When zoning is changed in a community, it affects everyone including homeowners. How will this affect your property? Why didn’t they tell you they are rezoning? Is it because you may have concerns? So they do it behind you back and deny it too.
Lackawanna County working with municipalities is trying to make your land worthless.
Here is how it works. They use Joint Zoning to do it. If you mention Joint zoning to municipal or county officials many of them do not know what it is. Why? Because the people behind this came up with a cute name to conceal their real intent. They call it planning. SAPA the Scranton-Abington Planning Association
So what is joint zoning?
First, there is traditional zoning that has been around for a long time
In simple terms, normal zoning is a division of land within a municipality’s boundaries to allow for different types of land uses within that community.
In the year 2000, laws were written to allow for joint zoning. The intent was to allow municipalities to combine their boundaries to allow for the various land uses.
With new laws come new problems and those that would exploit them. It may make sense to combine a few small communities to provide for the different land uses but where does it end and what does it mean.
What if a bunch of municipalities get together including a major city and under the disguise of SAPA, rezone the land within the entire area?
What if a township that is larger than the city of Scranton rezones the undeveloped land in a way that it cannot be used for any reasonable purpose and basically renders the land worthless?
What if you own land in that township and a township official tells you, for purpose of zoning, we are part of the city of Scranton. The reasonable things that you would like to do with your land are not permitted here because you can do that in Scranton. So, do you pick up your land and take it to Scranton?
You may think this is far-fetched but think again. If you own undeveloped land in Dunmore, Scranton, Newton, South Abington, Clarks Summit, Clarks Green, Glenburn, North Abington, Dalton, and West Abington, your land may be greatly devalued or rendered worthless. The plan below clearly shows their intent.
Some of you may think that this will not affect you because you already have a business or a farm. Think again. If the business or farm at some point is no longer viable, the only value that is left is value in the land and if the zoning does not permit any viable use for the land, then it is essentially worthless.
In addition, the restrictive zoning may put you out of business and farmers are going to be killed by this. Who would lend money to a business or a farmer knowing that the land that they own is essentially worthless?
Lackawanna County is involved in this. A county planning official told me that they see nothing wrong with this and that the County is actually planning to do the same thing with the rest of the County. In addition, the planner told me if anyone doesn’t like it they can take it to court. This is a very serious problem and if they actually get away with this in the targeted area, the remaining landowners in county are next.
We need to get organized. Landowners may register on the home page of this website. Click on NewtonPA home at the top of this page then click on Landowners Registration link on the home page. We also suggest that you register on this Community Board which you can do anonymously if you like.
Check the file with the plan below to see if your property is in the current target area.
The Plan Large PDF file 6.6 megs
Jpg version of the plan 623 kb
Land use plan small PDF file 67 kb