HARRISLAND - After nearly 40 years, it's finally due for a change.
The Pine Creek Township supervisors Wednesday agreed to start the process of revamping the township's zoning ordinances, last drafted in 1976.
"I hate to beat a dead horse, but we really need to get our ordinances updated," said township Solicitor Bob O'Connor. "Right now, it's antiquated. We could probably do it in-house without encountering the expenditures of $3,000 or $4,000 to have an outside firm do it."
Supervisor Chairman Dennis Greenaway recommended O'Connor seek a model the Pine Creek Township supervisors can use as a template.
The primary reason for the update, which could take one to two years to complete, would be to take all of the revisions that have occurred over the last 36 years and compile them into a "coherent, sequential way so it it be easier to find things," O'Connor said.
The issue came to light as the supervisors Greenaway, Tom Wilt and Jim Moore - found out during their meeting a home business is not allowed in a Rural Residential District. Kimberly Dugan is seeking to have a home business in her residence along Gravel Hill following her retirement.
"A home-occupied business is allowed in every district except for Rural Residential," Wilt said.
O'Connor said, by state statute, home-occupied businesses are permitted uses in residential areas, but not in Pine Creek Township, because of its antiquated zoning laws.
Greenaway said the supervisors will first have a few work sessions on the zoning ordinances and pass their suggestions onto the township planning commission for its input.
"I think the time is here," he said of updating the ordinances. "I think this was one of those, 'Duh. I thought it was allowed.' It's now time to re-do this."
In related matter, the supervisors Wednesday approved a set-back variance for a planned addition at the Susquehanna Valley Big Twins Club along Harley Drive.
The club had wanted a 13-foot addition with a two-foot roof overhang, but the supervisors unanimously agreed to its request as long as the set-back for the addition, including the roof overhang, is at least 15 feet from the right-of-way on Harley Drive.
The supervisors also gave agreed to allow the SVBT to barricade Harley Drive for local traffic only during its Fourth of July celebration starting June 29.
In other news, the supervisors:
- Approved a $500 donation to the Jersey Shore Summer Recreation Program, the same as in previous years.
- Approved the Keystone Central School District hiring Kacie Hershey as playground supervisor at Woolrich Park for the district's Summer Recreation Program. Wilt noted this is the first year the district has used the park for its summer program in several years.
- Appointed Janet Shields to serve on the Jersey Shore Library Board.
- Heard from Police Chief Dave Winkleman that the department issued seven citations, had three suspected DUIs, investigated two accidents, had four traffic stops-other, issued 12 verbal and one written warnings, investigated two criminal mischief incidences, two entries, three harassment incidents and six thefts in April.
Winkleman is still unable to be on active duty due to an injury he suffered on the job late last year.