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The Abington Citizens Network
where Abington, PA residents can share ideas and join forces to build a better community
 

                 
           Ordinance 1994
         Inspections for smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors & house numbers  needed for a "certificate of occupancy"  before selling your house .........$50 fee


Dec 9th - the item was tabled  and Commissioners said they would work with Realtors ( you know the BUSINESSES that are not making sure the affidavits are delivered now )  and with some residents ( apparently hand-picked because this writer has asked for a slot and not (yet) been given the nod - and if past history is any reflection I would guess I will never be given a slot. 
Issues like this need to be open to ALL WHO CARE  to help craft ordinances that affect us ALL  --- not to select groups or individuals.  The Commissioners will later declare that "residents"  were included That would be a falsehood if any were excluded.  Some residents, for instance, have a differing opinion, but are willing to compromise if they get a concession elsewhere.  Others might not appreciate that . 

You should write your Commissioner ( and letting  me know you did would help us to know if a lot or a few asked )  -----   ask for a webpage with all the latest meetings and updates on this issue - and to ask for  an email list to be generated that sends these updates directly to those interested.

In addition, I personally was sad to see it tabled .  Testing 500 or 600 dwellings a year does little to nothing to improve safety .  A good number of those will have already been in compliance .  There are over 20,000 units -  It is hardly an ordinance about safety . This is about the $ 12,000   that was already counted on in the budget -  Why would we allow such a form of making profit?  Necessary functions of government should be done at COST - not to make a profit for a plaque with Commissioner's names at dog parks and other such proposed expenditures. In my opinion, Abington residents should be more than a bit displeased over this proposal.

 

11-29-10
We hope residents will show up at the Township building December 9, 2010 to oppose this ordinance
and this new attempt not only to tax you, but also to impose an ordinance that can easily be expanded to intrude even further on your rights.

Points:
* Creates additional need for Township personal that the taxpayers will pay for.
* Unnecessary tax, there is no epidemic of injuries due to lack of Smoke or CO detectors
       and certainly not just from people who  are selling their homes.
* This ordinance can be amended in the future to allow for more intrusive inspections and more expensive repairs to be born by the home owners - and more staffing costs - 
* The personnel proposing this are not gracefully managing the things they already have on their plate ---- perhaps they might spend less time adding things or in rezoning activities.
* No " certificate of occupancy " of any sort could be issued just based on  with a couple of items - that gives a false sense that in inspection was done.
* these items are generally included in home inspections that are already paid for - so the homeowner will have to pay twice- and the buyer already should have knowledge.
* It violates the rights of property owners. You will pay this fee even if you are in compliance. so responsible owners are penalized if they are selling, while irresponsible residents are not penalized if they are not selling
* If implemented 1994 will continue the drip, drip, drip of tax and fee increases that are crippling this Township. despite claims of no tax increases this is how the increases are put into place  nearly impossible for residents to calculate.
* There are more cost effective ways to enhance fire safety.

Here is a letter from  a citizen and a group who oppose this "tax "as well

 

11-28-10 Fellow residents,

Ordinance 1994 has re-surfaced as a slimmed down version of the original.

This new law, if adopted, will require every home owner to obtain a Certificate of Occupancy in order to sell their home. The requirements to obtain this CO are working smoke detectors, working carbon monoxide detectors, as well as house numbers visible from the street.
The CO will cost $50.00, plus $25.00 for re-inspection if needed. Rental property owners will be required to get this CO every time their unit is re-rented.

This is a totally unnecessary fee, tax, to the residents of Abington. Why this is needed? Is there a rash of fires where smoke detectors were not present, or are there an abundance of people being overcome by Carbon Monoxide gas?  NO!

Even if you meet with all the requirements of this proposed ordinance you will still have to pay the $50.00 to be told you comply. Ridiculous!  If implemented this ordinance will require hiring additional township staff which we the taxpayers will have to pay for. Do we need this?

I am sending you this info because the township is holding a public hearing on Dec 9 at the township building. This hearing is for public comment purposes and the final step before they vote on this issue. It is very important that you attend this meeting and join me in stopping this unnecessary additional tax.

I have presented to the township a list of alternatives to further promote fire safety at no or little cost to the tax payers, and have told them that this new ordinance id totally unnecessary. I need your help!

We do not need an additional $50.00 tax. It's the constant $25, $50, $100. increases to fees, taxes, that are drowning us, the taxpayers. When is enough, enough?

Mark your calendars Dec 9th, Township Building, second floor, 8PM.

P.S. Please circulate this info to everyone on your e-mail list from Abington. There is strength in numbers. we need everyone to attend this hearing. You may contact me if more information is needed.

--
--
Citizens for Common Sense
John DiPrimio
215.572.5221
www.citizensforcommonsense.net

 

 

11-10  Ordinance 1994 - really just another fee . On Dec 9, 2010, the Commissioners will hold a hearing for  Ordinance 1994. Originally  this ordinance was to require an inspection of many items before the sale of the house could take place. The seller had to bring his house  before selling . This, of course, is somewhat ludicrous since he might have been allowed to live for years and years and years in the Township without bringing his house up to code. If having it to code it is important, then it shouldn't just be for someone leaving the Township. Under great protest, the Township staff relented and rewrote the ordinance so that only smoke detectors , carbon monoxide detectors and house numbers had to be in compliance , but a $50 fee had to be paid  to obtain a certificate of occupancy after these were inspected. This of course is also ludicrous,  if you can obtain a certificate of occupancy with just these two or three things, then the certificate itself has very little meaning.  In addition, home inspections generally  would note, or should note, these items and they have always been the responsibility of the buyer and seller to work out. There is no need for the Township to further intrude, other than to collect a fee. And since even homeowners who are in compliance already would have to obtain this certificate of occupancy, then it is a particularly onerous tax on people who are correctly obeying the law and being good citizens.  It is time to stop the senseless taxes and fees-- read more about this ordinance here


 

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Abington Township recently completely revamped their website at the end of 2015 . All links directed to the old site were broken. We will be reinstating links as we find them and if the data is still available.  
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