CHAPTER 155 BUILDING AND LAND USE REGULATIONS

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155.01 PURPOSE. The purpose of this chapter is to provide and establish reasonable rules and regulations for the erection, reconstruction and altering of buildings of all kinds, as well as the use and occupancy of such buildings to promote the health, morals, safety and general welfare in the City.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 364.1)
 


155.02 BUILDING OFFICIAL. The Clerk is the building official and is responsible for the administration and enforcement of this chapter.
 


155.03 PERMIT REQUIRED. No building or other structure shall be erected, altered, used or occupied within the City without first receiving a permit therefor.
 


155.04 APPLICATION. Application shall be made in writing, filed with the building official and contain the following information:
1. Name. The name and address of the applicant.
2. Location. The street address and full legal description of the property.
3. Proposed Work. The nature of work proposed to be done.
4. Use. The use for which the structure is or will be used.
5. Plans. Application for permits shall be accompanied by such drawings of the proposed work, drawn to scale, including such floor plans, sections, elevations, and structural details, as the building official may require.
6. Plot Diagram. There shall also be filed a plot diagram in a form and size suitable for filing permanently with the permit record, drawn to scale, with all dimensions figured, showing accurately the size and exact location of all proposed new construction or, in the case of demolition, of such construction as is to be demolished and of all existing buildings.
 


155.05 FEES. A fee of five dollars ($5.00) shall accompany the application.
 


155.06 AMENDMENTS. Nothing shall prohibit the filing of amendments to an application or to a plan or other record accompanying same, at any time before the completion of the work for which the permit was sought. Such amendments, after approval, shall be filed with and be deemed a part of the original application.
 


155.07 COMPLETION OF EXISTING BUILDINGS. Nothing contained in this chapter shall require any change in the plans, construction, size or designated use of a building, for which a valid permit has been issued or lawful approval given before June 1, 1980; provided, however, construction under such permit or approval shall have been started within six (6) months and the ground story framework, including structural parts of the second floor, shall have been completed within one year and the entire building completed within two (2) years after June 1, 1980.
 


155.08 APPLICATION APPROVED. It is the duty of the building official to examine applications for permits within a reasonable time after filing. If, after examination, the building official finds no objection to the same and it appears that the proposed work will be in compliance with the laws and ordinances applicable thereto, the building official shall forward findings to the Council for its approval or disapproval.
 


155.09 EROSION CONTROL. When a land disturbing activity, as defined by the Code of Iowa, is to occur as a part of a project for which a permit hereunder is sought, no permit shall be issued unless there is on file with the City a soil erosion control plan which covers the proposed project and is approved by the Soil Conservation District Commissioners.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 161A.64)
 


155.10 ACTION BY COUNCIL. After receiving the findings of the building official, the Council shall, within a reasonable time, either approve or disapprove the application. If disapproved, the Council shall state its reasons for disapproval and notify the applicant of same. If approved, the Council shall instruct the building official to issue the building permit to the applicant. Said permit shall be issued in triplicate, one copy for the applicant, one copy for the County Assessor and one copy to be retained in the City records.
 


155.11 RESTRICTIONS. No permit for the erection, alteration, use or occupancy of a building or similar structure shall be granted unless it definitely appears that such erection, alteration, use or occupancy shall not cause or be the source of the following:
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 414.24)
1. Noise. Any undue noise.
2. Electrical Interference. Any undue radio or television interference.
3. Odors. Any offensive odors.
4. Refuse. Any offensive or unsightly refuse.
5. Smoke. Any offensive or undue smoke.
6. Fire Hazard. Any fire hazard.
7. Appearance. Any unsightliness due to the appearance of any building or structure on the premises.
8. Congestion. Any undue gathering, congregating, parking of cars, or undue congestion of people or traffic.
9. Other. Any effect which will be obnoxious, offensive, dangerous or injurious to the health, welfare and safety of citizens.
 


155.12 CONDITION OF THE PERMIT. All work performed under any permit shall conform to the approved application and plans, and approved amendments thereof. The location of all new construction as shown on the approved plot diagram, or an approved amendment thereof, shall be strictly adhered to. It is unlawful to reduce or diminish the area of a lot or plot of which a plot diagram has been filed and has been used as the basis for a permit, unless a revised plot diagram showing the proposed change in conditions shall have been filed and approved; provided that this shall not apply when the lot is reduced by reason of a street opening or widening or other public improvement.
 


155.13 POSTING OF PERMIT. A copy of the permit shall be kept on the premises open to public inspection during the prosecution of the work and until the completion of same. The building official may require a certified copy of the approved plans to be kept on the premises at all times from the commencement of the work to the completion thereof. The building official shall be given at least twenty-four (24) hours’ notice of the starting of work under a permit.
 


155.14 REVOCATION. The building official may revoke a permit or approval issued under the provisions of this chapter in case there has been any false statement or misrepresentation as to a material fact in the application or plans on which the permit or approval was based.
 


155.15 PERMIT VOID. The permit becomes null and void if work or construction authorized is not commenced within sixty (60) days or if construction or work is suspended or abandoned for a period of one hundred twenty (120) days at any time after work is commenced.
 


155.16 RESIDENTIAL DWELLING STANDARDS. All residential dwelling units shall meet the following minimum standards:
1. The dwelling unit must have a minimum width of twenty-two (22) feet for at least sixty-five percent (65%) of the length of the dwelling unit, said dimension to be exclusive of attached garages, porches or other accessory structures.
2. All dwelling units including attached garages shall be placed on a permanent frost-free foundation.
3. All dwelling units shall provide for a minimum of nine hundred (900) square feet of floor space.
4. All dwelling units shall have a minimum roof pitch of 3:12. This requirement shall not apply to manufactured housing if the housing otherwise complies with 42 U.S.C. Sec. 5403.
5. All dwelling units shall have an exterior wall covering that is either:
A. Wood or masonry finish or its appearance, and/or
B. Vertical or horizontal grooved siding or lap siding or its appearance.
The use of flat or corrugated sheet metal for the exterior walls or roof covering is prohibited.
 


155.17 RESTRICTED RESIDENCE DISTRICT. The following area is hereby defined and established as a restricted residence district:
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 414.24)
All that area lying within the corporate limits of the City except the following described area:
An area bounded by Randolph Street, Washington Street, “G” Street and the Burlington Northern railroad tracks, including however, both sides of Randolph Street.
 


155.18 PROHIBITED USE. No building or other structure, except residences, school houses, churches and other similar structures, shall be erected, altered, used or occupied within the restricted residence district as defined herein without first receiving from the Council a special use permit therefor. No such special use permit shall be issued without the affirmative vote of three-fourths (¾) of the full Council.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 414.24)
 


155.19 EXCEPTIONS. The provisions of the preceding section shall have no application to any business, store, shop or factory existing and in operation in a restricted residence district on June 1, 1980, except in the matter of reconstruction, alteration or change in use of the structure.
 


155.20 NOTICE REQUIREMENTS. Whenever a restricted residence district is established or changed, a public hearing must be held, notice of which shall be given at least seven (7) days in advance in the manner prescribed in Section 18.05 of this Code of Ordinances. In no case shall the public hearing be held earlier than the next regularly scheduled City Council meeting following the published notice.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 414.24)
 


155.21 FRONT YARD REQUIREMENTS. Within the restricted residence district there shall be a front yard of not less than sixteen (16) feet (measured from the front lot line), except as follows:
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 414.24)
1. Between Existing Buildings. Where a building is to be erected on a parcel of land that is within one hundred (100) feet of existing buildings on both sides, the minimum front yard shall be a line drawn between the closest front corners of the adjacent buildings on the two (2) sides, or
2. Adjacent to Existing Building. Where a building is to be erected on a parcel of land that is within one hundred (100) feet of an existing building on one side only within the same block, such building may be erected as close to the street as a line drawn from the closest front corner of that building to a point ten (10) feet back from the front lot line measured at the center of the lot on which the proposed building is to be erected.
3. Double Frontage. Where lots have a double frontage, the front yard as required herein shall be provided on both streets.
 


155.22 SIDE YARD REQUIREMENTS. Within the restricted residence district no building shall be erected closer than ten (10) feet to either side lot line.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 414.24)
155.23 REAR YARD REQUIREMENTS. Within the restricted residence district there shall be a rear yard provided for each principal building of not less than sixteen (16) feet (when measured from the rear lot line) or ten percent (10%) of the depth of the lot, whichever amount is smaller.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 414.24)
 


155.24 MINIMUM SIZE OF PRINCIPAL STRUCTURE. Within a restricted residential district no principal structure shall have a width or length less than twenty-two (22) feet and only one principal structure shall be placed on a lot.
 


155.25 DETACHED GARAGE. Within the restricted residence district, no detached garage or other accessory building not attached to the principal building shall be erected closer than six (6) feet to any side or rear yard line.
 


155.26 FENCES.
1. Purpose. The purpose of this section is to provide for the regulation of fences within the City in furtherance of the public health, safety and welfare. It is unlawful for any person to erect, construct or maintain a fence which does not meet the standards set out in this section or which has not been constructed according to the procedure prescribed in this section.
2. Permit to Construct Fence. Anyone seeking to erect a fence shall first submit to the Council a written plan outlining the location of the fence, a specific description of the type of material to be used and the approximate time of construction. The plan shall indicate the location of streets, intersections, sidewalks, property lines and adjacent buildings relative to the fence. The plan shall indicate the height of the fence and approximate post locations and spacing. The Council shall consider any such permits at the next regularly schedule Council meeting. A special meeting of the Mayor and two Council members may be convened to approve a permit if waiting until the next meeting would cause a hardship in the opinion of the Mayor. The Council shall act upon the permits at the next regularly scheduled meeting and permit shall either be issued or denied and reasons given. Notice of the decision shall be delivered in person or shall be mailed to the applicant by United States regular mail. The Council shall consider at least the following factors in approving a permit:
A. Safety;
B. Obstruction of view of intersection and streets;
C. Community appearance standards;
D. Property rights of adjacent or nearby property owners or any other adverse consequences to the community or property owners due to the type of fence construction requested.
There is no fee required for the permit.
3. Prohibited Fences. The following types of fences are prohibited in the City:
A. Any fence composed of barbed wire;
B. Any fence connected to any type of electrical source carrying electrical current;
C. Any fence which obstructs or interferes with the view of streets and intersections causing a safety hazard within the City;
D. Any fence with sharp surfaces or other hazards causing concern for the safety of members of this community;
E. Any fence which is unsightly and not conducive to community appearance standards or which interferes with the enjoyment of the use of surrounding property owners; F. Tin fencing.
 


155.27 EXISTING LOTS. No yard or lot existing on June 1, 1980, shall be reduced in dimension or area below the minimum requirements established in this chapter.
 


155.28 CERTIFYING ORDINANCES. Within fifteen (15) days of the effective date of the adoption of any amendments to the provisions of this chapter the Clerk shall certify such amendment to the County Recorder.
(Code of Iowa, Sec. 380.11)
 


155.29 ABATEMENT OF VIOLATION. Any building or structure erected, altered, used or occupied in violation of this chapter shall be determined a nuisance and the same may be abated by the City or by any property owner within said district in the manner provided for the abatement of nuisances.
 


155.30 VARIANCES. Variances to the provisions of this chapter may be granted by an affirmative vote of two-thirds of all of the members of the Council. Said variance must include the reason for a variance, why the variance was granted and a specific description of the property for which the variance was granted.
 

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