1440.01   SHORT TITLE

This Title Four of Part Fourteen, the Building and Housing Code, shall be known and may be cited as the “Township of Lawrence Park Housing Code” or just the “Housing Code.”

1440.02   STATEMENT OF POLICY

It is hereby declared that inadequate provisions for light and air, insufficient protection against fire, unsanitary conditions, improper heating, overcrowding, dilapidation and disrepair of dwellings and premises, and the occupancy or existence of dwellings unfit for human habitation, endanger the health, safety, morals and general welfare of the inhabitants of the Township of Lawrence Park, and that the establishment and maintenance of proper housing standards and the rehabilitation of housing are essential to the public health, safety, morals and general welfare of the inhabitants of the Township of Lawrence Park.

1440.03   SCOPE

The provisions of this Housing Code shall apply to all dwellings, dwelling units, rooming houses, rooming units and premises located within the territorial limits of the Township of Lawrence Park, Erie County, Pennsylvania.

1440.04   CONFLICT OF LAWS

In any case where a provision of this Housing Code is found to be in conflict with a provision of any zoning, building, plumbing, fire, electrical, safety, sanitary or health ordinance or code of the Township of Lawrence Park, existing on the effective date of this Housing Code (Ordinance 194, passed July 8, 1969), the provision which establishes the higher standard for the promotion and protection of the health and safety of the people shall prevail.  In any case where a provision of this Housing Code is found to be in conflict with a provision of any other ordinance or code existing on the effective date of this Housing Code, which establishes a lower standard for the promotion and protection of the health, safety, morals and general welfare of the inhabitants of the Township, the provisions of this Housing Code shall be deemed to prevail and such other ordinance or code is hereby declared to be repealed to the extent that it is found to be in conflict with this Housing Code.

1440.05   DEFINITIONS

The following definitions shall apply in the interpretation and enforcement of this Housing Code.  The singular shall include the plural, and the plural shall include the singular.  Whenever the words “dwelling,” “dwelling unit,” “rooming house,” “rooming unit” and “premises” are used in this Housing Code, they shall be construed as though they were followed by the words “or any part thereof.”  The term “occupied,” whenever used in this Housing Code, shall be construed as though followed by the words “or intended or designed to be occupied.”

(a)        “Basement” means a portion of a building located party underground, but having less than half its clear floor-to-ceiling height below the average grade of the adjoining ground.

(b)       “Cellar” means a portion of a building located partly or wholly underground, and having half or more than half of its clear floor-to-ceiling height below the average grade of the adjoining ground.

(c)        “Code Enforcement Officer” means a person in the employ of the Township of Lawrence Park who is assigned to inspection and enforcement duties under the Housing Code.

(d)       “Duplex dwelling” means any dwelling containing two dwelling units.

(e)        “Dwelling” means any building or structure which is wholly or partly used or intended to be used for living or sleeping by human occupants.

(f)        “Dwelling unit” means any room or group of rooms located within a dwelling and forming a single habitable unit with facilities which are used or intended to be used for living, sleeping, cooking, and eating.

(g)       “Garbage” means any offal or refuse of fish, fruit, vegetable, animal matter, or any other organic substance subject to fermentation or decay.

(h)       “Habitable room” means a room or enclosed floor space in a basement, first or upper story used or intended to be used for living, sleeping, cooking, or eating purposes, excluding bathrooms, water closet compartments, laundries, pantries, foyers or communicating corridors, closets, storage spaces, and basement recreation rooms.

(i)         “Hotel” means any dwelling, or that part of any dwelling containing one or more rooming units, in which space is let by the owner or operator of one or more persons, not members of his or her immediate family, whether or not operated for profit or compensation, including boarding homes for infants, children, and the aged.

(j)         “Motel” means any dwelling, or that part of any dwelling containing one or more rooming units, in which space is let by the owner or operator to three or more persons, not members of his or her immediate family, whether or not operated for profit or compensation, including boarding homes for infants, children, and the aged.

(k)        “Multiple-family dwelling” means any dwelling containing three or more dwelling units.

(l)         “Occupant” means any person over one year of age, living, sleeping, cooking or eating in, or having actual possession of, a dwelling unit or rooming unit.

(m)      “Openable window area” means the part of a window or door which is available for unobstructed ventilation and which opens directly to the outdoors.

(n)       “Operator” means any person who has charge, care, or control of a building or part thereof, in which dwelling units or rooming units are let.

(o)       “Ordinary minimum water temperature” means fifty degrees Fahrenheit above zero.

(p)       “Owner” means any person who, alone or jointly or severally with others, shall have legal title to any dwelling or dwelling unit, with or without accompanying actual possession thereof; or shall have charge, care, or control of any dwelling or dwelling unit, as owner or agent of the owner, or as executor, executrix, administrator, administratrix, trustee or guardian of the estate of the owner.  An “owner” shall include not only a property owner or property owners who has or have title to said property or properties by deed, devise or operation of law, but shall include any person or persons purchasing a property by contract under which they hold right of possession.  Any such person thus representing the actual owner shall be bound to comply with the provisions of this Housing Code and of rules and regulations adopted pursuant thereto, to the same extent as if he were the owner.

(q)       “Person” means any individual, firm, corporation, association, partnership, or other legal entity.

(r)        “Plumbing” means all of the following supplied facilities and equipment; gas pipes, gas-burning equipment, water pipes, garbage disposal units, waste pipes, water closets, sinks, installed dishwashers, lavatories, bathtubs, shower baths, installed clothes-washing machines, catch basins, drains, vents and any other similar supplied fixtures, together with all connections to water, sewer, or gas lines.

(s)        “Premises” means a lot, plot, or parcel of land, including the buildings and structures located thereon.

(t)        “Rat-proofing” means a method of preventing the ingress of rats into buildings from the exterior or from one building to another.  It consists essentially of the closing of all openings in the exterior walls, ground or first floors, basement, cellar, roofs and foundations, that may be reached by rats from the ground by climbing, jumping, or by burrowing with materials or equipment impervious to rat-gnawing.

(u)       “Rooming house” means any dwelling, or that part of any dwelling, containing one or more rooming units, in which space is let by the owner or operator to one or more persons, whether or not operated for profit or compensation, including boarding homes for infants, children, and the aged, hotels and motels.

(v)        “Rooming units” means any room or group of rooms forming a single habitable unit, used or intended to be used for living or sleeping, but not for cooking or eating purposes.

(w)       “Rubbish” means any and all waste materials which result from the ordinary conduct of housekeeping, except garbage as defined herein.

(x)        “Supplied” means paid for, installed, furnished or provided by or under the control of the owner or operator.