Bath Council to streamline building permit process
The Town of Bath Council held the first reading of a new ordinance designed to make the process of obtaining a building permit in town quicker and easier.
The new ordinance was introduced by Councilman Ken Easton and Town Recorder Vince Kidwell at the Tuesday evening, November 20 meeting.
The second reading and vote to adopt the ordinance will take place at the next council meeting on December 4.
Easton, who read the ordinance to the council, said the ordinance was primarily written by Police Administrator Gene Kilduff with input from him and Kidwell.
Kilduff issues and manages building permits for the town as well as collects fees for business licenses required by contractors. Easton and Kidwell sit on both the town’s Public Safety and Ordinance committees.
The new building permit ordinance defines four classifications of permits; (1) Emergency repairs, (2) Routine home maintenance/ repairs, (3) Additions/improvements not included in current property and (4) New construction and flood plain area work.
The new ordinance
allows permits to be issued immediately for emergency repairs and routine home maintenance/repairs once a proper application request is submitted and the fee paid.
The council will be notified of the issuance of the permit at the next meeting.
Under the old building permit ordinance, residents and business owners could wait up to a month for a permit.
That is due to the requirement for the council to first agree to post the permit at one meeting and then to accept the permit, if there were no objections, contractor license issues or flood plain issues, at the next meeting.
The council only meets twice a month, on the first and third Tuesdays, so permits might sit as long as a month before being accepted.
For additions/improvements not included in current property, a permit may be issued after one reading at a council meeting. The council may at its discretion waive a second reading.
For all new construction and flood plain area work, two readings in the council are required before a permit is issued.
In the case of a flood plain request, the permit will only be issued after all flood plain concerns have been resolved to the satisfaction of the County Flood Plain Coordinator.
Permit fees and penalties
Permit fees are $20 for the first $15,000 of estimated work and $1 for each additional $1,000 of estimated work.
Contractors must possess a valid state and town business license. A West Virginia Business Registration Certificate and a state license are required to obtain a town license.
The license numbers are required in the permit application when submitted for classification and issuance.
Penalty fees will be assessed for intentionally falsifying application information or beginning work without a permit.
The fine for classification 1 and 2 is $100. The fines for classifications 3 and 4 are $100 for the first day infraction and $50 each day thereafter until work stops and proper permit procedures are followed.
The Town of Bath Police Chief will be responsible for the issuance and enforcement of building permits, the ordinance states.
A copy of the proposed ordinance is available at the town office.