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Question of the Day - #1 Meeting with Building Official

PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2014 12:53 pm
by RDavidson
2015 MN Rules 1300.0110, subp 3. Says in part: “When requested by a permit applicant, the building official shall meet with the permit applicant prior to the application for a construction permit…” Doesn’t someone need to submit a permit application to become a permit applicant?

Somebody must have ticked off the code gods to warrant putting this text in the codes because I’m sure this text wouldn’t have been put into the code for no reason. Who is the guilty party?

The amendment goes on to say the meeting shall be held at a “mutually agreeable location”. Since every building department has offices, do you believe it is necessary to require local jurisdictions to conduct their business other than at their local city hall? What do you tell a NY architect that says the only place he will agree to meet you is Pittsburgh? Do you tell your City Manager you need funds to go to Pittsburgh?

The SONAR for this amended language states that this language “is changed to coordinate with the same language in the incorporated model code documents”. Can anyone point out where in the incorporated model code documents that this may be found?

The SONAR states that the meeting with the building official is necessary “to ensure that the proposed project is viable before any time or money is spent in the application process.” Is the building official the sole source of establishing the viability of a project when land costs, zoning, economic conditions, labor, financing, and a whole host of other issues determines the viability of a project? I guess we have a lot more influence then I had imagined!

Regarding the intent to insure the project is viable before any time or money being spent, is it correct to assume that the expectation is that the building official will give his blessing to a project with no plans, no engineering, no written documentation provided (all of which involves an expenditure of time and money) and to assume full responsibility for the project viability? That is what the SONAR states. Can anyone explain what they believe is expected of the building official at such a meeting? Do any of you see yourselves placed in a very uncomfortable situation?