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Township of Lower Moreland, PA
Montgomery County
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[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the Township of Lower Moreland 3-11-2014 by Ord. No. 677[1]. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Alarm systems — See Ch. 68.
Building construction — See Ch. 82.
Numbering of buildings — See Ch. 86.
Fire prevention — See Ch. 105.
Peace and good order — See Ch. 136.
Plumbing — See Ch. 144.
Abandoned vehicles — See Ch. 194.
Fees — See Ch. A214.
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. 150, Property Maintenance, adopted 7-16-2003 by Ord. No. 548.
A certain document, three copies of which are on file in the office of the Secretary of the Township of Lower Moreland, being marked and designated as the "2012 International Property Maintenance Code" as published by the International Code Council, Inc., is hereby adopted as the Property Maintenance Code of the Township of Lower Moreland, Montgomery County, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, to regulate and govern the condition and maintenance of all property, buildings, and structures as herein provided; to establish minimum standards for basic equipment, lighting, ventilation, space heating, and sanitation; and to provide for the condemnation and demolition of buildings and structures unfit for human occupancy and use. Each of the regulations, provisions, penalties, conditions, and terms of said Property Maintenance Code are hereby referred to, adopted, and made a part hereof, as if fully set out in this chapter, with the additions, insertions, deletions, and changes, if any, prescribed in § 150-2 of this chapter.
Section 101 General, Subsection 101.1 Title, shall be amended by replacing "[NAME OF JURISDICTION]" with "Township of Lower Moreland."
Section 102 Applicability, Subsection 102.3 Application of other codes, shall be amended to read as follows:
102.3 Application of other codes. Repairs, additions, or alteration to a structure, or changes of occupancy, shall be done in accordance with the procedures and provisions of the International Building Code, International Energy Conservation Code, International Fire Code, International Fuel Gas Code, International Mechanical Code, International Residential Code, International Plumbing Code, and NFPA 70. Nothing in this code shall be construed to cancel, modify, or set aside any provision of the Lower Moreland Township Zoning Ordinance.[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 208, Zoning.
Section 103 Department of Property Maintenance Inspection, Subsection 103.5 Fees, shall be amended to read as follows:
103.5 Fee Schedule. The fees for activities and services required under this code shall be as set forth in the fee schedule established in Chapter A214, Fees.
Section 104 Duties and Powers of the Code Official, Subsection 104.3 Right of entry, shall be amended to read as follows:
104.3 Right of entry. Where it is necessary to make an inspection to enforce the provisions of this code, or whenever the Code Official has reasonable cause to believe that there exists in a structure or upon a premises a condition in violation of this code, the Code Official is authorized to enter the structure or premises at reasonable times to inspect or perform the duties imposed by this code, provided that if such structure or premises is occupied the Code Official shall present credentials to the occupant and request entry. If such structure or premises is unoccupied, the Code Official shall first make a reasonable effort to locate the owner or other person having charge or control of the structure or premises and request entry. If entry is refused, the Code Official is authorized to seek an administrative warrant to secure entry.
Section 106 Violations, Subsection 106.3 Prosecution of violation, shall be amended to read as follows:
106.3 Prosecution of violation. Any person failing to comply with a notice of violation or order served in accordance with Section 107 shall be deemed in violation of this code, and this violation shall be deemed a strict liability offense. If the notice or order is not complied with, the Code Official may institute the appropriate proceeding at law or in equity to restrain, correct, or abate such violation; to impose fines and penalties for such violation; and/or to require the removal or termination of unlawful occupancy of the structure or property in violation of the provisions of this code or of the order or direction made pursuant thereto. Any action taken by the Township shall be charged against the real estate upon which the violation is located and shall be a lien upon such real estate.
Section 106 Violations, Subsection 106.4 Violation penalties, shall be amended to read as follows:
106.4 Violation penalties. Any person, firm or corporation who shall violate any of the provisions of this code or shall fail to comply with any of the requirements hereof, shall be guilty of a summary offense and, upon conviction before a Magisterial District Justice, shall pay a penalty of not less than $100 or more than $1,000 for each and every offense. Each day a violation continues shall be deemed a separate offense.
Section 107 Notices and Orders, Subsection 107.1 Notice to person responsible, shall be amended to read as follows:
107.1 Notice to persons. Whenever the Code Official determines that there has been a violation of this code or has grounds to believe that a violation has occurred, notice shall be given in the manner prescribed in Sections 107.2 and 107.3 to the person responsible for the violation and the owner of the premises upon which the violation has occurred as specified in the code. Notices for condemnation procedures shall also comply with Section 108.3.
Section 109 Emergency Measures, Subsection 109.5 Costs of emergency repairs, shall be amended to read as follows:
109.5 Costs of emergency repairs. Costs incurred in the performance of emergency work are the responsibility of the owner of the premises where the unsafe structure is or was located. Such costs, however, shall be initially paid by the Township. The Township Solicitor may institute the appropriate proceeding at law or in equity against the owner of the premises where the unsafe structure is or was located for the recovery of such costs and all such costs shall be a lien on the premises.
Section 111 Means of Appeal shall be deleted in its entirety and replaced with the following:
Section 111
Means of Appeal
111.1 Appeals. An appeal from any decision of the Code Official may be taken to the Board of Commissioners pursuant to the Local Agency Law.[2] Such appeal shall be made in writing within 20 calendar days from receipt of notification and shall state the decision of the Code Official and the reasons for the exception taken thereto and be filed with the Township Secretary. The Board of Commissioners or its designee, within 30 days from the date of filing, shall fix a date, time, and location to consider the appeal and to allow the appellant to be heard if he states his desire to do so in the written appeal. A prompt decision shall be rendered by the Board of Commissioners or its designee with such decision being final.
111.2 Court review. Any person aggrieved by a Board decision may appeal this decision to the Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas. Such an appeal shall be filed within 30 days of the issuance of the decision. Within 30 days of the filing of an appeal, the Township and the owner and/or tenant of the premises directly involved in the appeal may intervene in the appeal as of course by filing a notice of intervention, accompanied by proof of service of the same upon each appellant or each appellant's counsel of record. All other intervention shall be governed by the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure.
Editor's Note: See 2 Pa.C.S.A. § 105.
Section 112 Stop Work Order, Subsection 112.4 Failure to comply, shall be amended to read as follows:
112.4 Failure to comply. Any person, who shall continue any work after having been served with a stop-work order, except such work as that person is directed to perform to remove a violation or unsafe condition, shall be liable to a fine of not less than $300 or more than $1,000.
Section 202 General Definitions shall be amended by adding the following definitions:
IMPROVED SURFACE. A portion of a lot graded for proper drainage and improved with a durable and dustless surface, such as concrete, bituminous concrete, or other approved alternative material; or designed as part of an approved stormwater BMP. These improvements shall be designed and constructed for activities such as vehicle drives, parking, loading, stacking, display, and storage; other similar improvements associated with motor vehicles; and other similar surface improvements, including, but not limited to, pedestrian pathways, refuse collection stations, outside display, outside storage, and outside dining.
NOXIOUS WEEDS. Any noxious vegetation covered under and prohibited by the Noxious Weed Control Law (3 P.S. § 255.1 et seq.), as amended, or by regulations of the Pennsylvania or United States Department of Agriculture, including but not limited to the following:
Cannabis sativa, commonly known as "marijuana"
Cirsium arvense, commonly known as "Canadian thistle"
Rosa multiflora, commonly known as "multiflora rose"
Sorghum halepense, commonly known as "Johnson grass"
Polygonum perfoliatum, commonly known as "mile-a-minute"
Pueraria lobata, commonly known as "kudzu vine"
Cirsium vulgare, commonly known as "bull thistle" or "spear thistle"
Carduus nutans, commonly known as "musk" or "nodding thistle"
Sorghum bicolor, commonly known as "shattercane"
Datura stramonium, commonly known as "jimson weed"
Lythrum salicaria, commonly known as "purple loosestrife" (all cultivars)
Heracleum mantegazzianum, commonly known as "giant hogweed"
Galega officinalis, commonly known as "goat's rue"
Chicory, succory, or blue daisy
Section 302 Exterior Property Areas, Subsection 302.4 Weeds, shall be amended to read as follows:
302.4 Weeds. All premises and exterior property within 100 feet of any habitable structure or building shall be maintained free from weeds in excess of 12 inches and all noxious weeds of any height. This height restriction, however, does not apply to naturalized areas, riparian buffers, managed meadows, pasture or grazing land, and other no-mow zones, as determined by the Township. "Weeds" shall be defined as all grasses, annual plants, and vegetation, other than trees or shrubs; provided, however, this term shall not include cultivated flowers and gardens.
Upon failure of the owner or agent having charge of a property to cut, mow and control weeds after service of a notice of violation, they shall be subject to prosecution in accordance with Section 106.3 and as prescribed by the authority having jurisdiction. Upon failure to comply with the notice of violation, any duly authorized employee of the jurisdiction or contractor hired by the jurisdiction shall be authorized to enter upon the property in violation and perform corrective work thereon, and the costs of such corrective work shall be paid by the owner or agent responsible for the property.
Section 302 Exterior Property Areas, Subsection 302.8 Motor vehicles, shall be amended to read as follows:
302.8 Motor vehicles. Except as provided for in other regulations, no inoperative motor vehicle shall be parked, kept or stored on any premises, and 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.
Exception. A vehicle of any type is permitted to undergo major overhaul, including body work, provided that such work is performed inside a structure or similarly enclosed area designed and approved for such purposes.
302.8.1 Outdoor parking and storage in residential areas. A maximum of one operable motor or other vehicle without bearing current registration, licensure, or inspection, as applicable, may be permitted to be stored or parked on a lot outside of a completely enclosed building, as long as the vehicle is stored or parked on an improved surface and is completely covered by an acceptable opaque "car cover." Tarps, bed sheets, plastic sheeting, or similar materials shall not be considered an acceptable opaque "car cover."
Section 304 Exterior Structure, Section 304.14 Insect screens, shall be amended by inserting:
304.14 Insect screens. During the period from April 1 to November 1, every door, window and other outside opening required for ventilation of habitable rooms, food preparation areas, food service areas or any areas where products to be included or utilized in food for human consumption are processed, manufactured, packaged, or stored shall be supplied with approved tightly fitting screens of minimum 16 mesh per inch, and every screen door used for insect control shall have a self-closing device in good working condition.
Exception: Screen doors shall not be required for out-swinging doors or other types of openings which make screening impractical, provided other approved means, such as air curtains or insect-repellent fans, are employed.
Section 602 Heating Facilities, Subsection 602.3 Heat supply, shall be amended by reading as follows:
602.3 Heat supply. Every owner and operator of any building who rents, leases, or lets one or more dwelling units or sleeping units on terms, either expressed or implied, to furnish heat to the occupants thereof shall supply heat so as to maintain a temperature of not less than 68° F. (20° C.) in all habitable rooms, bathrooms, and toilet rooms. All heat shall be supplied exclusively by a central-type heating system or systems and shall not be augmented by any portable-type heaters or cooking devices. The temperature shall be measured at a point three feet above the floor and three feet from any exterior wall.
When the outdoor temperature is below the winter outdoor design temperature for the locality, maintenance of the minimum room temperature shall not be required, provided that the heating system is operating at its full design capacity. The winter outdoor design temperature for the locality shall be as indicated in Appendix D of the International Plumbing Code.
In areas where the average monthly temperature is above 30° F. (-1° C.) a minimum temperature of 65° F. (18° C.) shall be maintained.
Section 602 Heating Facilities, Subsection 602.4 Occupiable work spaces, shall be amended to read as follows:
602.4 Occupiable work spaces. Indoor occupied work spaces shall be supplied with sufficient heat so as to maintain a room temperature of not less than 60° F. (18.33° C.) during all working hours. All heat shall be supplied exclusively by a central-type heating system or systems and shall not be augmented by any portable-type heaters. The temperature shall be measured at a point of three feet above the floor and three feet from any exterior wall.
Processing, storage, and operation areas that require cooling or special temperature conditions.
Areas in which persons are primarily engaged in vigorous physical activities.