Hayden to control building permits

Residents will be able to avoid trip to Steamboat for forms

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— As of today, people who want to build in Hayden won't have to travel to Steamboat Springs for a permit.

The new Hayden Building Department will handle building permits for the town, taking over that duty from the Routt County Regional Building Department.

Would-be builders will now head to Town Hall to pick up forms from Deputy Town Clerk Bonnie Carrico, who will be the face of the process for Hayden. She said some people have called to ask about the new system.

"I think the word is slowly getting out there," Carrico said.

Hayden is contracting with SAFEbuilt Inc., which will perform the duties that a building department would, Town Manager Russ Martin said. The town will handle the paperwork.

People who have questions about their plans and the building process can talk to SAFEbuilt staff members, who will have offices at First National Bank of the Rockies, Martin said. The bank, at 252 W. Jefferson Ave., is down the road from Town Hall. He said the town hopes to eventually have the contractors at Town Hall.

Hayden will keep 20 percent of the permit fees to cover its costs, Martin said, and the other 80 percent will go to SAFEbuilt.

"This is not an issue of trying to create a revenue stream," Martin said. "This is about trying to provide better services locally."

He said the town typically sees 20 to 30 building permits a year and that the number is growing.

"When you get people moving into Hayden who buy older homes and want to expand on that, those are the ones who are going to benefit from this transition," he said.

Martin said the town hopes the change streamlines the process from development to review to the final construction project.

The town set the deal in motion about a year ago, Martin said, and discussed the final details of the intergovernmental agreement with Routt County last month. That deal ironed out building-use-tax collection. The town will collect the county's portion of that money and place it in an account for the county.

The cost for those who want to build in Hayden probably will not change, Martin said. Voters approved a new building-use tax for the town in November, which he said could account for a slight increase.

Routt County Regional Building Department Official Carl Dunham said Oak Creek and Yampa have told the department they want to keep their building services in the county's hands.

Steamboat Springs had considered breaking off from the county and going to a private contractor, but the new City Council decided not to do so.

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