[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of West Whiteland 10-23-2019 by Ord. No. 450. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This ordinance was adopted as Ch. 140, but was renumbered to maintain the organization of the Code.
To plan for private gatherings and organized activities that, due to their size and/or special requirements, place demands on Township services or pose a danger to public health, safety and welfare, it is necessary that the Township receive advance notice of these events and be compensated for services required for the event that go beyond usual operations.
The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this chapter, shall have the following meanings:
- COMMUNITY EVENT
- Any public event officially sponsored or officially organized by the Township from time to time.
- PRIVATE SPECIAL EVENT
- A preplanned single event or series of events that, because of its nature, interest, location, promotion or any combination of similar influences, is expected to draw a large number of persons, proposed to be held on private property and requiring the use of public support services. "Private special event" shall include, but not be limited to, races, festivals, shows, neighborhood celebrations, public events which are privately sponsored but open to the public, or similar activities generally considered to be recreational in nature. The term shall not include the normal operations, activities or affairs of any duly established educational, recreational or religious organization located in the Township, an event whose estimated total attendance of all participants is anticipated to be less than 100 people, or to any community event.
- An individual, group, corporation, organization or other entity responsible for organizing, hosting or paying for the event.
- SUPPORT SERVICES
- Those services provided by the Township or the Township's designated emergency services providers to ensure that an event is conducted in such a manner as to protect the rights, safety, health, property and general welfare of its citizens. These services include, but are not limited to, fire protection, ambulance services, police protection, crowd management and control, traffic management and solid waste management.
No sponsor, person, association, firm, corporation, or other entity shall conduct a private special event in West Whiteland Township without first obtaining a permit from the Township.
Township services necessary for a private special event, as determined by the Township to protect the health and safety of the public, shall be paid for by the sponsor.
Approval to conduct a private special event by this process does not relieve the sponsor or any participants, including but not limited to peddlers, vendors, or exhibitors, from the responsibilities of applying for any other permits or licenses, complying with federal or state law, or meeting any other requirements of the Township's ordinances that may be applicable.
All events shall obtain liability insurance in the amount denoted on the application. The insurance shall satisfy all insurance requirements for the Township for holding the private special event.
All required permits, licenses, security deposits, fees, insurance policies or any other conditions of the permit so indicated on the permit shall be obtained no later than 10 days prior to the private special event.
The sponsor holding the private special event, as well as the owner of the land upon which the private special event takes place, shall be responsible to the Township for damages sustained to Township property caused by participants in the private special event. Such additional costs and expenses shall be paid to the Township within five days of receipt of a bill.
The sponsor, as well as the owner of the land upon which the private special event takes place, shall also be responsible for the cost of any support services required, at the sole discretion of the Township, to address specific unanticipated circumstances occurring at the private special event related to larger crowd numbers than projected by the sponsor, or where the nature of the private special event is not consistent with the event as applied for by the sponsor. Such unanticipated circumstances may include, but are not limited to, crowd control and emergency response. Such additional costs and expenses shall be paid to the Township by the sponsor within five days of receipt of a bill.
The Township Manager or his designee may, upon showing of good cause that certain conditions or requirements as herein set forth are not applicable or would cause an unreasonable burden upon the sponsor, modify the foregoing requirements after review of the circumstances presented by the sponsor.
The Township shall develop an application for a private special event permit. The Township application for a permit for a private special event shall be submitted by the sponsor to the Township Manager or his designee no less than 60 days prior to the private special event. If the private special event is planned to be marketed and promoted, the sponsor should submit the application well in advance to ensure that the private special event receives the required approvals.
The Township Manager or his designee may waive the requirement of 60 days' advance notice for spontaneous private special events for celebrations important to the Township, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the nation, including but not limited to the celebration of local sports teams and the end of wars or other conflicts of national significance. The Township Manager or his designee may waive the requirement of 60 days' advance notice if there are circumstances unique to the sponsor which justify the waiver to assure the public safety and welfare of the Township or the Township's best interest.
The application shall be further accompanied by such other information as may be required by the Township Manager or his designee.
Payment of an application review fee, the amount of which is to be set by resolution of the Board of Supervisors, shall be submitted along with each permit application.
Township review of the application is to provide a mechanism which will allow the Township to plan, evaluate and coordinate any private special event, which will allow the establishment of terms and conditions within which the event may be conducted and will allow the sponsor or any involved event planner to plan and manage the event within the context of the established terms and conditions.
Township review of private special events may involve input from any applicable Township departments. In reviewing a proposed private special event, personnel shall review, evaluate and estimate the cost of the support services required for the private special event and the cost of the support services that will be charged to the sponsor or the owner of the land upon which the private special event takes place. The personnel may also recommend to the Township Manager or his designee that costs or any portion of the costs be waived if such a waiver is in the best interest of the Township.
Township review will involve consideration of various criteria and factors, including but not limited to the following:
Does the Township have the ability to provide, if needed, the required support services, regardless of who bears the cost?
Does the proposed event adversely affect the normal and necessary functions of the support services to the Township?
Does the proposed event conflict with any other proposed events or activities?
Any personnel conducting the Township review shall recommend either approval or disapproval of a proposed private special event, submit the conditions required if approved, and submit an estimate of costs of support services and any other related issues to the Township Manager or his designee in a timely manner so as not to delay the planning process.
The Township Manager or his designee may require additional conditions not mentioned herein as may be necessary to maintain peace and order or to protect the health, safety and general welfare of the citizens of the Township or any neighboring property.
A final decision on the approval of a permit for the private special event proposed, along with all costs and conditions attached, shall be made by the Township Manager or his designee, except those applications which require street closures; then, in such case, a final decision shall be by the Township Board of Supervisors at a public meeting of the Township Board of Supervisors.
The Township Manager or his designee shall notify the sponsor of a private special event within five days of the final decision. If the notification is an approval, it shall include any costs and/or conditions attached to the approval. If the notification is a denial, it shall include the reasons for denial.
The cost of individual support services shall be set by resolution of the Board of Supervisors from time to time.
The anticipated costs for each individual private special event shall be calculated by the Township and set forth in the permit. No later than 10 days prior to the private special event, the sponsor or the owner of the land upon which the private special event takes place shall secure the costs associated with necessary support services according to the following schedule:
Security may be in the form of a cash escrow or bond in a format acceptable to the Township.
Within 30 days of the close of the private special event, the actual cost of support services, including support services arising for unanticipated circumstances, shall be calculated by the Township. If the actual costs exceed the amount of security held by the Township, additional payment shall made by the sponsor or landowner to the Township within five days of receipt of a bill. Otherwise, any excess security shall be released by the Township to the sponsor or the owner of the land upon which the private special event takes place.
In the event that all required permits, licenses, security deposits, fees, insurance policies or any other conditions of the permit so indicated on the permit are not obtained 10 days prior to the private special event, the permit shall be revoked by the Township.
In the event all required costs associated with the support services have not been paid 10 days prior to the private special event, the Township shall revoke the permit.
Any violation of one or more of the regulations set forth herein or conditions of the permit shall be sufficient grounds for the Township to immediately revoke the permit and order the sponsor holding the private special event to cease and desist its activities. Upon such notice of immediate revocation, the sponsor, as well as the owner of the land upon which the private special event takes place, shall cease and desist its activities and shall be prevented from applying for another permit for at least two years from the date of revocation.
If the violation is not discovered by the Township until the private special event has ended, then the Township shall suspend for two years the right of the sponsor conducting the private special event, as well as the owner of the land upon which the private special event takes place, to apply for another permit to conduct a private special event.
The Township may extend the suspension beyond the two-year period if, in its discretion, it is determined that the sponsor or the owner of the land upon which the private special event takes place will not conduct a future private special event in accordance with the regulations set forth herein or the conditions set forth in the permit or will, if allowed to conduct such a private special event, pose a threat to the public health, safety and welfare.
A sponsor or owner of the land upon which a private special event takes place who has been denied a permit to conduct a private special event, whose permit has been revoked or whose right to apply for a permit has been suspended or revoked for violation of this chapter or who contests a permit condition shall have the right to appeal said denial, suspension, revocation or condition to the Board of Supervisors, in writing, within five business days of the date of the notice of said denial, suspension, revocation or condition. The Board of Supervisors shall conduct a hearing on said appeal within 30 days from the date of filing of the appeal. The Board of Supervisors shall render a decision within 30 days after the hearing, either upholding the denial, suspension, revocation or condition or granting the appeal and ordering the Township to grant the permit or rescind the revocation or suspension notice or remove the condition.
By issuing an event permit, the Township makes no guarantees and assumes no liability for the safety of participants in, or spectators of, the event. The Township may require as a condition of an event permit that the sponsor agree to indemnify, defend, and hold the Township harmless for any and all costs, damages, or other liabilities related to the private special event.
In addition to paying for all support services required in association with the private special event, any private special event sponsor, as well as the owner of the land upon which the private special event takes place, who violates or permits the violation of any of the provisions of this chapter shall be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $600 per violation, plus all court costs, including reasonable attorney fees incurred by the Township. A separate offense shall arise for each day or portion thereof in which a violation is found to exist or for each section of this chapter which is found to be violated. Upon a finding of liability for committing or permitting the violation in a civil enforcement proceeding commenced by the Township, the defendant shall pay the fine, plus all court costs, including attorney fees. No judgment shall be imposed until the date of determination of a violation by a Magisterial District Judge and such fines, costs and attorney fees shall be collectible before any Magisterial District Judge as like fines, costs and attorney fees are now by law collectible. If the defendant neither pays nor timely appeals the judgment, the Township may enforce the judgment pursuant to the applicable Rules of Civil Procedure.
In addition to the above-provided penalties, the Township may maintain any action or proceedings in the name of the Township in the Chester County Court of Common Pleas, at law or in equity, to compel compliance with or enforce any violation of this chapter.
All remedies of the Township shall be cumulative.
If the Police Department provides support services, the Police Chief shall keep an accurate record of all hours worked by all officers, and extra compensation shall be paid to each officer for all time worked beyond regularly scheduled tour of duty, less the same deduction made from his usual compensation, at appropriate rates.