DISRUPTIVE CONDUCT OF AN OCCUPANT OF A RESIDENTIAL RENTAL UNIT
The purpose of this Chapter 9 of the Property Maintenance Code and the policy of Mount Joy Borough shall be to protect and promote public health, safety and welfare of its citizens, to establish rights and obligations of owners and occupants relating to residential rental units in the Borough, and to encourage owners and occupants to maintain and improve the quality of rental housing within the Borough. As a means to these ends, this Chapter provides for a systematic inspection program, registration and licensing of residential rental units and penalties. In considering the adoption of this Chapter, the Borough makes the following findings:
- There is a concern in the Borough with the failure of some property owners to properly maintain residential rental units.
- Borough records indicate there is a greater incidence of problems with the maintenance and upkeep of residential properties which are not owner-occupied as compared to those that are owner-occupied.
- Borough records indicate there are a growing number of disturbances at residential rental units.
- Borough records indicate that violations of the Borough’s Ordinances are generally less severe at owner-occupied units as compared to residential rental units.
DISRUPTIVE CONDUCT is an act by an occupant of a residential rental unit or by a person present at a residential rental unit involving public drunkenness, consumption of alcoholic beverage in public, public urination or defecation, the unlawful deposit of trash or litter on public or private property, damage to or destruction of public or private property, the obstruction of public roads, streets, highways or sidewalks, interference with emergency or police services, use of profane or obscene language or gestures, indecent exposure, fighting or quarreling, or any other act defined as “disorderly conduct” in the Pennsylvania Crimes Code or any act prohibited in Chapter 116, Curfew, Chapter 130, Firearms, Chapter 170, Noise, or Chapter 200, Public Property, of the Borough Code of Ordinances, or which otherwise injures or endangers the health, safety or welfare of the residents of the Borough residing in the neighborhood or vicinity of the gathering. It is not necessary that such conduct, action, incident or behavior constitute a criminal offense nor that criminal charges be filed against any person in order for said person to have perpetrated, caused or permitted the commission of disruptive conduct, as defined herein; provided, however, that no disruptive conduct shall be deemed to have occurred unless a Police Officer shall investigate and make a determination that such did occur, and keep written records, including a disruptive conduct report, of such occurrences. The occupant and the owner and, if applicable, the manager shall be notified of any such occurrences, in writing. The definition of disruptive conduct shall be interpreted in accordance with Section 304 of the General Local Government Code as added by Act 200 of 2014.
907.1 Disruptive Conduct.
- Police officers shall investigate alleged incidents of disruptive conduct. The police officer conducting the investigation shall complete a Disruptive Conduct Report upon a finding that the reported incident constitutes Disruptive Conduct. The information filed in the Disruptive Conduct Report shall include, if possible, the identity of the alleged perpetrator(s) of the Disruptive Conduct and the factual basis for the Disruptive Conduct described in the Disruptive Conduct Report. A copy of the Disruptive Conduct Report shall be given or mailed to the Occupant and mailed to the Owner and, if applicable, the Manager, within ten (10) working days of the occurrence of the alleged Disruptive Conduct.
- The Occupant or the Owner and, if applicable, the Manager shall have ten (10) working days from the date of a Disruptive Conduct to appeal the Disruptive Conduct Report. The appeal shall be made in writing and submitted to the Code Official in accordance with Section 111.1 of this Chapter 195.
- After (3) documented Disruptive Conduct incidents by an Occupant in any twelve (12) month period, the Owner and, if applicable, the Manager shall have ten (10) working days from the date of the third Disruptive Conduct Report to begin eviction proceedings against the Occupant(s) under the Pennsylvania Landlord and Tenant Act of 1951. Owner/Manager must submit a copy of the document to the Code Official commencing the eviction proceedings against the Occupant(s) of a residential rental unit. Failure to take such action will result in the immediate revocation of the Rental License issued by the Borough. The Residential Rental Unit involved shall not have its Rental License reinstated until the disruptive Occupants have been evicted, the Magisterial District Judge has ruled in the Occupant’s favor, the Magisterial District Judge has ruled in the Owner’s favor but has not ordered the eviction of the Occupant(s), or the Occupant(s) have filed an appeal to a higher court or declared bankruptcy, thereby preventing their eviction. The disruptive Occupant(s), upon eviction, shall not re-occupy any Residential Rental Unit on the same premises involved for a period of at least one (1) year from the date of eviction. This paragraph is not intended to limit or inhibit the Owner, and if applicable, the Manager’s rights to initiate eviction actions prior to the issuance of a third Disruptive Conduct Report in a twelve (12) month period.
- The Disruptive Conduct Report shall count against all Occupants of the Residential Rental Unit. More than one (1) Disruptive Conduct Report filed against the Occupants of a Residential Rental Unit in a twenty-four (24) hour period shall count as a single Disruptive Conduct Report for the purpose of Section 907.1.