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Port Chester Daily Voice serves Port Chester, NY
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Rye Brook's Building Amnesty Program to End in May

RYE BROOK, N.Y. - The Village of Rye Brook's building amnesty program, which offers residents an opportunity to receive approval on all work completed without proper permits, will end on May 24.

The amnesty program, which began on Nov. 19, 2009, waives the administrative fine for completing work without a permit, but does not waive fees associated with the building permit and the certificate of occupancy. The program also offers an expedited path for receiving approval on one and two family homes.

The local law states that applicants of one and two family homes can bypass the Architectural Review Board if they give notice to all neighbors within 50 feet of their property line and do not receive return notice in 10 days.

Section 4 of the local law states that the expedited path only applies to "small projects". A project is defined as small if it does not create a second story if none previously existed on the structure, is less than 15 percent of the existing gross floor area of the structure as measured prior to the addition or alteration, relates solely to the installation of windows and/or sliding glass doors, the installation or replacement of a fence, deck, patio or retaining wall, and was completed on or prior to Nov. 1, 2007.

According to the village website, the goal of the program is "to ensure the safety of all citizens through inspections, while permitting homeowners to receive all proper permits."

"We just want to make sure everything is safe," Village Administrator Chris Bradbury said. "To make sure everything is up to code."

According to Bradbury, the village has put on a number of educational programs attempting to spread the word regarding the amnesty program. Bradbury also confirmed that as of May 14, 2011, which was the last time the amnesty law was extended to 2012, there were 35 homeowners who took advantage of the program with three or four pending cases.

"The time to do it is now," Bradbury said of receiving permits.

For more information regarding the local law or the building amnesty program, visit the Village of Rye Brook website at ryebrook.org .

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