State mandates mean more work for city codes enforcement

NORWICH – Code enforcement departments throughout New York are going to have a lot more work to do now that the state has adopted new regulations. City of Norwich Code Enforcement Officer Jason Lawrence addressed the city’s finance & personnel committee Tuesday, explaining that the city has little choice in adhering to the new fire prevention and building codes. “This must be moved along. The state codes must be abided by. The council is responsible for setting the fee schedule,” he said.

“The big issues are going to be the fees and the operating permits,” Lawrence said. Under the new state mandates, any public facility capable of holding more than 100 individuals will be required to apply for and be granted an operating permit. In addition, the new requirements will mandate that permits be required for electrical work, which was previously not required, and that the codes enforcement officer is the only person who can sign off on a form of compliance, allowing permits to be processed. The state mandates also require a pre-inspection be done before any work can begin, effectively doubling the work load of the codes department.

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