Parish gets tough on buildings permits

Published 12:07 am Monday, July 15, 2013

VIDALIA — Those in violation of the Concordia Parish building permit ordinance will now be issued citations and charged with fines between $100 and $500 a day.

A notice will first be posted at the building in violation with instructions on how to get a permit and details on potential fines. A letter will also be sent to the address with similar instructions.

Violators will have 10 business days to apply for a permit. If they do not start the process, the case will be turned over to the District Attorney’s office where fines will be issued.

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Police Jury President Melvin Ferrington said fine amounts are determined based on several factors, including the size of the house and amount of time without a permit. Ferrington said fines might start at $100, but increase if a permit is not obtained.

All new construction in the parish requires a building permit.

“In some cases, permits only cost $25,” Police Jury President Melvin Ferrington said. “Lots of people simply don’t know that they need a permit. It’s easy to just get a permit. Violating the ordinance will cost more than just getting the permit.”

The police jury has contracted with Louisiana Institute for Building Technology and Safety’s Larry Walters to handle building permits. Walters detailed the plan for citations at Monday’s police jury meeting.