Williams Lake Council will be considering to adopt a proposed new building bylaw next month after six people took part in a public information session Monday.
“The people that showed up, I’m appreciative that they showed up,” said senior building inspector, Gary Deane.
“I’m assuming that the fact that there was very little concern with the people showing up that everybody’s not too opposed to it. There was some good discussion.”
The proposed bylaw is an update to the 16-year-old bylaw currently in effect.
Major changes proposed for 2019 Building Bylaw include:
1. Owners Undertaking now required.
2. Damage Deposit replaced with Security Deposit.
3. Registered professionals, engineers, and architects must provide proof of liability insurance.
4. Building permits now have an expiry date.
5. Permit requirements for retaining walls clarified.
6. Approval from Public Works manager required before any construction started within 10 meters
of city services.
7. Permit fee increase proposed.
“The biggest one is the permit fee increase where we’re looking at anywhere from a 15 to 20 percent increase across the board on building permit fees that are running on a sliding scale so there is no set scale on it,” Deane said.
“Generally even with the increase that I’m proposing here even if it is accepted by Council, we’re still going to be significantly less than our neighbouring jurisdictions-about 40 percent less than the City of Quesnel, City of Prince George, and the Cariboo Regional District so we’re still very reasonable when it comes to costs.”
Most of the changes Deane said are based on the Municipal Insurance Association of BC model bylaw.
“We didn’t have a lot of discussion directly with the contractors,” he said.
“What we’ve done with it is we printed out a lot of stuff that was really applicable to the City on how we would do business. That was one of the reasons that we had a meeting tonight. Hopefully some of the contractors would show up if they had big concerns with it and voice their concerns, and we still have time to change it before the final adoption by Council, but as I said with the crowd that’s showed up I’m pretty sure that it’s going to be adopted as we’re proposing.”
The City issues approximately 200 building permits a year.
“It will affect the owners more than the builders,” Deane said.
“What we’ve actually done is we’ve pointed out the legalities, the responsibilities the owners have in these projects and we’ve just gone from there so everybody knows who the players are in the whole process.”