City of Lebanon, PA
Lebanon County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
This title shall apply throughout the City of Lebanon. Any activity regulated by this title shall only occur in such a way that conforms with the regulations of this title.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
This title is hereby adopted:
(a) 
In accordance with the requirements and purposes (including Sections 604 and 605 or their successor section(s), which are included by reference) of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (the MPC), as amended;
(b) 
To carry out the following major community development objectives:
(1) 
To serve the goals and objectives of the City of Lebanon Comprehensive Plan, which are hereby included by reference, and the goals of the Lebanon County Comprehensive Plan;
(2) 
To conserve environmentally sensitive lands;
(3) 
To promote traditional styles of development and strong neighborhoods;
(4) 
To provide compatibility between various types of and uses, and encourage compatible mixes of uses;
(5) 
To provide for a variety of residential densities and housing types;
(6) 
To direct industrial development and intensive commercial development to locations that will minimize conflicts with homes;
(7) 
To promote new business development in appropriate areas that will provide additional tax revenue and job opportunities; and
(8) 
To promote pedestrian-friendly and bicycle-friendly patterns of development.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
(a) 
Applicability.
(1) 
Any of the following activities, or any other activity regulated by this title, shall only be carried out in conformity with this title and shall need a zoning permit:
A. 
Erection, construction, movement, placement or extension of a structure, building or sign, including but not limited to a fence or wall that is more than three feet in total height;
B. 
Change in the type of use of a structure or land, or expansion of a use;
C. 
Creation of a lot or alteration of lot lines;
D. 
Creation of a new use;
E. 
Demolition of a principal building, or partial demolition of the exterior of a principal building, if that building is regulated under Article 1308;
F. 
Site alterations or mineral extraction as defined by § 1315.02; and/or
G. 
Construction of a motor vehicle driveway, parking pad or parking lot.
(2) 
Zoning permit. A zoning permit indicates that a zoning application complies with this title, to the best knowledge of the applicable City Staff.
A. 
A zoning permit is required to be issued prior to the start of any of the activities regulated by Subsection (a)(1) above.
B. 
The City may, at its option, issue combined or separate construction permits and zoning permits and/or may utilize a single or separate applications for such permits.
C. 
Both principal and accessory uses and structures shall need a zoning permit, except that the City may not require an individual zoning permit for accessory uses that are customarily incidental to a principal use that has received a zoning permit.
(3) 
Certificate of occupancy.
A. 
Prior to occupancy of a new or expanded building, or in the change of the type of use of a building, a certificate of occupancy may be required under the Uniform Construction Codes (UCC).
B. 
The City staff may require that a certificate of occupancy be delayed or that only a temporary conditional certificate of occupancy be issued if there are outstanding ordinance compliance issues.
(b) 
Repairs and maintenance. Ordinary repairs and maintenance to existing structures that do not involve an expansion or change of a use or structure or other activity regulated by this title shall not require a zoning permit. (However, a construction permit may be needed for such work.)
(c) 
Types of uses.
(1) 
Permitted by right uses. The Zoning Officer shall issue a permit under this title in response to an application for a use that is permitted by right if the application meets all of the requirements of this title.
(2) 
Special exception use. This type of use requires a written approval by the Zoning Hearing Board following a hearing.
(3) 
Conditional use. This type of use requires a written zoning approval by the City Council under § 1314.17.
(d) 
Applications.
(1) 
Submittal. All applications for a zoning permit or a decision by the Zoning Hearing Board shall be made in writing on a form provided by the City. Such completed application, with required fees, shall be submitted to a designated City staff person.
(2) 
Site plan. The applicant shall submit a minimum of two copies of a site plan with the application if the application involves a new building, expansion of a building or addition of parking spaces. The site plan shall be drawn to scale and show the following:
A. 
Locations, dimensions and uses of existing and proposed structures, parking and loading areas, and locations of existing and proposed uses of areas of land, with existing features clearly distinguished from proposed features;
B. 
Notes showing the dimensions of all buildings from lot lines and street rights-of-way;
C. 
Locations of any watercourses and any 100-year floodplain;
D. 
Proposed lot areas, lot widths and other applicable dimensional requirements;
E. 
Locations and widths of existing and proposed sidewalks;
F. 
A North arrow and scale.
(3) 
Additional information. Any application under this title shall include the following information, unless the Zoning Officer determines such information is unnecessary to determine compliance with this title:
A. 
The address of the lot;
B. 
Name, mailing address and daytime phone number of the applicant, and of the owner of the property if different from the applicant, and of a person (such as an attorney, contractor, architect or engineer) who is serving as an agent for the applicant on this project, as well as email addresses if available;
C. 
If the applicant is not the landowner of record, information shall be presented with the application, such as an agreement of sale or lease or a signed letter from the landowner, to demonstrate that the applicant has the legal right to make the application;
D. 
A description of the existing and proposed use(s) of the property, with the proposed use described in sufficient detail for the Zoning Officer to determine compliance with this title;
E. 
All other applicable information listed on the official City application form;
F. 
If the applicant is incorporated, the legal name and day telephone number and mailing address of at least one primary officer of the organization/corporation;
G. 
Such additional information that the Zoning Officer may determine is reasonably necessary to determine compliance with this title;
H. 
A listing of all conditional uses, special exception approvals and/or variances which the applicant is requesting, and/or a description with a date of any such relevant approvals that were previously granted for the property; and
I. 
Signed acknowledgment of the application by the applicant.
(4) 
Submittals to the Board. In addition to the information listed in Subsection (d)(2) and (3) above, an application requiring a site plan and action by the Zoning Hearing Board or conditional use shall also include the following information, unless the Zoning Officer determines that such information is unnecessary to determine compliance with this title:
A. 
The present zoning district and major applicable lot requirements;
B. 
For a nonresidential use:
1. 
A description of the proposed nonresidential operations and storage in sufficient detail to indicate potential nuisances and hazards regarding noise, large truck traffic, glare, odors, dust, fire or toxic or explosive hazards or other significant public health and safety hazards;
2. 
A list of the maximum hours of operation;
C. 
A listing of any sections of this title for which a variance is being requested, with the reasons for such request;
D. 
Approximate locations of principal buildings and locations of streets and alleys and zoning district boundaries within 100 feet of the boundaries of the tract, and description of uses of adjoining properties (such as drugstore or single-family detached dwelling);
E. 
Information on proposed exterior lighting;
F. 
Name and address of person who prepared the site plan; and
G. 
Such additional information required under applicable sections of this title.
(5) 
Ownership. No person other than a landowner or their specifically authorized agent or a tenant or lessee with written authority or permission of the landowner shall submit a zoning application (see definition of landowner in Article 1315, which includes an equitable owner).
(6) 
Site plan review. If the Zoning Officer determines that an application will have significant impacts upon surrounding properties or will involve complex site plan matters, the Zoning Officer may offer the site plan for review by the Planning Commission and/or City Council. In such case, the applicant may be required to submit additional copies of the site plan to the Zoning Officer in advance of the meeting. The Council or Planning Commission may provide advice to the Zoning Officer concerning ordinance matters, as well as advisory comments to the applicant.
A. 
This process is primarily designed for situations when a land development plan will not be required under the Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance,[1] or when zoning approval matters are intended to be addressed prior to the land development plan submittal.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Part 13, Title 3, Subdivision and Land Development Regulations.
(e) 
Issuance of permits.
(1) 
The zoning permit and construction permit involve two different sets of regulations. Any zoning permit is issued with an automatic condition that the applicant must also meet all applicable construction codes.
(2) 
At least one copy of each zoning permit application and any other zoning approval shall be retained in City files.
(3) 
PennDOT permit. Where necessary for access onto a state road or work within a state right-of-way, a City zoning permit shall be automatically conditioned upon issuance of a PennDOT highway occupancy permit.
(4) 
The City may delay the final issuance of a construction or occupancy permit until a required PennDOT highway occupancy permit has been issued, any required subdivision and land development approval has been obtained, a new lot has been recorded, and/or erosion and sedimentation control approvals have been obtained.
(5) 
Compliance with subdivision and land development ordinance (SALDO). If an application under this title would also be regulated by the SALDO, then any permit or approval under this title shall automatically be conditioned upon compliance with the SALDO. See the definitions of "land development" and "subdivision" in the SALDO.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: See Part 13, Title 3, Subdivision and Land Development Regulations.
(f) 
Revocation of permits; appeal of permit or approval.
(1) 
Revocation. The Zoning Officer shall revoke, withhold or suspend a permit or approval issued under the provisions of this title in case of one or more of the following:
A. 
A material false statement or misrepresentation of fact in the application or on the plans on which the permit or approval was based (note: the Pennsylvania Criminal Code provides for penalties for providing false information to a municipal employee in the carrying out of his/her duties);
B. 
Upon violation of any condition lawfully imposed a special exception use approval, conditional use approval, variance or subdivision or land development approval;
C. 
Any work being accomplished or use of land or a structure in such a way that does not comply with this title or an approved site plan or approved permit application; and/or
D. 
For any other just cause set forth in this title.
(2) 
Appeals. A party with legitimate standing, or as otherwise provided by state law, may appeal decisions and determinations under this title within the provisions of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (MPC), provided that the time periods for such appeals in the MPC are met. (As of the adoption date of this title, such provisions were primarily in Sections 914.1 and 1002-A.)[3]
[3]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. §§ 10914.1 and 11002-A, respectively.
(g) 
Zoning permit for temporary uses and structures.
(1) 
Temporary uses.
A. 
A zoning permit for a temporary use or structure may be issued for customary, routine and accessory short-term special events, provided that:
1. 
Only an established nonprofit organization, governmental agency or a permitted place of worship proposing a temporary use to clearly primarily serve a charitable, public service or religious purpose or a City-sponsored festival or City-sponsored special event shall be eligible to receive approval for commercial-type activities in a district where a commercial use would not otherwise be permitted;
2. 
Such total events in a residential district shall each be limited to a maximum of 10 total days per calendar year (except for activities sponsored by the City of Lebanon); and
3. 
The Zoning Officer may require that the applicant prove that sufficient parking, sanitary facilities, emergency access, refuse collection, and traffic control will be available for the special event.
4. 
The applicant shall also comply with the City's requirements for transient retail businesses, as applicable, in § 313 of the City's Codified Ordinances.
B. 
A zoning permit may be issued for temporary storage and office trailers that are necessary to serve on-site construction, while such construction is actively underway under a valid City permit.
C. 
In addition, temporary natural Christmas tree sales shall be permitted by right in commercial and industrial districts, and on property owned by the City with permission of the City, or as an accessory use to a place of worship.
D. 
The City may also approve the construction of a model home, which is used as a sales office in a development, provided the building is converted to a dwelling when the development is complete. Alternatively, a modular sales office may be allowed by the City, provided it is removed completely when the development is complete.
E. 
Portable storage containers: see § 1313.07.
F. 
Tents shall meet setbacks that apply to accessory uses and shall not obstruct safe sight distances.
1. 
Tents within commercial districts are permitted to be erected for no longer than 60 total days per calendar year.
2. 
Tents within noncommercial districts are permitted to be erected for no more than 20 total days per calendar year.
3. 
Tents are also regulated by the Fire Code, including requirements for fire-safe materials and emergency access.
G. 
Accessory retail sales of the following items that were grown by a resident of the same property are allowed in any district: fruits (and their juices), vegetables (and their juices), flowers, plants, herbs and spices.
H. 
Garage sales are allowed as provided in Article 1306.
(2) 
Time period. The Zoning Officer shall state a reasonable maximum time period on the temporary permit. If no time limit is stated, then a seven day maximum period shall apply. A temporary permit may be renewed for just cause, and may be issued for more than one year for a recurring event.
(3) 
Temporary commercial sales.
A. 
Except as may otherwise be allowed by Subsection (g)(1)A above or other sections of this title, a lot shall only be used for temporary commercial sales if all of the following conditions are met:
1. 
The property shall be located within a zoning district that allows such use.
2. 
No more than 10% of the off-street parking spaces or six parking spaces, whichever is greater, that are required to serve occupied permanent uses shall be obstructed by the temporary use.
3. 
Any signs visible from a public street shall comply with this title.
4. 
If food or beverages are sold that are not prepackaged, the applicant shall prove compliance with state health regulations, including having on-site facilities for workers to wash their hands.
5. 
A zoning permit shall be required from the City, which shall be displayed while the activity is open for business.
6. 
The use shall not obstruct safe sight distances at intersections and driveways.
7. 
Any fireworks sales or storage shall only occur in a structure that has met City construction code and fire safety inspections, and the operator of any fireworks sales use shall make any area or vehicle used for fireworks sales or storage available for regular inspection by local police, codes and fire officials. See also the requirements of the Fire Code.
8. 
Electric generators that generate noise heard inside a dwelling on another lot and tanks of explosive substances shall not be placed within 100 feet of a dwelling.
B. 
This subsection shall not regulate temporary vendors who are authorized to operate during a City-sponsored parade or festival.
(4) 
Sidewalk cafes, sidewalk food cart or food trucks. See § 1306.03.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
(a) 
After receiving a proper application, the Zoning Officer shall either: 1) issue the applicable permit(s) or 2) deny the application(s) as submitted, indicating one or more reasons.
(b) 
After the permit under this title has been issued, the applicant may undertake the action specified by the permit, in compliance with other City ordinances. However, it is recommended that applicants wait 30 days to begin construction if there is a possibility of an appeal by another party to have the permit revoked. Any commencement of construction or a use within this thirty-day appeal period shall be at the risk of the applicant.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
(a) 
Minimum requirements. Where more than one provision of this title controls a particular matter, the provision that is more restrictive upon uses and structures shall apply. The provisions of this title are in addition to any other applicable City ordinance.
(b) 
Uses not specifically regulated. See § 1302.06.
(c) 
Interpretation of ordinance text and boundaries.
(1) 
The Zoning Officer shall literally apply the wording of this title and the location of all district boundaries to particular applications. In any case, the Zoning Officer may also request an advisory opinion from the City Solicitor's office to aid in the Zoning Officer's determination.
(2) 
If an applicant disagrees with the Zoning Officer's determination and believes that the ordinance should be interpreted in the applicant's favor, the applicant may appeal to the Zoning Hearing Board. See § 1314.11.
(d) 
Undefined terms/interpretation of definitions. See § 1315.02.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
All of the enforcement, violations and penalty provisions of the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (MPC), as amended are hereby incorporated into this title by reference. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, these provisions were primarily in Sections 616.1, 617 and 617.2 of such Act.[1])
(a) 
Violations. Any person who shall commit or who shall permit any of the following actions violates this title:
(1) 
Failure to secure a zoning permit prior to any of the following: a change in accessory or principal use of land or structure, or the erection, construction or alteration of any principal or accessory structure or portion thereof, or the placement of a sign, or a change in the area of a use or the land coverage or setback of a use, or the excavation or grading of land to prepare for the erection, construction or alteration of any structure or portion thereof;
(2) 
Placement of false statements on or omitting relevant information from an application for a zoning permit;
(3) 
Undertaking any action in a manner which does not comply with a zoning permit;
(4) 
Violation of any condition imposed by a decision of the Zoning Hearing Board in granting a variance or special exception or other approval; or
(5) 
Violation of any condition imposed by a decision of the City Council in granting a conditional use or other approval; or
(6) 
Violation of any condition imposed by a decision of a court of competent jurisdiction, where such court has granted zoning approval with conditions.
(b) 
Enforcement notice. If the City has reason to believe that a violation of a provision of this title has occurred, the City shall initiate enforcement proceedings by sending an enforcement notice as provided in Section 616.1 of the MPC.[2] Prior to sending an official enforcement notice, the Zoning Officer may at his/her option informally request compliance.
[2]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10616.1.
(c) 
Time limits. An official enforcement notice shall state the deadline to complete bringing the property into compliance with this title, and shall state that the applicant has 30 days from the receipt of the notice to appeal to the Zoning Hearing Board. The denial of a conditional use, special exception use or variance may also be appealed to the county court.
(d) 
Causes of action; enforcement remedies. The causes of action and enforcement remedies provisions of the mpc are hereby incorporated by reference. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, such provisions were in Section 617 of such law.[3])
(1) 
Violations and penalties. Any person who has violated or permitted the violation of the provisions of this title shall, upon being found liable therefor in a civil enforcement proceeding commenced by the City, pay a judgment of not more than $500 plus all court costs, including the reasonable attorney's fees incurred by the City as a result thereof. No judgment shall commence or be imposed, levied or be payable until the date of the determination of a violation by the Magisterial District Judge. If the defendant neither pays nor timely appeals the judgment, the City may enforce the judgment pursuant to the applicable rules of civil procedure. Each day that a violation continues shall constitute a separate violation, unless a Magisterial District Judge who determined that there has been a violation further determines that there was a good faith basis for the person violating this title to have believed that there was no such violation, in which event there shall be deemed to have been only one such violation until the fifth day following the date of the determination of a violation by the Magisterial District Judge, and thereafter each day that a violation continues shall constitute a separate violation. All judgments, costs and reasonable attorney's fees collected for the violation of this title shall be paid over to the City for the general use of the City. Imprisonment is not authorized under this title.
(2) 
Remedies. In case any building, structure, sign or landscaping is erected, constructed, reconstructed, altered, repaired, converted or maintained; or any building, structure, sign or land is used; or any hedge, shrub, tree or other growth is maintained in violation of this title or of any of the regulations made pursuant thereto or any of the permits or certificates of use and occupancy issued under this title or any conditions imposed upon the grant of a special exception or variance by the Zoning Hearing Board or upon the grant of a conditional use, then, in addition to any other remedies provided by law, any appropriate action or proceeding may be instituted or taken to prevent or restrain such unlawful erection, construction, reconstruction, alteration, repair, conversion, maintenance or use or to prevent any illegal act, conduct, business or use in and about such premises.
[3]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10617.
(e) 
Enforcement evidence. In any appeal of an enforcement notice to the Zoning Hearing Board, the City shall have the responsibility of presenting its evidence first.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. §§ 10616.1, 10617, and 10617.2, respectively.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
A City fee schedule for permits and applications may be established, which may be amended by ordinance of City Council (unless the City Charter may allow use of a written resolution). No application or appeal shall be considered filed until all fees are paid. Unless a later fee schedule is enacted by City Council, the following fees shall apply:
Zoning Permit Fees Based Upon the Total Value of the Proposed Improvements
Total value of proposed improvements:
Permit fee:
Improvement is under $2,000
$30
Improvement is between $2,001 to $5,000
$60
Improvement is between $5,001 to $10,000
$90
Improvement is between $10,001 to $50,000
$150
Improvement is between $50,001 to $100,000
$300
Improvement is over $100,001 to $500,000
$600
Improvement is over $500,001 to $1,000,000
$1,000
Improvement is over $1,000,001 and above
$1,500
Additional Fees
Zoning Hearing Board application:
a)
Involving a variance
$600
b)
Involving a challenge of a Zoning Officer decision, interpretation, special exception application, substantive challenge to the ordinance, or any other matter before the Board
$700
c)
In addition, the applicant shall reimburse the City for all legal advertising costs that are necessary after the first hearing date.
City Council hearing application:
a)
Involving a curative amendment challenge or a request for a zoning amendment (unless the zoning amendment was proposed by the City)
$700
b)
Involving a conditional use
$600
Zoning ordinance book
$25
Zoning Map
$8
Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance book
$20
Letter of zoning certification
$30
Sign zoning permit fees:
Note: A construction permit may also be required, and an electrical permit is also typically required for signs with electric service, with their own fees.
Sign type:
Fee:
Temporary sign that is required to have a zoning permit
$25
Any sign that is required to have a zoning permit and has less than 2 square feet of sign area, other than a temporary sign (note: the Sign Article of this title does not require a sign permit for most such signs)
$20
Any sign with 2 square feet or more of sign area but less than 50 square feet, other than a temporary sign, that does not have electric service
$50
Any sign with 2 square feet or more of sign area but less than 50 square feet, other than a temporary sign, that does have electric service
$100
Any sign with 50 square feet or more of sign area, other than a temporary sign, that does not have electric service
$100
Any sign with 50 square feet or more of sign area, other than a temporary sign, that does have electric service
$150
Notes:
1.
Work started, or signs installed, without a permit are subject to twice the regular permit fee.
2.
Projects cancelled or permits not picked up within 30 days of issue date will be invoiced for 50% of City permit fee and third party plan review fees. Fees unpaid for 90 days may be subject to a 10% interest rate or maximum allowable by law. Unpaid fees after one year are subject to a lien upon the property.
3.
Owners of property with illegally installed signs or with signs that are not removed within the allowed time frame may be charged for the costs of sign removal and/or storage and disposal of the signs.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
Within the requirements of the MPC, the City Council may amend, or repeal any or all portions of this title on: 1) its own motion or 2) after agreeing to hear a written request of any person, entity, landowner or the Planning Commission.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
The applicable provisions of the MPC shall apply. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, these provisions were primarily in Sections 609.1, 609.2 and 916.1 of such Act.[1])
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. §§ 10609.1, 10609.2, and 10916.1, respectively.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
(a) 
Appointment. The Zoning Officer(s) shall be appointed by the Mayor. The Mayor may designate other City staff persons to serve as Assistant Zoning Officer(s). Assistant Zoning Officers may serve with the same authority and duties as the Zoning Officer, under the direction of the Zoning Officer. The Zoning Officer shall not hold any elective office within the City, but may hold other appointed offices.
(b) 
Duties and powers. The Zoning Officer's duties and powers shall include the following:
(1) 
Administer this title in accordance with its literal terms, including to receive and examine all applications required under the terms of this title, and issue or refuse permits within the provisions of this title;
(2) 
Conduct inspections to determine compliance, and receive complaints of violation of this title;
(3) 
Keep records of applications, permits, certificates, written decisions, and variances granted by the Zoning Hearing Board, and of enforcement orders, with all such records being the property of the City and being available for public inspection;
(4) 
Review proposed subdivisions and land developments for compliance with this title;
(5) 
Take enforcement actions as provided by the MPC, as amended;
(6) 
Maintain available records concerning nonconformities, provided that the City is not required to document every nonconformity; and
(7) 
Serve such other functions as are provided in this title.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
(a) 
Membership of Board. The Zoning Hearing Board shall consist of five residents of the City appointed by the Mayor with confirmation by a majority vote by resolution of the City Council. The existing terms of office shall continue, with terms of office being three years, and with the terms being so fixed that the term of office of one member shall expire each year. Members of the Board shall hold no other office in the City and shall not be employed by the City in another capacity.
(1) 
Alternate members. City Council may appoint alternate members of the Zoning Hearing Board, within the applicable provisions of the MPC, and who shall serve as provided in such law. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, such provisions were in Section 903(b) of such Act.[1])
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10903(b).
(2) 
Expenditures. Within the maximum amount of funds appropriated by the City Council, the Zoning Hearing Board may employ or contract for secretaries, legal counsel, and other technical and clerical services. City Council may by resolution authorize compensation for members and alternate members for the performance of their duties.
(b) 
Vacancies. Appointments to fill vacancies shall be only for the unexpired portion of a term.
(c) 
Organization. The applicable provisions of the MPC shall apply. (As of the adoption date of this title, these provisions were in Sections 906(a), (b) and (c) of such Act.[2])
[2]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10906(a), (b) and (c).
(d) 
Zoning Hearing Board jurisdiction and functions. The Zoning Hearing Board shall be responsible for the following:
(1) 
Appeal of a decision by the Zoning Officer.
A. 
The Board shall hear and decide appeals where it is alleged by an affected person, entity or the City Council that the Zoning Officer has improperly acted under the requirements and procedures of this title.
B. 
See time limitations for appeals in § 1314.11.
(2) 
Challenge to the validity of the ordinance or map. The applicable provisions of the MPC shall apply. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, these provisions were primarily in Sections 909.1 and 916 of such Act.[3])
[3]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. §§ 10909.1 and 10916, respectively.
(3) 
Variance.
A. 
The Board shall hear requests for Variances filed with the City staff in writing on the official City application form. The City Planning Commission should be provided with an opportunity to review a zoning variance application. However, action by the Zoning Hearing Board is not required to be delayed to allow for a Planning Commission review.
B. 
Standards. The Board shall only grant a variance within the limitations of state law. As of the adoption date of this title, the MPC provided that all of the following findings must be made, where relevant in a given case:
1. 
That there are unique physical circumstances or conditions including irregularity, narrowness, or shallowness of lot size or shape, or exceptional topographical or other physical conditions peculiar to the particular property, and that the unnecessary hardship is due to such conditions and not the circumstances or conditions generally created by the provisions of this title in the neighborhood or district in which the property is located;
2. 
That because of such physical circumstances or conditions, there is no possibility that the property can be developed in strict conformity with the provisions of this title and a variance is therefore necessary to enable the reasonable use of the property;
3. 
That such unnecessary hardship has not been created by the appellant;
4. 
That the variance, if authorized, will not alter the essential character of the neighborhood or district in which the property is located, nor substantially or permanently impair the appropriate use or development of adjacent property, nor be detrimental to the public welfare; and
5. 
That the variance, if authorized, will represent the minimum variance that will afford relief and will represent the least modification possible of the regulation in issue.
C. 
In granting any variance, the Board may attach such reasonable conditions and safeguards as it may deem necessary to implement the purposes of this title.
D. 
A variance runs with the property, and can apply to future owners of the property. A variance applies in perpetuity, unless it is limited by a condition of the Zoning Hearing Board. A variance cannot be transferred to a different property.
(4) 
Special exception. See § 1314.
A. 
The Board shall hear and decide requests for all special exceptions filed with the City staff in writing. The Board shall only permit a special exception that is authorized by this title.
B. 
A special exception runs with the property, and can apply to future owners of the property.
(5) 
Persons with disabilities. After the Zoning Officer receives a complete written application, the Zoning Hearing Board shall grant a special exception allowing modifications to specific requirements of this title that the applicant proves to the satisfaction of the Zoning Hearing Board are required under applicable federal law to provide a reasonable accommodation to serve persons who the applicant proves have disabilities as defined in and protected by such laws.
A. 
Such reasonable accommodations shall be requested in accordance with the U.S. Fair Housing Act Amendments and/or the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended.
B. 
If the applicant is requesting a reasonable accommodation under the United States Fair Housing Amendments Act[4] or the Americans with Disabilities Act,[5] the applicant shall identify the disability which is protected by such statutes, the extent of the modification of the provisions of this title necessary for a reasonable accommodation, and the manner by which the reasonable accommodation requested may be removed when such person(s) with a protected disability no longer will be present on the property.
[4]
Editor's Note: See 42 U.S.C. § 3601 et seq.
[5]
Editor's Note: See 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq.
C. 
Any modification approved under this section may be limited to the time period during which the persons with disabilities occupy or utilize the premises.
(6) 
The Zoning Hearing Board shall also hear any other matters as set forth in the MPC. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, such provisions were primarily within Section 909.1 of such law.[6])
[6]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10909.1.
(e) 
Time limits for appeals. The applicable provisions of the MPC shall apply. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, these provisions were in Section 914.1 of such Act.[7])
[7]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10914.1.
(f) 
Stay of proceedings. The stay of proceedings provisions of the MPC shall apply. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, such provisions were in Section 915.1 of such Act.[8])
[8]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10915.1.
(g) 
Time limits on permits and approvals.
(1) 
After a variance is approved or other zoning approval (such as special exception or conditional use approval) is officially authorized, then any applicable zoning and construction permits shall be secured by the applicant within 18 months after the date of such approval or authorization. The work authorized by zoning permits shall then be completed within the time period specified in related construction permits. If construction permits are not required, then the work shall be completed within 18 months after issuance of a zoning permit, unless an extension is granted under Subsection (g)(1)B below.
A. 
However, if a variance is approved to address a violation of this title, then the permit shall be acquired and the work completed within six months after the variance is approved.
B. 
The Zoning Hearing Board or City Council may provide for a differing time period in their approval, such as to allow time for a phased project to be completed.
(2) 
Extension. In response to an applicant stating good cause in writing, the Zoning Officer may extend in writing the time limit for completion of work under a zoning permit.
(3) 
If an applicant fails to obtain the necessary permits or fails to begin construction within the above time periods, or allows interruptions in substantial construction of longer than 12 months, the Zoning Officer shall conclusively presume that the applicant has withdrawn or abandoned approvals, variances and permits under this title and all such approvals, variances and permits shall be deemed rescinded by the City.
(h) 
Multiple applications. No more than one application for the same portions of the same property shall be pending before the Zoning Hearing Board for special exception approval at any time.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
The following requirements shall apply to procedures, hearings and decisions of the Zoning Hearing Board.
(a) 
Notice of hearings. Notice of all hearings of the Board shall be given as follows:
(1) 
Ad. Public notice shall be published, as defined by Section 107 of the MPC.[1] The notice shall state the time and place of the hearing and the particular nature of the matter to be considered and the affected street address.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10107.
(2) 
Posting. Notice of such hearing shall be conspicuously posted on the affected tract of land at least one week prior to the hearing. If the City staff does not volunteer to post the property, then the applicant shall be required to post it. The applicant shall make a good faith effort to make sure that such notice remains posted until the hearing.
(3) 
Persons given notice. The City shall provide written notice to the applicant of the time and place of the hearing. The City should also provide notice to the Mayor and to the primary last-known owner of each lot that is abutting or immediately across a street, alley or railroad from the subject lot. Failure to provide such notice shall not be grounds for an appeal or delay. Also, such notice shall be given to any other person or group (including civic or community organizations) who has made a written timely request for such notice. Any such notices should be provided to the last-known address.
A. 
This distance for notice shall be increased to a 200 feet radius from the lot lines of the subject property if the application will involve a use variance or a special exception use.
(b) 
Initiation of hearings. A hearing required under this title shall be initiated within 60 days of the date of an applicant's request for a hearing, unless the applicant has agreed, in writing, to an extension of time.
(c) 
Decision/findings.
(1) 
The Board shall render a written decision on each application within 45 days after the last hearing on that application before the Board, unless the applicant has agreed in writing to an extension of time.
(2) 
Where the application is contested or denied, the decision shall be accompanied by findings of fact and conclusions based thereon, together with the reasons for such conclusions.
(3) 
References shall be provided to the most pertinent section(s) of this title and/or the MPC.
(d) 
Notice of decision. A copy of the final decision or, where no decision is called for, of the findings, shall be provided to the applicant. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, such provisions were within Sections 908(9) and 908(10) of such Act,[2] including provisions regarding notice to other parties.)
[2]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. §§ 10908(9) and 10908(10), respectively.
(e) 
See also Section 908 of the MPC.[3]
[3]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10908.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
The provisions for appeals to court that are stated in the MPC shall apply. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, these provisions were in Sections 1001-A, 1002-A, 1003-A, 1004-A, 1005-A and 1006-A of such Act.[1])
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. §§ 11001-A, 11002-A, 11003-A, 11004-A, 11005-A, and 11006-A, respectively.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
See the provisions of the MPC. (Note: As of the adoption date of this title, such provisions were within Section 619 of such Act.[1])
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10619.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
This title shall not apply to uses or structures owned by Lebanon City or by a municipal authority created solely by the City of Lebanon for uses and structures that are intended for a municipal, water supply, sewage, stormwater, public recreation, emergency service, emergency communication, public health and safety, or similar governmental purpose.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
(a) 
Purpose. The special exception process is designed to allow careful review of uses that have some potential of conflicts with adjacent uses or areas.
(b) 
Special exception procedure.
(1) 
A site plan shall be submitted, which shall contain the information required in § 1314.03(d). If a fully engineered subdivision or land development plan will be required, it may be submitted separately, such as after a special exception is approved.
(2) 
The Zoning Officer should provide a review to the Zoning Hearing Board regarding the compliance of the application with this title.
(3) 
The Zoning Hearing Board shall follow the procedures provided in § 1314.12.
(4) 
Time limits. See Section 908 of the MPC.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 10908.
(5) 
The City Planning Commission may be provided with an opportunity to review a special exception application. However, action by the Zoning Hearing Board shall not be delayed by a Planning Commission review.
(c) 
Consideration of special exception applications. When special exceptions are allowed by this title, the Zoning Hearing Board shall hear and decide requests for such special exceptions in accordance with standards established by this title, including the following:
(1) 
Compliance with this title. The applicant shall establish by credible evidence that the application complies with all applicable requirements of this title. The applicant shall provide the Board with sufficient plans, studies or other data to demonstrate this compliance.
(2) 
Compliance with other laws. The approval may be conditioned upon the applicant later showing proof of compliance with other specific applicable City, state and federal laws, regulations and permits. Required permits or other proof of compliance may be required to be presented to the City prior to the issuance of any zoning permit, construction permit, certification of occupancy and/or recording of an approved plan.
(3) 
Traffic. The applicant shall establish that the traffic from the proposed use will be accommodated in a safe and efficient manner that will minimize hazards and congestion, after considering any improvements proposed to be made by the applicant as a condition on approval.
(4) 
Site planning. The application shall include proper site layout, internal circulation, parking, buffering, and all other elements of proper design as specified in this title.
(5) 
Neighborhood. The proposed use shall not substantially negatively change the character of any surrounding residential neighborhood, after considering any proposed conditions upon approval such as limits upon hours of operation.
(6) 
Safety. The proposed use shall not create a significant hazard to the public health and safety, such as fire, toxic or explosive hazards.
(7) 
Natural features. The proposed use shall be suitable for the site, considering the disturbance of steep slopes, mature woodland, wetlands, floodplains, springs and other important natural features.
(d) 
Conditions. In granting a special exception, the Board may require such reasonable conditions and safeguards (in addition to those expressed in this title) as it determines are necessary to implement the purposes of this title. Conditions imposed by the Zoning Hearing Board shall automatically become conditions of a construction permit issued pursuant thereto, and any failure to comply with said conditions shall be a violation of this title.
[Ord. No. 1-2020, 21, passed 6-22-2020]
(a) 
Any review of activity within the floodplain, site plan review, subdivision or land development approval, erosion control review, wetland delineation review, stormwater runoff review, review of activity on steep slopes, or any other review, approval or permit under this title by an officer, employee, board, commission, solicitor, consultant or agency of the City shall not constitute a representation, guarantee or warranty of any kind by the City, or its employees, officials, boards, solicitor(s), consultants or agencies of the practicality or safety of any structure, use or subdivision, and shall create no liability upon nor a cause of action against such entity or person for any damage that may result pursuant thereto.
(b) 
If the Zoning Officer mistakenly issues a permit under this title, the City shall not be liable for any later lawful withdrawal of such permit.