On October 7, 2015, Governor Wolf approved an amendment to the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code. The amendment, known previously as House Bill 33, provides for the appointment of alternate members to planning commissions. Governing bodies may appoint, by resolution, up to three (3) residents of the municipality to serve as alternate members. Alternates may not serve as members of the zoning hearing board or as a zoning officer. The term of office of an alternate member is designated as four (4) years.
Alternates may be appointed to substitute for any absent commission member or member who has recused him/herself, or any member that may have been disqualified. Alternates will continue to serve on the commission for any proceeding in which they were originally appointed until the commission reaches a decision on the matter. Appointed alternates may be designated to cases as needed on a rotating basis according to declining seniority among the alternates.
If you have questions or concerns about how this may affect your municipality, please contact the Municipal Law Group.