Thursday, September 06, 2007

Self-Certification & Excavation Bills Signed

Normally, such topics would elicit yawns--and the headline probably just scared people away--but they're important to those that care about new development and construction in New York City and, particularly, Brooklyn. So, we'll note that despite the Governor's rejection last week of a bill to require more re-inspection of building sites by the Department of Buildings, bills that could help crack-down on self-certification and on construction that damages neighboring buildings have been signed.

The "Self-Certification Bill" is called the "Scarano Bill" by some activists after the Brooklyn architect who gave up his right to self-certify his plans last year after many issues arose about his buildings. Assem. Jim Brennan, who has sponsored a package of building and construction measures, said in a press release that the bill gives "DOB new power to crack down on shady architects who file illegal building plans." The bill authorizes the Buildings Commissioner to refuse to accept plans from an architect who in the past was proven to have knowingly made false filings with the Buildings Department.

Meanwhile, the "Shoring & Excavation Bill" requires contractors doing excavating of any sort to provide protection for adjacent properties and to carry insurance for damage caused by construction, demolition and excavation.



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