Sebastian Council hopes to renew board that hasn’t met in year

SEBASTIAN – Four members of the Sebastian Construction Board were reappointed to a second 3-year term, though the board hasn’t met in over a year.

The last meeting was July 2009.

Instead of disbanding the board, the Sebastian City Council unanimously approved re-upping the Construction Board’s membership and tasking them with reviewing the city’s building regulations and codes. “That would at least give them a reason to meet,” Mayor Richard Gillmor said during a recent council meeting.

The Sebastian City Council briefly considered discontinuing the Construction Board, as the Indian River County Board of Commissioners recently sunset many of its boards and committees.

However, City Manager Al Minner advised the council to keep the Construction Board.

Minner told the council that the board could provide them with good input on the impact of the state’s changes to building regulations and codes from a construction point of view.

The Construction Board consists of five members who are professionals or retired professionals from various parts of the construction industry. Currently, there are four members serving on the board – the plumber position is currently vacant.

The board members include:

Dithmar Bulla – Electrical Contractor

Frank Dalessandro – HARV Contractor

James Fortier – Alternate Concerned Citizen

Mark Redden – Alternate Contractor

Minner explained the city’s Construction Board serves as the appeals board for Building Department decisions. If a builder disagrees with the Building Department’s decision, the builder can go to the Construction Board.

“They just deal with it,” Vice Mayor Jim Hill said of builders who disagree with the Building Department because they don’t know about the Construction Board.

Minner said if the council were to get rid of the board, appellants would have to go before either Indian River County’s Special Magistrate or the state’s Construction Board.

The city’s Construction Board also has jurisdiction to prosecute unlicensed contractors, according to Minner.

Mayor Gillmor took issue with the dormancy of the board, calling it an “untapped resource” that should be used to help promote economic growth in the city.

“If we’re going to re-up them, I’d like to see them get to work,” he added.

The Sebastian Council decided that they would hold a more full discussion regarding the Construction Board, it’s mission and possible agendas after the first of the year.





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