§ 91.045  VARIANCES; APPEAL.
   (A)   An owner or occupant requesting a variance from state adopted fire and building laws as set forth by I.C. 22-13-2-11 shall apply for the variance with the Indiana Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission in accordance with the 675 I.A.C. 12-5-1:9 (Rule 5) (General Administrative Rules).
   (B)   An owner or occupant requesting a variance from a specific provision of this Fire Prevention Code or an appeal from a notice of violation or order that are not part of the state’s adopted fire and building laws as set forth by I.C. 22-13-2-11 shall apply in writing to the Chief within five working days of the date of the notice of violation or order. The granting of a variance shall be considered only upon the written application of the owner of the property stating that:
      (1)   Practical difficulties have been encountered in the implementation of specific requirements of this chapter;
      (2)   Compliance with specific requirements of this chapter will cause unnecessary hardship to the owner; and
      (3)   The owner desires to take advantage of new methods or equipment which are recognized as adequate for the purpose for which they are to be substituted.
   (C)   A variance may be granted only if the Fire Chief determines in writing that:
      (1)   The requested modification will conform to fundamental requirements for safety; and
      (2)   The granting of the variance does not increase the risk of fire or danger to the public. A copy of any variance granted shall be retained by the Fire Prevention Bureau.
   (D)   The Fire Chief, within ten business days following receipt of a variance or an appeal made under this section, shall either sustain or overrule the order(s). A written copy of the decision shall be sent by certified mail to the appellant.
   (E)   Any owner or occupant may appeal the decision of the Fire Chief. Such an appeal shall be made in writing to the Council within ten business days following receipt of a decision rendered by the Fire Chief.
   (F)   The Council shall hold a hearing after which it shall sustain, modify, or override the decision of the Fire Chief. A written copy of the decision shall be sent by certified mail to the appellant. Decisions rendered by the Council shall be final.
   (G)   A variance pertaining to the requirements of this Fire Prevention Code shall be enforced in the same manner as a notice of violation or order issued under this Fire Prevention Code.
   (H)   Whenever the Town Fire Department learns that an owner is in violation of the terms of a variance issued pursuant to this section, the Fire Chief may order compliance as provided in the Fire Prevention Code.
   (I)   An owner or occupant requesting a variance or an appeal from a specific provision of this Fire Prevention Code that are not part of the state adopted fire and building laws as set forth by I.C. 22-13-2-11 shall be subject to an administrative fee of $50.