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PRINTER'S NO. 1544
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE BILL
No.
1039
Session of
2020
INTRODUCED BY MARTIN, HUTCHINSON, J. WARD, SCHWANK AND KEARNEY,
FEBRUARY 19, 2020
REFERRED TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT, FEBRUARY 19, 2020
AN ACT
Amending Title 16 (Counties) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated
Statutes, consolidating the act of August 9, 1955 (P.L.323,
No.130), known as The County Code; and making a related
repeal.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Part I heading of Title 16 of the Pennsylvania
Consolidated Statutes is amended to read:
PART I
PRELIMINARY PROVISIONS
[(Reserved)]
Section 2. Part I of Title 16 is amended by adding chapters
to read:
CHAPTER 1
GENERAL PROVISIONS
Sec.
101. Scope of title.
102. Applicability.
102.1. Definitions.
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103. Excluded provisions.
104. Saving clause.
105. Holding of office.
106. Construction of references.
107. Constitutional construction.
108. Legislation according to class.
108.1. (Reserved).
§ 101. Scope of title.
This title relates to counties.
§ 102. Applicability.
Except for the following, this title does not apply to
counties of the first or second classes:
(1) Section 108 (relating to legislation according to
class).
(2) Sections 301 (relating to enumeration of counties),
310 (relating to counties divided into nine classes) and 311
(relating to ascertainment, certification and effect of
change of class).
(3) Subchapter B of Chapter 11 (relating to required
fiscal security for officers and employees).
(4) Part II (relating to counties of the first class).
(5) Part III (relating to counties of the second class).
(6) Chapter 139 (relating to coroner).
(7) Section 14301 (relating to district attorney,
qualifications, eligibility and compensation) or in section
17509 (relating to h otel room rental tax in second class and
second class A counties) .
(8) Chapter 171 (relating to Southwestern Pennsylvania
Regional Renaissance Initiative).
(9) Chapter 173 (relating to third class county
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convention center authorities).
§ 102.1. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this title shall
have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
"County Code." The former act of August 9, 1955 (P.L.323,
No.130), known as The County Code.
"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, footpaths,
playgrounds, playfields, gymnasiums, public baths, swimming
pools, agricultural fairgrounds or other indoor or outdoor
recreation centers.
"Street." A street, road, lane, court, cul-de-sac, alley,
public way or public square.
§ 103. Excluded provisions.
This title does not include any provisions of, and may not be
construed to repeal:
(1) Article XIII.1 of the act of April 9, 1929 (P.L.343,
No.176), known as The Fiscal Code.
(2) Except as otherwise provided in section 3903 of the
County Code, the act of June 3, 1937 (P.L.1333, No.320),
known as the Pennsylvania Election Code.
(3) The act of August 24, 1951 (P.L.1304, No.315), known
as the Local Health Administration Law.
(4) Any law relating to the fees of county officers,
except any acts repealed by former Article XXXIX of the
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County Code.
(5) Except if expressly provided, any law relating to
the collection of municipal and tax claims.
(6) Any law relating to the assessment and valuation of
property and persons for taxation.
(7) Any law relating to the giving of county consent to
public utilities.
(8) Any law relating to State highways.
(9) Any law relating to the validation of elections,
bonds, resolutions and accounts of corporate officers.
(10) Any law relating to collections by county officers
of money for the Commonwealth, and the issuance of State
licenses.
(11) Any law relating to the government and regulation
of or commitment to jails, prisons and other correctional
institutions and maintenance and care of prisoners or inmates
in jails, prisons and other correctional institutions.
(12) Any law relating to civil and criminal procedure,
except special provisions concerning action.
(13) Any law relating to joint county and municipal
buildings and works.
(14) Any law relating to county libraries, except law
libraries.
(15) Any law relating to the recording of deeds,
mortgages or other instruments in writing.
(16) Any law relating to the rebinding, reindexing and
transcribing of records in county offices.
(17) Any temporary law.
(18) Any amendment or supplement of any of the laws
referred to in this section.
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(19) 53 Pa.C.S. Pt. VII Subpt. B (relating to
indebtedness and borrowing).
(20) 66 Pa.C.S. Pt. I (relating to public utility code).
§ 104. Saving clause.
(a) Continuation.--This title, as far as the provisions of
this title are the same as the provisions of laws in existence
on January 1, 1956, shall be construed as a continuation of the
laws, and not as a new enactment. The repeal by the County Code
of any provisions of law, may not revive any law repealed or
superseded prior to January 1, 1956, nor affect the existence or
class of any county created prior to January 1, 1956. This title
may 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 the repealed laws.
(b) Local laws.--Each ordinance, resolution, regulation and
rule, made under an act repealed by the County Code, shall
continue with the same force and effect as if the act had not
been repealed. Each local act applying to particular counties,
not specifically repealed, shall continue in force, and any
provisions of this title inconsistent with local laws may not
apply to the counties affected by the local laws, unless the
application is clearly indicated.
(c) Remain in force.--All acts and parts of acts relating to
counties, or to particular classes of counties, in force as of
January 1, 1956, and not repealed by the County Code, shall
remain in force in the same manner and with the same effect as
prior to the adoption of the County Code.
(d) Second Class County Code.--This title shall be
considered a continuation of the act of July 28, 1953 (P.L.723,
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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 former section 3901 of the
County Code may not be construed as modifying or repealing any
term of office, power, ordinance, rule or regulation of home
rule counties or counties of the second class A existing on
December 24, 2018.
§ 105. Holding of office.
An individual holding an elective office under the County
Code shall continue to hold the office until the expiration of
the individual's term, subject to the conditions and salary
attached to the office prior to October 24, 2018.
§ 106. Construction of references.
If reference is made to any act, the reference shall also
apply to and include any codifications in which the provisions
of the act referred to are substantially reenacted or to
reenactments, revisions or amendments of the act.
§ 107. Constitutional construction.
The provisions of this title shall be severable, and, if any
of its provisions are held to be unconstitutional, the decision
of the court may not affect the validity of the remaining
provisions of this title. It is declared as a legislative intent
that this title would have been adopted by the General Assembly
had the unconstitutional provisions not been included within
this title.
§ 108. Legislation according to class.
The affairs of counties shall be legislated for and regulated
by general laws, applicable to each county, or to particular
classes, as fixed and appointed by this title. Each law adopted
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by the General Assembly for one or more of the classes fixed and
appointed by this title shall be deemed to be general laws.
§ 108.1. (Reserved).
CHAPTER 3
NAMES AND CORPORATE POWERS
AND CLASSIFICATION OF COUNTIES
Subchapter
A. Division of Commonwealth into Counties and Corporate
Powers
B. Classification
SUBCHAPTER A
DIVISION OF COMMONWEALTH INTO
COUNTIES AND CORPORATE POWERS
Sec.
301. Enumeration of counties.
§ 301. Enumeration of counties.
The Commonwealth shall be divided into 67 named counties, as
now established by law. The counties shall be Adams, Allegheny,
Armstrong, Beaver, Bedford, Berks, Blair, Bradford, Bucks,
Butler, Cambria, Cameron, Carbon, Centre, Chester, Clarion,
Clearfield, Clinton, Columbia, Crawford, Cumberland, Dauphin,
Delaware, Elk Erie, Fayette, Forest Franklin, Fulton, Greene,
Huntingdon, Indiana, Jefferson, Juniata, Lackawanna, Lancaster,
Lawrence, Lebanon, Lehigh, Luzerne, Lycoming, McKean, Mercer,
Mifflin, Monroe, Montgomery, Montour, Northampton,
Northumberland, Perry, Philadelphia, Pike, Potter, Schuylkill,
Snyder, Somerset, Sullivan, Susquehanna, Tioga, Union, Venango,
Warren, Washington, Wayne, Westmoreland, Wyoming and York.
SUBCHAPTER B
CLASSIFICATION
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Sec.
310. Counties divided into nine classes.
311. Ascertainment, certification and effect of change of
class.
§ 310. Counties divided into nine classes.
For the purposes of legislation and the regulation of a
county's affairs, counties of this Commonwealth, now in
existence and counties to be created, shall be divided into nine
classes as follows:
(1) First Class Counties, having a population of at
least 1,500,000 inhabitants.
(2) Second Class Counties, having a population of at
least 1,000,000 but less than 1,500,000 inhabitants.
(3) Second Class A Counties, having a population of at
least 500,000 but less than 1,000,000 inhabitants.
(4) The following shall apply:
(i) Third Class Counties, having a population of at
least 210,000 but less than 500,000 inhabitants.
(ii) After the results of a Federal decennial census
are published, a county of the third class having a
population of at least 500,000 inhabitants may elect not
to become a county of the second class A by enacting an
ordinance or adopting a resolution of the county
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.
(5) Fourth Class Counties, having a population of at
least 145,000 but less than 210,000 inhabitants.
(6) Fifth Class Counties, having a population of at
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least 90,000 but less than 145,000 inhabitants.
(7) Sixth Class Counties, having:
(i) a population of at least 45,000 but less than
90,000 inhabitants; and
(ii) having a population of at least 35,000 but less
than 45,000 inhabitants which by ordinance or resolution
of the county commissioners elect to be a county of the
sixth class.
(8) Seventh Class Counties, having:
(i) a population of at least 20,000 but less than
45,000 inhabitants; and
(ii) having a population of at least 35,000 but less
than 45,000 inhabitants which have not elected to be a
county of the sixth class.
(9) Eighth Class Counties, having a population of less
than 20,000 inhabitants.
§ 311. Ascertainment, certification and effect of change of
class.
(a) Ascertainment.--The classification of counties shall be
ascertained and fixed according to population by reference to
the Federal decennial census under this section, less the number
of individuals residing on lands that have been ceded to the
United States.
(b) Certification.--
(1) The Governor, under the great seal of this
Commonwealth, shall certify the following to the county
commissioners on or before October 1 of the year succeeding
the year in which the Federal decennial census was taken:
(i) that a Federal decennial census shows that a
county has attained a population entitling the county to
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an advance in classification; or
(ii) that the last two preceding Federal decennial
censuses show that a county has decreased in population
so as to recede in classification, as provided under this
section.
(2) The county commissioners shall forward the
certificate under paragraph (1) to the recorder of deeds, and
the certificate shall be recorded in the recorder's office.
(c) Intent.--It is recognized that a change in the form of
local government is attended by certain expense and hardship and
the change should not be occasioned by a temporary fluctuation
in population. Therefore, it is the intent of this section that
the classification of a county may not be changed because its
population has decreased at the time of one Federal decennial
census, but rather only after the change is demonstrated by two
Federal decennial censuses that the population of a county has
remained below the minimum figure of its class for at least a
decade.
(d) Change in class.--
(1) Changes of class ascertained and certified shall
take effect on January 1 next following the year in which the
change was certified by the Governor to the county
commissioners, except that the salaries of county officers
may not be increased or decreased during the term for which
the county officers have been elected.
(2) In the municipal election following the
certification of change of class and preceding the effective
date of the change, the proper number of individuals shall be
elected to fill an elective office which will exist in the
county by the change of classification certified. An election
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may not be held for an office which will be abolished as a
result of a change of classification.
CHAPTER 5
FIXING AND RELOCATING LINES AND BOUNDARIES
Sec.
501. Petition to Commonwealth Court.
502. Commonwealth Court designation of neutral court and
appointment of commission.
503. Compensation, assistants and expenses.
504. Oath, organization and duties.
505. Authority to fix undetermined county line.
506. Report of boundary commission, approval by court and
certification of line.
§ 501. Petition to Commonwealth Court.
(a) Boundary lines.--The boundary line between two or more
adjoining counties may be determined, surveyed, established or
marked as provided under this title.
(b) Petition.--The process under subsection (a) shall be
instituted on petition of a taxpayer, the county commissioners
or the governing body of a political subdivision of any of the
counties involved.
§ 502. Commonwealth Court designation of neutral court and
appointment of commission.
(a) Designation.--The court, upon the filing of the
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 shall sit in the
court's home county.
(b) Appointment.--If the designated court determines that
the county line, or any part of the county line, shall be
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surveyed or marked, the court shall appoint a boundary
commission, composed of three surveyors or professional
engineers 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.
§ 503. Compensation, assistants and expenses.
(a) Compensation.--The surveyors or professional engineers
composing the boundary commission under section 502 shall each
receive compensation fixed by the court for the time necessarily
spent in the discharge of the duties and shall be reimbursed the
necessary expenses incurred while engaged with the work of the
commission.
(b) Assistants.--The boundary commission may employ
assistants as the court allows, at compensation fixed by the
court. An assistant shall be reimbursed for actual necessary
expenses incurred while employed by the commission.
(c) Expenses.--Each cost, including the necessary expenses
of advertising the meeting of the boundary commission under this
chapter, and in procuring and setting the permanent monuments
necessary to mark the county line, the expenses of the boundary
commission and the commission's assistants and each other
expense necessarily incurred shall be paid by the interested
counties jointly, in equal parts, or by each party to the
proceeding as directed by the court, upon presentation of
properly itemized bills, duly verified by affidavit of the
person claiming payment or someone on the person's behalf.
§ 504. Oath, organization and duties.
(a) Oath.--The members of the boundary commission shall take
and subscribe the oath under 53 Pa.C.S. § 1141 (relating to form
of oaths of office) prior to assuming duties with the
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commission.
(b) Organization.--The boundary commission shall:
(1) Meet and organize within two weeks of the
appointment.
(2) Select from the commission's membership a
chairperson and a secretary who shall keep a full record of
the proceedings and work of the commission.
(3) Advertise in not more than two newspapers published
in each of the affected counties, a time and place of meeting
and when and where parties shall be heard.
(4) Without unreasonable delay after the hearing,
ascertain the location and survey and mark with permanent
monuments the existing county line between the counties.
§ 505. Authority to fix undetermined county line.
(a) Recommendations.--If the boundary commission cannot
determine, ascertain or locate the existing county line, the
commission shall report to the court of common pleas, with a
recommendation that a new county line be established in whole or
in part.
(b) Establishing new lines.--If the court deems
establishment of a new line necessary, the court shall direct
the boundary commission to fix and determine a new county line,
to mark the new county line with permanent monuments and to
prepare a report in accordance with section 506 (relating to
report of boundary commission, approval by court and
certification of line).
§ 506. Report of boundary commission, approval by court and
certification of line.
(a) Report.--The boundary commission shall prepare a written
report containing a map or draft showing the courses and
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distances of the line ascertained and designated by the
commission as the existing county line, or if the commission has
been directed to fix and determine a new county line, the map or
draft shall instead show the courses and distances of the new
county line. A map or draft under this subsection shall show the
lands through which the line passes and the buildings in close
proximity, together with the roads and streams crossed by or
near to the line.
(b) Filing.--The report and map, signed by a majority of the
members of the boundary commission, shall be filed in the court
of common pleas having been given jurisdiction and, if approved
by the court, shall be recorded in the records of the court of
common pleas having been given jurisdiction.
(c) Notice.--Written notice shall be given by the boundary
commission to the affected counties and to the owners of each
land that will be affected by the proposed change of the date
the report containing the recommendation of the boundary
commission will be considered by the court.
(d) Recording.--A copy of the report and approval shall be
certified by the prothonotary to the prothonotary of each county
affected, where the report and approval shall be recorded in the
records. The line ascertained, surveyed, fixed and marked shall,
as of the date of the certification, be the boundary line
between the counties.
(e) Approval.--The prothonotary, having determined the
matter, shall certify the approval of the court on two copies of
the report and map filed in the prothonotary's office and shall,
within 30 days, transmit a copy by mail to the:
(1) Secretary of Community and Economic Development;
(2) Secretary of Conservation and Natural Resources; and
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(3) Secretary of Transportation.
CHAPTER 11
GENERAL PROVISIONS
SUBCHAPTER A
(Reserved)
SUBCHAPTER B
REQUIRED FISCAL SECURITY FOR OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES
Sec.
1121. Short title and scope of subchapter.
1122. Definitions.
1123. Required security.
1124. Official security and officers.
1125. Other county officers and employees.
1126. County officers and employees acting as agents.
1127. Bonds or blanket bond as security coverage.
1128. Insurance as security coverage.
1129. Form of required security.
1130. Amount of coverage.
1131. Custody and filing of required security documents.
1132. Payment of premiums and commissions on collections.
1133. Other requirements, references and approvals.
§ 1121. Short title and scope of subchapter.
(a) Short title of subchapter.--This subchapter shall be
known and may be cited as the County Officer and Employee Fiscal
Security Act.
(b) Scope of subchapter.--This subchapter applies to
security coverage and additional coverage in the form of bonds,
blanket bond or insurance, protecting against events of loss of
money or property as a result of misconduct by officers and
employees in counties of the second class, second class A, third
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class, fourth class, fifth class, sixth class, seventh class or
eighth class, including counties of these classes which have
adopted a home rule charter or an optional plan.
(c) Inapplicability.--This subchapter shall not apply to
bonds of county treasurers acting as tax collectors as provided
in section 4 of the act of May 25, 1945 (P.L.1050, No.394),
known as the Local Tax Collection Law.
§ 1122. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this subchapter
shall have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Additional coverage." Insurance that covers each county at
a minimum for the loss of money or property through robbery,
burglary and larceny committed by parties other than officers or
employees required to receive or hold money.
"Blanket bond." Security coverage in the form of a bond for
county officers and employees as follows:
(1) for county officers and employees as a comprehensive
group;
(2) for a group of named county officers and employees;
or
(3) for county officers and employees in scheduled
positions.
"Bond." Security coverage under which a surety guarantees
the performance of a duty by a county officer or employee in
compliance with this subchapter.
"County." A county of the second class, second class A,
third class, fourth class, fifth class, sixth class, seventh
class or eighth class, including counties of these classes which
have adopted or may adopt a home rule charter or an optional
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plan.
"County officers and employees." Elected and appointed
county officials, deputies and other appointees of county
elected and appointed officials and county employees, whether
acting on behalf of the county or as agents of a Commonwealth
agency or a governing authority, who are required to receive,
account for or hold any money or property by virtue of their
office or employment.
"Crime-fidelity insurance." Insurance that is endorsed with
faithful performance of duty coverage and which insures, at a
minimum, against events of loss of money or other property
resulting from one or more fraudulent or dishonest acts,
including, but not limited to, embezzlement, theft, forgery,
similar acts of dishonesty or fraud by a county officer or
employee acting alone or in collusion with others, or from a
breach of fiduciary duty or a failure of a county officer or
employee to perform faithfully the officer's or employee's
duties or to account properly for all money and property
received or held by virtue of the officer's or employee's office
or employment.
"Governing authority." Includes:
(1) The Supreme Court.
(2) Any agency or unit of the unified judicial system
exercising a power or performing a duty under 42 Pa.C.S. §
1721 (relating to delegation of powers).
"Governing body." The county board of commissioners or the
body vested with the legislative authority of the county in
counties which have adopted a home rule charter or an optional
plan.
"Home rule charter." A charter adopted under 53 Pa.C.S. Pt.
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III Subpt. E (relating to home rule and optional plan
government) or its predecessor, the former act of April 13, 1972
(P.L.184, No.62), known as the Home Rule Charter and Optional
Plans Law, or Article XXXI-C of the act of July 28, 1953
(P.L.723, No.230), known as the Second Class County Code.
"Money." Coin or currency of the United States or of any
other country, travelers checks, personal checks, bank checks
and bank notes in current use and having a face value, money
orders and securities.
"Official security." Security on behalf of a county officer
to provide protection from events of loss or misconduct when the
officer fails to faithfully perform the duties of the office.
"Optional plan." An optional plan adopted under 53 Pa.C.S.
Pt. III Subpt. E (relating to home rule and optional plan
government) or its predecessor, the former act of April 13, 1972
(P.L.184, No.62), known as the Home Rule Charter and Optional
Plans Law.
"Required security." Security coverage and additional
coverage provided in compliance with this subchapter.
"Securities." All negotiable and nonnegotiable instruments
or contracts representing either money or other property,
including revenue and other stamps in current use, tokens and
tickets and evidences of debt issued in connection with credit
or charge cards, which cards are not issued by the county.
"Security coverage." A bond, a blanket bond or a crime-
fidelity insurance policy, which is endorsed with faithful
performance of duty coverage, provided in compliance with this
subchapter for the purpose of protecting against the loss of
money and other property sustained as a result of one or more
fraudulent or dishonest acts, including, but not limited to,
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embezzlement, theft, forgery, similar acts of dishonesty or
fraud by a county officer or employee acting alone or in
collusion with others, or from a breach of fiduciary duty or a
failure of a county officer or employee to perform faithfully
the officer's or employee's duties or to account properly for
all money and property received by virtue of the officer's or
employee's position or employment.
§ 1123. Required security.
(a) In general.--A county shall obtain security coverage and
additional coverage for county officers and employees in
accordance with this subchapter.
(b) Security coverage.--Security coverage shall be provided
in accordance with the following:
(1) Section 1124 (relating to official security and
officers).
(2) Section 1125 (relating to other county officers and
employees).
(3) Section 1126 (relating to county officers and
employees acting as agents).
(c) Additional coverage.--Supplemental to or as part of the
security coverage to be provided in accordance with this
subchapter, the county shall obtain additional coverage in the
form of adequate insurance indemnifying it against the loss of
money and property through robbery, burglary and larceny by
parties other than those required to obtain security in
accordance with this chapter.
(d) Primary liability.--
(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), the county
shall be primarily liable for a claim for the loss of money
and property which a county officer or employee is required
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to receive, account for or hold by virtue of the officer's or
employee's office or employment, to the extent that the loss
is or could have been the subject of required security under
this subchapter.
(2) The county shall not be primarily liable for a claim
for the loss of money and property under paragraph (1) to the
extent that recovery of the loss can be obtained from other
insurance or bond protection provided by the Commonwealth
agency or any other person or entity asserting a claim.
(3) With regard to the loss of money or property,
nothing in this subchapter shall be deemed to restrict or
diminish a county's right to reimbursement or subrogation or
to limit any right the county may have to be indemnified or
receive restitution for the loss.
§ 1124. Official security and officers.
(a) Official security.--Each county shall obtain official
security in the form of bonds, a blanket bond or a crime-
fidelity insurance policy, which is endorsed with faithful
performance of duty coverage, that protects the county from
losses caused by acts of the officers set forth in subsection
(b) or the equivalent officers in home rule or optional plan
counties, whether elected, appointed or appointed to fill a
vacancy, before those officers begin their official duties.
(b) Officers.--The following are the officers or equivalent
officers in home rule or optional plan counties upon whose
behalf official security shall be obtained in accordance with
subsection (a):
(1) Each county commissioner.
(2) The chief clerk of the county commissioners.
(3) The controller.
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(4) The county treasurer.
(5) The prothonotary of the court of common pleas.
(6) The sheriff.
(7) The coroner.
(8) The clerk of the courts of the court of common
pleas.
(9) The clerk of the orphans' court division of the
court of common pleas.
(10) The recorder of deeds.
(11) The register of wills.
(12) Probation and parole officers, if required by order
of court to obtain official security.
(13) The fire marshal and deputy fire marshals, if
required by law to obtain official security.
(14) The secretary of the board of health and the health
officer in a county in which the secretary is required by law
to obtain official security.
§ 1125. Other county officers and employees.
A county shall obtain security coverage with faithful
performance of duty coverage for all county officers and
employees who are not subject to section 1124 (relating to
official security and officers), including deputies and other
appointees in each county office, who are required to receive,
account for or hold any money and other property by virtue of
their office or employment.
§ 1126. County officers and employees acting as agents.
Each county shall obtain security coverage for county
officers and employees acting as agents of a Commonwealth agency
or governing authority in accordance with this subchapter or any
other law, regulation or rule requiring the posting of security
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in the form of a bond or otherwise.
§ 1127. Bonds or blanket bond as security coverage.
(a) In general.--A county may comply with section 1123(b)
(relating to required security) by providing bonds or a blanket
bond in accordance with the following:
(1) The bond or blanket bond shall be joint and several,
with one or more surety companies authorized to do business
in this Commonwealth and licensed by the Insurance
Commissioner.
(2) The bond or blanket bond shall be conditioned upon
each of the following:
(i) The faithful performance of all duties required
of the person holding the office or position.
(ii) The just and faithful use, accounting or
payment over, according to law, of all moneys and
balances and other property, which are received or held
by the officer or employee by virtue of the officer's or
employee's office or employment whether on behalf of the
county, the Commonwealth, a political subdivision or any
other person.
(iii) The delivery to the successor in office of all
books, papers, documents or other official things, whole,
safe and undefaced, held in right of the office.
(3) A bond or blanket bond shall be taken in the name of
the county and, in case of a breach of any of the conditions
thereof by the acts or neglect of a principal on the bond,
shall be for the use of the county, the Commonwealth, a
political subdivision or any other person as that person's
interest shall otherwise appear.
(4) The county, the Commonwealth, a political
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subdivision or other listed obligees or insureds, as the case
may be, may sue upon the bond in its name or for its own use.
Acts of the General Assembly pertaining to actions and
limitations of actions upon official bonds given to the
Commonwealth shall apply to the bonds provided for in this
subchapter just as if they were given to the Commonwealth,
except as otherwise specifically provided in this subchapter.
(b) Combined offices.--In counties in which one or more of
the county offices set forth in section 1124(b) (relating to
official security and officers) are combined, if officers are
covered by individual bonds, a single bond covering the combined
offices shall suffice for the officer holding the combined
offices.
§ 1128. Insurance as security coverage.
A county may comply with section 1123(b) (relating to
required security) by providing crime-fidelity insurance for
county officers or employees in accordance with this subchapter.
§ 1129. Form of required security.
The form and contents of a bond, a blanket bond or insurance
obtained in compliance with this subchapter shall be approved by
the governing body of the county, after review by the county
solicitor and consultation with the county risk manager, if any.
In cases in which required security is being provided for a
county officer or employee who is acting as an agent for a
Commonwealth agency or the governing authority, the Commonwealth
agency or the governing authority may review and comment on the
form of the required security. The governing body may refer to
sample forms that may be made available by the Department of
State in the approval process.
§ 1130. Amount of coverage.
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(a) Governing body.--The governing body shall establish a
procedure pursuant to which the governing body shall annually
determine the form and amount of required security that will be
reasonably sufficient to protect against the risks of loss in
compliance with this subchapter.
(b) Risk manager.--The governing body may appoint a risk
manager who, at the request of the governing body, shall compile
and submit information relevant to the determination of an
amount of required security under subsection (a).
(c) Consultation.--To determine the amount of security for a
county officer or employee who is acting as an agent for a
Commonwealth agency or governing authority, the governing body
may, or the risk manager shall, if directed by the governing
body, provide written notice to the secretary or head of the
Commonwealth agency or the governing authority. The Commonwealth
agency or governing authority may provide input concerning the
amount of security it believes is reasonably sufficient to
protect against the risks of loss required to comply with this
subchapter. Nothing in this subchapter shall impair the right of
a Commonwealth agency or governing authority from approving the
amount of required security, if it is explicitly authorized by
law to approve the amount of a bond or other security of a
county officer or employee acting as its agent.
§ 1131. Custody and filing of required security documents.
(a) Custody.--The governing body shall direct the chief
clerk or equivalent officer in a home rule or optional plan
county to present the documents evidencing required security
obtained in accordance with this subchapter to the recorder of
deeds or equivalent officer in a home rule or optional plan
county for recording. No tax, fee or other charge shall be
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imposed for the recording of documents in compliance with this
section. Following the recording, the documents shall be
returned to the chief clerk or equivalent officer in a home rule
or optional plan county, who shall maintain the custody of these
documents on behalf of the governing body.
(b) Department of State filing.--
(1) In compliance with section 809 of the act of April
9, 1929 (P.L.177, No.175), known as The Administrative Code
of 1929, it shall be sufficient for a copy of the recorded
documents evidencing the required security for county
officers to be filed with the Department of State in
accordance with deadlines established by the department.
(2) No other filing or approvals, except as provided in
section 1133(c)(2) (relating to other requirements,
references and approvals) of documents evidencing the
required security for county officers, except that required
in accordance with paragraph (1), shall be required as a
condition for the issuance of commissions to elected county
officials by the Department of State.
(3) Notwithstanding the provision of any other law, no
tax, fee or other charge shall be imposed as a result of the
issuance of commissions to elected county officials, and no
fee may be imposed for the recording of required security
documents or commissions.
(c) Copies.--If requested by the Commonwealth agency or
governing authority on whose behalf a county officer or employee
is acting as an agent, a copy of recorded documents evidencing
the required security shall be provided by the chief clerk or
the equivalent officer in a home rule or optional plan county to
the Commonwealth agency or governing authority. No charge or fee
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shall be imposed for any copy provided in accordance with this
subsection.
(d) Filing by governing body.--The governing body shall have
the duty to file documents as required by this section.
(e) Retention of documents.--Documents evidencing required
security shall be held by the custodian thereof for the longer
of the following periods:
(1) For at least one year after the officer's term of
office or employee's period of employment and, in the case of
a county officer or employee who is acting as an agent for a
Commonwealth agency or governing authority, for at least one
year after the settlement of accounts with the Commonwealth
agency or the governing authority.
(2) For the period of time required by the act of August
14, 1963 (P.L.839, No.407), entitled "An act creating a
county records committee; imposing powers and duties upon it;
authorizing the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission
to assist and cooperate with it; defining county records; and
authorizing the disposition of certain county records by
county officers in counties of the second to eighth class,"
or the rules and regulations adopted pursuant thereto.
(f) Evidence.--A copy of original documents evidencing
required security, certified as true and correct by the
custodian thereof, or a copy of the recorded documents
evidencing required security, certified as true and correct by
the recorder of deeds, shall be competent evidence thereof in
any judicial proceeding, in the same manner as the original
would be if produced and offered in evidence.
(g) Sufficiency of filing and recording.--Notwithstanding
any other provision of law, it shall be sufficient to file and
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record documents evidencing required security in accordance with
this subchapter without further acknowledgment, filing or
recording of these documents with any other county officer or
with any other Commonwealth agency, except as required by this
subchapter.
§ 1132. Payment of premiums and commissions on collections.
(a) Premiums and costs.--The premiums and costs for all
forms of required security for county officials and employees
shall be paid by the county. The requirement of this subchapter
that a county acquire and pay the premiums and costs for
required security shall not relieve a Commonwealth agency on
whose behalf a county officer or employee is acting as an agent
from an obligation, imposed by law, to procure insurance or
bonding protection.
(b) Commissions on collections.--Nothing in this subchapter
shall affect the right, provided for in any other law, of a
county officer or employee to retain a commission, for use of
the county, on amounts collected or transmitted as agent for a
Commonwealth agency. Notwithstanding the right to retain
commissions in accordance with this paragraph, no county officer
or employee shall be entitled to retain any additional sums from
amounts collected for or to be transmitted to the Commonwealth
agency for the purpose of paying premiums or costs related to
the acquisition of required security.
§ 1133. Other requirements, references and approvals.
(a) Compliance.--A requirement in another law, regulation or
rule that a bond be provided by a county officer or employee to
secure the faithful performance of duty or to act as the agent
of a Commonwealth agency or governing authority may be satisfied
by including this obligation within the coverage of required
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security supplied in accordance with this subchapter.
(b) Reference to bonds.--Reference to bonds of county
officers and employees in any other law shall be construed and
read together with this subchapter, and if a conflict exists
between this subchapter and the reference to bonds of county
officers and employees in any other law, the provisions of this
subchapter shall prevail.
(c) Other approvals.--Notwithstanding any other provision of
law, the following shall apply to required security in the form
of a bond, a blanket bond or insurance:
(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), when required
security is obtained in compliance with this subchapter, it
shall not require the approval of any Commonwealth agency or
the Governor as to form, content or amount.
(2) If any other law explicitly authorizes a
Commonwealth agency or the Governor to approve the amount of
a bond or other security of a county officer or employee, the
amount of required security under this subchapter shall be
subject to approval by the Commonwealth agency or the
Governor, which approval shall not be unreasonably withheld.
Section 3. Parts II and III of Title 16 are repealed:
[PART II
CREATION, ALTERATION AND FUNCTIONS
(Reserved)
PART III
GOVERNMENT AND ADMINISTRATION
Subpart
A. General Provisions
SUBPART A
GENERAL PROVISIONS
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Chapter
11. General Provisions
CHAPTER 11
GENERAL PROVISIONS
Subchapter
A. (Reserved)
B. Required Fiscal Security for Officers and Employees
SUBCHAPTER A
(Reserved)
SUBCHAPTER B
REQUIRED FISCAL SECURITY FOR OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES
Sec.
1121. Short title and scope of subchapter.
1122. Definitions.
1123. Required security.
1124. Official security and officers.
1125. Other county officers and employees.
1126. County officers and employees acting as agents.
1127. Bonds or blanket bond as security coverage.
1128. Insurance as security coverage.
1129. Form of required security.
1130. Amount of coverage.
1131. Custody and filing of required security documents.
1132. Payment of premiums and commissions on collections.
1133. Other requirements, references and approvals.
§ 1121. Short title and scope of subchapter.
(a) Short title of subchapter.--This subchapter shall be
known and may be cited as the County Officer and Employee Fiscal
Security Act.
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(b) Scope of subchapter.--This subchapter applies to
security coverage and additional coverage in the form of bonds,
blanket bond or insurance, protecting against events of loss of
money or property as a result of misconduct by officers and
employees in counties of the second class, second class A, third
class, fourth class, fifth class, sixth class, seventh class or
eighth class, including counties of these classes which have
adopted a home rule charter or an optional plan.
(c) Inapplicability.--This subchapter shall not apply to
bonds of county treasurers acting as tax collectors as provided
in section 4 of the act of May 25, 1945 (P.L.1050, No.394),
known as the Local Tax Collection Law.
§ 1122. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this subchapter
shall have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Additional coverage." Insurance that covers each county at
a minimum for the loss of money or property through robbery,
burglary and larceny committed by parties other than officers or
employees required to receive or hold money.
"Blanket bond." Security coverage in the form of a bond for
county officers and employees as follows:
(1) for county officers and employees as a comprehensive
group;
(2) for a group of named county officers and employees;
or
(3) for county officers and employees in scheduled
positions.
"Bond." Security coverage under which a surety guarantees
the performance of a duty by a county officer or employee in
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compliance with this subchapter.
"County." A county of the second class, second class A,
third class, fourth class, fifth class, sixth class, seventh
class or eighth class, including counties of these classes which
have adopted or may adopt a home rule charter or an optional
plan.
"County officers and employees." Elected and appointed
county officials, deputies and other appointees of county
elected and appointed officials and county employees, whether
acting on behalf of the county or as agents of a Commonwealth
agency or a governing authority, who are required to receive,
account for or hold any money or property by virtue of their
office or employment.
"Crime-fidelity insurance." Insurance that is endorsed with
faithful performance of duty coverage and which insures, at a
minimum, against events of loss of money or other property
resulting from one or more fraudulent or dishonest acts,
including, but not limited to, embezzlement, theft, forgery,
similar acts of dishonesty or fraud by a county officer or
employee acting alone or in collusion with others, or from a
breach of fiduciary duty or a failure of a county officer or
employee to perform faithfully the officer's or employee's
duties or to account properly for all money and property
received or held by virtue of the officer's or employee's office
or employment.
"Governing authority." Includes:
(1) The Supreme Court.
(2) Any agency or unit of the unified judicial system
exercising a power or performing a duty under 42 Pa.C.S. §
1721 (relating to delegation of powers).
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"Governing body." The county board of commissioners or the
body vested with the legislative authority of the county in
counties which have adopted a home rule charter or an optional
plan.
"Home rule charter." A charter adopted under 53 Pa.C.S. Pt.
III Subpt. E (relating to home rule and optional plan
government) or its predecessor, the former act of April 13, 1972
(P.L.184, No.62), known as the Home Rule Charter and Optional
Plans Law, or Article XXXI-C of the act of July 28, 1953
(P.L.723, No.230), known as the Second Class County Code.
"Money." Coin or currency of the United States or of any
other country, travelers checks, personal checks, bank checks
and bank notes in current use and having a face value, money
orders and securities.
"Official security." Security on behalf of a county officer
to provide protection from events of loss or misconduct when the
officer fails to faithfully perform the duties of the office.
"Optional plan." An optional plan adopted under 53 Pa.C.S.
Pt. III Subpt. E (relating to home rule and optional plan
government) or its predecessor, the former act of April 13, 1972
(P.L.184, No.62), known as the Home Rule Charter and Optional
Plans Law.
"Required security." Security coverage and additional
coverage provided in compliance with this subchapter.
"Securities." All negotiable and nonnegotiable instruments
or contracts representing either money or other property,
including revenue and other stamps in current use, tokens and
tickets and evidences of debt issued in connection with credit
or charge cards, which cards are not issued by the county.
"Security coverage." A bond, a blanket bond or a crime-
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fidelity insurance policy, which is endorsed with faithful
performance of duty coverage, provided in compliance with this
subchapter for the purpose of protecting against the loss of
money and other property sustained as a result of one or more
fraudulent or dishonest acts, including, but not limited to,
embezzlement, theft, forgery, similar acts of dishonesty or
fraud by a county officer or employee acting alone or in
collusion with others, or from a breach of fiduciary duty or a
failure of a county officer or employee to perform faithfully
the officer's or employee's duties or to account properly for
all money and property received by virtue of the officer's or
employee's position or employment.
§ 1123. Required security.
(a) In general.--A county shall obtain security coverage and
additional coverage for county officers and employees in
accordance with this subchapter.
(b) Security coverage.--Security coverage shall be provided
in accordance with the following:
(1) Section 1124 (relating to official security and
officers).
(2) Section 1125 (relating to other county officers and
employees).
(3) Section 1126 (relating to county officers and
employees acting as agents).
(c) Additional coverage.--Supplemental to or as part of the
security coverage to be provided in accordance with this
subchapter, the county shall obtain additional coverage in the
form of adequate insurance indemnifying it against the loss of
money and property through robbery, burglary and larceny by
parties other than those required to obtain security in
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accordance with this chapter.
(d) Primary liability.--
(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), the county
shall be primarily liable for a claim for the loss of money
and property which a county officer or employee is required
to receive, account for or hold by virtue of the officer's or
employee's office or employment, to the extent that the loss
is or could have been the subject of required security under
this subchapter.
(2) The county shall not be primarily liable for a claim
for the loss of money and property under paragraph (1) to the
extent that recovery of the loss can be obtained from other
insurance or bond protection provided by the Commonwealth
agency or any other person or entity asserting a claim.
(3) With regard to the loss of money or property,
nothing in this subchapter shall be deemed to restrict or
diminish a county's right to reimbursement or subrogation or
to limit any right the county may have to be indemnified or
receive restitution for the loss.
§ 1124. Official security and officers.
(a) Official security.--Each county shall obtain official
security in the form of bonds, a blanket bond or a crime-
fidelity insurance policy, which is endorsed with faithful
performance of duty coverage, that protects the county from
losses caused by acts of the officers set forth in subsection
(b) or the equivalent officers in home rule or optional plan
counties, whether elected, appointed or appointed to fill a
vacancy, before those officers begin their official duties.
(b) Officers.--The following are the officers or equivalent
officers in home rule or optional plan counties upon whose
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behalf official security shall be obtained in accordance with
subsection (a):
(1) Each county commissioner.
(2) The chief clerk of the county commissioners.
(3) The controller.
(4) The county treasurer.
(5) The prothonotary of the court of common pleas.
(6) The sheriff.
(7) The coroner.
(8) The clerk of the courts of the court of common
pleas.
(9) The clerk of the orphans' court division of the
court of common pleas.
(10) The recorder of deeds.
(11) The register of wills.
(12) Probation and parole officers, if required by order
of court to obtain official security.
(13) The fire marshal and deputy fire marshals, if
required by law to obtain official security.
(14) The secretary of the board of health and the health
officer in a county in which the secretary is required by law
to obtain official security.
§ 1125. Other county officers and employees.
A county shall obtain security coverage with faithful
performance of duty coverage for all county officers and
employees who are not subject to section 1124 (relating to
official security and officers), including deputies and other
appointees in each county office, who are required to receive,
account for or hold any money and other property by virtue of
their office or employment.
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§ 1126. County officers and employees acting as agents.
Each county shall obtain security coverage for county
officers and employees acting as agents of a Commonwealth agency
or governing authority in accordance with this subchapter or any
other law, regulation or rule requiring the posting of security
in the form of a bond or otherwise.
§ 1127. Bonds or blanket bond as security coverage.
(a) In general.--A county may comply with section 1123(b)
(relating to required security) by providing bonds or a blanket
bond in accordance with the following:
(1) The bond or blanket bond shall be joint and several,
with one or more surety companies authorized to do business
in this Commonwealth and licensed by the Insurance
Commissioner.
(2) The bond or blanket bond shall be conditioned upon
each of the following:
(i) The faithful performance of all duties required
of the person holding the office or position.
(ii) The just and faithful use, accounting or
payment over, according to law, of all moneys and
balances and other property, which are received or held
by the officer or employee by virtue of the officer's or
employee's office or employment whether on behalf of the
county, the Commonwealth, a political subdivision or any
other person.
(iii) The delivery to the successor in office of all
books, papers, documents or other official things, whole,
safe and undefaced, held in right of the office.
(3) A bond or blanket bond shall be taken in the name of
the county and, in case of a breach of any of the conditions
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thereof by the acts or neglect of a principal on the bond,
shall be for the use of the county, the Commonwealth, a
political subdivision or any other person as that person's
interest shall otherwise appear.
(4) The county, the Commonwealth, a political
subdivision or other listed obligees or insureds, as the case
may be, may sue upon the bond in its name or for its own use.
Acts of the General Assembly pertaining to actions and
limitations of actions upon official bonds given to the
Commonwealth shall apply to the bonds provided for in this
subchapter just as if they were given to the Commonwealth,
except as otherwise specifically provided in this subchapter.
(b) Combined offices.--In counties in which one or more of
the county offices set forth in section 1124(b) (relating to
official security and officers) are combined, if officers are
covered by individual bonds, a single bond covering the combined
offices shall suffice for the officer holding the combined
offices.
§ 1128. Insurance as security coverage.
A county may comply with section 1123(b) (relating to
required security) by providing crime-fidelity insurance for
county officers or employees in accordance with this subchapter.
§ 1129. Form of required security.
The form and contents of a bond, a blanket bond or insurance
obtained in compliance with this subchapter shall be approved by
the governing body of the county, after review by the county
solicitor and consultation with the county risk manager, if any.
In cases in which required security is being provided for a
county officer or employee who is acting as an agent for a
Commonwealth agency or the governing authority, the Commonwealth
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agency or the governing authority may review and comment on the
form of the required security. The governing body may refer to
sample forms that may be made available by the Department of
State in the approval process.
§ 1130. Amount of coverage.
(a) Governing body.--The governing body shall establish a
procedure pursuant to which the governing body shall annually
determine the form and amount of required security that will be
reasonably sufficient to protect against the risks of loss in
compliance with this subchapter.
(b) Risk manager.--The governing body may appoint a risk
manager who, at the request of the governing body, shall compile
and submit information relevant to the determination of an
amount of required security under subsection (a).
(c) Consultation.--To determine the amount of security for a
county officer or employee who is acting as an agent for a
Commonwealth agency or governing authority, the governing body
may, or the risk manager shall, if directed by the governing
body, provide written notice to the secretary or head of the
Commonwealth agency or the governing authority. The Commonwealth
agency or governing authority may provide input concerning the
amount of security it believes is reasonably sufficient to
protect against the risks of loss required to comply with this