Board adopts trio of ordinances
Whitpain Township’s rulebook has some new additions, with the chapters on loitering, burning and soliciting recently being updated.
The board of supervisors adopted a trio of ordinances revising the township code on these three topics at its Sept. 18 meeting.
The township’s regulations on disturbing the peace now contain a reworded ordinance on loitering, which “make[s] it unlawful for any person to loiter within the limits of the township,” according to a summary of the ordinance provided on the meeting agenda.
Loitering is defined as a gathering for no legal purpose that causes some annoyance or damage to the public safety or welfare, according to township Solicitor Jim Garrity.
“This ordinance was caused by the very odd situation of a person living in one of our bus shelters,” Garrity said, noting nothing on the books expressly prohibited the person from doing so.
The previous ordinance did not address loitering in shopping centers or bus stops, according to township officials.
A second approved ordinance revised the township’s regulations regarding environmental concerns when it comes to both fires and community gatherings.
The new ordinance prohibits both recyclable materials and leaf waste from being burned anywhere in the township. It also prohibits outdoor burnings except for control fires; burning by fire companies for instructional purposes; cooking; and burning for ceremonial, recreational and certain agricultural purposes, according to a summary of the ordinance.
The prohibition on burning does not apply to chimineas or fire pits at residences, according to Fire Marshal David Camarda.
In another part of the ordinance, recycling receptacles are now required for community events of 200 people or more. Previously, only trash receptacles were required.
The new ordinance makes the township code more acceptable to the state Department of Environmental Protection — and therefore makes the DEP more likely to provide grant funding, according to Garrity.
Finally, the township updated its ordinance on soliciting. The new ordinance requires an applicant to get a background check and provide it to the township — previously the township had to pay for the background check — and it prohibits fliers from being placed on windshields and advertisements from being thrown onto driveways.