CLICK HERE: COVID-19 IMPACTS | Construction Activity and Inspections

As of midnight on 3/25/20, all construction activity must stop per the Governor’s Executive Order. We are suspending construction inspections except for the specific exemptions spelled out in the Governor’s Order which include:

A. ) Construction related to essential activities as described in the Order;
B. ) To further a public purpose related to a public entity or governmental function or facility, including but not limited to publicly financed low-income housing; or
C.) To prevent spoliation and avoid damage or unsafe conditions, and address emergency repairs at both non-essential businesses and residential structures.

Please do not schedule an inspection unless you meet one of the above-stated exemptions. If scheduling an essential project inspection, please indicate the specific provisions in the Governor’s Order that your construction project falls under to justify exemption applicability.

All construction activity and all inspections allowed to occur must meet social distancing and appropriate health and worker protection measures before proceeding. The following guidelines are applicable for creating a safe environment for workers and inspectors:

Do not request an inspection if any occupant or contractor is displaying any symptom of illness, is currently sick, or has been sick within the last 14 days.
Remote video inspections may be conducted where social distancing or inspector safety cannot be guaranteed, the type of inspection is suitable for video inspection, and where technological barriers do not become a hindrance.
— Inspections may be canceled or postponed at the inspector’s discretion to ensure safety.

Video inspections will be conducted via Google Duo. Please download the Google Duo app prior to 8:00 a.m. on the day of your inspection as the building inspector will call between 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. to schedule your video inspection time. Please be aware that alternate formats for video inspection may apply as directed by the inspector. For inspection questions, contact Jack Helm at 206-714-4703 or jackh@newcastlewa.gov.

Please note that issuance of new permits for work not considered as part of an essential activity will be delayed until the Governor’s Order has been lifted and it is safe to resume construction activities

CLICK HERE: COVID-19 IMPACTS | Building Permit Applications and Inspections

The following provisions will ensure that construction activity in the City of Newcastle complies with Governor Inslee’s Stay Home, Stay Healthy Proclamation (20-25) and his associated Construction Guidance Memorandum issued March 25, 2020 (hereafter referred to as “Governor’s Order”).

“Essential Project” includes all uses defined in the Governor’s Order. Applicants shall describe how a proposed essential project meets the definition and criteria of “essential” in the Governor’s Order.

Acceptance of Building Permit Applications: Building Permit Applications will be accepted under the following four scenarios:

1. The applicant attests that the project is an “essential” project as defined by the Governor’s Order and describes how it meets the criteria;
2. The applicant attests that the project is for “emergency repair” as provided by the Governor’s Order and as defined below;
3. The applicant acknowledges that the application will be processed but not issued until the Governor’s Order is lifted; or
4. The application is for a public entity or governmental function or facility, including but not limited to publicly financed low-income housing.

Please read this handout for a full rundown on City procedures for building permit applications and inspections during the COVID-19 outbreak.

You may schedule an inspection at MyBuildingPermit.com. However, due to COVID-19 restrictions your inspection could be delayed in order to keep our inspectors safe and abide by the COVID-19 guidelines


Permits

*New* Permit Counter Hours
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday: 8-10 a.m. and 2-4 p.m.
Thursday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Permit applications accepted until 4 p.m.)
Friday: CLOSED

The counter completes intake for the Building Department permit applications, Public Works Right-of-Way Permits and Planning Department land use project applications.

Applications must be filled out in full with all names and contact information. Contractors must provide both state and city business license information on the application.

To view the permit process flow chart, please click here.

Construction hours in the City of Newcastle are:
Monday - Friday: 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Weekends, Legal Holidays: 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM


For Electrical Permits:

Electrical permits and inspections are handled by the Department of Labor & Industries.
Phone: 425-990-1400

For water and sewer connections and related fees:

Contact Coal Creek Utility District.
Phone: 425-235-9200

Click the red arrows on each topic to get additional information about each permit.

When do I need a building permit?

Although there are sometimes exceptions, rules state when a permit is needed. International Building Codes provide the conditions where permits are not required, and anything not specifically mentioned below will require a permit.

Work exempted from permits:

— One-story detached accessory structures used as tool and storage sheds, playhouses and similar uses, provided the floor area does not exceed 200 square feet. Such structures must also be located inside of the building setback line, typically five feet from the side property line and 20 feet from the rear property line.

— Fences not over six feet high.

— Rockeries and retaining walls that are not over four feet in height, unless supporting a surcharge. Rockeries or retaining walls over 30 inches are not allowed in setbacks.

— Sidewalks and driveways not more than 30 inches above grade and not over any basement or story below and which are not part of an accessible route.

— Painting, papering, tiling, carpeting, cabinets, countertops, and other similar finish work.

— Temporary theater stage sets and scenery.

— Residential window awnings supported by an exterior wall when projecting not more than 54 inches out from the wall and that do not require additional support.

— Prefabricated swimming pools in which the pool walls are entirely above grade, less than 24 inches deep, and the capacity does not exceed 5,000 gallons.

— Movable cases, counters, and partitions not over 5 feet 9 inches in height.

— Decks not exceeding 200 square feet in area, that are not more than 30” above grade at any point, and are not attached to a dwelling and do not serve an exit door required by Section R311.4.

— Like-for-like re-roofing of one and two family dwellings, provided that the roof sheathing is not removed or replaced.

Other exemptions, which apply to non-residential structures, are not listed here. If you are finishing a basement, building an addition, remodeling, adding a plumbing fixture, gas appliance or air conditioner, a permit will be needed prior to starting the work.

Submittal requirements vary with the type of permit. That information can be obtained by contacting the permit coordinator at (425) 649-4444.

If a contractor will be used for any portion of the permitted activity, a state business license is required, as well as a city business license. Any hired individual or company is required to have a city business license, which costs $50 for a calendar year. Failure to comply with any of the permit requirements will result in the permit not being issued or a stop work order being posted after the permit is issued.

With any permit, at least one inspection is required. When the permit is issued, the applicant is informed of the required inspection(s) and a sign-off card is normally provided. A project is not considered complete unless given a final approval by the inspector. Copies of all inspection reports are left at the site and are to be kept with the permit documents.

Any situations not specifically described above or situations that are unique to the processes listed must be approved by the building official. The building official must approve alternate materials, methods, or codes prior to proceeding with the work.

All permits shall expire after two years from the date of issuance, regardless of whether the work is completed. If a permit is expired for time, a new permit may be obtained for ½ of the original permit fee provided that no changes have been or will be made in the original plans and specifications for such work.

Mechanical Permits (Building Division)

Are you replacing or installing a new water heater or any other mechanical fixture that is NOT associated with a remodel, new construction (such as a single family home), or any other building permit?

— If yes, all you need to do is complete a Mechanical Permit Application and bring it to City Hall during permit counter hours, or you can obtain your permit online at MyBuildingPermit.com.

— If no, then you must complete a Mechanical Permit Application as part of your overall Building Permit application packet. These types of permits cannot be completed over the counter and require review.

— FEES: For specific mechanical permit fees, please see the Fee Schedule.

Plumbing Permits (Building Division)

Are you replacing or installing a new shower or any other plumbing fixture that is not associated with a remodel, new construction (such as single-family home), or any other building permit? 

— If yes, all you need to do is complete a Plumbing Permit Application and bring it to City Hall during permit counter hours, or you can obtain your permit online at MyBuildingPermit.com.

— If no, then you must complete a Plumbing Permit Application as part of your overall Building Permit application packet. These types of permits cannot be completed over the counter and require review.

— FEES: For specific plumbing permit fees, please see the Fee Schedule.

Re-Roofing Permits (Building Division)

Are you replacing your roof, including the sheathing?

— If yes, all you need to do is complete a Building Permit Application and bring it into City Hall during permit counter hours or you can obtain your permit online at MyBuildingPermit.com.

— FEES: For specific permit fees, please see the Fee Schedule.

NEW Construction - Single Family Homes, Remodels, Additions (Building Division)

If you are building new construction or expanding the footprint of the building you will need to complete a building, plumbing and mechanical application. Please see the sample site plan and checklist to ensure you properly prepare and submit all required materials.

If you are building a deck, you will need to submit:

— A Building Permit Application;

— A site plan 11"x17" (3 copies) showing property lines, footprint of home, proposed deck location, deck dimensions, and owner information (NOTE: If you are just replacing a deck exactly like-for-like, no site plan is required);

— An official materials and cost list OR if you're hiring a contractor, then provide an official signed bid;

— Please review the Deck Submittal Checklist

— FEES: Plan Review Fees due at time of submittal. Building projects of these kinds are based off of valuation. An estimate of fees cannot be provided prior to submittal. You may use the Fee Schedule and ICC Valuation Table to determine fees in advance.

Solar Permits (Building Division)

If you are having new solar panels installed or older one replaced, you need to complete a Building Permit Application, any additional solar materials, and provide construction and attachments plans.

— Applications must be submitted in-person at City Hall between 8:00 AM and 3:00 PM.

— Review is required.

— Solar Permit Submittal Checklist

— FEES: For associated fees, please see the current Fee Schedule

Demolition Permits (Building Division and Public Works Department)

If you are demolishing a structure, you will need to complete a Demolition Permit Application:

— 1 copy of the application;

— 2 copies of a site plan showing the work to be done and which structures, including construction entrance and silt fencing;

— Asbestos Abatement Report - Contact the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency at (206)689-4058;

— Utility disconnection plans;

— FEES: For demolition fees, please see the Fee Schedule.

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