Zoning & Planning Officer:
Assistant Zoning & Planning Officer:
Manchester Township has had a zoning ordinance in effect since 1958 as well as a subdivision and land development ordinance to help manage growth, control the use of land and regulate uses that may cause a nuisance. The township can only regulate what the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania permits the township to regulate. The current ordinances are based on a state law known as the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (Act 247 as amended). Examples of zoning laws range from not permitting manufacturing facilities in residential zones, to the distance that must be maintained between an accessory structure and the neighbor’s property line. The Commonwealth stipulates that all uses must be provided for in a municipality. The absence of zoning/planning regulations would result in overcrowding and incompatible uses being adjacent to each other.
Another regulation of a land use nature is the Stormwater Management Ordinance which requires developers to mitigate the effect of storm water runoff from new developments in either an on site management facility or a regional type facility.
Development plans are first presented to the Manchester Township Planning Commission which generally meets on the last Wednesday of the month. This volunteer body reviews the plans for subdivisions and land developments and makes recommendations to the Board of Supervisors. The Board of Supervisors have the ultimate approval or disapproval of these plans. Many times the Board of Supervisors must approve a plan because the plan has met all of the criteria for approval as defined by the ordinances of the Township and the laws of the Commonwealth.
Questions regarding the use of a property, uses that are permitted if certain criteria are met or proposals to deviate from the provisions of the Zoning Ordinance are heard by the Manchester Township Zoning Hearing Board. This quasi judicial body rules in zoning matters following a public hearing. The appeal of the decision of the Zoning Hearing Board is made through the Court system.