2017-03-16 / Front Page

Annual building report is positive

BY RHONDA S. SANDERS
810-452-2665 • rsanders@mihomepaper.com

FLINT TWP. — A positive cash flow last year is one of the highlights of an in-depth 2016 Year in Review for the building department submitted to the township board of trustees by Tracey Tucker, building director. The 15-page report stated that building department revenues were $382,957.12 compared to expenses of 349,911.52 - resulting in a positive cash flow of about $33.045. Permits accounted for 68.91 percent of revenues, certification and licensing for19.78 percent and code enforcement for 7.74 percent. In accordance with state law, building department revenues cannot exceed 10 percent in profit. The township had 7 percent.

The report covered all aspects of building department services which includes issuing permits, code enforcement, certifications and licensing, planning, the Zoning Board of Appeals, economic development.

Staff issued 1027 permits and conducted 1724 inspections, according to the report. Those included 707 building inspections; 233 plumbing inspections; 371 mechanical inspections, and 413 electrical inspections. Permits included 312 for buildings; 121 for plumbing, 329 for mechanical and 265 for electrical.

Planning activity included actions of the Planning Commission and Master Plan updates, Future Land Use Map update, Zoning Ordinance changes, Capital Improvement Plans and Facilities Management Plans.

Planning projects included a Master Plan review that began last year and is expected to be completed by mid-2017. A Future Land Use Map review than began last year also is expected to be completed by mid-year.

Reviews will begin this year of the Capital Improvement and Facilities Management plans. Cases before the Planning Commission last year included one site condominium, two special land use requests and nine site plan reviews.

The Zoning Board of Appeals heard four setback and three signage cases, denying one of each. On the economic development front, Tucker and other township officials worked with various partners including the township Economic Development Corp., the township Building Authority, the NMDC-I-69 International Trade Corridor, the West Flint Business Association, Swartz Creek Chamber of Commerce, Michigan Economic Development Corp and the Flint and Genesee Chamber of Commerce.

Tucker and staff regularly meet with realtors, handle marketing and write and implement grants. The township expects to receive grants this year from the Community Development Block Grant and the Hardest Hit Fund for demolition of 43 structures and to support code enforcement. Two township manufacturers were granted an Industrial Facilities Tax Exemption last year.

Code enforcement includes blight, weeds, zoning, property maintenance and state building and trades. Code enforcement officers wrote 2,359 tickets last year. The crew also helped the sewer and water department by delivering condemnation notices and placards.

Enforcement of the weeds ordinance accounted for most code violations issued - 1,355. Blight complaints drew 176 notices and rental compliance received 155. Also cited were 310 complaints about vehicles, 18 for parking violations, 96 for outdoor storage, 13 for abandoned property and 4 concerning livestock.

The building department also maintains a database for certifications and licensing including business licenses, rentals, dance/entertainment permits and Class C liquor licenses. A total of 1460 certificates last year included 1260 business licenses, 93 rentals, 25 liquor licenses, 6 entertainment permits, 60 abandoned residential citations, and one going out of business sale permit.

In summary, the building department did not exceed its budget.

“We maintain our services and keep our fees in line with our expenses in order to be self-supporting,” the report concluded. “We have achieved this for the past nine years.”

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