Tyrone tackles tattoo establishments

Tyrone Borough has taken steps to regulate tattoo establishments in the municipality through two separate actions approved at Monday’s council meeting.
However, it’s not clear if such an establishment is currently operating in the borough at this time.
First, the borough adopted a resolution appointing four people to a possible five-member board of health. Solicitor Larry Clapper indicated the borough already had established a board of health long ago as part of the borough’s administrative code; however, the borough had never instituted a working board with actual members deciding various health-related issues.
The newly instituted board will now have the responsibility of enforcing the laws of the state, the regulations of the State Department of Health and health-related borough ordinances.
The four members named to the board are Jennifer Bryan, Sharon Danaway, William Latchford and J. R. Watson. The members are all Tyrone Borough residents and have been appointed to five-year terms. Council also reserved the right to name a fifth member at a later time. The additional member council may consider is expected to have a medical background such as a doctor.
At Monday’s meeting, it was indicated council did consider an appointee who turned down the position.
After the adoption of the board of health resolution, the council adopted an ordinance designed to regulate tattoo establishments in the borough. Solicitor Clapper indicated an already existing business would be required to abide by the ordinance.
The new unadvertised ordinance will require such business to have a license to operate in the borough. Tattoo shops will also be subject to inspection of its premises and be required to meet certain health and sanitary standards. The borough will have the right to suspend or revoke a previously granted license.
An as yet unnamed health officer will be responsible for serving notices of suspensions or revocations of licenses. Businesses will then have the right to appeal the action before the newly established board of health.
A business engaging violation of the ordinance could be subject to penalties in the form of a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $600 and the costs of the action. An operator could even be jailed if found in default of payment of fines and costs imposed by the borough.
The ordinance makes provisions for requiring the business to seek parental permission for patrons under the age of 18 who want to use the provided services and goes into great detail regarding health-related and sanitary issues.
The ordinance also regulates businesses engaging in body piercing and imposes a $50 fee for the granting of a license.
The Daily Herald has researched if there are any currently functional tattoo and/or body piercing establishments in Tyrone Borough.
The effort discovered a tattoo parlor storefront located at 5 E. 10th Street. The business was found to be closed and did not appear operational during repeated visits. Boxes and other materials were observed scattered on the floor and the window at the location contained no business name, hours of operation or phone number other than information printed on a required occupancy permit. The words “body piercing” were printed on the window in large lettering.
“We issued an occupancy permit on Oct. 10,” said borough code enforcement officer Tom Lang.
A new business in Tyrone Borough is required to obtain an occupancy permit according to Lang. Information obtained from the permit posted at the establishment indicated it was issued to Anthony Lee of Altoona and the type of business was described as a tattoo parlor.
The new ordinance does allow a business to relocate to a new location in the borough and transfer its license. The business must provide the new location to the health officer and the business is subject to health and sanitary requirements at the new location. A license may not be transferred from one owner to another.
Lang was unaware if the business had moved to another location in the borough and a call placed to the number listed on the occupancy permit yielded a caller unavailable message.