In this case out of Washington County, the Commonwealth Court was asked to weigh in on what conditions a zoning hearing board may reasonably impose upon a special exception approval. In ruling that most of the conditions imposed by the Cecil Township Zoning Hearing Board (“ZHB”) were unreasonable, and thus an abuse of discretion, the Commonwealth Court emphasized that conditions placed on a special exception approval must be based upon either the zoning ordinance or the Municipalities Planning Code (“MPC”), and must be supported by evidence in the record.
In this dispute over the placement of air conditioning equipment, the Commonwealth Court was presented with an appeal from a trial court’s order to compel compliance with its earlier order declaring a property owner was subject to certain provisions of a uniform planned community declaration. In reversing the order, the court held that because the earlier order had granted declaratory relief, it could not have directed any specific action by the property owner and thus the community association’s motion to compel was premature. Continue reading