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Home > City Departments > Permit and Inspection Services > Permits > Permit Process

Permit Process

Building Permit fees have changed for both residential and commercial work in the City.  This does not include plumbing, electrical, or heating work.  The fee changes are effective from 7/24/2014.
Please contact the Permit Office at (716) 851-4249, (716) 851-5033, (716) 851-5572 or (716) 851-4924 for more details.

Step One:  Registration:  In order to check for zoning and NYS Code requirements, a copy of the property survey or site plan must be examined by a Building Inspector in the Permit Office (Room 301 City Hall, 851-4294, 851-4924, 851-5033, 851-5572).  At this time, the Inspector will institute the registration process to ascertain whether the work you intend to do meets all the requirements of the City and State ordinances, or whether any special approvals are required.  The Permit Office, Room 301 City Hall, will furnish you with a copy of the following forms to assist you in preparing the plans and documents to be submitted.

  • Registration Form- New Construction
  • Signage
  • Renovations
  • Site Improvements and Parking

Step Two:  Application:  The Inspector will input the Building Permit Application to the computer from the information given to them from the applicant.  After obtaining any special approvals that may be required, three (3) sets of blueprints (min 18" x 24" blueprint paper with original seals & signatures) and three (3) copies of the property survey and any other specification and support documents are filed in Room 301 City Hall.  At that time the application fee is paid.  (Questions about fees, phone (716) 851-4249, (716) 851-5033, (716) 851-5572 or (716) 851-4924)  An original seal and signature of a NYS licensed architect or engineer is required for all new buildings and additions, both regardless of cost; an original seal and signature is required for any alteration or repair to or work upon any building or structure which involves changes affecting the structural safety and/or public safety thereof, and for most alterations and all change of use/occupancy.  Construction documents for projects where costs exceed $25,000 need to bear the seal and signature of a licensed professional.  In any case, all plans must be professionally drawn and comply with The Building Code of New York State.

►  Please Note:  When the permit is issued one copy of the plans is given to the Building Inspector one is returned to the Client, and the third will be stored by the City as a permanent legal document of record.

Step Three:  Code Review:  The blueprints will be logged in by the Permit Office, then send to the Building Code Review Office in Room 301 for review.  At this point the Application Fee will be submitted.  The Building Code Specialists are the first to review the plans for completeness.  Then plans will be reviewed by applicable Departments in the order that follows:

  • Sewer Authority - Room 1038, Regina Harris 851-4667 x4227
  • Plumbing Inspectors - Room 313, Tony Ando 851-5067
    Electrical - Room 313, Charlie Moore 851-4600
    HVAC - Room 313, Mark Blake 851-4092
  • Fire Prevention - Room 321, Chief Mark Morganti 851-5707
    Elevator - Room 313, Kevin Gould 851-5104
    Code Review - Room 301, Peter Klemann 851-4911

If during the review process it is determined that revisions are required, contact will be made with the agent of record.  (3 sets of revisions required on min 18" x 24" blueprint paper)  These plans must be filed in Room 301 City Hall.  The revisions will be sent to the appropriate departments.

Tracking:  Any questions regarding the status of your plans can be directed to John Caputo (716) 851-4111.

Step Four:  Permit Issuance:  The Building Code Review office will phone the agent of record when plans have been approved by the appropriate departments.  When all necessary plan review approvals are acquired a contractor is identified and the permit fee is paid, the Building permit will be issued and work may commence.

Step Five:  Inspections:  Building Permit Inspections are required at various stages of a project.  Depending on the nature of the project, typical permit inspections include:

  • Excavation inspection
  • Foundation inspection
  • Rough or framing inspection
  • Finish inspection

The agent is responsible for scheduling all inspections. The inspector must be called prior to starting any work.

Step Six:  Closing Out Permits:  All permits require finalization upon completion of any project.  The building inspector will issue one of two documents to close the project;  a Certificate of Occupancy, or a Certificate of Compliance.  This document certifies that the work is satisfactory and that the permit and inspections process is complete.

►  Please Note:  Work cannot begin until a Building Permit Process is completed, fees are paid, and a building permit is issued.  A fine will be levied for any work that begins without a permit.  The permit will not be issued unless the Permit Office has the name of the licensed contractor who will be doing the work.