Proposed Legislation in Pennsylvania (October 2008)

October 2008Newsletters In The Zone

Printer Friendly

House Bill No. 904 proposes to amend the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (MPC) by adding provisions to authorize a municipality to enact a temporary development moratorium. The proposal would allow a governing body of a municipality to “place a moratorium of limited duration on new development by enacting...an ordinance to temporarily suspend the acceptance of applications for development in order to permit enactment or revision of a comprehensive plan, a subdivision and land development ordinance or a zoning ordinance.”

The proposal would allow the municipality to limit the moratorium to specific areas and exempt specific uses from the moratorium. The maximum length of the moratorium would be 18 months, although that time period could be extended for an additional 180-day period if certain conditions are met. The proposal also would allow a landowner or developer to apply for a waiver from a moratorium.

The proposal requires a municipality to make written findings of need that the enactment of a comprehensive plan, a subdivision and land development ordinance or a zoning ordinance, among other things, will improve the health, safety or environment of the people of the municipality and otherwise promote the purposes of the MPC.

The municipality would be required to hold a public hearing pursuant to public notice before making the findings referenced above. Then, after making the written findings and before voting on the enactment of an ordinance, the municipality would be required to hold another public hearing pursuant to public notice.

For more information about this issue, contact David Comer at 610.397.7963 or [email protected].