Dayton renews tornado-relief program that waives permit, inspection fees

Dayton has renewed a tornado-relief program that waives permitting and inspection fees to help property owners and residents rebuild.

The program has benefitted 47 residential properties and 27 commercial properties by waiving more than $154,000 in fees, according to Ford Weber, Dayton’s director of economic development.

Dayton City Manager Shelley Dickstein said the program expired at the end of last year, but extending it will help out because the pandemic slowed the rebuilding process.

“Some of the projects were large and multi-phased,” she said. “Some demolition has occurred but not a lot of redevelopment yet.”

On Wednesday, the Dayton City Commission approved a resolution reinstating the tornado-relief program that the commission established in June 2019, following the devastating Memorial Day tornadoes.

The resolution extends the program through the end of 2022 and is retroactive, dating back to Jan. 1 of this year.

The program waives zoning administration and building fees for residential and commercial properties that were damaged or impacted by the tornadoes.

The city is waiving fees for building permits, zoning certificates, applications for zoning variances, plan reviews, certificates of use and occupancy, building inspections and wrecking permits.

People who have paid for permits for tornado-impacted properties since Jan. 1 can seek reimbursement.

Credit: Chris Stewart

Credit: Chris Stewart

In a memo to the city manager, Weber wrote that some rebuilding projects have been delayed because of the coronavirus crisis and pandemic-related economic disruptions.

Weber said some projects need more time to get going, and some properties have been demolished but redevelopment plans have not been submitted.

The city processed or issued about 7,341 commercial and residential permits last year, which was down more than 7% from 2019, Weber said.

Nearly 500 properties in Dayton were impacted by the storm.

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