Calabasas City Council Approves the 2010 California Building Standards Code

by KW Calabasas on General February 23rd has no comments yet!

By Newly Paul,

At a meeting marked by intense debate, the Calabasas City Council voted to approve the 2010 California Building Standards Code, with local amendments. Three of the five council members voted in favor of the new code.

While the majority of members welcomed the code, saying it would ensure stringent compliance with building safety regulations and ensure the highest standards of safety, Mary Sue Maurer and James Bozajian disapproved, saying the language of the code was draconian, and could compromise the rights of residents.

Maureen Tamuri, Calabasas community development director, explained that the new code does not expand any permits, saying, “The purpose of this language about the status of an unpermitted building is to make it clear who is responsible for making sure the building has valid permits. The language would enable the prosecutor to prosecute violators more easily.”

Mayor Barry Groveman said the new code would reassure people that they are safe in commercial buildings in the city.

“These are very legitimate changes to protect law-abiding citizens against those that are playing games or are reckless,” Groveman said.

City Attorney, Michael Colantuono, said the intent of the specific language of the code is to give people sufficient notice  to get permits and to narrow the city’s decision making authority.

Nancy Rothenberg, president of Calabasas Highlands Homeowners Association, suggested that the clause in the new code, which gives the city the right to shut off utilities by virtue of any violation of the California Municipal Code, be removed.

She also said that the definition of “unpermitted structures” includes one that was altered at any point of time by any person without the required permits, and that should be changed.

Tamuri said that the city maintains a folder of all permits granted to a house from the time it was built, and residents are encouraged to come by and make sure the necessary permits have been obtained.

She said the city wants to ensure that building code inspections are not intrusive.

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