January 30, 2008
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
COUNTY INCENTIVE PROGRAM FOR BUILDERS REACHES MILESTONE
Charlotte, NC – The failure rate for building inspections has dropped 32 percent, thanks to an incentive program developed by local builders and Mecklenburg County Code Enforcement. The failure rate was nearly 29 percent in 2005. It dropped below 20 percent in November and December 2007.
Every time a contractor breaks ground for a project, submits plans for approval or finishes various phases of a building project, an inspection is needed and must pass for the project to continue to the next phase. Nearly 100,000 of those inspections were failing every year. With help from builders, Code Enforcement convened a Code Compliance Task Force in May 2005 to study the issue and make recommendations. At that time, the failure rate was 28.87 percent. By the end of 2005, the task force announced their recommendation for the Pass Rate Incentive Program and builders began an industry information campaign centered on the need to “Do it Right the First Time.”
Almost immediately, builders responded and the failure rate began a steady decline that continued through November 2007 when the failure rate dropped below 20 percent (19.81 percent) for the first time since records have been kept. The rate stayed below 20 percent again in December (19.68 percent).
Under the program, builders who “Do it Right the First Time” continue to get rapid response to requests for inspections. Builders who fail more than 40 percent of their inspections for the previous quarter face a two-day delay on all subsequent inspections. The delay can cost the builder a lot of time and money. Continued inspection failures raise the penalty threshold including an increase in the cost of permit fees. The County offers educational opportunities for builders who have high failure rates, and builders who lower their failure rate can again get quicker service from Code Enforcement.
Technical Contact: Edward Prince at 704-432-3311. Media Contact: Roger W. Kortekaas at 704-336-2597 or