Two Commas Hold Up Fence at Veterans Field

Supervisors will re-advertise an ordinance after a question of semantics arose at a public hearing Tuesday evening.

The .

The revised ordinance would have allowed for the construction of a fence around the township's .

But the omission of two commas, to offset a key phrase in the ordinance, could have arguably granted a much wider exception than

The oversight was noted by supervisors at a public hearing during the board's Tuesday evening meeting.

The verbiage in question currently reads as follows:

An ordinance of the Board of Supervisors of Upper Southampton Township... amending the Upper Southampton Township Zoning Ordinance by exempting all accessory structures with the exception of accessory buildings used in conjunction with public recreational facilities from all setback and height requirements of the underlying zoning district and amending the fence regulations for corner lots in residential districts. (emphasis added)

Supervisor Lola Biuckians said when she read the ordinance it sounded as if exceptions were being granted to all accessory structures, not just those related to public recreation facilities.

"It makes it sound like anything [a resident wants] to put there [they] can, except a building," she said.

Members of the board agreed that the phrase "with the exception of accessory buildings" should be offset by commas. This, they said, would highlight the fact that the exception is intended only for public recreational facilities.

Township Solicitor Donald Williams said in order modify the grammar of the ordinance, supervisors would have to re-advertise the ordinance with the addition of the two commas. Then, discussion of the corrected version could take place at a public hearing after the public had the chance to review the new version. 

Supervisors unaminously passed a motion to keep the hearing open until a later date, to be detrmined after the corrected version of the ordinance has been advertised.

ingrid July 18, 2012 at 12:49 PM
I suggest the person(s) whose job it was to correctly proofread for grammar and spelling errors grab a copy of the Kathrine Gibbs Handbook of Business English. Another example of small government at its finest allowing more wasted billable hours from our township solicitor to have this corrected.
James Peter July 18, 2012 at 09:29 PM
I agree with Ingrid. What a waste of money !!
john doe July 20, 2012 at 08:11 PM
waste of money!! thats all they do in upper southampton!! in these days we need to stop spending just take a deep breath for short period because were do they keep getting all these dollars to pay for new trucks,cars,schools,parks etc,!! spend spend spend what the hell!!! I cant sell my house fast enogh to the hell out of here. I can tell you this I didnt vote for one of those bozos on that board or osama i mean obama.


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