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The Bureau of Permits and Inspections provides permitting & inspection services for all construction including building, electrical, mechanical, fire systems, grading & sediment control, forest conservation, new road construction, storm drains, and storm water management, improvements for the purpose of public safety & ensuring quality private and public infrastructure.
Do I Need a Permit?
The key to knowing if a project needs a building permit is to determine if the work planned can realistically be called maintenance or not. Permits are generally NOT required for maintenance or aesthetic changes like painting, new roof shingles, window replacement of the same sizes, etc., unless the property is located in the Historic District. However, once the work description involves terms such as constructing, enlarging, altering, moving or removing, demolishing, etc., then chances are very good that a building permit will be required. In addition, permits are required for all electrical, mechanical/HVAC, fire protection, site development, tree removal and sign installation/modification, sheds, decks, patios that change the drainage pattern, and interior remodeling work.
Use and Occupancy Permits are required for all commercial businesses. This includes existing businesses that change name or ownership. Commercial tenant spaces cannot be occupied until a request for Use and Occupancy is issued AND a field Use and Occupancy inspection is approved.
Special Events held that generate or invite public participation and/or spectators resulting in an impact on public streets, sidewalks, public lands, public facilities, adjacent private properties are required to apply for a Special Events Permit. The Special Event Policy is designed to standardize events held are executed with the safety and health of the participants, the protection of public property, and the impact on non-participating citizens is taken into account.
Certain applications have specific digital submission requirements that need to be followed. Details of these requirements and sample files can be found in the documents section.
Steven R Buffington, Deputy Director Permits and Inspections
Telephone: (717) 849-2208
Steven R. Buffington, BCO – Building Code Official
Deputy Director Permits and Inspections
Michelle Diggs – Property Maintenance Supervisor
German Barranca – Building Code Official
Shelton Scott – Assistant Building Code Official
Cliffonda Stokes – Health Enforcement Officer
Carlos Santiago – Code Enforcement Officer
Anthony Brunner – Property Maintenance Inspector
Shawn Kelly – Property Maintenance Inspector
Jayden Handy – Property Maintenance Inspector
David Tavarez – Property Maintenance Inspector
Dai’Quest Casiano – Property Maintenance Inspector
Floretha Williams – Property Maintenance Inspector
Gregg Wilson – Property Maintenance Inspector
Jacquez Casiano – Property Maintenance Inspector
Raymond McGettigan – Property Maintenance Inspector
Shonna Akins – Property Maintenance Inspector
Annette Anderson – Permit Technician
Amy Newcomer – Tenant Occupied Administrative Assistant
Building Codes; Then and Now
The City of York first passed a building code in 1901. It was a code written by an insurance company and as such addressed many of the concerns that exist today. However, an insurance company has a vested interest in the outcome or judgement of a building condition and as such may not have written a code strictly for the safety of the occupants and community.
Today, building codes are available that specifically relate to matters involving construction or renovation of a structure, fire related issues with any structure, plumbing matters, mechanical systems, and the proper maintenance of property and premises. In the past, these codes are available from a number of sources, BOCA, Building Officials and Codes Administrators, is the oldest. BOCA and two other code agencies, ICBO and SBCII, have merged to produce one set of uniform code standards that are accepted across the country, known as the International Codes.
What Is A Code and How Does It Become Law?
The City of York has adopted current ‘model’ building codes and specially adopted them for unique circumstances in the City. The Building Official and the Fire Chief and their staffs have reviewed all of the proposed codes and changed, or amended, them to apply specifically to York.
A model building code is a collection of rules, specifications, authorities, and other statutory requirements, compiled as a complete set by consensus vote of a group of professional building inspection professionals. As a model, a code is ONLY a recommendation. The content of the model code is involved with the physical structure and healthful conditions for occupants of buildings
When a government legislative authority adopts a model code, it becomes the law of the local jurisdiction. Building codes are, therefore, the government’s official statement on building safety.
Building codes establish predictable and consistent minimum standards, which are applied to the quality and durability of both the construction and the materials. Minimum standards means that construction meets the criteria of being both “practical and adequate” for protecting individual’s lives, providing a known level of safety, and provides for public safety.
Building and Construction Codes in the City of York**
When codes are adopted and become part of the law, certain agencies within the government are appointed to oversee the application of and compliance with the codes. In the City of York, Building Official and his staff are responsible to oversee the proper application and enforcement of:
- New Construction (Both Commercial and Residential)- 2015 International Building Code along with Appendices B, C, D, E, F, H and J, as published by the International Codes Council. Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry requires compliance with the accessibility requirements of Chapter 11 and Appendix E of the 2015 International Building Code.
- Residential Construction – 2015 International Residential Code along with Appendices A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, J, K and L, as published by the International Codes Council.
- Existing Building Code – 2015 International Existing Building Code along with The Appendix, as published by the International Codes Council.
- Fire Code – 2015 International Fire Code along with Appendices B, C, D, E, F and G, as published by the International Codes Council.
- Plumbing Code – 2015 International Plumbing Code along with Appendices B, C, D, E, F and G, as published by the International Codes Council.
- Mechanical Code – 2015 International Mechanical Code along with Appendix A, as published by the International Codes Council.
- Fuel Gas Code – 2015 International Fuel Gas Code along with Appendices A, B, C and D, as adopted by the International Codes Council.
*To view these documents please visit www.ICCsafe.org
Property Maintenance Code of the City of York as formulated on the basis of the International Property Maintenance Code.
Effective January 1, 2007
Citizen Inspector Training
The purpose of the Citizen Inspector Training classes is to encourage citizens to be involved and to participate in the community in which they live. The Citizen Inspector Program was created in 1998 and it encourages participants to serve as the eyes and ears for the community. A citizen inspector’s role is to assist in keeping neighborhoods clean and safe, encourage neighbors to maintain their properties and report possible violations. They will not enforce the codes.
The Bureau of Permits and Inspections and the Fire Prevention Bureau of the City of York offer Citizen Inspector Training classes, free of charge, for York City residents.
For More Information or To Sign Up:
Phone: (717) 849-2256