Dorrance Updates Planning, Zoning Rules
‘SWEET TOOTH’ BOOTH-Catherine Dougherty, Rose  Slavinski, Lorraine Langan and Linda Brown worked at the Bake Booth at the annual St. Jude’s Picnic last weekend. The popular event featured plenty of homemade food, games, raffles and entertainment. This year’s grand prize winner is the Termini Family of Mountaintop.

Based on a request from the township Planning Commission and the recommendation of Solicitor Donald Karpowich, the Board of Supervisors, lead by Gary Zane, agreed to revise an ordinance to simplify the consolidation of parcels.

This cost-saving step for property owners was approved for advertisement at the August 5th regular meeting.

Karpowich reported that in discussions with the planners, it was noted that the rural community should streamline the ‘reverse subdivision’ process. The objective is to allow property owners to combine contiguous lots into one lot without requiring the cumbersome and expensive process needed to separate or divide lots.

“Planning made some changes, namely one, they do not believe that we should limit the number of lots in the exemption under a reverse subdivision provided that the lots are contiguous. And we shouldn’t restrict the size of those lots.

“As part of that process, once approved by the board, would require that the applicant follow up with the recording of a deed consistent with that approval within 90 days.”

The board’s vote authorized the advertisement of the amendment for a public hearing.

Under zoning, a discussion was held regarding the revision of the zoning fee schedule to address fees sufficient to cover township costs for zoning hearing appeals. Karpowich explained that Zoning Officer Alan Snelson is proposing a change in fees from a flat appeal application fee of $500 to an application fee of $500 and additional fees for related township expenses.

The attorney summarized, “The zoning officer is proposing a filing fee of $500 plus the associated costs, when those costs exceed the application fee. So if it exceeds $500, there are certain things the applicant will be required to pay for that zoning hearing board appeal: half the stenographer fee; the administration and overhead cost; the advertising cost. And when the particular application is in the process, should it exceed the $500, the resolution would say that the township could bill them for the difference and they would be responsible to pay that difference.”

Chairman Zane asked, “Is that $500 per meeting?”

Karpowich said, “No, it’s per application.” He added that these hearings may result in several meetings; several advertisements and several appearance fees by the stenographer. “And the administrative and overhead costs could become excessive in that they would exceed the application fees,” he added.

Karpowich was directed to prepare the appropriate resolution to make the adjustment.

Staying with township planning and zoning issues, Snelson advised that there were three separate zoning applications in July. Applications were

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