The Forest Park Village Council unanimously approved an ordinance at its July 24 meeting revamping several sections of village code, including language on compliance, ownership transfers and permitting and inspection costs.
The July 24 approval comes about six months after Village Administrator Tim Gillian tasked Director of Public Health and Safety Steve Glinke and his staff with examining current regulations. Some, Glinke said, hadn’t been updated since 2003.
“This is an update to our pricing for permitting fees and inspections,” Commissioner Tom Mannix said “Some of them were archaic in nature in terms of trying to figure out exactly how to contemplate what a fee would be.”
Previously, village code spelled out a fee structure based on cubic feet. So, for instance a resident wanting to get a permit for a new garage on a single-family home would be charged “$3 per 100 cubic feet or fraction thereof.”
Now, that same resident would be charged $15 for every thousand dollars of construction costs.
This change, Glinke said, is more consistent with other parts of village code.
In some cases, fees went up. An inspection for an individual condo now costs $25 more, up from $200. In other instances, the increase was much more significant. An inspection for a 10- to 20-unit building now costs $1,500. Before July 24, it was $850 for a 10-unit building, with an additional $40 for every unit. An industrial building inspection now costs $1,500, up from $1,000.
“There are some minor increases in here,” Mannix said. “But most importantly, is what we did is that we spent a lot of time figuring out how to reduce the cost to homeowners in the village so that they could actually do home improvements and not have to bear too much of a burden getting inspections and getting permits and things from the village.”
Glinke, in a July 26 phone call, concurred.
“We really geared most of the increases toward commercial and income-properties in an effort to provide some relief to single-family dwellings, to families,” Glinke said. “The increases we’re pretty evenhanded and certainly intended not to create any sticker shock with any homeowners.”
Mannix, at the July 24 meeting, praised village staff for their work on the changes.
Mayor Anthony Calderone agreed.
“Sounds like a good job by everyone,” Calderone said.
“Hopefully, it works well with the department and the residents,” Commissioner Dan Novak said.