Permits, and Inspections

PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITIES - This Department is responsible for permitting and inspecting all phases of residential and commercial construction including new construction, renovations, additions and accessory structures.  
Department Contact Information:
Chelsea Bradford-Administrative Assistant
Lynn Chance-Building Inspector
Scott Lee-Building Official
When are permits required? - A building permit is typically required for any construction activity exceeding $1500.00 in value, with the exception of ordinary repairs. For example: a permit is not required to replace paint, replace floor covering or minor repairs for routine maintenance. However, structural changes in roof design, roof coverings, replacing of windows and doors, moving walls, additions, decks/porches, basement finishes require a building permit.  Additionally barns, farm outbuildings and storage buildings are required to have a building permit (accessory storage buildings less than 200 square feet may be exempt from a building permit but building setbacks shall still to be considered).   Permits are also required for plumbing, wiring and the installation of mechanical equipment with the exception of minor repairs such as the replacement of lamps and connection of approved portable electrical equipment, portable heating, cooking and clothes drying appliances, portable heating, ventilation and cooling equipment, et cetera. If in doubt as to whether or not a building permit is required, please contact the Building Inspections Department and ask if a permit is required first before proceeding. Obtaining a permit upfront will help to avoid mistakes as well as penalties and increased permit fees. 
Why are permits required? - Citizens often question why a building permit is necessary.  The primary reason is to reduce the potential hazards of unsafe construction practice and ensure the public health, safety and welfare of family, friends, visitors and potential or perspective buyers. If construction projects do not comply with minimum code requirements as required by state law, the value of the customer's investment may be substantially reduced. Obtaining a permit first will hopefully avoid problems in the future not only with building construction but other laws or ordinances such as compliance with county development regulations, soil erosion control and flood plain management.
What will happen if work is started without a permit? - Work commenced with permitting may result in a stop work order being issued.  At this point all construction related activates must cease.  This could delay the project and may result in an interruption to the utilities supplied to the structure, the issuance of citations, increased permit fees, and/or penalties
What to do in an emergency? - If county offices are closed or in an emergency situation and repair is necessary for replacement of a hot water heater, leaky plumbing, repair to damaged electrical service or mechanical equipment from a fire or other disaster, a state licensed plumber, electrician or conditioned air contractor can proceed with necessary repairs provided the appropriate permit is obtained within 72 hours of the emergency repair.