Citation:

Commonwealth v. East Brunswick Twp., 980 A.2d 720 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2009).

Summary:
Municipality's ordinance regulated the land application of sewage sludge preempted by various state statutes.
Case Details:

The Township adopted an ordinance prohibiting the use of sewage sludge on lands.  Following a suit by the Attorney General to invalidate the ordinance, the Township replaced it with an ordinance that made the use of sewage sludge very difficult.  Again, the Attorney General filed a Petition for Review contending that the purpose of the ordinance was to prohibit the use of sewage sludge within the Township.

The Commonwealth Court determined (1) that the Township’s ordinance was preempted by the Solid Waste Management Act; (2) that the Township could seek to enjoin a violation of the Solid Waste Management Act, but that it could not police the use of sewage sludge itself; (3) the Nutrient Management Act preempts the Township’s ordinance which was more stringent than what the Act required; and (4) that the Township’s ordinance violated Section 11(a) of the Agricultural Area Security Law which required the Township to encourage farming.

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