New rule allows some Kootenai County residents to build without permits

New rule allows some Kootenai County residents to build without permits

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho - A full house at the Kroc Center in Coeur d'Alene, where hundreds of people weighed in on proposed changes to the county building codes Monday night.

The Kootenai County Board of Commissioners debated for more than an hour before voting on option one, which would allow property owners with more than five acres to build a home without a permit.  Under proposal one, a structural engineer or architect would not be required to sign off on the design.  It would also allow homeowners to add on a decks, awnings and other improvements to existing structures without a permit.

Commissioners considered three other options before making their decision.  The second option would allow builders to opt-in to the formal permitting procedures.  Option three: maintain and update current building codes.  Option four:  get rid of building codes all together.

More than 400 people voiced their opinions about the proposals.

"Who do building codes benefit? Banks, Realtors, insurance companies, contractors, developers," said one homeowner who is against building codes.

 "Not normal people like us who don't have associations and boards of director's behind them," said the homeowner.

"I don't like the idea of no building codes," said Russ McLain.

"I think it's really stupid.  It's a stupid idea from stupid people," said McLain.

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