A new Commercial Building Maintenance Code was approved by Town Council on January 6th after a public hearing. The purpose of this code is to set standards for commercial buildings within the corporate limits of Rutherfordton, because all current standards within our code of ordinances only address residential structures. The Town was able to craft this ordinance with the help of the UNC School of Government and the Town’s Attorney, Beth Miller. This ordinance will ultimately create building standards that will be applicable to commercial buildings, create a vacant commercial building registration, and provide the Town the ability to enforce standards to prevent dilapidation of commercial buildings.
Since this new code deals with North Carolina General Statute 160D Land Use Regulations, our Planning Board reviewed the ordinance before Town Council back in November 12th, 2020. They voted to recommend the code to Town Council as the board collectively saw the great need for this code.
Below is a general overview of the new code:
- This code applies to all vacant and occupied commercial buildings within the Town limits
- If a building is a combination of both commercial and residential, both codes would apply.
- The purpose of this code is to prevent commercial buildings from diminishing property values or detract excessively from the appearance of the area; preserve character, history, & integrity of our Town and community; prevent any possible threat or danger to the general public; and to promote the comfort and safety of our residents.
- It fulfills the purpose by: creating minimum standards for commercial buildings and structures; listing specific timeframes for abating violations; and creating a vacant property registry.
- Enforcement for this code is consistent with NCGS 160D-1129, which starts with an investigation from the Town’s Code Enforcement Officer and an order of abatement. Any violation of this new code can result in fines and civil penalties.
To read the entire building maintenance code, please click here.