recyclables will be in violation of this subsection. Should any person or business use an unlicensed hauler to dispose of their waste, trash, or recyclables, said person or business shall be in violation of this subsection. Upon request of the Public Officer, any owner or occupant must show proof of their appropriate trash and/or recyclable hauler. Any parts found within a municipal waste container, recycling container garbage bag, or loose trash/waste displaying the name and/or address of a person and/or persons, that trash or waste shall be presumed to be the property of such person and/or persons. It shall be unlawful for any person, business, partnership, or entity to remove or haul waste, trash, or recyclables without the proper approval or license. Any waste, trash, or recyclables found not to be disposed of in accordance with this subsection will be a violation of this subsection.
Placement or littering by private advertising matter. No person shall throw, place, sweep, or dispose of litter or private advertising matter upon any public sidewalk, alley, street, bridge, public passageway, public parking area, or any public property. No person, group, organization, or entity will hang, place or advertise on any public property in any manner without the express written permission of Pine Grove Borough Council. No person, group, organization, or entity will hang, place, or advertise on any property that they do not have any ownership rights to without the written approval of said owner.
Snow and ice removal from sidewalks. Every owner, tenant, occupant, lessee, property agent, or any other person who is responsible for any property within the Borough of Pine Grove, is required to remove any snow or ice from their sidewalk within 24 hours of the cessation of said snow and ice falling, Furthermore, they must create a path, free from any snow or ice, of three feet on said sidewalk. Should any property be a place of business within the Borough of Pine Grove, all snow and ice must be removed within four hours of the cessation of said snow and ice fall. Any property that is deemed a business must have the entire sidewalk free from any snow and ice. If and/or when the snow and/or ice cessation happens during the hours of darkness, the time limit of removal of all snow and ice begins at daybreak.
Storage containers for waste or trash. The owner of every premises shall supply approved containers for waste/trash, as well as be responsible for the removal of rubbish. All containers that store waste or trash shall be durable, watertight, and made of metal or plastic. Containers must have tight-fitting covers, and must be kept clean and odor free at all times. All containers must be stored in the rear of every property so said containers are not visible from the public right-of-way. Waste/trash containers may only be placed in front of any property when darkness occurs the night before the day of the scheduled waste/trash pickup day. Once the licensed hauler removes the waste/trash from any property, all containers must be returned to the rear of any property before daybreak on the day following pickup. (Example: Jim Smith's trash collection day is Wednesday. Jim Smith may place his trash containers out front of his property on Tuesday night, once night falls. Jim Smith must place his trash containers in the rear of his yard before daybreak, on Thursday morning.)
Storing of hazardous material. It shall be unlawful for any person, business or entity to store combustible, flammable, explosive, or other hazardous materials, including, but not limited to, paints, volatile oils and cleaning fluids, or combustible rubbish including, but not limited to, wastepaper, boxes, or rags unless the storage of said materials is stored in compliance with the applicable Building Codes.
Storing of recyclables. It shall be the responsibility of the owner of all residential, commercial, and industrial property to ensure storage collection, and disposal of all recyclables from their property in such a manner not to create a public nuisance. Storage of recyclables is only prohibited in approved containers, which must be kept clean and sanitary at all times.
Swimming pools. Swimming pools shall be maintained in good repair at all times. They shall also be kept clean, safe, secured, and sanitary as well.
Violating the terms of any vending license. It shall be unlawful to violate any term, part, portion or in total, any vending license. Any person, business, partnership, or entity violating their vending license shall be in violation of this subsection.
Temporary dumpster permit required. Each temporary dumpster, whether placed on private property or in a public right-of-way, shall display a valid permit issued by the Borough of Pine Grove. The current fee for a dumpster permit is $10. This fee may be increased at any time upon majority vote of Pine Grove Borough Council. Pine Grove Borough maintains authority to extend the period of the dumpster permit or to refuse requests to extend the time of the dumpster permit.
Trimming of trees required. All trees in the sidewalk area and all trees near the sidewalk area shall be trimmed and kept trimmed by the property owners of the abutting premises so that the same shall be without branches to the height of 10 feet above streets, highways, and sidewalks on both sides of all streets, highways and alleys within the Borough.
Upon finding a quality of life any Public Officer of the Borough of Pine Grove may issue quality of life violation tickets to the owner and/or occupant of the property at issue or to the individual(s) known to have violated this chapter.
The provisions of this chapter shall be enforced by police officers, or any other public officer authorized to enforce ordinances, including, but not limited to, all Public Officers as defined by this chapter.
Any violation of the provisions of this chapter may be cause for a citation, a violation ticket, and/or a notice of violation to be issued to the violator.
A violation ticket shall be served upon a violator by handing it to the violator, by handing it at the residence of the person to be served to an adult member of the household or other person in charge of the residence, by leaving or affixing the notice or violation ticket to the property where the violation exists, by handing it at any office or usual place of business of the violator, to his/her agent or to the person for the time being in charge thereof, or by mailing the notice to the violator's address of record.
Each day a violation continues or is permitted to continue may constitute a separate offense for which a separate fine may be imposed.
Any person or business violating this chapter is hereby directed to satisfy the Borough of Pine Grove and its citizens, upon issuance of a violation ticket, by correcting the violation in question. A public officer is authorized and empowered to cause a violation to be corrected. The cost shall be determined by the Borough in order that the Borough shall be compensated for both direct and indirect costs and expenses incurred.
The Borough of Pine Grove and/or its contractor, per the direction of the Borough, reserves the right to abate the violation in question at the expense of the owner. If the Borough has affected the abatement of the violation, the cost thereof may be charged to the owner of the property, tenant, or offending party. A bill/invoice will be generated to the violator for payment separate from the quality of life ticket.
In all instances where the Borough abates the violation, in addition to the fine set forth in the quality of life ticket, the Borough is authorized to recover from the offending party, the owner of the property, or tenant the abatement charges and such other charges established by the Borough by way of municipal lien and the rules and regulations. All costs, including, but not limited to, attorneys' fees, Code Official fees, and interest, shall be recoverable by the Borough.
Borough of Pine Grove cleanup. The Borough reserves the right to perform any necessary work to abate any violation once 72 hours passes from the date of issuance of the violation ticket. Should the violation, at the discretion of the Borough, present imminent danger and/or pose a health hazard and/or risk, the Borough reserves the right to perform the abatement immediately. The Borough will perform this work at the prevailing rate per hour, per man, and forward the cost of any material necessary for the abatement. The Borough reserves the right to charge an additional 20% on all material purchased to cover all miscellaneous expenses such as wear and tear on equipment. These costs may be increased by majority vote of Pine Grove Borough Council,
Contractor cleanup. The Borough reserves the right to direct a contractor to perform the abatement of the violation in question once 72 hours passes from the date of issuance of the Violation Ticket. Should the violation present imminent danger and/or pose a health hazard and/or risk, the Borough reserves the right to direct the contractor to perform the abatement immediately. The contractor will submit a bill for their work to the Borough of Pine Grove and the Borough will forward these costs to the violator. The Borough reserves the right to add a 30% processing fee in addition to the cost of the contractor.
The Borough reserves the right, in addition to all costs, fines, and penalties imposed by this chapter, to record a municipal lien against the property for all costs incurred consistent with the Borough Code, including, but not limited to, attorneys' fees and reasonable interest.
For each violation of this chapter, violation tickets shall be issued as set forth on the Quality of Life Fine Schedule. The Quality of Life Fine Schedule and the amounts of the tickets may be amended, from time to time, at the discretion of Pine Grove Borough Council, by majority vote, by resolution only without the requirement of an ordinance.
Editor's Note: The Quality of Life Fine Schedule is included as an attachment to this chapter.
Any persons who receive a violation ticket for any violation of this chapter may, within 15 days, admit the violation, waive a hearing, and pay the fine in full satisfaction.
Any person who violates this chapter shall pay a fine as set forth in the Quality of Life Fine Schedule for each offense, plus all direct and indirect costs incurred by the Borough for the cleanup and abatement of the violation.
If the person in receipt of a violation ticket does not pay the fine or request a hearing within 15 days, the person will be subject to an additional penalty for days 16 through 30.
Failure of the person to request a hearing within 15 days or to make payment within 30 days of a violation ticket shall make the person subject to a citation for failure to pay.
The Borough reserves the right to issue citations without first issuing Violation Tickets.
The Borough reserves the right to issue warnings to violators to abate the violation within a reasonable amount of time, but such warning is not required before issuing a violation ticket or citation.
Any person, firm, or corporation who shall fail, neglect, or refuse to comply with any of the terms or provisions of this chapter, or of any regulation or requirement pursuant hereto and authorized hereby shall, upon conviction, be ordered to pay a fine of not less than $100, and not more than $1,000 on each offense, or imprisoned no more than 90 days, or both.
The Magisterial District Judge may order the violator to make restitution to said real or personal property owner.
A person in receipt of a violation ticket may appeal to Borough Council by filing a request, in writing, within 15 calendar days of the date of the violation ticket.
In order for an appeal to be deemed valid and a hearing date and time to be set, the following must be performed by the alleged violator requesting the appeal within 15 calendar days:
All paperwork, including the appropriate appeal form for the appeal, must be submitted and complete within 15 calendar days from the date the violation ticket was issued.
Payment of the fine must be made, in full, with the appeal form which will be refunded within 30 calendar days should the alleged violator win his/her appeal.
The appeal hearing will be held before Borough Council or their designee within 60 days from the date of the appeal. Borough Council or its designee may uphold the appeal, deny the appeal, or may modify the violation ticket and/or any associated costs, fines, or penalty amounts as he/she sees appropriate.
At the discretion of the Borough of Pine Grove, all tickets for which payment is not received within 45 days of issuance of a ticket for which an appeal is not taken, and 45 days from denial of appeal and monies paid by the Borough of Pine Grove for abatement of a violation not paid within 45 days of billing, may be turned over by the Borough to a collection agency for receipt. At the discretion of the Borough of Pine Grove, municipal liens may be placed upon a property for which payment has not been made on an issued ticket and/or for abatement of a violation. The amount of the municipal lien shall include all costs and expenses, including reasonable attorneys' fees and interest as allowed under the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
The penalty, lien and collection provisions of this section shall be independent, non-mutually exclusive separate remedies, all of which shall be available to the Borough of Pine Grove as may be deemed appropriate for carrying out the purposes of this chapter. The remedies and procedures provided in this chapter for violation hereof are not intended to supplant or replace to any degree the remedies and procedures available to the Borough in the case of a violation of any other Borough of Pine Grove Code, Ordinance or Codified Ordinances, whether or not such other Code or Ordinance is referenced in this chapter, and whether or not an ongoing violation of such other Code or Ordinance is cited as the underlying ground for a finding of a violation of this chapter.
If any provision, paragraph, word, section, or subsection of this chapter is invalidated by any court of competent jurisdiction, the remaining provisions, paragraphs, words, sections, or subsection shall not be affected and shall remain in full force and effect. If any section, subsection, sentence, or clause of this chapter is held, for any reason, to be invalid, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of the chapter.
All relevant ordinances, regulations, and policies of the Borough of Pine Grove Pennsylvania not amended shall remain in full force and effect.
Borough of Pine Grove Ordinance Numbers 239 and 293 are hereby repealed.
This chapter specifically replaces and supersedes any sections of Borough Ordinance Numbers 254 and 338 that are inconsistent with this chapter. All rights, remedies and sections of Ordinance Numbers 254 and 338 not inconsistent with this chapter shall remain in full force and effect. The Borough reserves and saves all rights in regard to all ordinances and sections of those ordinances not inconsistent with this chapter.
This chapter shall be effective immediately upon passage and approved in the manner prescribed by law.