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Chatham County planning department offers new permitting checklist

Posted Thursday, June 7, 2012

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Pittsboro, NC - Chatham County’s Planning Department has taken steps to help all residents better understand the rules and permits required for various kinds of building projects. Residents may be unfamiliar with permits involved with renovations, additions or new construction.

A major step is a new bilingual checklist to help people identify when they need a permit, which can be found on the Chatham County website at www.chathamnc.org/planning or www.chathamnc.org/Index.aspx?page=112.. Printed copies also are available at the Central Permitting lobby located at 80 East Street in Pittsboro.

The checklist asks the person to identify the specific activities they will be doing. The completed form is submitted to either central permitting or planning staff, who review it and notify the applicant to explain what permits are needed.

Angela Birchett, zoning administrator for Chatham County, said that they decided to make the new permitting checklist available in Spanish as well as English because the 2010 Census shows that about 13 percent of the county’s residents are Hispanic and nearly half of Siler City’s residents are Hispanic. Some are still in the process of learning English. In the interim, the county wants to be as responsive as possible by offering the checklist in Spanish for newer residents of the county.

The county also has received positive feedback from the business community for monthly pre-application meetings where those planning to start or expand businesses can meet with an array of county functions involved in permitting a business.

Birchett commended Sergio Borrayo, code enforcement officer for the Town of Siler City, who translated the checklist into Spanish. “We hope to have more forms and website information available in the Spanish language in the coming months”, said Birchett.

 
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