Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Butler County in the case of Penn Township Board of Supervisors, by and through Louis A. Jakovac, Jr., Building Inspector v. Allets, Inc., and Richard Gomes, their agents, servants, employees, successors, or assigns, Equity No. 81-002, Book 23, Page 219.
Howard N. Stark, with him William G. Sherr, for appellants.
Philip Lope, Lope & Criss, for appellees.
Judge Craig. Opinion by Judge Craig.
[ 67 Pa. Commw. Page 327]
Appellants Allets, Inc. and Richard Gomes have applied for a stay of the injunction issued against them by President Judge Dillon of the Court of Common Pleas of Butler County in a zoning enforcement action brought by Penn Township, Butler County.
Appellants, having leased a building located in the C-2 Commercial District of Penn Township, filed a building permit application for interior remodeling, designating the proposed occupancy of the building as "SALES." After completion of the remodeling, the township officials, claiming to rely upon a conversation with a principal of the appellant corporation, issued a certificate of occupancy which expressly permitted occupancy of the building only as a "card shop." Without rejecting, protesting or otherwise appealing that use designation in the certificate of
[ 67 Pa. Commw. Page 328]
occupancy, the appellants proceeded to open the premises for business as an adult bookstore.
Because the activity was not a card shop use, the township, after attempting a summary offense proceeding for ordinance violation, filed this equity action, in accordance with Section 617 of the Pennsylvania Municipality Planning Code (MPC), Act of July 31, 1968, P.L. 805, as amended, 53 P.S. § 10617. After trial and consideration of exceptions to a decree nisi, President Judge Dillon issued a final order essentially and primarily enjoining the appellants from using the premises "for any purpose until such time as a valid Occupancy Permit has been issued for the type of business actually conducted on those premises."
Pursuant to Pa. R.A.P. 1732, after the trial court rejected appellant's application for a stay, appellants renewed their request for supersedeas here.
This court has not heretofore had occasion, in a published opinion, to articulate the criteria which guide it with respect to the granting of stay applications under Pa. R.A.P. 1732. In the view of this ...