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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: May 19, 2020 09:54 AM
From: Representative Liz Hanbidge
To: All House members
Subject: Title 35 Permanently Adding Tolling of Applications Provisions
During the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic it became clear that some of the municipal codes made it difficult for municipalities to meet remotely and what powers they had in such instances.
Act 15 of 2020 amended Title 35 Pa.C.S. pertaining to municipal powers during a declared emergency or disaster to provide a mechanism and standards for municipalities to meet remotely only during the COVID-19 emergency.  It provided a mechanism for municipalities to utilize, only during the COVID-19 declaration, for suspending the time frames for considering applications filed with the municipal boards and commissions.
This amendment would permanently add the temporary provisions to Title 35 Pa.C.S. Section 7501 (General authority of political subdivisions) contained in Act 15 of 2020 regarding tolling of applications before a municipal governing body, board or commission during a declaration of disaster or emergency by the Governor.
For any application, plat, plan or other submission for approval, which is defined in Section 2 of Act 54 of 2013, known as the Development Permit Extension, or for action on any appeal or curative amendment:
  • The number of days for the political subdivision body to take action shall be suspended and tolled, from the date of the disaster declaration (March 6, 2020) until 30 days after this legislation is enacted.
  • Political subdivisions must notify all affected applicants about the time extension and their right to request action. Failure to receive notice does not affect the tolling.
  • Applicants may request proceedings anyway during the 30-day window, but it shall be at the political subdivision’s discretion to fulfill the request. Additionally, applicants and all other parties that receive notice of such proceedings waive any challenge to the proceedings.
Please consider joining me in co-sponsoring this important legislation.  Thank you.

Introduced as HB2616