Hammer _ Nail Newsletter - Spring 2000

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					Hammer &
Nail News
  Boise City Planning & Development Services                                        Spring 2000 Volume 6 No. 2

Customer Service Surveys Reviewed by Staff
Two years ago, Planning and Develop-    Customer Service                            Interactive Voice Response
ment Services created a “One Stop       Several responses were encouraging;         We discovered that our customers
Shop” to better serve the development   others pointed out that we still have ar-   feel very strongly about our Interac-
community. A lot has changed, and we    eas that need improvement. The an-          tive Voice Response System (IVR),
decided to survey our customers to      swers regarding the quality of our cus-     which is used by contractors to re-
make sure their needs are being met.    tomer service were generally positive.      quest inspections over a touch-tone
We distributed 583 surveys to a ran-    For example, 69% believe our cus-           phone. 47 % thought the IVR was
dom sample of our customers in Feb-     tomer service is better now than it was     easy and convenient to use, while 25%
ruary, and over 100 were returned.      before the creation of the “One Stop        disagreed. The remaining 28% re-
The responses were anonymous, so        Shop.” Our employees received high          ported that they were neutral, unsure,
we received candid comments about       marks for the respect they show to-         or that the IVR was not applicable to
our performance. Dawneen Blakeslee,     wards customers: 83% agreed or              their work.
from Blakeslee and Associates, inter-   strongly agreed with the statement
viewed several customers about their    “Planning employees treat me with re-       Web Site
experiences with PDS since the reor-    spect.” Inspection and Plan Review          We were quite surprised to learn that
ganization. The information was re-     staff received similar comments.            almost half of the customers reported
viewed with our staff during customer                                               they were “Unsure/Not Applicable”
service training held in March.         Inspection Consistency                      when asked if they could find the
                                        The quality and consistency of inspec-      information they needed on our web
                                        tions concerned some customers.
                                                                                    site. 32% answered that they were
           Inside                       When asked if they received the same
                                        quality of inspection regardless of who
                                                                                    neutral. If you haven’t been to our
                                                                                    web site lately, we encourage you to
                                        performed it, 43% disagreed or
  2       Employee Spotlight:                                                       visit (www.boisecitypds.org). We
                                        strongly disagreed. Customers also ex-
          Kim Harrison                                                              think you’ll be surprised by all of the
                                        pressed similar concerns about plan re-
  3       Department Bulletins          view services.                              information we have available.

                                        Processing Time                             Moving Forward
  4       Frequently Asked
                                        Some customers are dissatisfied with        We appreciate all of the customers
                                        the time it takes to process plans. 36%     who took the time to complete the
  5       Electrical News               disagreed or strongly disagreed with        survey. Their straightforward answers
                                        the statement “The time it takes staff      will help us provide better customer
  6       Plan Review Timelines
                                        to review and process my projects is        service. We are carefully examining
  7       Free Residential Wall         appropriate.” 21% were neutral on this      the issues and concerns that were
          Bracing Class                 subject. We also received several writ-     raised, and are in the process of de-
                                        ten comments and suggestions regard-        veloping solutions.
  8       Phone Numbers
                                        ing processing time.
The Hammer & Nail                                 Spring 2000                          www.boisecitypds.org

Em ployee
Kim Harrison
                                                                 Kim Harrison
Code Enforcement                                            Code Enforcement Secretary

Is the junk in your neighbor’s        the Code Enforcement Officers.         Sometimes people contact us
yard obscuring your view of the       Kim estimates she receives an          when they are frustrated, and
foothills? Do they have a pile of     average of 15 complaints a day.        some of this anger spills over
tires that looks like a local ver-                                           onto our staff. Kim has a special
                                      The most challenging part of her
sion of Mt. Everest? Do you have                                             ability to keep her cool, even
                                      job is responding to complaint
a neighbor who is running a                                                  when customers use terms like
                                      calls from citizens. It’s not un-
trucking business out of the                                                 “ignorant bananas” to describe
                                      usual for the Code Enforcement
house next door? If you’ve tried                                             our staff or their neighbors.
                                      office to receive a complaint
everything you can think of to let
                                      about one particular property, and     Kim is a Boise native. In her
your neighbor know that some-
                                      then to suddenly be bombarded          spare time, Kim attends BSU,
thing needs to change, but they
                                      with a rash of complaints about        tends bar and coaches a Special
still don’t get the point, it might
                                      every other neighbor located on        Olympics bowling team.
be time to call the City’s Code
                                      the same street.
Enforcement division. Code En-
forcement can intervene in such
situations, to enforce the City’s
zoning codes. If you call Code
                                      New Fees in Effect
Enforcement, your first contact       New Fees for plan review services, inspections and permits went
will be Kim Harrison, the secre-      into effect on March 13, 2000. The following fee schedules have
tary for Code Enforcement.            changed:
Kim joined our staff in October
                                              •   Building                   •   Electrical
after proving her abilities as a
                                              •   Mechanical                 •   Plumbing
temporary employee for the De-
                                              •   Building Fire Plan Check   •   Fire Sprinkler
partment. Kim’s job consists of
                                              •   Plan Review                •   Fire Alarms
taking complaints from citizens,
coordinating the work of the con-     To get a copy of the new fee schedules please contact us at
tractors, who clean up the prop-      384-3801 or download the schedules from our Internet page at
erty when an owner refuses to,        www.boisecitypds.org/permits.htm.
and providing office support to

The Hammer & Nail                              Spring 2000                      www.boisecitypds.org

                                     Planning & Development
                                     Services Department Bulletins

New Commercial Roofing Applications                                      Staff Changes
The commercial roofing permit application has been revised and           Tricia Canaday, who worked as
simplified so it is easier and faster to complete. This permit covers    Planning & Development Ser-
only reroofing on existing commercial and multifamily buildings,         vices Historic Planner, has ac-
and does not allow any structural modifications, interior roof drains    cepted a new position with the
or mechanical installation. Separate permits are required for those      Idaho State Historic Preservation
changes.                                                                 Office.
The new form can then be mailed or faxed directly to the Permit          Kathleen Lacey has joined PDS
Division when applying for the permit. Copies are available from         as the Department’s first Trans-
the Permit Division by calling 384-3802. Application forms are           portation Planner. In Kathleen’s
also available on our Internet site at www.boisecitypds.org.             previous position, she worked as
                                                                         the transportation planner for the
International Building Code Update                                       Bannock Planning Organization.
                                                                         The Boise City Council recently
The hearings for the International Building Code (IBC) have been         created the Transportation Plan-
scheduled for April 9-20th in Birmingham, Alabama. In preparation        ner position so that the City
for this meeting, the Northwest Chapter of the International Con-        would have someone to research
ference of Building Officials (ICBO) met in Seattle to discuss           and analyze transportation plans,
changes to the proposed IBC. The Northwest Chapter is comprised          projects and proposals and pre-
of building officials, enforcement personnel and industry profes-        pare reports on planning issues
sionals from throughout Oregon, Idaho and Washington.                    of interest to Boise City.
Two of Boise’s inspection staff, George Slane and Jim Storey,            A big part of Kathleen’s job will
attended the meeting. The group voted and prioritized changes that       be to coordinate transportation
they will propose at the IBC hearings and selected delegates who         questions and issues with the
will speak for the membership of the Northwest Chapter.                  staff of transportation related
                                                                         agencies such as Ada County
New ICBO Committee Meets                                                 Highway District, the Idaho De-
                                                                         partment of Transportation and
In January, the first meeting of the ICBO (International Conference      Community Planning Associa-
of Building Officials) certification committee met in Whittier, CA.      tion. She will also be responsible
This new committee will be responsible for determining the qualifi-      to keep the Mayor and Council
cations and developing exams for the ICBO family of certifications.      advised of transportation planning
Two members of the Idaho Chapter of Building Officials, George           programs and issues that may im-
Klomp, the Building Official of Idaho Falls and George Slane, Chief      pact Boise City.
Structural Inspector of Boise City, have been appointed to sit on this
committee. If you have any questions or input about ICBO certifica-
tions, please feel free to contact George Slane at 867-4855.

The Hammer & Nail                                 Spring 2000                        www.boisecitypds.org

Frequently Asked Questions                                                 Inspector
Find Answers Here                                                          Phone
Q:   How do I know what the minimum re-
     quirements are for plans when I submit                                Fax Number                 388-4735
     an application for a commercial build-
                                                                           Phone numbers listed are the
     ing permit?
                                                                           Inspector’s cell phone numbers.
A:   The Plan Review Division has applications available                   Building & Mechanical
     for both new buildings and tenant remodels. There is                  Inspectors
     also a checklist available, which can be used to make                 George Slane                867-4855
     sure the basic plan package you are submitting is com-                Bob Archibald               867-6226
     plete. Contact the Plan Review Division at 384-3801 for               Perry Paine            1-208-340-1266
     copies of this checklist.                                             Dixie Fellows          1-208-340-1169
                                                                           Carl Dependahl         1-208-340-1273
Q:   What are the current construction codes I must
                                                                           Jim Storey
                                                                           Jim Sly
     use to design and construct a building in Boise City?
                                                                           Dave Lightfoot         1-208-340-1269

A:   The following are the current construction codes:
                                                                           Alan Hauser
                                                                           Russ Owen
     1997 Uniform Building Code                                            Tom Arcoraci           1-208-340-1182
     1997 Uniform Fire Code
                                                                           Fire Inspectors
     1997 Uniform Mechanical Code
                                                                           Rick Jackson           1-208-340-1183
     1999 National Fuel Gas Code
                                                                           Joe Tawney             1-208-340-1295
     1997 Uniform Plumbing Code
     1999 National Electrical Code                                         Electrical Inspectors
     1994 Uniform Code for Building Conservation                           Jim Schmer             850-0292
                                                                           Jack Frank             1-208-340-1259
     1997 Uniform Code for the Abatement of Dangerous Buildings
                                                                           Pat Lass               1-208-340-1270
                                                                           Marv Burris            1-208-340-1297
Q:   What accessibility standards for the disabled are                     Joe Ray                1-208-340-1292
     used for design and construction?
                                                                           Plumbing Inspectors
A:   The Zoning Ordinance found in the Boise City Code (BCC) sets          Lee Rice               850-5017
     standards for parking design. The 1997 Uniform Building Code          Stan Johnson           1-208-340-1257
                                                                           Bill Vandegrift        1-208-340-1275
     (CABO/ANSI A11731-1992) is utilized to determine the access
                                                                           Gary Ziegler           1-208-340-1263
     into the building and within the structure.                           Gerry Varner           1-208-340-1280
     In addition to local codes, there are also Federal laws that are      Code Enforcement Inspectors
     covered under ADA and Fair Housing regulations. We try to             Jim Soden              850-9039
     determine if your projects meet these requirements, but the inter-    Scott Brown            867-1848
     pretation of these laws are not controlled by the City, thus we       Carol Montgomery       867-3392
     cannot take responsibility if your plans do not meet their require-   Erosion Control Inspector
     ments.                                                                Jim Rogers             395-7818

The Hammer & Nail                                     Spring 2000                              www.boisecitypds.org

Electrical News You Can Use!
Subs: Access Electrical Power Safely                                            Basic Building Permit
Electrical inspectors report increasing incidences of brick layers and hardwood Facts for Electricians
floor installers plugging their cords into dryer and range outlets with nails, bare   Electricians need to know a few basic
cooper wire, or in some cases, they are taking the panel cover off and putting        facts about building permits before
their wires into the breakers in the panel. We can’t stress enough that electri-      requesting an electrical permit for a
cians are the only ones allowed to access panels during construction.                 commercial job.
These subcontractors are creating unsafe conditions that may result in an             Building Permit Numbers
accident. The NEC states that temporary wiring for construction purposes is to        Know the building permit number
be provided by the electrical contractor who has the necessary outlets and            (BLD00-0XXXX) of your project or
safeguards. If an electrical inspector finds someone is not using a proper cord       you will not be able to get an electri-
cap to plug into the proper outlet, the power to the property will be termi-          cal permit. PDS links all permits
nated immediately.                                                                    associated with a project together.
                                                                                      We do this to insure that all work has
Temporary Power Poles Need ID Stickers                                                been completed before the entire
Electrical inspectors are having trouble determining which temporary power            project is “finaled” out, and a final
pole needs to be inspected at some job sites. When a jobsite has anywhere             occupancy certificate is granted.
from two to five poles in a row, it is hard to determine which pole should be in-     Boise Phases Building Permits
spected when an ID sticker is missing or isn’t filled in properly. An ID (green in    Boise allows some commercial
color) sticker should be placed on temporary poles before you request an in-          projects to have phased building per-
spection. If you don’t know the address, please place the permit number in the        mits. In these cases, separate building
address blank on the green ID sticker.                                                permits are often issued for the grad-
When temporary power poles are found without ID stickers, we will place a             ing, foundation, shell and core and
note in our computer system stating that we could not find the pole, and a            tenant improvements. In cases where
reinspection fee will be assessed.                                                    the project has a shell and core permit
                                                                                      and a tenant improvement permit, the
Complete Corrections in a Timely Manner                                               electrical contractor should take out
                                                                                      an electrical permit for work he does
Some corrections are not being corrected and called in to PDS in a timely             on the shell and core and another one
manner. When a correction is written a time limit will be given. If the correction    for electrical work on the tenant im-
is not completed and called back into PDS by a specific date, or an extension         provement. The electrical contractor
is requested, then the electrical inspector will visit the job site, do a rein-       should submit a separate Certificate
spection and the project may be subject to a reinspection fee.                        of Value which includes the value of
                                                                                      the electrical work being performed in
Post Permit Cards on Duplexes/Townhouses                                              that particular phase.
On duplexes that are being built to Townhouse specifications, the Building Per-
mit Card shall be posted as required (on the warm wall or next to the
service). If the card is not on the job site, the service will not be energized
until we are informed which work needs to be inspected. If the card is on the
job site, we also need to be informed about which one of the services should
be energized.

The Hammer & Nail                             Spring 2000          www.boisecitypds.org

IVR Contest                               Plan Review Processing Timelines
Last November and December, PDS           Commercial Plan Review Processing Time
held a contest to increase the number     Jan 1 through March 3
of inspections being requested by our
customers using the improved Inter-
active Voice Response (IVR) system.
Here are the contest results.
Greatest Percentage of
IVR Calls
• OEI: 98%
• Boisean Joint Venture: 96%
• Amyx Traditional Homes: 95%
• Tech Plumbing: 94%
• Prestige Homes: 91%

Best “New” IVR Users
• Leisure Time Inc
• Empire Heating
• A-1 Plumbing Services
• B&B Electric
• Paragon Plumbing

Highest Total Number of
IVR Calls                                 Single Family Dwelling Processing Time
• A-1 Heating & Air Conditioning:         Jan 1 through March 31
• De Best Plumbing: 120
• TML: 104
• Western Heating and AC: 104
• Advanced Heating and Cooling: 90

With your help and the hard work of
our staff, the number of inspection re-
quests being funneled through the
IVR system rose from 12% to 39%.
PDS performs about 45,000 inspec-
tions a year. That’s a lot of phone
calls for our clerks to handle! Even
30% usage of the IVR by our cus-
tomers allows the clerks to assist you
on those jobs where you need extra
attention. Thank you for giving the
new and improved IVR system a try.

The Hammer & Nail                               Spring 2000                       www.boisecitypds.org

Classes, Conferences and More
Free Residential Wall Bracing Class
Everything you ever wanted to know but were afraid to ask

Twenty-five builders, designers,    like to make this training available   Carl Westfall, a Planning & De-
engineers and others recently at-   to others in the community if          velopment Services Plans Exam-
tended a Planning & Develop-        there is enough interest. The pre-     iner, created the presentation and
ment Services presentation that     sentation covers:                      has developed an interactive
was requested by the Building       •   Determining the location of        model that illustrates the basic
Contractors Association. The             braced wall lines                 concepts behind the building
class covered the basic concepts                                           code requirements.
                                    •   How to calculate the amount of
of residential wall bracing.
                                        loading capacity for hold downs    If you would be interested in at-
The class was so well received by       into the foundation                tending a presentation on this
those that attended that Planning   •   How the holdowns tie into the      subject please contact Carl
& Development Services would            foundation                         Westfall at 384-3801.

Storm Water Conference Inspires Attendees
Over 100 people, city officials,    Here are some of the techniques        • Limit on-street parking
engineers, architects, and land-    they recommended for improving
                                                                           On the site scale
scape architects learned new in-    storm water quality:
formation about storm water                                                • Use permeable or porous
                                    On the regional or watershed             pavement
management at the third annual
Public Works conference in Feb-     scale                                  • Add grassy patches on drive-
ruary.                              • Inventory the best habitat and         ways
                                      protect it                           • Include rooftop gardens to
A variety of speakers presented
                                    • Look where the growth should           collect storm water runoff
valuable information about the
                                      go and focus on protecting the       • Use soil amendments to
new federal storm water require-
                                      rural areas                             improve infiltration
ments for Phase II communities,
or cities with less than 100,000    • Use maximum lot sizes, in
                                      addition to minimum lot sizes        Much of their message focuses
population. Judy Corbet, devel-                                            on planning for storm water sys-
oper of Village Homes in Davis,     On the community scale                 tem design early in the develop-
CA, talked about creative neigh-                                           ment process. It is also about
                                    • Study the importance of densi-
borhood design, and the impor-                                             keeping storm water above
                                      ties in designing livable, walk-
tance of sustainable communi-                                              ground rather than putting it un-
                                      able, and sustainable neighbor-
ties. Bill Derry, a planner with                                           derground. The success of these
Seattle’s CH2M Hill, described                                             efforts relies on the coordination
storm water management tech-        • Use mixed dwelling types
                                                                           between Public Works, the Plan-
niques from three different per-    • Design new neighborhoods
spectives: the regional, the com-     with alleys and narrower
munity, and the site scale.            streets                                           Continued on page 8

The Hammer & Nail                                Spring 2000                            www.boisecitypds.org

Storm Water                             Helpful Phone Numbers
Conference                               Hours: Monday - Friday
                                         8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Area code 208
                                                                                 Boise City Departments
                                                                                 Airport                   383-3110
Continued from page 7                                                            Fire                      384-3827
                                         Planning & Development
                                                                                 Parks & Recreation        384-4240
                                         Administration            384-3800
                                                                                 Public Works              384-3900
ning and Zoning Commission,              Community Development     384-4158
                                                                                 Animal Control            342-3508
and Planning and Development             T*D*D* & Voice            384-4195
                                                                                 City Billing              384-3735
                                         Housing Rehabilitation    384-4195
Services. Storm Water staff will                                                 City Clerk                384-3710
                                         Permit Section            384-3802
try to adopt some of these mes-                                                  Forestry                  384-4083
                                             Fax                   388-4715
sages and techniques into their                                                  Legal Department          384-3870
                                         Plan Review               384-3801
2000 work plan. Questions? Con-                                                  Police Dispatch           377-6790
                                             Fax                   384-3814
                                                                                 Abandoned Vehicles        377-6744
tact Joan Meitl at 384-3928.             Planning & Zoning         384-3830
                                             Fax                   384-3753      Other Agencies
Note: Anyone may purchase or             Electrical Inspections    384-3804      Central District Health   327-7499
borrow a copy of the 90-minute           Heating Inspections       384-3806      ACHD                      395-7857
Corbett/Derry video from Public          Plumbing Inspections      384-3805      BFI                       345-1265
Works. For more information,             Elec/Plumb/Heat Fax       384-3867      Ada County Zoning         364-2277
contact Julie Quinn at 388-4703,         Fire                      384-3803      Assessor                  364-2400
                                         Sign Inspection           384-3808      Recorder                  364-2223
or send an e-mail to:
                                         Structural Inspection     384-3803      Garden City               377-1831
jquinn@pobox.ci.boise.id.us).                                                    City of Meridian          888-4433
                                             Fax                   388-4735
                                         Code Enforcement          384-3845      City of Eagle             939-6813

 Hammer &               Published quarterly by Boise City Planning & Development Services

 Nail News              Mayor H. Brent Coles                 City Council President - Carolyn Terteling-Paine,
 www.boisecitypds.org   Director Tim Hogland                 Council ProTem - Mike Wetherell, Sara Baker, Jon
                        Publisher Dave Hattrick              Mason, M. Jerome Mapp, Paula Forney
                        Editor Jenifer Gilliland             Contributors George Slane, Marlene Southard, Jim
                        Graphic Design Deanna L. Gutierrez   Schmer, Tempra Wilson, Julie Quinn, Jenifer Gilliland

Planning & Development Services                                                                        Bulk Rate
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P. O. Box 500                                                                                          Boise, ID
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Boise, Idaho 83701-0500

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