Pulling a permit? We're here to help!
Our review process consists of applications and reviews. The review process usually consists of three steps.
Gather Information, Talk With Us
Having a clear idea of what you are proposing and how it fits on your property and with community plans will help you save time and money in the review process. Doing some homework is often helpful. Here's some information to get you started.
- Code Jargon - Common Terms Defined (PDF)
- Review Process - Step by Step Guide to Review Process (PDF)
- City Plan and Codes - Access Info Here (PDF)
- Questions to Consider Before you Begin Application (PDF)
Our Preliminary Project Conversation
After doing some research, please contact the Community Development Department to talk about your potential project. We'll talk about what reviews are needed and anticipated timeframe. Please know each proposed project is different so review timelines, costs, information needed, and applications needed will be different.
More significant developments may require you to attend a pre-submittal meeting(s) with senior City staff. This helps us all become familiar with your development plan and identify significant review issues.
Most projects require either administrative zoning approval or formal City Council zoning review and approval. If administrative approval is needed this will be done by staff at the time a building permit is issued.
If formal review by the City Council is needed, that begins with filing an application, plan information, and a fee for review. We'll provide the application form and a checklist for your submittal. The application(s) required differ by project. Written and electronic applications may be accepted. When we receive your application, we'll review it to make sure all the materials needed are included. If not, staff will let you know what additional items are needed.
What Happens After We Receive a Completed Application?
- After we receive your complete application for Council review we will process the request. The review timeline and process will vary by what is proposed. The review process may be completed by the Community Development Department, may involve review at a staff meeting, may involve review by City contracted consultants, and/or may require review by the Planning Commission and approval by the City Council.
- Staff review may identify issues that need to be addressed which may result in conditional approval. Oftentimes projects require at least one round of revisions with the potential for additional staff review/meetings. Complex issues may require an additional time and/or meetings to resolve. Applicants may and are encouraged to participate in meetings where their applications are being discussed.
- If a public hearing is needed, staff will determine whether your proposal is ready for a public hearing after the initial staff review. A public hearing notice will be drafted and sent to the Belle Plaine Herald for publication. The hearing notice will be posted online and mailed, if required, to property owners within 350 feet of the subject property.
- If review by the Planning Commission and/or City Council is required, staff will provide you a copy of the formal staff review letter and, if applicable, potential conditions of approval prior to the item being addressed at a public meeting. Public meeting packets are also available for downloading from www.belleplainemn.com simply click on the meeting date on the calendar and select the appropriate meeting.
A building or zoning permit is needed for most construction projects. Most building and zoning permits are issued by staff. Permit review requirements depend on the type of project. Some permits involving minor work (re-roofing, siding, new windows, etc.) can be issued 'over the counter' for a flat fee. All applications are available online or at the counter.
What Happens After a Completed Application Is Submitted?
Applicants are notified when permits are reviewed and issued and available for pick-up. Applicants will be given the original permit card which includes a listing of required inspections. Applicants will also receive a copy of their plan submittal with staff comments and any necessary changes clearly marked on the plans. The building permit should be posted on the premises and a copy of the reviewed plans should be retained on site of construction.
What Can I Expect With Inspections?
Building inspections are required as part of the building permit process. Inspections identify whether or not work completed is up to code and confirm necessary changes are complete. Our goal is to be on-site for inspection within one or two days of being asked. Most inspections can be scheduled by emailing permitting or calling City Hall at 952-873-5553.
The number and type of inspections needed depend on the type of permit you obtain. Typically, inspections should occur within 180 days of receiving your permit. This ensures the City can close out a permit that only requires a final inspection or to keep an existing permit active for those that require multiple inspections. Permits that remain open and are inactive may be reclassified as 'expired'. Expired permit status means the work has not been approved by the City and a new permit is needed before any additional work or inspection can be done. Expired and open (unfinished) permits have been known to hold up the sale of property.
Permit holders are responsible for providing access for inspections, including: (a) ensuring that the components are readily visible and not concealed or permanently covered and (b) ensuring that access is readily available by temporary stairs, ladder, or other necessary means to perform the inspection.
A certificate of occupancy (CO) is required prior to occupying a building. A temporary certificate of occupancy (TCO) may be issued pending minor remaining items awaiting completion or where only portions of the building are complete in specific cases.