Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County in the case of James Hackett and Mirella Hackett, his wife v. Zoning Hearing Board of Hatfield Township and Clifton A. Kulp, No. 79-3764.
Marc D. Jonas, with him Steven H. Lupin, Hamburg, Rubin, Mullin & Maxwell, for appellants.
James I. Garrity, with him Arthur Lefkoe, and Marc C. Davis, Wisler, Pearlstine, Talone, Craig and Garrity, for appellee.
President Judge Crumlish and Judges Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer, Rogers, Blatt, Craig, MacPhail, Williams, Jr. and Palladino. Opinion by Judge Craig. Judge Wilkinson, Jr. did not participate in the decision in this case. Judge Mencer dissents.
[ 58 Pa. Commw. Page 434]
James and Mirella Hackett (objectors) have appealed an order, by the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County, which quashed their appeal from a decision of the Hatfield Township Zoning Hearing Board (board) on the ground that it was not timely filed.
Clifton Kulp, landowner, had applied to the board in October 1978 for a special exception to convert a three-car garage on his property into a single-family dwelling. The board expressed its approval of the special exception in a decision issued February 1, although, as noted below, if the statutory deadline for the board's decision, under the forty-five day provision of Section 908(9) of The Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code (MPC),*fn1 was not effectively extended, the date of deemed approval under that section was January 14, 1974. Objectors appealed on March 2.
The stenographer's record of the November 30, 1978 hearing before the board reveals that an agreement of record was reached between the board, the landowner's attorney, and the objectors' attorney to
[ 58 Pa. Commw. Page 435]
extend the time within which the board could render a decision, from January 14, 1979 until February 1.
MR. DAVIS [board]: I have a question for each of you gentlemen while we are still on the record. We may have a problem with the holidays next month, with our forty-five days. I would appreciate if both of you gentlemen would give an ...