PRINTER'S NO. 1394
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE BILL
No.
1005
Session of
2017
INTRODUCED BY EICHELBERGER, McGARRIGLE, HUTCHINSON, BLAKE AND
SCHWANK, DECEMBER 28, 2017
REFERRED TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT, DECEMBER 28, 2017
AN ACT
Amending the act of August 9, 1955 (P.L.323, No.130), entitled,
"An act relating to counties of the first, third, fourth,
fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth classes; amending, revising,
consolidating and changing the laws relating thereto;
relating to imposition of excise taxes by counties, including
authorizing imposition of an excise tax on the rental of
motor vehicles by counties of the first class; and providing
for regional renaissance initiatives," making extensive
revisions relating to preliminary provisions; names and
corporate powers, classification of counties; fixing and
relocating lines and boundaries; county officers; county
commissioners and chief clerks; controller; auditors;
treasurer; county solicitor; engineer; sheriff and coroner;
prothonotary, clerks of court, clerk of orphan's court,
register of wills, recorder of deeds; district attorney,
assistants and detectives; salaries of county officers; fees
of salaried county officers, salary boards, payment of
solicitors appointed by county officers; fiscal affairs;
contracts and special powers and duties of counties; public
health; aeronautics; grounds and buildings; eminent domain
and injury to property; recreation places; bridges, viaducts
and culverts and roads; providing for military and veterans
affairs; and making editorial changes.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. The title of the act of August 9, 1955 (P.L.323,
No.130), known as The County Code, is amended to read:
AN ACT
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Relating to counties of the first, second class A, third,
fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth classes; amending,
revising, consolidating and changing the laws relating
thereto; relating to imposition of excise taxes by counties,
including authorizing imposition of an excise tax on the
rental of motor vehicles by counties of the first class; and
providing for regional renaissance initiatives.
Section 2. Section 102 of the act, amended April 20, 2016
(P.L.134, No.18), is amended to read:
Section 102. Applicability.--(a) Except incidentally, as in
sections 108, 201, 210, 211, 401 and 1401 or as provided in
section 1770.12, Article XII-B and Article XXX, this act does
not apply to counties of the first[, second A,] or second
classes.
(b) Except where otherwise specifically limited, this act
applies to all counties of the second A, third, fourth, fifth,
sixth, seventh and eighth classes.
Section 3. The act is amended by adding a section to read:
Section 102.1. Definitions.--The following words and phrases
when used in this act shall have the meanings given to them in
this section unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Municipal corporation." A city, borough, incorporated town,
township of the first or second class or a home rule or optional
charter municipality other than a county.
"Municipality." A municipal corporation or county.
"Recreation places." The term includes public parks,
parkways, bridle paths, horse show rings, foot paths,
playgrounds, playfields, gymnasiums, public baths, swimming
pools, agricultural fairgrounds or other indoor or outdoor
recreation centers.
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"Street." A street, road, lane, court, cul-de-sac, alley,
public way or public square.
Section 4. Sections 103, 104, 105, 106, 107 and 108 of the
act are amended to read:
Section 103. Excluded Provisions.--This act does not include
any provisions of, and shall not be construed to repeal:
(1) [The Municipal Borrowing Law, approved June twenty-five,
one thousand nine hundred forty-one (Pamphlet Laws 159)] 53
Pa.C.S. Pt. VII Subpt. B (relating to indebtedness and
borrowing).
(2) [The Pennsylvania Election Code,] Except as otherwise
provided in section 3903, the act of June 3, 1937 (P.L.1333,
No.320), known as the "Pennsylvania Election Code," approved
June three, one thousand nine hundred thirty-seven (Pamphlet
Laws 1333).
(4) The Local Health Administration Law, approved August
twenty-four, one thousand nine hundred fifty-one (Pamphlet Laws
1304).
(5) [The Municipal Unclaimed Moneys Act, approved May
seventeen, one thousand nine hundred forty-nine (Pamphlet Laws
1403).] Article XIII.1 of the act of April 9, 1929 (P.L.343,
No.176), known as "The Fiscal Code."
(6) [Any] Except where otherwise expressly provided, any law
relating to the collection of municipal and tax claims.
(7) [Except as provided under subdivision (e) of Article
XVII, any] Any law relating to the assessment and valuation of
property and persons for taxation.
(8) Any law relating to the giving of county consent to
public [utility corporations] utilities.
(9) Any law relating to State highways.
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(10) Any law relating to the validation of elections, bonds,
resolutions and accounts of corporate officers.
(11) Any law relating to collections by county officers of
moneys for the Commonwealth, and the issuance of State licenses.
(12) Any law relating to the government and regulation of
jails, prisons and other correctional institutions and the
commitment thereto, and maintenance and care of prisoners or
inmates therein.
(13) Any law relating to civil and criminal procedure,
except special provisions concerning action.
(14) Any law relating to joint county and municipal
buildings and works.
(15) Any law relating to county libraries, except law
libraries.
(16) Any law relating to the recording of deeds, mortgages
or other instruments in writing.
(17) Any law relating to the re-binding, re-indexing and
transcribing of records in county offices.
(18) Any law relating to the fees of county officers, except
as any such acts are repealed by [section two thousand nine
hundred one] Article XXXIX of this act.
(19) Any temporary law.
(20) Any amendment or supplement of any of the laws referred
to in this section.
(21) [The Public Utility Law, approved May twenty-eight, one
thousand nine hundred thirty-seven (Pamphlet Laws 1053)] 66
Pa.C.S. Pt. I (relating to public utility code).
Section 104. Saving Clause.--(a) The provisions of this
act, as far as they are the same as those of existing laws,
shall be construed as a continuation of such laws, and not as
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new enactments. The repeal by this act of any provisions of law,
shall not revive any law [heretofore] previously repealed or
superseded, nor affect the existence or class of any county
[heretofore] previously created. The provisions of this act
shall not affect any act done, liability incurred, or right
accrued or vested, nor affect any suit or prosecution, pending
or to be instituted, to enforce any right or penalty, or punish
any offense under the authority of [such] the repealed laws.
(b) All ordinances, resolutions, regulations and rules, made
pursuant to any act [of Assembly] repealed by this act, shall
continue with the same force and effect as if [such] the act had
not been repealed. All local acts [of Assembly] applying to
particular counties, not specifically repealed, shall continue
in force, and any provisions of this act inconsistent
[therewith] with local laws shall not apply to the counties
affected by [such] the local laws, unless [such] the application
is clearly indicated.
(c) All acts and parts of acts [of Assembly] relating to
counties, or to particular classes of counties, in force [at the
time of the adoption of this act] as of January 1, 1956, and not
repealed [hereby] by this act, shall remain in force in the same
manner and with the same effect as prior to the adoption of this
act.
(d) This act shall be considered a continuation of the act
of July 28, 1953 (P.L.723, No.230), known as the "Second Class
County Code," as it pertains to second class A counties except
where otherwise expressly provided. The repeal of the "Second
Class County Code," as it relates to second class A counties by
section 3901 of this act shall not be construed as modifying or
repealing any term of office, power, ordinance, rule or
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regulation of home rule counties or counties of the second class
A existing on the effective date of this subsection.
Section 105. Holding of Office.--Any person holding elective
office under any act [of Assembly] repealed by this act shall
continue to hold [such] the office until the expiration of the
person's term [thereof], subject to the conditions and salary
attached to [such] the office prior to the passage of this act.
Section 106. Construction of References.--Whenever in this
act reference is made to any act [by title, or name, such], the
reference shall also apply to and include any codifications
wherein the provisions of the act referred to are substantially
reenacted or to reenactments, revisions or amendments of the
act.
Section 107. Constitutional Construction.--The provisions of
this act shall be severable, and, if any of its provisions are
held to be unconstitutional, the decision of the court shall not
affect the validity of the remaining provisions of this act. It
is hereby declared as a legislative intent that this act would
have been adopted by the General Assembly had [such] the
unconstitutional provisions not been included [therein] within
this act.
Section 108. Legislation According to Class.--The affairs of
counties [are herein and shall hereafter] shall be legislated
for and regulated by general laws, applicable to all counties,
or to particular classes, as [herein] fixed and appointed by
this act. All laws adopted by the General Assembly for one or
more of the classes [herein] fixed and appointed by this act
shall be deemed to be general laws.
Section 5. The act is amended by adding a section to read:
Section 108.1. Collection of Tax on Real Property from Rent
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Paid to Owner in County of the Second Class A.--(a) Where the
owner of any residential or commercial real property that is
located in a county of the second class A and subject to a claim
pursuant to the act of May 16, 1923 (P.L.207, No.153), referred
to as the Municipal Claim and Tax Lien Law, derives any rental
income from that property, the county treasurer shall notify the
property owner in writing of the property owner's duty to remit
that rental income to the office of the county treasurer. The
rent remitted shall be applied to the amount of tax owed, along
with any interest or penalties due, until the claim is paid in
full.
(b) The notice of the county treasurer shall include the
amount of the claim on the property, including interest and
penalties, and the date or dates the rental income is to be
remitted. If, after fifteen days of the date or dates specified
in the notice, the property owner fails to remit the rental
income, the county may immediately begin the judicial sale
process provided for in the Municipal Claim and Tax Lien Law.
Section 6. Section 109 of the act is amended to read:
Section 109. Proceedings for Recovery of Penalties.--Unless
[herein] otherwise specifically provided[, in every case in
which] in this act, when any pecuniary penalty or forfeiture is
imposed by this act, the proceeding for the recovery of the same
shall be by indictment in the court of [quarter sessions] common
pleas, or by civil action as debts of equivalent amount are by
law recoverable. [Aldermen or justices of the peace] Magisterial
district judges shall not have jurisdiction of any suit or
action for the recovery of any penalty imposed by this act for
official misconduct. Such suit or action, when brought in the
court of common pleas, shall have preference for trial over all
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other actions.
Section 7. The act is amended by adding a section to read:
Section 109.1. Collection of Tax and Municipal Claims by
Suit; Limitations.--(a) In addition to the remedies provided by
law for the collection of tax and municipal claims, a county may
proceed for the recovery and collection of any tax or municipal
claim against any owner or owners of the property owing the tax
or municipal claim by a civil action or other appropriate
remedy. To each judgment obtained for the taxes or municipal
claim, there shall be added a penalty of ten per centum,
interest at the prevailing legal rate and costs of suit. Upon
judgment, execution may be issued without any stay or benefit of
any exemption law.
(b) The right of a county to collect unpaid taxes or
municipal claims under the provisions of this section shall not
be affected by the fact that the tax or municipal claims have or
have not been entered as liens in the office of the
prothonotary.
(c) A civil action brought to recover unpaid taxes or
municipal claims shall be commenced within twenty years of the
following:
(1) The date a tax is due.
(2) The date of completion of an improvement from which the
claim arises.
(3) The date that the property owner first became liable for
payment of any claim other than that for taxes or improvements.
(d) The remedy granted under this section shall be applied
retroactively.
Section 8. Sections 110, 202, 210, 211, 301, 302, 303, 304,
305, 306, 401, 402 and 403 of the act are amended to read:
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Section 110. Publication of Legal Notices.--(a) Whenever,
under the provisions of this act, advertisement, notice or
publication is required to be published in one newspaper, [such]
the publication shall be made in a newspaper of general
circulation as defined [by the act, approved May sixteen, one
thousand nine hundred twenty-nine (Pamphlet Laws 1784), known as
the "Newspaper Advertising Act,"] in 45 Pa.C.S. § 101 (relating
to definitions), printed in the county, unless the matter in
connection with which the advertising is being done affects only
a political subdivision, in which case [such] the advertisement
shall be published in a newspaper printed in [such] the
political subdivision, if there is such a newspaper and, if not,
then in a newspaper circulating generally in [such] the
political subdivision. If [such] notice is required to be
published in more than one newspaper, it shall be published in
at least one newspaper of general circulation[, defined as
aforesaid], printed, if there [be] is such a newspaper, or
circulating generally in the county, as [above] provided [in the
county] above.
(b) When [such] the notice relates to any proceeding or
matter in any court, or the holding of an election for the
increase of indebtedness, or the issue and sale of bonds to be
paid by taxation, [such] the notice shall also be published in
the legal newspaper, if any, designated by the rules of court of
the proper county for the publication of legal notices and
advertisement, unless [such] the publication [be] is dispensed
with by special order of court. All ordinances, auditors'
reports, controllers' reports, or advertisements, inviting
proposals for public contracts and for bids for materials and
supplies, shall be published only in newspapers of general
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circulation[, as hereinbefore defined].
(c) Nothing in this act shall preclude the publication of
notices by means other than in a newspaper to the extent
authorized by law.
Section 202. General Powers.--Each county shall have
capacity as a body corporate to:
(1) Have succession perpetually by its corporate name.
(2) Sue and be sued and complain and defend in all proper
courts by the name of the county of . . . . . . . . . . . .
(3) Purchase, acquire by gift or otherwise, hold, lease, let
and convey [such] real and personal property as shall be deemed
to be for the best interests of the county.
(4) Make contracts for carrying into execution the laws
relating to counties and for all lawful purposes.
(5) Have and use a seal which shall be in the custody of the
commissioners [thereof]. The official acts of the commissioners
shall be authenticated [therewith] with the seal. The
commissioners may prescribe the form of [such] the seal.
(6) To make appropriations for any purpose authorized by
this or any other act of the General Assembly.
Section 210. Counties Divided Into Nine Classes.--For the
purposes of legislation and the regulation of their affairs,
counties of this Commonwealth, now in existence and those
hereafter created, shall be divided into nine classes as
follows:
(1) First Class Counties, those having a population of
1,500,000 inhabitants and over.
(2) Second Class Counties, those having a population of
[800,000] 1,000,000 and more but less than 1,500,000
inhabitants.
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(2.1) Second Class A Counties, those having a population of
500,000 and more but less than [800,000] 1,000,000 inhabitants.
(3) (i) Third Class Counties, those having a population of
210,000 and more but less than 500,000 inhabitants.
(ii) After the results of any Federal Decennial Census are
published, any county of the third class having a population of
500,000 inhabitants and over may elect not to become a county of
the second class A by enacting an ordinance or adopting a
resolution of the [Board of County Commissioners] commissioners
not later than February 15 of the year following the year in
which the figures from the Federal Decennial Census are
certified by the United States Department of Commerce and
available.
(4) Fourth Class Counties, those having a population of
145,000 and more but less than 210,000 inhabitants.
(5) Fifth Class Counties, those having a population of
90,000 and more but less than 145,000 inhabitants.
(6) Sixth Class Counties, those having a population of
45,000 and more but less than 90,000 inhabitants and those
having a population of 35,000 and more but less than 45,000
inhabitants which by ordinance or resolution of the [Board of
County Commissioners] commissioners elect to be a county of the
sixth class.
(7) Seventh Class Counties, those having a population of
20,000 or more but less than 45,000 inhabitants and those having
a population of 35,000 and more but less than 45,000 inhabitants
which have not elected to be a county of the sixth class.
(8) Eighth Class Counties, those having a population of less
than 20,000 inhabitants.
Section 211. Ascertainment, Certification and Effect of
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Change of Class.--(a) The classification of counties shall be
ascertained and fixed according to their population by reference
from time to time to the decennial United States census as
[hereinafter provided, deducting therefrom] provided in this
section, less the number of persons residing on any lands that
have been ceded to the United States.
(b) Whenever it shall appear by any [such] decennial census
that [any] a county has attained a population entitling it to an
advance in classification, or whenever it shall appear by the
last two preceding censuses that a county has [heretofore or
hereafter] decreased in population so as to recede in
classification, as [herein prescribed] provided in this section,
it shall be the duty of the Governor, under the great seal of
this Commonwealth, to certify that fact accordingly, to the
[board of county] commissioners on or before the first day of
October of the year succeeding [that] the year in which the
census was taken [or as soon thereafter as may be], which
certificate shall be forwarded by the commissioners to the
recorder of deeds and be recorded in [his] the recorder's
office.
It is the intent of this section that the classification of
any county shall not be changed because its population has
decreased at the time of one United States decennial census,
because it is recognized that a change in the form of local
government is attended by certain expense and hardship, and
[such] the change should not be occasioned by a temporary
fluctuation in population, but rather only after it is
demonstrated by two censuses that the population of a county has
remained below the minimum figure of its class for at least a
decade.
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(c) Changes of class ascertained and certified [as
aforesaid] shall become effective on the first day of January
next following the year in which the change was [so] certified
by the Governor to the county commissioners but the salaries of
county officers shall not [thereby] be increased or decreased
during the term for which they shall have been elected. In the
municipal election following [such] the certification of change
of class and preceding the effective date of [such] the change,
the proper number of persons shall be elected to fill any
elective office which will exist in the county by the change of
classification certified. No election shall be held for any
office which will be abolished as a result of [such] a change of
classification.
Section 301. Petition to [Superior] Commonwealth Court.--(a)
The boundary line between any two or more adjoining counties may
be determined, surveyed, [relocated] established or marked in
the manner provided by this article.
(b) Such a proceeding shall be instituted on petition of any
taxpayer, the [county] commissioners or the [corporate
authorities] governing body of any political subdivision of any
of the counties involved.
Section 302. [Superior] Commonwealth Court to Designate
Neutral Court; Appointment of Commission.--(a) The court, upon
the filing of such petition, shall designate a court of a county
not affected by the question and not adjoining any of the
counties involved to act in the proceeding. The designated court
[so designated] shall sit in its home county.
(b) If it appears to the [court so] designated court that
the county line, or any part thereof, shall be surveyed or
marked, it shall appoint a boundary commission, composed of
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three surveyors or professional engineers [in civil
engineering,] licensed or registered in accordance with the act
of May 23, 1945 (P.L.913, No.367), known as the "Engineer, Land
Surveyor and Geologist Registration Law," to act for the court
as hereinafter provided.
Section 303. Compensation, Assistants and Expenses.--(a)
The surveyors or professional engineers [in civil engineering]
composing [such] the boundary commission shall each receive such
compensation as the court shall fix for the time necessarily
spent in the discharge of their duties and[, in addition
thereto,] shall also be reimbursed the necessary expenses
incurred by them respectively while engaged upon the work of
[such] the commission.
(b) The boundary commission may employ such assistants as
the court shall allow, at a compensation to be fixed by the
court[, and such assistants shall be reimbursed the actual
necessary expenses incurred by them respectively while employed
by such commission]. Assistants shall also be reimbursed for
actual necessary expenses incurred while employed by the
commission.
(c) All costs, including the necessary expenses of
advertising the meeting of the boundary commissioners as
hereinafter provided, and in procuring and setting the permanent
monuments [needful] necessary to mark [in a permanent manner
such] the county line, the expenses of the boundary commission
and its assistants and all other expenses necessarily incurred,
shall be paid by the interested counties jointly, in equal
parts, or by any party or parties to the proceeding as the court
may direct, upon presentation of properly itemized bills, duly
verified by affidavit of the person claiming payment or [some
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one on his] someone on the person's behalf.
Section 304. Oath; Organization and Duties.--(a) The
members of the boundary commission shall take and subscribe [an
oath to perform their duties impartially and with fidelity] the
oath as provided in 53 Pa.C.S. § 1141 (relating to form of oaths
of office) prior to assuming duties with the commission.
(b) The boundary commission shall meet and organize within
two weeks of its appointment. It shall select from its
membership a chairman and also a secretary who shall keep a full
record of the proceedings and work of the commission. [Before
entering upon its duties, it shall designate, by advertisement]
The commission shall advertise in not more than two newspapers
published in each of the counties concerned, a time and place of
meeting, when and where parties interested shall be heard. After
[such] the hearing, it shall, without unreasonable delay,
ascertain the location, and survey and mark with [suitable]
permanent monuments [of a permanent character] the existing
county line between such counties[, if it shall consider such
old county line a proper one].
Section 305. Authority to Fix [New] Undetermined County
Line.--(a) When the boundary commission [has ascertained,
located and determined said line, if it appears to it that the
existing county line, from any cause whatever, has become
inconvenient for any purpose, or improper, difficult to
ascertain, or not related to the natural or other land marks,
the commission] cannot determine, ascertain or locate the
existing county line, it shall so report [these facts, or any of
them,] to the court of [quarter sessions having appointed the
commission] common pleas, with a recommendation that a new
county line be established in whole or in part.
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(b) [Thereupon, if said] If the court shall be of opinion
that it is [to the interest and advantage of the respective
counties] necessary that a new county line be established, [they
may] it shall direct [said] the boundary commission to fix and
determine a new county line [and], to mark the same with
[suitable] permanent monuments [of a permanent character] and to
prepare the report as provided in section 306.
[(c) Notice shall be given to the counties interested, and
to the owners of all lands which will be affected by the
proposed change, of the time when the recommendation of the
commission for a new county line will be considered by the
court.]
Section 306. Report of Boundary Commission; Approval by
Court; Certification of Line.--(a) The boundary commission[, or
a majority thereof, shall make a report, in writing, and attach
thereto] shall prepare a written report containing a map or
draft showing the courses and distances of the line ascertained
and designated by them as the existing county line, or where
they may have been directed to fix and determine a new county
line, such map or draft[, in lieu thereof,] shall instead show
the courses and distances of new county line. In either case,
the map or draft shall also show the lands through which said
line passes and the buildings in close proximity thereto,
together with the roads and streams crossed by or near to such
line.
(b) The report and map, signed by a majority of the members
of the commission [or a majority of them], shall be filed in the
court of [quarter sessions] common pleas having been given
jurisdiction, and if approved by such court, shall be ordered
recorded in the records thereof.
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(b.1) Written notice shall be given by the boundary
commission to the counties interested, and to the owners of all
lands which will be affected by the proposed change, of the time
when the report containing the recommendation of the boundary
commission will be considered by the court.
(b.2) A copy of the report and approval shall be certified
by the [clerk of the court] prothonotary to the [clerk of the
court of quarter sessions] prothonotary of each county affected,
where it shall be recorded in the records. The line so
ascertained, surveyed and fixed and so marked shall
[thenceforth], as of the date of the certification, be the
boundary line between the counties.
(c) The [clerk of the court of quarter sessions]
prothonotary, having determined the matter, shall certify the
approval of the court on two copies of the report and map filed
in [this] the prothonotary's office and, within thirty days,
transmit a copy by mail to the Secretary of [Internal Affairs,
to be by him deposited in his department, and another to the
Department of Highways] Community and Economic Development, the
Department of Transportation and the Department of Conservation
and Natural Resources.
Section 401. Enumeration of Elected Officers.--(a) In each
county, there shall be the following officers elected by the
qualified electors of the county:
(1) Three county commissioners.
(2) Three auditors or, in counties of the second class A and
in all counties where the office of auditor has heretofore been
or shall hereafter be abolished, one controller.
(3) One treasurer.
(4) One coroner.
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(5) One recorder of deeds.
(6) One prothonotary.
(7) One clerk of the court of [quarter sessions and of the
court of oyer and terminer] common pleas.
(8) [One] Except in counties of the second class A, one
clerk of the orphans' court.
(9) One register of wills, who, in counties of the second
class A, shall serve as clerk of the orphan's court.
(10) One sheriff.
(11) One district attorney.
(12) Two jury commissioners, except in counties where the
office of jury commissioner has been abolished.
(b) [All] Except as provided in subsection (b.1), all such
officers shall be elected at the municipal election next
preceding the expiration of the terms of the officers now in
office, and quadrennially thereafter, and shall hold their
offices for a term of four years from the first Monday of
January next after their election and until their successors
shall be duly qualified, but in the event that any [such]
officer so elected, excepting a county commissioner or auditor,
shall fail to qualify, or if no successor shall be elected, then
the chief deputy, first assistant, first deputy or principal
deputy in office at the time the vacancy occurred shall assume
the office until a successor has been appointed pursuant to
section 409 or until the first Monday in January following the
next municipal election, whichever period is shorter. In the
case of a county commissioner or auditor, there shall be a
vacancy which shall be filled as provided in this act.
(b.1) In the event that any officer in a county of the
second class A, other than a county commissioner, shall fail to
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qualify, or if no successor is elected, the officer then in
office shall continue in office only until the first Monday in
January following the next municipal election, at which time a
successor shall be elected for a term of four years.
(c) All the county officers enumerated in this section shall
remain as now constituted. This section does not create any
office in any county where such office does not now exist.
(d) The office of jury commissioner may be abolished by
referendum at the option of each county which on the effective
date of this subsection is a county of the third class having a
population under the 1990 Federal decennial census in excess of
237,000 residents, but less than 240,000 residents, or a
population under the 1990 Federal decennial census in excess of
337,000 residents, but less than 341,000 residents, whenever
electors equal to at least five per centum of the highest vote
cast for any office in the county at the last preceding general
election shall file a petition with the county board of
elections, or the governing body of the county adopts, by a
majority vote, a resolution to place such a question on the
ballot and a copy of the resolution is filed with the county
board of elections for a referendum on the question of
abolishing the office of jury commissioner. Proceedings under
this subsection shall be in accordance with the provisions of
the act of June 3, 1937 (P.L.1333, No.320), known as the
"Pennsylvania Election Code." Upon approval of the referendum
the office of jury commissioner shall expire at the completion
of the current jury commissioners' terms of office. The
referendum shall not take place in any year in which the office
of jury commissioners is on the ballot.
(e) The office of jury commissioner may be abolished in a
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county of the third class having a population during the 2000
decennial census of not less than 371,000 and not more than
380,000 if the governing body of the county adopts, by a
majority vote, a resolution abolishing the office of jury
commissioner. Upon approval of the resolution, the office of
jury commissioner shall expire at the completion of the current
jury commissioners' terms of office.
(f) After review of the procedures in effect within the
county to ensure that lists of potential jurors are a
representative cross section of the community, the governing
body of a county of the second class A or third through eighth
class may adopt, by a majority vote, a resolution abolishing the
office of jury commissioner. Upon approval of the resolution,
the office of jury commissioner shall expire at the completion
of the current jury commissioners' terms of office.
Section 402. Incompatible Offices.--(a) No elected county
officer or, in counties of the third through eighth class,
county solicitor, shall, at the same time, serve as a member of
the legislative body of any [city, borough, town or township of
any class, nor as treasurer or tax collector of any city,
borough, incorporated town or township,] municipal corporation
nor as school director of any school district, nor as a member
of any board of health.
(a.1) Except as otherwise authorized by law, no elected
county officer or county solicitor of a county of the third
through eighth class shall, at the same time, serve as treasurer
or tax collector of any municipal corporation.
(b) No member of Congress from this State, nor any person
holding or exercising any office or appointment of trust or
profit under the United States, shall, at the same time, hold or
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exercise any county office in this State to which a salary, fee
or perquisites are attached. This section shall not apply to
[United States Reserve Officers or enlisted personnel] members
of the National Guard or other reserve component of the armed
forces not called into active duty.
Section 403. Oath of Office.--(a) In addition to any oath
or affirmation required by any other act of Assembly, all county
officers, their deputies, assistants and clerks, shall, before
entering on the duties of their respective offices or
employments, take and subscribe the [following oath or
affirmation: "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will
support, obey and defend the Constitution of the United States,
and the Constitution of this Commonwealth; and that I will
discharge the duties of my office (or employment) with fidelity;
that I have not paid or contributed, or promised to pay or
contribute, either directly or indirectly, any money or other
valuable thing to procure my nomination or election (or
appointment), except for necessary and proper expenses expressly
authorized by law; that I have not knowingly violated any
election law of this Commonwealth, or procured it to be done by
others in my behalf; that I will not knowingly receive, directly
or indirectly, any money or other valuable thing for the
performance or non-performance of any act or duty pertaining to
my office (or employment) other than the compensation allowed by
law".] oath as provided in 53 Pa.C.S. § 1141 (relating to form
of oaths of office).
(b) The foregoing oath shall be administered by some person
authorized to administer oaths, and shall be filed in the office
of the prothonotary of the county in which the same is taken.
Any person refusing to take said oath or affirmation shall
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forfeit his office. Any person who shall be convicted of having
sworn or affirmed falsely, or of having violated said oath or
affirmation, shall be guilty of perjury.[, and shall be subject
to such penalties as are provided therefor in the act, approved
June twenty-four, one thousand nine hundred thirty-nine
(Pamphlet Laws 872), known as The Penal Code, and be forever
disqualified from holding any office of trust or profit within
this Commonwealth.]
Section 9. Section 403.1 of the act is repealed:
[Section 403.1. Compensation When Salary Not Fixed by Law.--
In counties where no annual salary is fixed by law for the
county treasurer, he shall receive in full compensation for his
services on behalf of the county a certain amount per centum on
all moneys received and paid by him, which rate shall be
settled, from to time, by the county commissioners with the
approbation of the county auditors.]
Section 10. Sections 404, 405, 406, 407, 408, 409, 410 and
411 of the act are amended to read:
Section 404. Officers to Have Commissions Recorded.--Every
county officer receiving a commission from the Governor shall,
immediately, deliver the same to the recorder of deeds for
recordation [at the expense of such officer]. No [such] officer
shall execute any of the duties of [his] office until [he has so
delivered the said commission] the commission has been
delivered.
Section 405. Location of Offices, Records and Papers.--(a)
The commissioners, auditors, controller, treasurer, sheriff,
recorder of deeds, prothonotary, clerk of courts [of quarter
sessions and oyer and terminer], clerk of orphans' court,
register of wills[, recorder of deeds] and district attorney
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shall keep their respective offices, and all public records and
papers [belonging thereto] of those offices, at the county seat,
and in such buildings as may be erected or appropriated for such
purpose.
(a.1) The [county] commissioners shall have the power to
keep and maintain records and to contract with persons, for
storage, retrieval, and transmission of county records within or
outside the county except that no records shall be stored
outside the county seat without the approval of the [president
judge and the] officer in charge of the office to which the
records belong. The approval of the president judge shall be
required if records are in the custody of agencies of the court
of common pleas, the clerk of courts, the prothonotary, the
register of wills and the clerk of the orphans' court. Public
records stored outside of the county seat shall be made
accessible to the general public at the county seat by [means of
an electronic telecopying system] any electronic means or
facility which will permit the retrieval of the records or exact
copies thereof within [three] five business days.
County records used on a regular or frequent basis shall
remain in the county seat.
(a.2) The commissioners of counties of the second class A
shall have the power to impose a fee on recorded instruments
required to be kept permanently that are filed with the county,
and, with the approval of the president judge, shall have the
power to impose a fee on civil or criminal cases filed in the
court of common pleas. The fees will be collected by the
appropriate row officer and deposited in a special records
management fund, administered by the county's records management
program in the Office of Management and Productivity or, in the
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absence of such an office, an office that handles the same or
similar functions. The fund shall be solely used to help defray
the cost of maintaining, administering, preserving and caring
for the records of the county.
(b) The [county] commissioners shall, after consultation
with the officer, furnish each [of such officers] officer with
an office and additional space in the county building, court
house or other building at the county seat sufficient to perform
the duties of the office.
(c) Any [person] officer failing or refusing to maintain
[his] the office and to keep all public records and papers
[belonging thereto] of the office in the buildings appropriated
for such purpose in accordance with the provisions of this
section, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction
thereof, shall be sentenced to undergo imprisonment until [he]
the officer complies with the provisions of this section, or
until sooner discharged by order of the court, and to pay a fine
not exceeding five hundred dollars ($500), to be paid to the use
of the county.
Section 406. Records Open to Inspection.--[(a) The minute
book and other fiscal records and documents of every county may
be open to the inspection of any taxpayer thereof, but the
proper officers may make reasonable rules and regulations
respecting the time of such inspection.
(b) In case any officer shall refuse to permit the
inspection of any fiscal record or document the taxpayer may, by
petition to the court of common pleas of the county, set forth
his reasons for desiring to make such inspection, and, if the
court deems such reasons proper, it shall order the officer to
permit the inspection to be made.] Except as otherwise provided
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by this act, records of county offices shall be open for
inspection subject to the rules and regulations provided in the
act of February 14, 2008 (P.L.6, No.3), known as the "Right-to-
Know Law."
Section 407. Officers to Secure Funds, Records, Books, Et
Cetera, from Predecessors.--(a) Any person, elected or
appointed, and duly commissioned to any county office, shall
demand and receive all records, books, drafts, plans, papers,
seals or other official things, including all public funds held
in [such] the office, and not otherwise provided for by Article
XIII.1 of the [act, approved May seventeen, one thousand nine
hundred forty-nine (Pamphlet Laws 1403), known as the Municipal
Unclaimed Moneys Act,] act of April 9, 1929 (P.L.343, No.176),
known as "The Fiscal Code," belonging to [such] the office from
the person or persons who held the office immediately before
[his] the officer's election or appointment, or from any other
person or persons holding or possessing them.
(b) Any person detaining from such a county office any
records, books, drafts, plans, papers, seals or other official
things, including public funds, as herein provided, belonging to
[such] an office after reasonable demand [therefor] has been
made, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction
thereof, shall be sentenced to undergo imprisonment until the
delivery of any such official things found to be in [his] the
person's possession or control to the proper officer, or until
sooner discharged by order of the court, and to pay a fine not
exceeding five hundred dollars ($500), to be paid to the use of
the county.
Section 408. Deputies to Act in Certain Cases.--(a)
Whenever any county officer is authorized or required to appoint
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a deputy or deputies, such deputy or principal deputy, where
there are more than one, shall, during the necessary or
temporary absence of [his] the deputy's principal, perform all
duties of such principal, and also, in case of a vacancy or as
provided in section 401(b), until a successor is qualified.
While fulfilling these duties, in the case of a vacancy, in
counties of the third through eighth classes, the deputy shall
receive the salary provided by law for the principal or the
salary provided for the deputy, whichever is greater.
(b) No person temporarily succeeding to any county office by
reason of the death, resignation or removal of the duly elected
or appointed officer, shall execute any of the duties of such
office until [he] that person has first taken oath and filed the
bond required of the principal officer.
Section 409. Vacancies Not Otherwise Provided For.--[In] (a)
Except as otherwise provided in subsection (b), in case of a
vacancy, happening by death, resignation or otherwise, in any
county office created by the Constitution or laws of this
Commonwealth, and where no other provision is made by the
Constitution, or by [the provisions of] this act, to fill the
vacancy, it shall be the duty of the Governor to appoint a
suitable person to fill such office, who shall continue
[therein] to hold and discharge the duties [thereof] of the
office until the first Monday in January following the next
municipal election occurring not less than ninety days after the
occurrence of the vacancy, or for the balance of the unexpired
term, whichever period is shorter. If there is a municipal
election occurring not less than ninety days after the
occurrence of the vacancy, other than the one at which the
office ordinarily is filled, then the office shall be filled at
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that election for the balance of the unexpired term. Such
appointee shall be confirmed by the Senate if in session.
(b) In counties of the second class A, the appointed person
shall continue in office and discharge the duties of the office
for the balance of the unexpired term.
(c) The Governor shall discharge the duties set forth in
this section in accordance with section 207.1(d)(5.1) of the act
of April 9, 1929 (P.L.177, No.175), known as "The Administrative
Code of 1929."
Section 410. County Officials to Furnish Information to
Heads of the Governmental Departments.--(a) It shall be the
duty of all county officers to furnish, on application
[therefor,] to the head of any department of the State
government [such] information and copies of [such] records or
documents contained in their respective offices, as in the
opinion of [such] the head of department may be necessary or
pertinent to the work of [his respective] the department. The
county so furnishing information shall receive for copying and
forwarding the same such reasonable compensation as the Auditor
General may determine. Such compensation shall be paid to the
county by the State Treasurer, out of moneys not otherwise
appropriated, upon warrant from the Auditor General.
(b) All county officers shall also furnish to the Department
of Community [Affairs] and Economic Development such information
as may be requested by it.
Section 411. Penalty for Neglect or Refusal to Perform
Duties.--If any county officer neglects or refuses to perform
any duty imposed on [him] the officer by the provisions of this
or any other act, [or by the provisions of any other act of
Assembly,] or by any rule of court, [or other provision of law,
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he] the officer shall, for each [such] neglect or refusal, be
guilty of a misdemeanor, and, on conviction thereof, shall be
sentenced to pay a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars
($500).
Section 11. Section 412 of the act is repealed:
[Section 412. Absconding Officers.--The office of any county
officer absconding from the county shall be vacant to all
intents and purposes.]
Section 12. Sections 413 and 414 of the act are amended to
read:
Section 413. Qualifications of Elected County Officers.--(a)
No person shall be elected to any county office, except the
office of district attorney otherwise provided for by this act,
unless [he] the person shall be at least eighteen years of age,
a citizen of the United States and a resident of the county, and
shall have resided within the county for one year next preceding
[his] election.
(b) In addition to the qualifications in subsection (a), a
person shall not be eligible for the office of sheriff except in
accordance with the act of February 9, 1984 (P.L.3, No.2), known
as the Sheriff and Deputy Sheriff Education and Training Act.
Section 414. Mileage of County Officials and Employes.--All
county officials and employes may, when authorized by the county
commissioners, be reimbursed [at the rate of twelve cents (12¢)
per mile for the use of their personal vehicle when discharging
their official duties or performing a duty imposed upon them
unless provisions of law require the payment of a higher rate]
in accordance with the act of July 20, 1979 (P.L.156, No.51),
referred to as the Uniform Mileage Fee Law.
Section 13. The act is amended by adding sections to read:
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Section 415. Required Security.--The county shall obtain
required security for county officers and employees in
accordance with 16 Pa.C.S. Ch. 11 Subch. B (relating to required
fiscal security for officers and employees).
Section 416. Solicitors to County Officers Other Than
Commissioners.--(a) Each of the following officers may
designate and appoint a person who shall be licensed to practice
law in this Commonwealth to act as solicitor to that officer:
(1) The county treasurer.
(2) The sheriff.
(3) The register of wills.
(4) The recorder of deeds.
(5) The coroner.
(6) The controller or auditors, as the case may be.
(b) The solicitor shall advise upon all legal matters, and
conduct any litigation, as requested by the officer.
(c) The solicitor shall hold office at the pleasure of the
officer.
(d) The commissioners may appropriate money for the payment
of any solicitor appointed pursuant to this section.
(e) The appointment, compensation, powers and duties of
solicitors appointed by prothonotaries, clerks of court and
clerks of orphans' court shall be in accordance with 42 Pa.C.S.
(relating to judiciary and judicial procedure).
Section 14. Sections 440, 442, 443, 444, 445, 446, 460, 502,
503, 504, 507, 508, 509, 521, 601, 602 and 603 of the act are
amended to read:
Section 440. State Associations Authorized.--County officers
of each county may organize for themselves a State association
as follows:
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(1) The county commissioners, together with the county
solicitor and the chief clerk to the county commissioners and
certain officers who are counterpart personnel in counties
having a Home Rule Charter or optional form of government.
(2) The county controllers.
(3) The sheriffs.
(4) The district attorneys.
(5) The probation officers.
(6) The registers of wills and clerks of orphans' courts.
(7) The prothonotaries and clerks of courts [of quarter
sessions].
(8) The county treasurers.
(9) The recorders of deeds.
(10) The directors of veterans' affairs.
(11) The coroners.
(12) Jury commissioners.
(13) The county auditors.
(14) The public defenders.
Section 442. Deputies and Solicitors May Attend Annual
Meetings.--[The deputy controller, the deputy sheriff, the
deputy register of wills, the deputy clerk of orphans' court,
the deputy treasurer, the deputy prothonotary, the deputy clerk
of the courts of quarter sessions, the first assistant district
attorney, one assistant public defender and the deputy recorder
of deeds and the chief deputy coroner, with the approval of his
principal, and the solicitor for each officer, may attend the
annual meetings of his respective associations either together
with the controller, sheriff, register of wills, treasurer,
prothonotary, clerk of the courts of quarter sessions, district
attorney, public defender, recorder of deeds or coroner as the
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case may be or in his place.] With the approval of their
principals, the first and, where appointed, second deputy and
the solicitor of the following officers may attend the annual
meeting of their respective association with or in the place of
their principals:
(1) The controller.
(2) The sheriff.
(3) The register of wills.
(4) The clerk of orphans' court.
(5) The treasurer.
(6) The prothonotary.
(7) The clerk of the courts.
(8) The recorder of deeds.
(9) The district attorney.
(10) The public defender.
(11) The coroner.
Section 443. County Payment for Expenses of Attending
Members [to be Paid by County]; Time Limit on Meetings.--(a)
The actual expenses of all authorized elected county officers
attending the annual meetings of their associations shall be
paid by the [several counties] county out of the general county
fund. Each of [these] the officers, except the county
commissioners, shall be reimbursed for actual expenses not to
exceed [one hundred seventy-five dollars ($175)] two hundred
twenty dollars ($220) per day for the number of days specified
in subsection (b) of this section, together with mileage going
to and returning from such meeting and the registration fee. The
sum of [one hundred seventy-five dollars ($175)] two hundred
twenty dollars ($220) per day as set forth in this subsection
shall be adjusted annually by the annual increase in the cost of
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living as determined annually by the United States Department of
Labor.
(a.1) The actual expenses of all authorized nonelected
county officers and employes attending the annual meetings of
their associations may be paid by the [several counties] county
out of the county general fund. Each of these officers may be
reimbursed for actual expenses in an amount not to exceed [one
hundred seventy-five dollars ($175)] two hundred twenty dollars
($220) per day for the number of days specified in subsection
(b) of this section, together with mileage going to and
returning from such meetings and the registration fee. The sum
of [one hundred seventy-five dollars ($175)] two hundred twenty
dollars ($220) per day shall be adjusted annually as set forth
in subsection (a) of this section.
(a.2) Every delegate attending the annual meeting shall
submit to the county original receipts along with an itemized
account of expenses incurred at the meeting. The county may
authorize employes to be compensated at their regular employe
rate during their attendance at the annual meeting. The actual
expenses for elected officers shall, and for nonelected officers
may, be paid for the number of days specified in subsection (b).
In addition, elected county officers shall receive, and
nonelected county officers and employes may receive, actual
expenses not to exceed [one hundred seventy-five dollars ($175)]
two hundred twenty dollars ($220) per day for each day not in
excess of two in going to and returning from such meeting. The
sum of [one hundred seventy-five dollars ($175)] two hundred
twenty dollars ($220) per day shall be adjusted annually as set
forth above.
(b) The annual meeting of the association of county
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commissioners, county solicitors and chief clerks shall not
exceed four days, that of the district attorneys shall not
exceed three days, and those of all other State associations
shall not exceed three days in every case, exclusive of the time
spent in traveling to and from the said meetings.
Section 444. Other Meeting Expenses Paid by Counties.--(a)
In addition to the expenses [hereinbefore] authorized in this
subdivision, the necessary expenses of the annual meetings of
the associations hereinafter named, including annual association
dues, printing, committee expenses and stenographical expense,
shall be paid in equal parts by the [several] counties whose
officers are members of the respective associations.
(b) In the case of county commissioners, county solicitor
and county clerk, county controllers, county auditors, sheriffs,
register of wills, clerks of orphans' courts, county treasurers,
recorders of deeds, prothonotaries, clerks of courts, public
defenders, district attorneys, jury commissioners [and coroners,
the portion of the annual expenses charged to each county of the
third and fourth class shall not exceed six hundred dollars
($600), to each county of the fifth and sixth class, five
hundred dollars ($500), to each county of the seventh and eighth
class, four hundred dollars ($400), and in], coroners and, in
the case of second class A counties, directors of veterans'
affairs, the portion of annual expenses charged to each county
shall not exceed the following:
(1) For each county of the second class A, one thousand
dollars ($1,000).
(2) For each county of the third and fourth class, seven
hundred fifty dollars ($750).
(3) For each county of the fifth and sixth class, six
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hundred twenty-five dollars ($625).
(4) For each county of the seventh and eighth class, five
hundred dollars ($500).
(c) In the case of the directors of veterans' affairs for
counties other than those of the second class A, the portion
charged to each county shall not exceed four hundred dollars
($400), and in the case of the probation officers an annual
membership subscription not exceeding [ten dollars ($10)] twelve
dollars and fifty cents ($12.50) per member shall be paid by the
county, and shall be in lieu of the expenses hereinbefore in
this section provided for other county officers.
(d) The amounts set forth in subsections (b) and (c) shall
be adjusted annually by the annual increase in the cost of
living as determined annually by the United States Department of
Labor.
Section 445. Annual Assessments for County Commissioners,
Etc.--(a) In addition to the expenses hereinbefore authorized,
the necessary expenses of the association of county
commissioners, county solicitors and chief clerks shall be
apportioned among the counties holding membership in the
association in amounts provided for by the rules and regulations
of the association.
(a.1) In addition to the expenses hereinbefore authorized,
the necessary expenses of the association of district attorneys
shall be apportioned among the counties holding membership in
the association in amounts provided for by the rules and
regulations of the association.
(b) Such annual apportionments of expenses shall be as
approved at each annual [convention] conference of the said
association by a majority vote of the members present and, when
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so approved, shall be paid by the several counties from general
county funds.
Section 446. Associations and Organizations Concerned with
Governmental Affairs.--The [county] commissioners of any county
may[, by resolution,] join associations and organizations
concerned with county or governmental affairs, other than the
[Pennsylvania State Association of County Commissioners] County
Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania, may pay dues to such
associations and organizations and may send delegates to
meetings or [conventions] conferences of such associations and
organizations and pay the necessary expenses incident to their
attendance at such meetings or [conventions] conferences.
The county commissioners of any county may [by resolution]
authorize any county official and [his] employes of the official
to attend meetings of professional associations and
organizations, or study or training sessions for persons holding
the same or similar office or employment, and may pay all or any
specified portion of the necessary expenses incident to their
attendance at such meetings or sessions.
Every person attending any [convention] conference, meeting
or study or training session referred to in this act shall
submit to the controller, or to the county commissioners in
counties having no controller, an itemized account of [his]
expenses [thereat] related to the event, including traveling
expenses or mileage, which the county commissioners may have
agreed to pay.
Section 460. Meetings Open to Public.--[(a)] All meetings,
regular and special, of the board of county commissioners and of
all boards, commissions and authorities, created by or operating
as agencies of a county, are hereby declared to be public
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meetings [open to the public at all times.
(b) Nothing contained in this section shall prevent the
county commissioners or any such board, commission or authority
from holding executive sessions from which the public is
excluded, but no final official action shall be taken as to any
proposed or existing resolution, ordinance, rule or regulation,
or part thereof, at such an executive session.] subject to the
provisions of 65 Pa.C.S. Ch. 7 (relating to open meetings).
Section 502. Organization.--The [county] commissioners shall
meet on the first Monday of January, in the year one thousand
nine hundred and fifty-six, and on the first Monday of January
every fourth year thereafter, in the office provided for them at
the county seat for the purpose of organization. If the first
Monday is a legal holiday, the meeting shall be held the first
day following.
Section 503. Meetings, Regular and Special; Conduct of
Meetings; Notices.--(a) The [county] commissioners shall adopt
rules for the conduct and order of business[, establishing also]
and establish regular times and places of meeting. A copy of
[such] the rules shall be posted at all times in a conspicuous
place in the county court house for the benefit of the public.
(b) Each commissioner shall have at least twenty hours
notice of any special meeting and of the nature of business to
be conducted [thereat] at the meeting, unless [such] the notice
[be] is waived by [him] the commissioner in writing or by
attendance at [such] the special meeting.
Section 504. Quorum; Execution of Official Instruments.--(a)
The commissioners shall constitute a board, two members of which
shall be a quorum for the transaction of business, and, when
convened [in pursuance of notice or according to adjournment]
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after notice, shall be competent to perform all the duties
appertaining to the office of county commissioners.
(b) Where any official document, instrument or official
paper is to be executed by the [county] commissioners, it shall
be done by at least two of the commissioners and attested by the
chief clerk who shall affix the county seal thereto.
Section 507. Expenses.--The [county] commissioners shall be
allowed their expenses, necessarily incurred and actually paid,
in the discharge of their official duties, or in the performance
of any service, office, or duty imposed upon county
commissioners.
Section 508. Office Furniture, Stationery, Etc.--(a) The
[county] commissioners, at the cost of the county, shall
purchase and provide the office furniture, equipment and
supplies, blank books, [blanks,] blank dockets, books for
records, stationery, postage, [fuel, light and janitor and
telephone service,] utilities, cleaning and maintenance required
for each of the county officers whose offices are located in the
county buildings or at such other places at the county seat as
may be designated by the commissioners, and all supplies used by
the public in connection with such offices.
(b) The [county] commissioners, at the cost of the county,
shall purchase and provide all of the same items as needed for
each of the county officers whose offices are not required by
law to be kept and maintained in county buildings or at the
county seat.
(c) Before purchasing office furniture, equipment or
supplies, blank books, blank dockets, books for records or
stationery, the county officers who are to be furnished with any
of [such] the items shall have an opportunity to state in
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writing [his] preferences as to the type and make of [such
articles or any of them] the items. The commissioners shall,
when feasible, purchase and supply to each officer [his
preference in such articles] the preferred item when such
preference has been given.
Section 509. Ordinances and Resolutions.--(a) The [board
of] commissioners may adopt resolutions and ordinances
prescribing the manner in which powers of the county shall be
carried out and generally regulating the affairs of the county.
The commissioners may formulate and adopt ordinances,
resolutions, and rules and regulations, pertaining to the use of
any property owned or used by the county and the conduct of
persons in, on or about such county property, in order to
preserve such property and to promote and preserve the public
health, safety and welfare.
(b) All [such] proposed ordinances, unless otherwise
provided by law, shall be published at least once in one
newspaper of general circulation in the county not more than
sixty days nor less than seven days prior to passage. Public
notices of any proposed ordinance shall include either the full
text [thereof] or the title and a brief summary of the proposed
ordinance prepared by the county solicitor setting forth all the
provisions in reasonable detail and a reference to a place
within the county where copies of the proposed ordinance may be
examined. If the full text is not included a copy thereof shall
be supplied to [a] the same newspaper of general circulation in
[the county at the time] which the public notice is published.
If the full text is not included, an attested copy thereof shall
be filed in the county law library[.] within thirty days after
enactment. The date of such filing shall not affect the validity
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of the process of the enactment or adoption of the ordinance;
and a failure to record within the time provided shall not be
deemed a defect in the process of the enactment or adoption of
the ordinance. In the event substantial amendments are made in
the proposed ordinance or resolution, [upon enactment,] the
commissioners shall [within ten days], at least ten days prior
to enactment, re-advertise in one newspaper of general
circulation in the county, a brief summary setting forth all the
provisions in reasonable detail together with a summary of the
amendments. [Such ordinances] Ordinances shall not become
effective until recorded in the ordinance book of the county. In
any case in which maps, plans or drawings of any kind are
adopted as part of an ordinance, the commissioners may, instead
of publishing the same as part of the ordinance, refer in
publishing the ordinance to the place where such maps, plans or
drawings are on file and may be examined.
(c) The [board of county] commissioners may also prescribe
fines and penalties not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000)
for a violation of a building, housing, property maintenance,
health, fire or public safety code or ordinance and for water,
air and noise pollution violations, and not exceeding six
hundred dollars ($600) for a violation of any other county
ordinance, which fines and penalties may be collected by suit,
brought in the name of the county, in like manner as debts of
like amount may be sued for.
(d) Any person violating any of the ordinances adopted by
the [board of county] commissioners pursuant to this section
shall, upon conviction thereof at a summary proceeding, be
sentenced to pay such fine as may be prescribed in such
ordinances by the [county] commissioners but not in excess of
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one thousand dollars ($1,000), to be paid to the use of the
county, with costs of prosecution, or to be imprisoned for not
more than ten days, or both.
Section 521. Duties and Powers of Chief Clerk.--(a) The
chief clerk shall keep the books and accounts of the board of
county commissioners, record and file their proceedings and
papers, attest all orders and voucher checks issued by them and
perform all other duties pertaining to [his office as] the
office of chief clerk.
(b) [He] The chief clerk shall have general power to
administer oaths and affirmations[,] pertaining to the business
of the office of the county commissioners.
Section 601. Election and Term; Seal.--(a) At the municipal
election immediately preceding the expiration of the term of the
controller [now] in office on January 1, 1956, and quadrennially
thereafter, the qualified electors of each county of the third,
fourth and fifth classes, and of every other county where the
office of controller has been or may hereafter be established,
including counties in which the office was established by
general law, or otherwise, while such counties were in a higher
classification, shall elect one citizen of the county, who shall
serve as controller for the term of four years from the first
Monday of January following [his] the controller's election, or
until [his] a successor shall be qualified[, if he so long shall
behave himself well].
(a.1) In counties of the second class A, a controller shall
be elected at the municipal election immediately preceding the
expiration of the term of the controller in office on the
effective date of this subsection and quadrennially thereafter.
(b) Each county controller shall be provided with an
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official seal of [his] the office by the county commissioners of
the county, which shall be used for the attestation of all
official papers.
Section 602. Eligibility.--(a) No person holding office
under the United States shall be eligible to the office of
county controller during [his] continuance in such office, nor
until one year thereafter.
(b) The county commissioners, county treasurer,
prothonotary, register of wills, clerk of the courts, recorder
of deeds, sheriff and district attorney, and their chief clerks
or deputies, shall be ineligible, during their continuance in
such office and for two years thereafter, to the office of
county controller.
(c) The controller shall always be eligible to reelection or
appointment.
Section 603. Deputy Controller and Clerks.--(a) The
controller in counties of the second class A, third, fourth and
fifth classes shall appoint a deputy controller and clerks, and
in counties of the sixth, seventh and eighth classes may appoint
a deputy controller and clerks, and each controller may
authorize one or more of the clerks employed in [his] the
controller's office to administer to all persons oaths and
affirmations, pertaining to the business of the office, with the
same force and effect as if administered by the controller or
deputy controller.
(b) The controller may appoint a second deputy controller,
who shall possess and discharge all the rights, powers and
duties of the principal deputy controller during [his necessary
or] the principal deputy controller's and the controller's
temporary absence.
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Section 15. Section 604 of the act is repealed:
[Section 604. Solicitor to the Controller.--The county
controller may designate and appoint one person, learned in the
law, to act as his solicitor. Such solicitor shall advise upon
all such legal matters as may be submitted to him, and shall
conduct any litigation desired by the county controller. He
shall hold office at the pleasure of the controller.]
Section 16. Sections 605, 606, 607, 701, 702 and 703 of the
act are amended to read:
Section 605. Establishment of Office of Controller in
Counties of the Sixth, Seventh and Eighth Classes.--(a) The
office of controller may be established in any county of the
sixth, seventh or eighth class by the affirmative vote of a
majority of the electors of the county voting on the question
submitted, as herein provided, at the general election in which
the auditors are in the third year of their term.
(b) The question shall be submitted to the electors of the
county whenever county electors file a petition containing
signatures equal to at least five per centum of the highest vote
cast for any office in the county at the last preceding general
election. [Such] The petition shall be filed with the county
commissioners at least sixty days before the day of the general
election at which the question is to be submitted. If the
petition is sufficiently signed the county commissioners shall
cause the question to be submitted in the manner provided by the
Pennsylvania Election Code.
(c) If the majority of electors voting on the question shall
vote in favor of establishing the office of county controller,
[such] the office shall thereby be established, and, at the next
municipal election, and quadrennially thereafter, the electors
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of the county shall choose a citizen of the county for the
office of controller in place of the county auditors.
Section 606. Appointment by Governor; Duties of Auditors;
Abolition of Office of Auditor.--(a) Whenever the office of
controller is established in any county, under the provisions of
section 605 of this act, or by a change in class of such county
not otherwise provided for by law, the Governor shall appoint a
suitable person to act as controller of said county until [his]
a successor in office is duly elected and installed.
(b) Upon the appointment of a controller, as provided in
this section, the county auditors then in office shall proceed
to audit all accounts as required by law, and shall file a
report of such audit with the controller so appointed, not later
than three months after the controller assumes [his] office,
whereupon the office of county auditor shall be abolished and
cease to exist in said county.
Section 607. Expenses.--The county controller and [his] the
county controller's deputy, clerks, and auditors shall be
allowed their expenses necessarily incurred and actually paid in
the discharge of their official duties, or in the performance of
any service or duty imposed upon them.
Section 701. Election and Vacancies.--(a) In each county
where the office of controller has not been established, three
county auditors shall be elected in the year one thousand nine
hundred fifty-five, and every fourth year thereafter. In the
election of auditors, each qualified elector shall vote for no
more than two persons. The three persons having the highest
number of votes shall be elected.
(b) Any casual vacancy in the office of county auditors
shall be filled, for the balance of the unexpired term, by the
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court of common pleas of the county, [by the appointment of an
elector who voted for the auditor whose place is to be filled.]
sitting en banc, appointing a successor who shall be a
registered elector of the county and shall be a member of the
same political party as was the auditor whose place is to be
filled at the time the auditor assumed office.
Section 702. Eligibility.--(a) No person shall be eligible
to the office of county auditor who, within two years, shall
have been treasurer of the county.
(b) [No person holding the office of county auditor shall at
the same time hold or be employed in any office of the county,
the county institution district, any school district, any board
of health or any municipality authority of which the county is a
member.] No person holding the office of county auditor shall at
the same time hold any office or employment for the county or
for any municipal authority of which the county is a member. A
county auditor may not be employed in an administrative position
by any school district or any organization or entity that may be
audited by the board of auditors. A county auditor may not hold
an elected or appointed office or serve as a manager for any
municipal corporation in the county.
Section 703. Meetings; Quorum.--(a) The auditors shall
[assemble] meet at the county seat on the first Monday of
January in each year[, and begin] for the purpose of organizing
and to begin their audit of the fiscal affairs of the county for
the fiscal year immediately preceding.[, and thereafter, at such
times as they may find necessary for the completion of their
audit before the first day of the following July. They may, upon
petition to the court of common pleas, have such additional time
for the completion of their report as the court shall allow.]
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If the first Monday in January is a legal holiday, the meeting
shall be held the first day following.
(b) The auditors shall meet as necessary for the completion
of their audit by the first day of the following July. The
auditors may petition the court of common pleas for additional
time for the completion of the audit and the filing of the
report. The court, upon a showing of due cause, shall grant such
additional time as it deems necessary for completion of the
audit and report.
(c) The auditors shall receive such compensation as
determined by the county commissioners in accordance with the
act of November 1, 1971 (P.L.495, No.113), entitled, as amended,
"An act providing for the compensation of county officers in
counties of the second through eighth classes, for compensation
of district attorneys in cities and counties of the first class,
for compensation of district election officers in all counties,
for the disposition of fees, for filing of bonds in certain
cases and for duties of certain officers," provided that any
daily or hourly compensation set for the auditors shall be
applicable for any period of extension granted in accordance
with this section.
(d) Any two auditors when duly convened shall be a quorum
for the purpose of transacting any business.
Section 17. Section 704 of the act is repealed:
[Section 704. Counsel.--The auditors may employ a competent
attorney-at-law to act as their counsel and attorney.]
Section 18. Sections 805, 806 and 806.1 of the act are
amended to read:
Section 805. Misapplication of Funds Collected for Specific
Purposes.--Whenever any moneys are collected by law in any
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county [for any special purpose, and paid into the hands] and
are in the possession or control of the treasurer of [such] the
county, it shall be unlawful for [such] the treasurer to apply
such moneys, or any part thereof, to any other purpose than that
for which [such] the moneys were collected unless otherwise
authorized by law. Every such misapplication shall [be a
misdemeanor, upon conviction thereof such treasurer shall be
punished by a fine of not less than the amount so misapplied, or
by imprisonment for not less than three months nor more than one
year, or both.] constitute a violation of 18 Pa.C.S. § 3927
(relating to theft by failure to make required disposition of
funds received).
Section 806. Deputy Treasurer.--The county treasurer is
[hereby] authorized to appoint a deputy county treasurer who
shall perform such duties as shall be prescribed by the county
treasurer.
Section 806.1. Second Deputy Treasurer.--The county
treasurer may appoint a second deputy treasurer, who shall
possess and discharge all the rights, powers and duties of the
principal deputy treasurer during [his necessary or] the
principal deputy treasurer's and treasurer's temporary absence.
Section 19. Section 807 of the act is repealed:
[Section 807. Solicitor to County Treasurer in Third,
Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh and Eighth Class Counties.--In
counties of the third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth
classes, the county treasurer is authorized to appoint one
person, learned in the law, as his solicitor. The solicitor
shall advise upon all legal matters that may be submitted to him
and shall conduct any litigation when requested so to do by the
treasurer.]
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Section 20. Sections 901, 902, 903, 904, 1001 and 1002 of
the act are amended to read:
Section 901. Appointment; Qualifications.--The county
commissioners shall appoint a county solicitor, who shall be an
attorney-at-law admitted to practice in the courts of this
Commonwealth. [He shall, before] Before entering upon the duties
of [his] office, the solicitor shall file with the county
commissioners an agreement to pay all fees, attorney's fees, and
commissions received from every source as county solicitor into
the county treasury.
Section 902. Duties.--[He] The solicitor shall commence and
prosecute all suits brought, or to be brought, by the county,
wherein or whereby any rights, privileges, properties, claims or
demands of the county are involved, as well as defend all
actions or suits brought against the county, and shall perform
all duties now enjoined by law upon county solicitors, and shall
do all and every professional act and render legal advice
incident to the office which may be required of [him] the
solicitor by the commissioners.
Section 903. Employes in [Third Class] Certain Counties.--In
counties of the second class A and third class, the county
solicitor may, with the consent of the county commissioners,
employ [a stenographer as an assistant in his office] clerks or
assistants as may be necessary in the discharge of the
solicitor's duties.
Section 904. Assistant County Solicitors.--[The] (a) Except
as provided in subsection (b), the county commissioners may
appoint one or more assistant county solicitors, and special
counsel who shall be attorneys at law admitted to practice in
the courts of this Commonwealth. Each assistant and special
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counsel shall perform such duties in connection with the legal
affairs of the county as may be assigned [to him] by the county
commissioners or the county solicitor.
(b) In counties of the second class A, the power to appoint
assistant county solicitors and special counsel as provided in
this section shall lie with the county solicitor, subject to the
approval of the county commissioners.
Section 1001. County Engineer; Appointment; Term.--The
[county] commissioners of any county may appoint a professional
engineer in civil engineering[, who shall be styled] or an
engineering firm as the county engineer. [Such] The engineer
shall serve at the pleasure of the commissioners.
Section 1002. Duties.--The county engineer shall:
(1) prepare plans, specifications, and estimates of all
engineering work undertaken by the county, and, whenever
required, shall furnish the commissioners with reports,
information, or estimates on any such work and, in general,
shall perform all [such] duties with reference to any county
engineering work as the county commissioners may from time to
time prescribe.
(2) perform all duties relating to surveying as may be
assigned [to him] by the county commissioners or by law; and
(3) perform all duties heretofore imposed on county
surveyors.
Section 21. Article XII of the act is repealed:
[ARTICLE XII
SHERIFF AND CORONER
(a) Sheriff
Section 1201. Unfinished Business of Outgoing Sheriff.--(a)
It shall be the duty of every outgoing sheriff, to deliver all
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unfinished and unexecuted writs and process whatsoever to his
successor whose duty it shall be to receive and execute the same
as if said writs and process had been originally issued and
directed to him, and to carry out and complete all other
official duties of his predecessor.
(b) Whenever any real estate shall be sold under any
execution by a sheriff who shall, in any lawful manner, be
succeeded in office before any deed shall be executed and
acknowledged by him in due form of law for such real estate, his
successor in office shall have the same power and be under the
same duty to execute and acknowledge a deed for such real estate
to the purchaser thereof as the sheriff selling such real estate
under execution if he were still in office, which deed so
executed shall be as effectual in law as if the title had been
completed by the former sheriff.
(c) No court order shall be necessary in any event to
authorize an incoming sheriff to carry out his duties as
prescribed by this act.
Section 1202. Sheriff May Act by Deputy.--Whenever the
sheriff is or shall be required by law to act in person under or
by virtue of any writ or process whatsoever issued by the courts
of this Commonwealth, he may act either in person or by a
regularly appointed deputy sheriff.
Section 1203. Chief Deputy; Compensation.--The sheriff of
each county shall appoint, by commission duly recorded in the
office for recording deeds, a chief deputy, whose appointment
shall be revocable by the sheriff at pleasure on recording in
said office a signed revocation thereof. The chief deputy,
during his continuance in office, shall have full power and
authority to perform any duty incumbent upon such sheriff, with
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like effect in law as if such official act had been done by the
sheriff in person, regardless of the ability or temporary
disability of such sheriff to act, while such sheriff continues
in office. Nothing in this section shall operate to relieve such
sheriff or his sureties from liability upon their official bond.
Section 1204. Real Estate Deputies in Counties of the Third
and Fourth Classes.--In counties of the third and fourth
classes, the sheriff may have a real estate deputy to take
charge of all matters relating to sheriff's sales of real estate
and distributions of the proceeds thereof, whose appointment
shall be made and be revocable as hereinbefore provided for the
chief deputy. Such deputy shall have full power to perform all
duties incumbent upon the sheriff in like manner as his chief
deputy with like effect in law as if such official acts had been
done by the sheriff in person. Such duties shall include the
execution and acknowledgment of sheriff's deeds for real estate
upon receipt of the purchase price thereof. Nothing in this act
shall operate to relieve the sheriff or his sureties from
liability upon their official bonds but such liability shall
continue as heretofore.
Section 1205. Deputies and Clerks.--The sheriff of each
county may appoint such deputies and clerks as may be necessary
to properly transact the business of his office. He may revoke
the appointment of deputies in the same manner as his chief
deputy. The sheriff may also appoint necessary special deputies,
when any emergency arises, to assist him in executing any civil
or criminal process or court order or in preserving the peace,
who shall serve only so long as they are absolutely needed.
Section 1206. Deputy Sheriff's Qualifications.--A sheriff
shall not appoint any person a chief deputy or any other deputy
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sheriff unless the sheriff files with the prothonotary, prior to
the appointment of such person, the name and photograph of such
person, together with an affidavit of such person setting forth
the following:
(1) His full name, age, and residence address.
(2) That he is a citizen of the United States, and eighteen
years of age or over.
(4) That he has never been convicted of a crime involving
moral turpitude under the laws of this Commonwealth, or of any
other state, or of the United States.
(5) That he has not, for a period of two years immediately
preceding the filing of such affidavit, acted either for himself
or as the agent or employe of another, in any labor dispute, or
hired himself out or performed any service as a private
detective, private policeman or private guard in any labor
dispute, or received any fee or compensation whatsoever for
acting as a private detective, private policeman or private
guard in any labor dispute, or conducted the business of a
private detective agency, or of any agency supplying private
detectives, private policemen or private guards, or advertised
or solicited any such business in this Commonwealth in
connection with any labor dispute.
Section 1207. False Statements in Deputy's Affidavit.--Any
false statement contained in any such affidavit shall constitute
perjury, and shall be punishable as such.
Section 1208. Filed Items, Public Records.--The name,
photograph, and affidavit of any such person so filed with the
prothonotary, shall constitute a public record.
Section 1209. Public List of Applicants for Deputy
Sheriff.--The sheriff shall, from time to time, prepare a list
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of the names of all persons who have applied for appointment as
deputy sheriff and who meet the qualifications hereinbefore
prescribed. Such list shall be posted in a public place for a
period of not less than ten days, and thereafter shall be filed
in the office of the prothonotary. No deputies shall be
appointed by the sheriff whose names do not appear on said list.
Section 1210. Private Services, Gifts and Payments,
Contracts, Prohibited.--(a) No sheriff, deputy sheriff,
detective or other county police officer whatsoever, shall
perform, directly or indirectly, any official services or
official duties for any person, association or corporation, or
receive, directly or indirectly, any compensation, gifts or
gratuities from any person, association or corporation during
the period of his official services. Nothing herein contained
shall prohibit such officers from serving writs and other legal
process as authorized by law. Any compensation payable to any
such officer for official duties and services shall be paid only
out of the proper county, or other public funds, to the amount
and in the manner prescribed by law. Gifts, donations, and
gratuities of any nature whatsoever made by any person,
association or corporation to the county or to any official or
agent thereof, shall not constitute public funds within the
meaning of this section.
(b) No county, or any official or agent thereof, shall
accept as a gratuity, gift or donation any arms, ammunition,
military supplies, tear gas or equipment, or supplies or
articles of a similar character from, nor shall any such
gratuity, gift or donation be made by any person, association or
corporation.
(c) Any contract or agreement, whatsoever, made in violation
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of the provisions of this section, shall be utterly void and of
no effect, in law or in equity, and is hereby declared to be
contrary to public policy.
(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section,
unless otherwise prohibited by resolution or ordinance of the
county, an individual who is employed as a sheriff, deputy
sheriff, detective or other county police officer may engage in
outside employment, including employment in security, during a
period in which the individual is not scheduled to perform nor
performing duty as a county employe. The county is not liable
for any damage resulting from an act of an individual acting
under this subsection.
Section 1211. Penalties.--Any sheriff, deputy sheriff or any
other county police officer, whatsoever, or any other official
of the county or any person, association or corporation,
violating any of the provisions of sections 1206, 1209 or 1210
of this act, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon
conviction, shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not less than
one hundred dollars ($100) nor more than five hundred dollars
($500), or to undergo imprisonment for not less than ninety days
nor more than two years, or both.
Section 1212. Construction.--Nothing contained in sections
1206 or 1210 of this act, shall be construed to prohibit the
appointment, employment or compensation by any county in the
manner expressly provided by law of--(1) night watchmen, (2)
railroad police, (3) bank police, (4) payroll police, (5)
special policemen to police and protect cemeteries and grounds
and buildings open to the public, or to enforce laws for the
prevention of cruelty to persons or animals, (6) fire police
whose only duty shall be to direct traffic and maintain order
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to, at or from fires, (7) police or guards employed by nonprofit
corporations or organizations.
Section 1213. Solicitor in Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth,
Seventh and Eighth Class Counties.--In all counties of the
third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth classes, the
sheriff may appoint one person, learned in the law, as his
solicitor. Said solicitor shall advise the sheriff upon all
legal matters that may be submitted to him, and shall conduct
any litigation in connection with the sheriff's office when
requested so to do by the sheriff.
Section 1214. Chief Deputy Coroner to Act as Coroner in Case
of a Vacancy.--If any coroner shall be legally removed from his
office or shall die or resign before the expiration of the term
for which he was commissioned, the chief deputy coroner shall
execute the office of coroner and perform all things thereunto
appertaining and receive and retain for his own use the
compensation provided by law for coroners until another coroner
is commissioned and notice thereof is given to such chief deputy
coroner.
Section 1215. Sheriff to Keep Docket.--Every sheriff and
every coroner, acting as sheriff, shall provide and keep in his
office a book or books in which he shall enter all writs that
may come to him and the proceedings thereon, and, at the
expiration of his term of office, such book or books shall be
deposited in the office of the prothonotary for the inspection
of all persons interested therein.
(b) Coroner
Section 1231. Deputies.--The coroner may appoint one or more
deputies to act in his place and stead, as he may deem proper
and necessary. Such deputy or deputies shall have the same
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powers as the coroner.
Section 1232. Duties with Respect to County Morgues.--The
coroner of each county in which a county morgue is established,
shall make general rules and regulations for its government and
control, and shall appoint suitable persons for each morgue so
established to have charge of the same, and who shall be
removable at the pleasure of the coroner. The number of such
persons and the salary of each shall be fixed by the salary
board.
Section 1233. Removal of Bodies to Morgue.--Whenever the
body of any deceased person who is unidentified or which body is
unclaimed by proper persons has been found within the county, it
shall be removed to the county morgue or to a private morgue
serving in lieu thereof. The coroner shall, if he deems it
necessary, cause any such body to be properly embalmed or
prepared for preservation for such length of time as he may
think proper. Any such body shall be examined or inspected only
by such persons as the coroner authorizes in writing, or who are
admitted in his presence. No such body shall be removed from any
such morgue except upon the certificate of the coroner.
Section 1234. Ambulance.--In each county, the county
commissioners may furnish and maintain, from the general funds
of the county, an ambulance for the removal of bodies of
deceased persons to and from the morgue, and for the burial of
unclaimed bodies. The coroner may provide rules and regulations
for the use and maintenance of the ambulance.
Section 1235. Unclaimed Property of Deceased; Sales.--(a)
The coroner shall safely keep in his charge all personal effects
and property which appear to have been on or about the person at
the time of his death, or being found on any decedent whose body
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is received at the county morgue or at any other morgue serving
in lieu thereof, and all such effects and property which are
delivered to him according to law. The coroner shall hold such
property for one year, unless sooner claimed by legal
representatives of the deceased, or otherwise duly and lawfully
claimed or disposed of.
(b) After one year, the coroner shall cause such property
remaining unclaimed, or so much thereof as remains undisposed of
according to law, except moneys and such properties as
securities which may not be subject to such a sale, which shall
be turned over to the commissioners for proper disposition or
use, to be sold at public sale.
(c) Notice of any such public sale shall be published in at
least one newspaper of general circulation in the county once a
week for three successive weeks. The proceeds of all such sales
shall be paid immediately into the county treasury, and the
coroner shall make a written report thereof to the county
commissioners, under oath, at the same time. If the body has
been buried at the expense of the institution district, the
county shall pay the proceeds of sale, or such property as was
not subject to sale, as hereinbefore provided, less costs, over
to the institution district. The foregoing provisions shall be
in lieu of escheat to the Commonwealth.
Section 1236. Private Morgue May be Used.--In any county
where a county morgue is not maintained, the coroner may cause
any body which he is authorized to admit to a county morgue to
be removed to a private morgue within the county, and, for the
use thereof, the owner shall be paid a sum to be established by
the salary board, to be paid in the same manner as fees of
coroner's jurors are paid.
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Section 1236.1. Requests for Examinations and Reports.--(a)
Requests for examinations or other professional services by
other counties or persons may be complied with at the discretion
of the coroner pursuant to guidelines established by the county
commissioners.
(b) A set of fees and charges for such examinations or
professional services shall be established by the coroner,
subject to approval by the county commissioners, and shall be
accounted for and paid to the county treasurer pursuant to
section 1760. Payment for examinations or professional services
shall be the responsibility of the county or person requesting
such services.
(c) The coroner may charge and collect a fee of up to one
hundred dollars ($100) for each autopsy report, up to fifty
dollars ($50) for each toxicology report, up to fifty dollars
($50) for each inquisition or coroner's report and such other
fees as may be established from time to time for other reports
and documents requested by nongovernmental agencies. The fees
collected shall be accounted for and paid to the county
treasurer pursuant to section 1760 and shall be used to defray
the expenses involved in the county complying with the
provisions of the act of March 2, 1988 (P.L.108, No.22),
referred to as the Coroners' Education Board Law.
Section 1237. Coroner's Investigations.--(a) The coroner
having a view of the body shall investigate the facts and
circumstances concerning deaths which appear to have happened
within the county, regardless where the cause thereof may have
occurred, for the purpose of determining whether or not an
autopsy should be conducted or an inquest thereof should be had,
in the following cases:
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