Bellaire bids to clean up policies, fees

BELLAIRE – Village council passed a pair of ordinances Thursday aimed at updating the policies, languages and fee structures that are expected to revamp and expedite the village’s permitting process and also provide a more streamlined environment for Code Administrator Bill Swoyer to function.

Both ordinances passed 6-0, the first of which dealt with the erection, construction or alteration of a building.

Ideally, it’s designed to make sure Swoyer has detailed specifications of the scope of work for each job in question, including: plans, contractor’s name and contact info, the cost of the project and other pertinent information.

The plans must be read through and approved by Swoyer, within a reasonable time upon receipt, before a permit will be issued.

The minimum fee is $10 for the first $1,000 of evaluation and $4 for each additional $1,000.

Permits will be good for 60 days. An extension may be granted, based on need and reasoning given for any project delays. The re-issue will cost half off the original permit fees.

The other ordinance sought to update policies and language in village ordinances 1357.05 through 1357.07, dealing with demolition permits.

Plans must be submitted to the service department, detailing the manner, method and equipment to be used in the demolition work, along with the proposed completion date.

In the proposed method of demolition, it must be shown that good engineering practices will be followed and the contractor must provide a proof of insurance.

Also, no demolition permit will be issued unless any outstanding utility bills owed the village are paid.

The permits will be for 60 days, with the potential for a re-issue, depending on reasoning given for the extension.

The base fee will be $35 per structure with an addition of 20 cents for each 100 square feet of floor space.

Swoyer has been on the job for three months.

He offered up his first quarterly report to council. Its results were met with praise from council members.

“I just wanted to say I truly appreciate all the hard work you’ve been doing,” Councilman Josh Meyer said to Swoyer. Others echoed his sentiments.

Through three months, Swoyer has:

  • Issued 50 residential building permits, nine commercial permits and four demolition permits.
  • Ten contractor’s cards were issued, along with 17 state approved plants.
  • Forty-eight rental inspections have been conducted.
  • He’s handled 69 property complaints and issued 52, 72-hour notices.

“I’ve also been working with multiple agencies,” Swoyer said, noting he’s worked with the Bellaire Police Department, sheriff’s office, child services and others to rectify various situations in town.

Hughes may be reached at