McFarland trustees enacted a new ordinance Monday, Jan. 27, that would require a $150 fee for a permit to construct a deck, porch or balcony onto an existing building.

The village did not previously collect a fee for review and inspection of decks, balconies and porches, but the village incurs expenses to process, review and inspect permits.

A new deck, porch or balcony on an already existing building would require additional time for inspection and review for that singular feature of the building.

If a deck, porch or balcony is proposed as part of the building’s initial construction, a permit fee would be 15 cents per square foot for residential and 18 cents per square foot for commercial, which is the same cost as the rest of the building.

The fee is lower for new residential or commercial buildings, because it is part of the overall review and inspection process by the building inspector.

“When it’s part of new home construction, he’s already reviewing the plan set. He’s already out there doing multiple inspections,” community development director Andrew Bremer said. “It’s generally not going to be special trips. Therefore, a reduced fee or having it be the same cost per square foot as the rest of the home makes more sense from a staff perspective.”

Construction, reconstruction or alterations are forbidden under the new ordinance unless the applicant has obtained a building permit from the building inspector. The applicant must provide information about the location, size and construction materials.

Minor repairs do not require a permit. Minor repairs would not increase the occupancy, size or use and not involve structural portions.

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