[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Dover 11-13-2013 by Ord. No. 2013.10.09-013 as Ch. 68 of the 2013 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter is enacted pursuant to the authority granted by RSA 47:22 and 155-A.
[Amended 2-12-2020 by Ord. No. 2020.01.08-001]
There is hereby adopted by the City of Dover, New Hampshire, for the purpose of establishing rules and regulations for the construction, alteration, removal, demolition, equipment, use, occupancy, location and maintenance of buildings and structures, including permits, that certain building code known as the "State Building Code," pursuant to RSA 155-A, which shall be known as the "Building Code." This chapter may contain deletions, modifications and amendments to the Building Code. One copy of the Building Code shall be filed in the office of the Inspection Services Division. The Building Code is hereby adopted and incorporated as fully as if set out at length herein, and, from the date on which this chapter shall take effect, the provisions thereof shall be controlling in the construction of all buildings and structures therein contained within the corporate limits of the City of Dover, New Hampshire.
Qualifications of Building Official. The Building Official shall not have any interest whatever, directly or indirectly, in the sale or manufacture of any material, process or device entering into or used in or in connection with building construction, alterations, removal and demolition.
The Building Official shall receive applications required by this chapter, issue permits and furnish the prescribed certificates. He shall examine premises for which permits have been issued and shall make necessary inspections to see that the provisions of law are complied with and that construction is prosecuted safely. He shall enforce all provisions of the Building Code. He shall, when requested by proper authority or when the public interest so requires, make investigations in connection with matters referred to in the Building Code and render written reports on the same. To enforce compliance with law, to remove illegal or unsafe conditions, to secure the necessary safeguards during construction or to require adequate exit facilities in buildings and structures, he shall issue such notices or orders as may be necessary.
Inspections required under the provisions of the Building Code shall be made by the Building Official or his duly appointed designee. The Building Official may accept reports of inspectors of recognized inspection services, after investigation of their qualifications and reliability. No certificate called for by any provision of the Building Code shall be issued on such reports unless the same are in writing and certified to by a responsible officer of such service.
The Building Official shall keep comprehensive records of applications, of permits issued, of certificates issued, of inspections made, of reports rendered and of notices or orders issued. He shall retain, on file, copies of required plans and all documents relating to building work so long as any part of the building or structure to which they relate may be in existence.
All such records shall be open to public inspection for good and sufficient reasons at the stated office hours, but shall not be removed from the office of the Building Official without his written consent.
The Building Official or any employee charged with the enforcement of this code, acting in good faith and without malice for the City in the discharge of his duties, shall not thereby render himself liable personally, and he is hereby relieved from all personal liability for any damage that may accrue to persons or property as a result of any act required or by reason of any act or omission in the discharge of his duties. Any suit brought against the Building Official or employee because of such act or omission performed by him in the enforcement of any provisions of this code shall be deferred by the Legal Department of the City until final termination of the proceedings.
The Building Official, in the discharge of his official duties and upon proper identification, shall have authority to enter any building, structure or premises at any reasonable hour.
Nothing in this chapter or in the Building Code hereby adopted shall be construed to affect any suit or proceeding now pending in any court or any rights acquired or liability incurred nor any cause or causes of action accrued or existing under any act or ordinance repealed hereby, nor shall any right or remedy of any character be lost, impaired or affected by this chapter.
This chapter shall be enforced by the Building Official, who shall have the authority to make inspections necessary to carry out his/her duties in the enforcement of this chapter.
The Building Official shall not approve an application or issue a building permit or certificate of occupancy for any purpose, except in compliance with the provisions of this chapter.
Applicability. It shall be unlawful to construct, enlarge, alter, relocate or demolish a structure; or change the occupancy of a building or structure requiring greater strength, exit or sanitary provisions; or to change to another use; or to install or alter any equipment for which provision is made or the installation of which is regulated by the currently adopted Building Code for the City of Dover without first filing an application with the Building Official, in writing, and obtaining the required permit therefor. Building permits are not required for simple and normal maintenance and repairs, provided that such work does not exceed $2,500.
Prerequisite approvals. An applicant for a building permit approval shall be responsible for providing certified verification of all requisite state and/or local approvals prior to the issuance of said building permit.
Application. Application for a building permit shall be made in duplicate on standard forms provided by the Building Official and accompanied by the required fee. In addition, all applications for building permits shall be accompanied by the following:
Plans and specifications. The application for the permit shall be accompanied by not less than two copies of specifications and of plans drawn to scale, with sufficient clarity, detail and dimensions to show the nature and character of the work to be performed. When quality of materials is essential for conformity to the Building Code, specific information shall be given to establish such quality, and the Building Code shall not be cited or the term "legal" or its equivalent be used as a substitute for specific information. The Building Official may waive the requirement for filing plans when the work involved is of a minor nature.
Description of work. The application shall contain a general description of the proposed work, its location, the use and occupancy of all parts of the building or structure and of all portions of the site or lot not covered by the building or structure, and such additional information as may be required by the Building Inspector.
The estimated cost of any structure or improvement and such other information as may be necessary to provide for the administration and enforcement of this chapter shall be provided.
Site plan. There may also be required a site plan showing to scale the size and location of all the new construction and all existing structures on the site, the parcel's vehicular access, distances from lot lines, the established street grades and the proposed finished grades, and it shall be drawn in accordance with an accurate boundary line survey. In the case of demolition, the plot plan shall show all construction to be demolished and the location and size of all existing structures and construction that are to remain on the site or plot.
Engineering details. The Building Official may require to be filed adequate details of structural, mechanical and electrical work, including computations, stress diagrams and other essential technical data. All engineering plans and computations shall bear the signature of the engineer or architect responsible for the design. Plans for buildings more than two stories in height shall indicate where penetrations will be made for electrical, mechanical, plumbing and communications conduits and pipes and materials and methods for maintaining the required structural integrity, fire-resistance rating and fire-stopping.
Action of application. Upon the filing of a completed application, the Building Inspector shall approve or deny the application within a reasonable period of time, not to exceed 30 days.
Statute of limitations. Any work for which a building permit has been issued shall commence within the time period specified in the State Building Code and State Fire Code pursuant to RSA 155-A.
Amendments to application. Amendments to a plan, application or other records accompanying the same may be filed at any time before completion of the work for which the permit sought is issued, upon approval by the Building Official. Such amendments shall be deemed part of the original application and shall be filed therewith.
Suspension of permit. Any permit issued shall become invalid if the authorized work is suspended or abandoned for a period of six months after the time of commencing the work.
By whom application is made. Applications for a permit shall be made by the owner or lessee of the building or structure, or agent of either, or by the licensed engineer or architect employed in connection with the proposed work. If the application is made by a person other than the owner in fee, it shall be accompanied by an affidavit of the owner or the qualified applicant or a signed statement of the qualified applicant witnessed by the Building Official or his designee to the effect that the person is authorized to make such application. The full names and addresses of the owner, lessee, applicant and of the responsible officer, if the owner or lessee is a corporate body, shall be stated in the application.
[Amended 2-12-2020 by Ord. No. 2020.01.08-001]
Purpose. The purpose of a certificate of occupancy is to give the Building Inspector a mechanism by which he/she can verify conformance with provisions of this chapter, the building permit and other requisite approvals related thereto.
Applicability. No person shall use or permit the use of any building, structure or premises or part thereof hereafter erected, relocated, altered, repaired, converted or extended until a certificate of occupancy is issued by the Building Official.
Application. Application for a certificate of occupancy shall be made on standard forms provided by the Building Official. Application shall be required at such time as when the applicant has complied with the provisions of this chapter, the building permit and/or any other requisite approval related thereto.
Action of application. The Building Official shall, within 15 working days of receipt of such application, render a decision either granting a certificate of occupancy or a temporary certificate of occupancy or denying said application. When a certificate of occupancy is requested on a project, the Building Official shall defer action until in receipt of a sign-off from the Director of Planning and Community Development, Community Services Director, Fire and Rescue Chief and Police Chief and/or their designee, certifying the adequacy of required improvements.
See Fee Schedule.
[Added 2-12-2020 by Ord. No. 2020.01.08-001]
Violations of this chapter shall be subject to the penalties provided in RSA 155-A:8.