City of Meriden, CT
New Haven County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Council of the City of Meriden 10-7-1963 as Ch. 8 of the 1963 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Building Code Board of Appeals — See Ch. 6, Art. XIV.
Fire prevention — See Ch. 107.
Floodplain management — See Ch. 110.
Housing standards — See Ch. 125.
Numbering of buildings — See Ch. 146.
Sewers — See Ch. 170.
Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 180.
Water — See Ch. 207.
Zoning — See Ch. 213.
STATUTORY REFERENCES
Applicability of State Building Code — See C.G.S. § 29-253.
[Amended 9-15-1980]
The control and regulation of any building in the City shall be under the jurisdiction of the Division of Buildings, headed by the Building Inspector, within the Department of Development and Enforcement. In addition, the control and regulation of any sidewalk and other immediate and adjacent area of any such building shall be in the Building Inspector during such period of construction or partial or total demolition.
[Amended 9-15-1980]
The Building Inspector shall be vested with and shall follow the procedures provided in the State of Connecticut Basic Building Code. Furthermore, the Building Inspector shall have the authority to direct any agency or commission of the City for cooperation and service, whenever the Building Inspector is of the opinion that such service and cooperation are necessary to protect the public safety and public welfare.
[Amended 9-15-1980]
The practice and the procedure provided in the State of Connecticut Basic Building Code for the demolition of unsafe buildings shall be followed by the Building Inspector in the partial or total demolition of any building in the City, except wherein such code is not in conformity with this chapter.
All buildings or structures which have any or all of the following defects shall be deemed dangerous buildings:
A. 
Those whose interior walls or other vertical structural members list, lean or buckle to such an extent that a plumb line passing through the center of gravity falls outside of the middle third of its base.
B. 
Those which, exclusive of the foundation, show 33% or more of damage or deterioration of the supporting member or members or 50% of damage or deterioration of the nonsupporting enclosing or outside walls or covering.
C. 
Those which have improperly distributed loads upon the floors or roofs or in which the same are overloaded or which have insufficient strength to be reasonably safe for the purpose used.
D. 
Those which have been damaged by fire, wind or other causes so as to have become dangerous to life, safety, morals or the general health and welfare of the occupants or the people of the City.
E. 
Those which have become or are so dilapidated, decayed, unsafe, or unsanitary or which so utterly fail to provide the amenities essential to decent living that they are unfit for human habitation or are likely to cause sickness or disease, so as to work injury to the health, morals, safety or general welfare of those living therein.
F. 
Those having light, air and sanitation facilities which are inadequate to protect the health, morals, safety or general welfare of human beings who live or may live therein.
G. 
Those having inadequate facilities for egress in case of fire or panic or those having insufficient stairways, elevators, fire escapes or other means of communication.
H. 
Those which have parts thereof which are so attached that they may fall and injure members of the public or property.
I. 
Those which because of their condition are unsafe, unsanitary or dangerous to the health, morals or general welfare of the people of the City.
J. 
Those buildings existing in violation of any provisions of the Building Code or any provisions of the State Fire Safety Code or other provisions of this Code or other ordinances of the City.
[Amended 9-15-1980]
The following standards shall be followed in substance by the Building Inspector in ordering repair, vacation or demolition:
A. 
If the dangerous building can reasonably be repaired so that it will no longer exist in violation of the terms of this chapter, it shall be ordered repaired.
B. 
If the dangerous building is in such condition as to make it dangerous to the health, morals, safety or general welfare of its occupants, it shall be ordered to be vacated.
C. 
In any case where a dangerous building is 50% damaged or decayed or deteriorated from its original value or structure it shall be demolished, and in all cases where a building cannot be repaired so that it will no longer exist in violation of the terms of this chapter it shall be demolished. In all cases where a dangerous building is a fire hazard existing or erected in violation of the terms of this chapter or any ordinance of the City or statute of the state it shall be demolished.
All dangerous buildings defined in § 77-4 are hereby declared to be public nuisances and shall be repaired, vacated or demolished as provided by this chapter.
[Amended 9-15-1980]
The Building Inspector shall:
A. 
Inspect or cause to be inspected, semiannually, all public buildings, schools, halls, churches, theaters, hotels, tenements and commercial, manufacturing or loft buildings for the purpose of determining whether any conditions exist which render such places dangerous buildings within the terms of § 77-4.
B. 
Inspect any building, wall or structure about which complaints are filed by any person to the effect that a building, wall or structure is or may be existing in violation of this chapter.
C. 
Inspect any building, wall or structure reported by the Fire or Police Department of the City as probably existing in violation of the terms of this chapter.
D. 
Notify, in writing, the owner, occupant, lessee, mortgagee, agent and all other persons having an interest in such buildings as shown by the land records in the office of the City Clerk of any building found by him to be a dangerous building within the standards set forth in § 77-4 that:
(1) 
The owner must vacate or repair or demolish such building in accordance with the terms of the notice and of this chapter.
(2) 
The occupant or lessee must vacate such building or may have it repaired in accordance with the notice and remain in possession.
(3) 
The mortgagee, agent or other person having an interest in such building as shown by the land records may at his own risk repair, vacate or demolish the building or have such work or act done, provided that any person notified under this subsection to repair, vacate or demolish any building shall be given such reasonable time, not exceeding 30 days, as may be necessary to do, or have done, the work or act required by the notice provided for herein.
E. 
Set forth, in the notice provided for in Subsection D hereof, a description of the building or structure deemed unsafe, a statement of the particulars which make the building or structure a dangerous building and an order requiring the same to be put in such condition as to comply with the terms of this chapter within such length of time, not exceeding 30 days, as is reasonable.
F. 
Place a notice on all dangerous buildings reading as follows: "This building has been found to be a dangerous building by the Building Inspector. This notice is to remain on this building until it is repaired, vacated or demolished in accordance with the notice which has been given the owner, occupant, lessee, mortgagee or agent of this building and all other persons having an interest in this building as shown by the land records in the office of the City Clerk of the City of Meriden. It is unlawful to remove this notice until such notice is complied with."
[Added 8-21-2000]
The following procedure shall be followed in substance in order to reactivate gas and/or electric service to a building or rental unit which has been vacant for more than one year:
A. 
If a building, either residential or commercial or a combination residential/commercial, or a rental unit has been vacant for more than a year, a licensed contractor shall obtain a permit from the Meriden Building Department in order to reactivate the gas and/or electric service to the building or rental unit.
B. 
The licensed contractor shall inspect the building's or rental unit's equipment pertaining to the gas and/or electric service and shall conduct a gas pressure test for the gas service.
C. 
The Building Inspector shall conduct an inspection of the building's or rental unit's equipment pertaining to the gas and/or electric service.
D. 
If the inspections are satisfactory, the Building Inspector shall contact the electric and/or gas company to release the service for reactivation.
[Amended 9-15-1980]
A. 
If the owner, occupant, mortgagee or lessee fails to comply with the order provided for in § 77-7 within 10 days, the Building Inspector shall cause such building or structure to be repaired, vacated or demolished as the facts may warrant under the standards hereinbefore provided in § 77-5 and shall, with the assistance of the Corporation Counsel, cause the costs of such repair, vacation or demolition to be charged against the land on which the building existed as a municipal lien or to be recovered in a suit at law against the owner, provided that in cases where such procedure is desirable and delay thereby caused will not be dangerous to the health, morals, safety or general welfare of the people of the City, the Building Inspector shall notify the Corporation Counsel to take legal action to force the owner to make all necessary repairs or demolish the building.
B. 
The Building Inspector shall report to the prosecuting attorney the names of all persons not complying with the order provided for in § 77-7.
[Amended 9-15-1980]
In cases where it reasonably appears that there is immediate danger to the life or safety of any person unless a dangerous building, as defined herein, is immediately repaired, vacated or demolished, the Building Inspector shall cause the immediate repair, vacation or demolition of such dangerous building. The costs of such emergency repair, vacation or demolition of such dangerous building shall be collected in the same manner as provided in § 77-9A.
In cases, except emergency cases, where the owner, occupant, lessee or mortgagee is absent from the City, all notices or orders provided for herein shall be sent by registered mail to the owner, occupant, mortgagee, lessee and all other persons having an interest in such building to the last known address of each, and a copy of such notice shall be posted in a conspicuous place on the dangerous building to which it relates. Such mailing and posting shall be deemed adequate service.
The employees of the Fire Department shall make a report, in writing, to the Building Inspector of all buildings or structures which are or may be or are suspected to be dangerous buildings within the terms of this chapter. Such reports must be delivered to the Building Inspector within 24 hours of the discovery of such buildings by any employee of the Fire Department.
All employees of the Police Department shall make a report, in writing, to the Building Inspector of any buildings or structures which are, may be or are suspected to be dangerous buildings within the terms of this chapter. Such reports must be delivered to the Building Inspector within 24 hours of the discovery of such buildings by any employee of the Police Department.
[Amended 9-15-1980]
A. 
Whenever in the course of any proceedings taken hereunder the Building Inspector shall have cause to require additional evidence as to whether or not any building or structure is susceptible to fire to an extent appreciably in excess of that in the case of the average building or structure in the same locality, or additional evidence as to whether or not a building or structure is in such condition as to be unusually detrimental to the health of the persons living therein in violation of the requirements as set forth in the terms of this chapter or any ordinance of the City or the Building Code or statute of the state, it may request reports from other departments.
B. 
The department to which the request as provided in Subsection A above is directed shall cause the building or structure to be inspected with particular reference to the characteristics inquired about, and a report thereof in writing shall be transmitted to the Building Inspector within five days of the receipt of the request for such report. The report shall be considered along with other evidence.
In any case where a provision of this chapter is found to be in conflict with a provision of any zoning, building, fire, safety or health ordinance or code of the City existing on the effective date of this chapter, the provision which establishes the higher standard for the promotion and protection of the health and safety of the people shall prevail. In any case where a provision of this chapter is found to be in conflict with a provision of any other ordinance or code of the City existing on the effective date of this chapter which establishes a lower standard for the promotion and protection of the health and safety of the people, the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed to prevail, and such other ordinances or codes are hereby declared to be repealed to the extent that they may be found in conflict with this chapter.
[Added 1-2-1996; amended 4-7-1997; 11-16-1998]
A. 
All applicants for building permits must obtain from the office of the Tax Collector a certification signed by either the Tax Collector or the Collector's designee certifying that there are no delinquent taxes, water or sewer charges or assessments for the property for which the application was made or that an accepted payment plan has been entered into and an amount equal to at least three monthly payments has been paid.
B. 
No application for a building permit shall be granted unless such certification is presented.
C. 
Notwithstanding the above, a lessee of real property shall be given a building permit for improvements, although the record owner owes delinquent property taxes or water and sewer charges or assessments, provided that the following information is supplied to the Building Department prior to the issuance of the permit:
(1) 
A copy of the lease from the property owner to the lessee.
(2) 
Evidence that the lessee is renting the property for consideration and has rented it for at least three months.
(3) 
A certification from the lessee that the improvements being made are for the benefit of the lessee and at the lessee's expense and that the lessee has no financial or corporate interest in the lessor.
D. 
In no case shall the lessee be given a building permit where the lease reveals that the lessee is responsible for the payment of the property taxes.
[Amended 11-4-1996]
A. 
The owner of any dangerous building who shall fail to comply with any notice or order to repair, vacate or demolish such building given by any person authorized by this chapter to give such notice or order may, in addition to other remedies, including but not limited to criminal prosecution, be fined $90 for each offense. Each day's failure to comply with any such notice or order shall constitute a separate violation.
B. 
The occupant or lessee in possession who fails to comply with any notice to vacate and who fails to repair such building in accordance with any notice given as provided for in this chapter may, in addition to other remedies, be fined $50 to $90 for each offense. Each day's failure to comply with any such notice or order shall constitute a separate violation.
C. 
Any person removing the notice provided for in § 77-7F may, in addition to other remedies, be fined $50 to $90 for each offense. Each day's failure to comply with any such notice or order shall constitute a separate violation.
D. 
The provisions of this section may be enforced by citation, in addition to other remedies. The following persons have authority to issue citations for violations pursuant to this section: Building Official, Electrical Inspector, Plumbing and Heating Inspector, Director of Development and Enforcement, Zoning Enforcement Officer, NPP/Housing Manager, Housing Code Inspector and Rehabilitation Specialist.