Lapsed Building Permit Policy – Date: March 1, 2021
The following be adopted as Policy:
The Village of Radium Hot Springs does not have the personnel resources available to review, mail renewal letters and possibly investigate those expired building permits constituting contraventions of the building bylaw because the owners failed to call for inspections as required under the bylaw;
The process involved in arranging and conducting a hearing under Section 57 of the Community Charter for these permits places an unreasonable administrative and financial burden on the Village of Radium Hot Springs staff, Mayor and Council;
The Mayor and Council of the Village of Radium Hot Springs considers it uneconomic to take enforcement action against the owners of the properties for which these permits were issued or to inspect the buildings and structures for possible contraventions of the BC Building Code and other regulations;
Now therefore be it resolved:
1. That building permits issued before January 1, 2017 under Village of Radium Hot Springs Building Bylaws No. 392, 2013; 383, 2011; or 204, 2000, for which none or only some of the inspections have been called for, as required under Bylaws No. 392, 2013; 383, 2011; or 204, 2000, shall be deemed to be lapsed, and the building inspection department is instructed not to take action to resolve apparent bylaw or possible Building Code contraventions.
2. That, should the building inspection staff become aware of a serious hazard associated with a lapsed permit, action shall be undertaken against the owner to have the hazard remedied or to proceed with the register of a Notice on Property Title under Section 57 of the Community Charter.
The following procedure shall apply to those permits issued under Building Bylaws No. 392, 2013; 383, 2011; or 204, 2000.
1. Permits issued before January 1, 2017 which are deemed under this policy to have lapsed, shall only be investigated when requested by the property owner or in the event that a hazard is identified, which is a result of the bylaw contravention.
2. Lapsed building permits may be renewed by the property owner in accordance with the fee requirements outlined in the building bylaw No 392, 2013.
3. Lapsed permit files shall be moved out of the active building permit file storage area, identified as to be lapsed and filed into the closed building permit files.
The building bylaw has conditions of expiry. Expired building permits are again compounding, and the properties have been bought and sold, sometimes more than once. Sending a notice to the current owner to inform them of this policy is not a legislative requirement, is administratively exhaustive and would exceed the current building department’s workload. However, not taking any action may continue to expose the Village of Radium Hot Springs and its taxpayers to unnecessary liability.
The resources of the building inspection department are almost completely consumed by current and active permits, departmental and various other duties. Resolving each lapsed permit could require on average about 6 – 8 hours of staff time to correspond, inspect and take any necessary legal or remedial action. For the building department to follow up with all permits to the extent of either closing the file or recommending Notice on Title, staff levels would need to be supplemented or increased with resultant budget increases.
The policy will allow the building department’s current staff to lapse and close these expired permits as staff time is available.
Information about this policy will be advertised in not less than 2 editions of the local newspaper and will also be posted on the Village of Radium Hot Springs website