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YORKTOWNE TENNIS CLUB v. YORK TOWNSHIP (09/26/88)

decided: September 26, 1988.

YORKTOWNE TENNIS CLUB, INC. ET AL., APPELLANTS
v.
YORK TOWNSHIP, A POLITICAL SUBDIVISION, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of York County, in the case of Yorktowne Tennis Club, Inc., Joseph D. Glitz, Barbara A. Glitz, and Andre Jaeckle v. York Township, a Political Subdivision, No. 87-SU-01737-07.

COUNSEL

Daniel M. Fennick, Anderson, Converse and Fennick, P.C., for appellants.

Raymond L. Hovis, Stock and Leader, for appellee.

President Judge Crumlish, Jr., Judge McGinley, and Senior Judge Narick, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge McGinley.

Author: Mcginley

[ 120 Pa. Commw. Page 14]

Yorktowne Tennis Club, Inc. (Appellant) appeals an order of the Court of Common Pleas of York County (trial court) which sustained the preliminary objections of York Township (the Township) and dismissed Appellant's complaint. We affirm.

Appellant is a tennis and fitness facility, located in York Township and open to the general public. In April of 1987, the Township purchased a tennis and fitness facility, Wynfield Club, located in the Township which is open to the general public.*fn1 Mr. Jim Rodkey, manager of the Wynfield Club, testified that he sets the user fees and other fees, such as court time, at the Wynfield Club.*fn2 Mr. Rodkey also testified that the guidelines for establishing the fees or rates were determined by the

[ 120 Pa. Commw. Page 15]

York Township Board of Commissioners.*fn3 The Board of Commissioners instructed Mr. Rodkey to devise a budget for the Wynfield Club in which his expenditures would be met by the income generated through user fees and court fees.*fn4 Both facilities, for the most part, offer the same services, i.e., indoor and outdoor tennis, aerobics, dance classes, whirlpool, pro shop, tennis lessons and tournaments, and racquetball.*fn5 Appellant and the Township user fees are identical*fn6 although the Township court fees are on the average about a dollar less.*fn7

Appellant filed a complaint in the trial court pursuant to Section 1501 of the First Class Township Code (Code)*fn8 to enjoin the Township from providing the described services to non-township residents in violation of the Code. The trial court sustained Appellee's preliminary objections and dismissed the complaint.

This controversy involves the interpretation of Section 3001 of the Code, 53 P.S. ยง 58001, and presents the issue whether a first class township is authorized to operate a public facility such as the Wynfield Club.

[ 120 Pa. Commw. Page 16]

Initially, we note that our scope of review of a final decree in equity is limited to determining whether the Chancellor's findings are supported by substantial evidence, whether an error of law was committed or whether the Chancellor abused his discretion. Penn-Delco Page 16} School ...


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