City of Lancaster, PA
Lancaster County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Lancaster as Article 729 of the Codified Ordinances; amended in its entirety 9-24-1996 as Ord. No. 10-1996. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Property maintenance — See Ch. 223.
As used in this chapter, certain terms are defined as follows, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
ETCHING EQUIPMENT OR MATERIALS
Includes, but is not limited to, any tool, device, equipment or substance that can be used to make permanent markings on metal, glass, plastic, concrete or stone.
GRAFFITI
Includes, but is not limited to, unauthorized drawings, inscriptions, writings or markings of any nature whatsoever, whether scratched, painted or drawn on any surface, including but not limited to buildings, sidewalks, streets or structure of any type, with the exception of any such drawings, inscriptions, writings or markings of any nature whatsoever, whether scratched, painted or drawn with chalk upon the sidewalks or streets of the City of Lancaster.
INDELIBLE MARKER
Includes, but is not limited to, any marker containing a fluid which is not water soluble and which has a point, brush, applicator or other writing surface of 3/8 inch or greater.
MINOR
Any person under the age 18 years.
PERSON
Any individual, partnership, corporation, trust, association, owner, contractor, salesperson or any other legal entity.
PRIVATE PROPERTY
Any land and/or the improvements thereon owned by any person, including vacant lots, structures, alleyways, walkways, parking areas or other improvements, such as patios and fences.
PUBLIC PROPERTY
Any land or building owned by governmental entity or dedicated for a governmental purpose or as a street, including curb and gutter areas, alley, sidewalk or utility easement, and including any structural improvements thereon.
SPRAY-PAINT CONTAINER
Any and all types of aerosol spray-paint cans or devices.
No person shall write, paint or draw any form of graffiti, including but not limited to any inscription, figure or mark of any type, upon any public property or private property, with a spray-paint can, indelible marker, etching equipment or materials or any other marking device (including but not limited to crayons or chalk).
A. 
No person shall sell at retail to any minor spray-paint containers or indelible marker. For purposes of this section, to "sell at retail" means to sell to a consumer for ultimate use, and not for purposes of resale.
B. 
No person shall knowingly make graffiti upon any public property or private property or assist, directly or indirectly, in the making of such graffiti. Such assistance shall include but not be limited to persons making available the etching equipment or materials, indelible markers, spray-paint containers or other marking devices used in the making of the graffiti, acting as a lookout or observatory for the person actually making the graffiti or knowingly providing any material, assistance or funding to any person for purposes of making graffiti.
C. 
No person shall possess a spray-paint container, indelible marker or etching equipment or materials on private property or on public property with the intent to make graffiti thereon or on other property, unless the owner, manager or other person having control of the public or private property consented to the presence of such spray-paint container, indelible marker or etching equipment or materials.
D. 
No minor shall possess any spray-paint container or indelible marker, except:
(1) 
A minor may possess spray-paint container or indelible markers while under the immediate supervision of his or her parent, legal guardian or teacher;
(2) 
A minor, in the course of his or her employment, may possess spray-paint containers or indelible markers at the direction and under the supervision of his or her employer.
E. 
No person shall aid, assist or abet a minor in obtaining or purchasing spray-paint containers or indelible markers except in conformity with the exceptions contained in Subsection D hereof.
F. 
No person selling indelible markers or spray-paint containers shall allow such indelible markers or spray-paint containers to be displayed for sale in such a manner as to be accessible to shoplifters. Such persons shall take all reasonable steps to prevent the shoplifting of such indelible markers and spray-paint containers.
Responsibility for enforcement of this chapter of the Code of the City of Lancaster on public property and private property shall rest both with the Bureau of Police of the City of Lancaster and the Bureau of Housing and Structural Inspections of the City of Lancaster,[1] which Bureaus shall have the authority to institute summary criminal proceedings as a means of enforcement of this chapter; provided, however, that the Bureau of Housing and Structural Inspections shall under no circumstances have the power of arrest.
[1]
Editor's Note: Pursuant to Ord. No. 14-1997, adopted 8-26-1997, the Bureau of Housing and Structural Inspections shall be deemed to refer to the appropriate Code Official of the Department of Housing and Community Development (now the Department of Economic and Community Development). See § 223-5 of Ch. 223, Property Maintenance.
Any conduct by a minor in violation of this chapter shall be deemed both tortuous and criminal in nature.
Pursuant to Chapter 55 of the Judicial Code, a court, in any proceeding against a minor, shall ascertain the amount sufficient to fully reimburse any owner of public property or private property who or which has suffered injury because of the tortuous act of the minor in violation of this chapter and may direct such minor's parents or legal guardian to make payments in an amount not exceed the limitations set forth in Section 5505 of the Judicial Code to the owner of such public property or private property.
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof by summary proceedings, be fined not less than $300 nor more than $900 for the first offense and not less than $500 nor more than $900 for each succeeding offense; and, furthermore, the violator shall pay the costs associated with the prosecution thereof and the costs to repair the damaged public property or private property for each and every violation hereof. Upon default of payment of any fine imposed or the costs of prosecution or repair as provided for herein, such violator/defendant may be imprisoned for not more than 30 days.