§ 4-20  BUILDING PERMITS.
   1.   No person shall erect, enlarge, construct, relocate, substantially improve, repair, place, alter, move or demolish any building, structure, mobile, modular or manufactured home, or initiate any other construction, without first obtaining a separate building permit for each such building or structure from the office of the City Clerk-Treasurer. Said permit shall be in addition to, and separate from, all other requirements for zoning clearance permits, occupancy certificates or certificates of appropriateness.
      a.   All building permits issued for construction, replacement or major (40% or more) repair of any fence (fences, walls or hedges, hereinafter referred to as fences) within the corporate limits of the city, shall comply with applicable zoning and building regulations and with the following requirements.
         (1)   Any fence in front of the front of the building limit line shall not exceed four feet in height above the average elevation of the property.
         (2)   No fence outside any side or rear building limit line of any structure may exceed six feet in height above the average elevation of the property.
         (3)   Where security or privacy requires a fence height in excess of the above, it may be permitted, on review, in accordance with the provisions contained in Chapter 15 in the zoning regulations of this code of this code of ordinances. In no case may the fence be more than eight feet above the elevation of the ground measured at the base of the fence.
         (4)   Fences, with or without hedge or similar vegetation, shall not cause a sight obstruction for any private driveway.
         (5)   Fences shall not be closer than 11.5 feet in distance from back of the curb or the edge of the pavement. In no case shall the erection of such fence or wall interfere with existing sidewalk, sight triangle or fire hydrants. This provision does not give a landowner any legal right or property interest to the right-of-way, and the right-of-way by the city or a utility company.
         (6)   No person shall build, construct, erect or maintain any electrical or barbed wire fence within the city limits; except, when used on any land in excess of two acres to retain large animals. Barbed wire may be used, when strung on extension arms at the top of a fence; provided that such barbed wire be at least six feet from the ground and not extend beyond the property line upon which such fence is situated.
         (7)   Fences shall be kept in good repair, and in a safe and sanitary condition at all times by the owner.
      b.   In the event of conflict between the fence height restrictions delineated herein and the justifiable need of the applicant for a permit to construct a fence not in conformity with such height restrictions, the applicant may, after denial of his or her permit to construct said fence, appeal the permit denial to the City Council requesting variance from said height requirement/restrictions.
         (1)   The appeal must be filed in the office of the City Clerk within ten calendar days after the request for a fence permit has been denied.
         (2)   If the City Council finds that because of exceptional circumstances the strict application of the fence height requirements contained herein would result in undue hardship, the City Council may authorize a variance from the fence height requirements.
         (3)   EXCEPTION CIRCUMSTANCES are defined as circumstances due to handicap, disability, infirmity or advanced age of the applicant, or due to the unusual configuration and/or location of the applicant’s property such that excessive light, noise safety or disturbance from a business or businesses or traffic make it unlikely that the applicant can peacefully and/or safely enjoy the use of the applicant’s property.
   2.   Before any building or structure is demolished, a permit must be obtained from the building official. The permit shall have a fee charged as set in subsection 6. below.
      a.   The demolition of the building or structure shall commence within seven calendar days and be completed within 30 calendar days after the permit is issued. Up to 30 calendar days additional time to complete the demolition may be granted upon written application to the code official; provided, the entire demolition site must be secured by a substantial fence or other suitable barrier to preclude accidental or causal entry. The work shall meet all requirements of this section.
      b.   Before demolition of the building or structure is started, all utility service connections will be removed and all storm and sanitary sewers leading from the building or structure shall sealed.
      c.   All floors, slabs and foundations which are a part of the building or structure being demolished shall be removed to a depth of one foot below existing grade, and the area shall be backfilled with suitable, uncontaminated dirt, concrete or asphalt. Basements of demolished buildings of structures shall also be backfilled to grade level.
      d.   All debris and rubble of demolished buildings or structures shall be disposed of at an approved dumping site that meets all local codes and State Health Department regulations.
      e.   Upon completion of demolition and site clearance, the site shall be graded so that it will drain without significant erosion or scour.
      f.   All demolition, site clearance work and site grading shall be subject to inspection and must be approved by the Building Official.
      g.   Noncompliance shall be grounds for revocation of the permit by the City Clerk-Treasurer.
   3.   No human-made change to improved or unimproved real estate located within a designated flood hazard area, including, but not limited to, buildings or other structures, mining, dredging, filling, grading, paving, excavation or drilling operations, shall be initiated until a separate building permit has been obtained for each such operation from the office of the City Clerk-Treasurer.
   4.   No mobile, manufactured or modular home shall be placed on improved or unimproved real estate without first obtaining a separate building permit for each such home from the office of the City Clerk-Treasurer.
   5.   All applications for building permits shall be signed and in writing, upon an official blank form supplied by the office of the City Clerk-Treasurer or the Municipal Building Inspector, and shall be submitted to either of said officials, along with the required fee.
   6.   Building permit fees shall be according to the following schedule:
 
a.
Minimum fee for residential use, structures or additions
$125
Minimum fee for commercial use, construction or additions
$150
b.
Fee per square foot in addition to minimum fee for new residential and commercial construction or additions to existing residential or commercial structures
$0.25
c.
Base remodel and other improvement fee
$50
d.
In addition to the fee set forth in subsections 6.a., 6.b. and 6.c. above, there shall be a project value fee for $1,000 of project cost for all improvements not otherwise listed in this section, to include, but not limited to, sidewalks, driveways, decks, below-ground storm shelters, in-ground swimming pools, lawn sprinkler systems and storage facilities of 144 square feet or less
$5
e.
Fence permit
$30
f.
Carport permit
$50
g.
Mobile home permit
$75
h.
House moving permit
$100
i.
Demolition permit
$50
j.
Governmental agencies exempt from fees
   The payment of fees for permits shall not be required for construction or improvements by or on behalf of the federal, state, county, city or other political subdivision of government. This section shall not be construed as waiving the requirement of obtaining a building permit or obtaining inspections requited by this code. Inspection fees as required by this code and provided in the fee schedule shall be paid by all governmental entities and political subdivisions for new construction except for inspection fees on buildings owned or controlled by the city or any political subdivision thereof; the Mayor or his or her designated representative may waive or modify said inspection fees for building projects by governmental entities and political subdivisions
k.
Effective date of governmental agency’s exemption
   The effective date for governmental agencies not being required to pay fees for permits for construction or improvements as set forth in subsection 6.j. above shall be January 1, 2019
 
   7.   The office of the City Clerk-Treasurer shall be responsible for the administration of the building permit process; provided, that, building permit application forms may be obtained from, and submitted to, the Municipal Building Inspector.
   8.   Applications for building permits shall contain all applicable information required on the building permit form, and shall be accompanied by drawings of the proposed work (drawn to scale), showing floor plans, structural details, computations and such additional information as may be required of the applicant by the office of the City Clerk-Treasurer, the Municipal Building Inspector, this code of ordinances or the City Council.
   9.   Building permits applications for development, location, demolition or alteration within delineated flood hazard areas (as shown on the community’s official flood insurance rate map (FIRM) dated July 20, 2009 which is hereby adopted by reference as if set out fully herein), shall be reviewed by the Municipal Building Inspector to ensure compliance with § 4-150 and that all of the following requirements are met:
      a.   The involved land is properly zoned for the proposed use;
      b.   Applicable zoning district provisions (including floodway and floodway fringe district provisions), and any applicable historic preservation provisions, have been met;
      c.   Legally-dedicated roadway access is available, and proof of such dedication has been provided;
      d.   Adequate and sanitary provisions have been made for utilities, and fire protection is also adequate;
      e.   All easements and street right-of-way areas provided in the recorded plat, if any, are not encroached upon; to this end, the builder of any structure located in the city shall, by receipt of the building permit, agree to furnish the purchaser(s) of the structure(s) with a survey of the lot(s) and structure(s) thereon, upon completion of construction, indicating compliance with this requirement; said survey shall be signed by a surveyor licensed in the state;
      f.   All other floodplain regulations, if applicable, have been met and the required information provided;
      g.   Applicable historic preservation regulations have been met (Article 4 of this chapter and any appropriate provisions of Chapter 15 of this code of ordinances); and
      h.   All other required municipal permits and/or licenses have been obtained.
   10.   Building permit applications for development, location, demolition or alteration within delineated flood hazard areas (as shown on the community’s official flood insurance rate map (FIRM), dated July 20, 2009, which is hereby adopted by reference as if set out fully herein), shall be reviewed by the Municipal Building Inspector to ensure that all of the following requirements are met:
      a.   All building sites shall be reasonably safe from flooding; if a proposed building site is in a flood-prone area, all new construction and substantial improvement (including the placement of pre-fabricated buildings and mobile homes) shall:
         (1)   Be designed, modified and/or adequately anchored to prevent flotation, collapse or lateral movement of the structure; all manufactured housing to be placed within Zone A on the community’s flood hazard boundary map (FHBM) shall be anchored by providing over-the-top and frame ties to ground anchors; over-the-top ties shall be provided at each of the four corners of the mobile home, with two additional ties per side at intermediate points, and manufactured homes less than 50 feet long requiring one additional tie per side; frame ties shall be provided at each corner of the home, with five additional ties per side at intermediate points, and manufactured homes less than 50 feet long requiring four additional ties per side; all components of the anchoring system shall be capable of carrying a force of 4,800 pounds; any additions to the home shall be similarly-anchored;
         (2)   Be constructed with materials and utility equipment resistant to flood damage;
         (3)   Be constructed by methods and practices that minimize flood damages; and
         (4)   Be constructed with electrical, heating, plumbing, ventilation and air conditioning equipment and other service facilities that are designed and/or located to prevent water from entering or accumulating within the components during conditions of flooding.
      b.   All new and replacement water supply systems within flood-prone areas shall be designed to minimize or eliminate infiltration of flood waters into the systems.
      c.   All new and replacement sanitary sewage systems shall be designed to minimize or eliminate infiltration of flood waters into the systems and discharges from the systems into flood waters.
      d.   On-site waste disposal systems within flood-prone areas shall be located to avoid impairment to them, or contamination from them, during flooding.
      e.   (1)   The Municipal Building Inspector shall utilize all available 100-year flood elevation data to review building permit applications, and shall require that all applications for development within a flood-prone area be accompanied by:
            (a)   The elevation of the lowest habitable floor (including basement) of all new or substantially improved structures; and
            (b)   A certificate signed by a registered professional engineer or architect, stating that the flood-proofing methods to be utilized are adequate to withstand the flood depths, pressures, velocities, impact and uplift forces, and other factors associated with the 100-year flood, and indicating the specific elevation to which the structure will be flood-proofed.
         (2)   New construction and substantial improvements, with fully enclosed areas below the lowest floor that are subject to flooding, shall be designed to automatically equalize hydrostatic flood forces on exterior walls by allowing for the entry and exit of floodwaters. Designs for meeting this requirement must either be certified by a registered professional engineer or architect, or meet or exceed the following minimum criteria:
            (a)   A minimum of two openings having a total net area of not less than one square inch for every one square foot of enclosed area subject to flooding shall be provided;
            (b)   The bottom of all openings shall be no higher than one foot above grade; and
            (c)   Openings may be equipped with screens, louvers, valves or other coverings or devices; provided, that, they permit the automatic entry and exit of floodwaters.
      f.   All new construction or substantial improvement of residential structures within Zone A1-30 on the municipality’s flood insurance rate map (FIRM) shall have the lowest floor, including basement, elevated one foot above the level of the 100-year flood.
      g.   Within Zone A1-30 on the municipality’s flood insurance rate map (FIRM), all manufactured housing not in a park or subdivision, all new manufactured housing parks and subdivisions, all expansions to existing manufactured housing parks and subdivisions and all repairs, reconstruction or improvement of streets, utilities and/or pads in existing manufactured housing parks or subdivisions, shall be located, developed, expanded or improved according to the following criteria:
         (1)   All manufactured housing shall be placed, or be capable of being placed, on compacted fill or on pilings, so that the lowest floor of the home will be one foot above the level of the 100-year flood;
         (2)   All lots shall have adequate provisions for surface drainage and access; and
         (3)   All manufactured housing to be elevated on pilings shall:
            (a)   Be placed on lots large enough to permit steps;
            (b)   Provide for piling foundations to be placed in stable or stabilized soils, no more than ten feet apart; and
            (c)   Provide for reinforcement of piers more than six feet above ground level.
      h.   All new construction or substantial improvement of residential structures located within any AO (Area of Shallow Flooding) Zone, as shown on the municipality’s flood insurance rate map (FIRM), shall have the lowest floor, including basement, elevated above the highest adjacent grade or the crown of the nearest street, one foot above the depth number specified for the area on the municipality’s flood insurance rate map (FIRM). Within Zone AH or AO, adequate drainage paths around structures on slopes shall be required.
      i.   All new construction or substantial improvement of nonresidential structures within Zone A1-30 on the municipality’s flood insurance rate map (FIRM) shall:
         (1)   Have the lowest floor, including basement, elevated one foot above the level of the 100-year flood; or
         (2)   Be designed, together with attendant utility and sanitary facilities, so that, below the level of the 100-year flood, the structure is water-tight, with walls substantially impermeable to the passage of water, and contains structural components capable of resisting hydrostatic and hydrodynamic loads and the effects of buoyancy.
      j.   All new construction or substantial improvement of nonresidential structures within any AO (Area of Shallow Flooding) Zone on the municipality’s flood insurance rate map (FIRM) shall:
         (1)   Have the lowest floor, including basement, elevated above the highest adjacent grade or the crown of the nearest street, one foot above the depth number specified on the municipality’s flood insurance rate map (FIRM); or
         (2)   Be completely flood-proofed, along with attendant utility and sanitary facilities, to one foot above the depth number specified on the municipality’s flood insurance rate map (FIRM), so that any space below the level is water-tight, with walls substantially impermeable to the passage of water, and contains structural components capable of resisting hydrostatic and hydrodynamic loads and the effects of buoyancy; and
         (3)   Be required to include, within Zones AH or AO, adequate drainage paths around structures on slopes, to guide flood waters around and away from proposed structures.
      k.   The requirements of this chapter shall also be in effect for building permit applications for development located within any A99 Zones on the municipality’s flood insurance rate map (FIRM).
      l.   Floodways, as designated on the municipality’s official flood hazard boundary map (FHBM), are hazardous areas due to:
         (1)   The velocity of flood waters which carry debris and potentially damaging projectiles; and
         (2)   The creation of severe erosion problems; the following provisions apply within designated floodway areas:
            (a)   Encroachments are prohibited, including fill, new construction, substantial improvements and other developments, unless certification by a professional registered engineer or architect is provided, demonstrating that encroachments shall not result in any increase in flood levels during occurrence of the base flood discharge.
            (b)   If the provisions of subsection 10.l.(2)(a) above are satisfied, all new construction and substantial improvements shall comply with all applicable flood hazard reduction provisions of this code of ordinances.
   11.   The Municipal Building Inspector shall have the following additional responsibilities in the review of building permit applications for development, location, demolition or alteration within a delineated flood hazard area.
      a.   Building permit applications shall be reviewed to ensure that all necessary governmental agency permits required by state or federal law have been obtained.
      b.   In the case of building permit applications for alteration or relocation of a watercourse, the Municipal Building Inspector shall:
         (1)   Notify adjacent communities and the state flood insurance coordinating office prior to such work (and submit copies of such notification to the Federal Flood Insurance Administrator); and
         (2)   Obtain written assurances from the building permit applicant that the flood-carrying capacity within the altered or relocated portion of the watercourse will be maintained.
      c.   For the purpose of determining future flood insurance risk premium rates, the Municipal Building Inspector shall maintain records of:
         (1)   The elevation of the lowest habitable floor of all new or substantially-improved structures; and
         (2)   Flood-proofing certificates (including the specific elevation to which the structures are flood-proofed).
      d.   When a regulatory floodway has not been designated, the Municipal Building Inspector must require that no new construction, substantial improvements or other development (including fill) shall be permitted within Zones A1-30 and AE on the community’s FIRM, unless it is demonstrated that the cumulative effect of the proposed development, when combined with all other existing and anticipated development, will not increase the water surface elevation of the base flood more than one foot at any point within the community.
      e.   The Municipal Building Inspector shall utilize the full range of the community’s floodplain management regulations in this review, including:
         (1)   Section 1-58 (Chapter 1 of this code of ordinances);
         (2)   Section 4-150 (Chapter 4 of this code of ordinances);
         (3)   Section 15-36 et seq. (Chapter 15; zoning ordinance);
         (4)   Section 15-37 et seq. (Chapter 15; subdivision regulations); and
         (5)   All other floodplain management policy resolutions, plans and data references available for this use.
   12.   Issuance of a building permit for development within an identified flood hazard area shall not create liability on the part of any municipal official for any flood damages resulting from reliance upon the provisions of this section, or any administrative decision lawfully made thereunder.
   13.   If the Municipal Building Inspector is satisfied that the proposed work described in the application and attached materials conform to the requirements of the adopted zoning ordinance, Building Code and other regulations and requirements, the issuance of the building permit shall be authorized by signing the application and forwarding it to the office of the City Clerk-Treasurer, who shall return a copy to the applicant.
   14.   If the application or attached materials do not conform to pertinent municipal regulations, the Municipal Building Inspector shall not approve said application, but shall return the application to the City Clerk-Treasurer, along with written reason(s) for disapproval. The City Clerk-Treasurer shall return the application, with written reason(s) attached, to the applicant. The applicant may subsequently amend the application, if possible, and re-submit it, or initiate other action to correct the deficiencies.
   15.   The Municipal Building Inspector and the office of the City Clerk-Treasurer shall complete all required review processes in an efficient and effective manner, without unreasonable or unnecessary delay.
   16.   A building permit, once approved and issued, shall be construed as authorization to proceed with the work and shall not be construed as authority to violate, cancel, alter or set aside any municipal regulations, nor shall such issuance prevent the Municipal Building Inspector from thereafter requiring a correction of errors in plans, construction or a violation of this code of ordinances.
   17.   If the work allowed under an issued building permit has not been initiated within the time period as outlined below, such permit shall become null and void, unless a request for an extension is submitted to, and approved by the City Council. If said permit becomes null and void, a new permit must be obtained and the regular fee incident thereto collected, in order for the work to be initiated or resumed.
      a.   If the work described in any building permit for new construction has not begun within 90 days from the date of issuance thereof, the permit shall be canceled by the Building Official and written notice thereof shall be given to the persons affected.
      b.   If the work described in any building permit for new construction has not been completed within one year of the date of issuance thereof, the permit shall expire and be canceled by the Building Official, and written notice thereof shall be given to the persons affected, together with notice that further work as described in the canceled permit shall not proceed unless and until a new building permit has been obtained.
      c.   If the work described in any building permit for remodeling or alteration of existing structures has not begun within 30 days from the date of issuance thereof, the permit shall be canceled by the Building Official and written notice thereof shall be given to the persons affected. This provision shall also be applicable to the construction of fences, carports, patio covers and accessory buildings.
      d.   If the work described in any building permit for remodeling or alteration of existing structures has not been completed within 180 days of the date of issuance thereof, the permit shall expire and be canceled by the Building Official; and written notice thereof shall be given to the persons affected, together with notice that further work as described in the canceled permit shall not proceed unless and until a new building permit has been obtained. This provision shall also be applicable to the construction of fences, carports patio covers and accessory buildings.
   18.   The Municipal Building Inspector shall keep a permanent and accurate accounting of all building permits, and shall transmit copies of each permit issued to the Chairperson of the Municipal Planning Commission, for information purposes. The City Clerk-Treasurer shall keep a permanent and accurate record of all building permit fee payments.
   19.   The City Clerk-Treasurer may revoke a building permit in case there has been any false statement or misrepresentation as to a material fact in the application or attached materials on which the building permit approval was based.
   20.   Building permits shall be conspicuously displayed on the project or site, in a manner visible from the street.
   21.   The City Clerk-Treasurer and the Municipal Building Inspector shall monitor municipal utility hook-up requests and shall not allow municipal utilities to be turned on to any unit, structure or project for which a building permit has not been issued.
   22.   Appeals from any aggrieved person concerning a decision of the City Clerk-Treasurer relative to the granting of building permits shall be taken to the City Council, who shall act as the Permit Board of Appeals for the city.
   23.   No building permit shall be issued on any portion of a plat on which all subdivision improvements have not been completed and accepted for dedication by the City Council. No municipal utility service shall be furnished to such lot until all subdivision improvements have been completed and accepted for dedication. No utilities either private or city owned shall be connected for residential or commercial occupancy until the sewer line has meet the required deflection test and said sewer line has been accepted and approved by the City Council.
(Ord. 16-01, passed 6-13-2016; Ord. 19-02, passed 3-11-2019)