Sep 192014

By Tammy Gray

Revenue generated through the sale of building permits was the highest it has been in four years for the 2013-14 fiscal year, according to a report by the Navajo County Planning and Zoning Department.

County officials collected a total of $389,387 in building permit fees throughout the course of the last fiscal year. That was up by nearly $62,000 over the year before, and the highest amount since fiscal year 2009-10. It is still only a fraction of the $1.1 million collected in 2005-06 or the $1 million collected in 2006-07.

Building permit revenues started dropping in 2007-08, when they totaled just under $750,000, then plunged the next year to a little more than $483,000. The revenues hit a low in 2011-12 when they came to just under $294,000. They have been steadily rising since that time.

This fiscal year, however, building permit revenues have dropped significantly over the first month of the fiscal year. Revenues for July totaled $26,191, compared to the $48,977 collected in July 2013. According to the report, July is not typically a busy month for building permits, but is not usually the slowest month either. Amounts vary from year to year, but January and February are often the slowest, with July falling somewhere in the middle.

In July the planning and zoning department issued eight new start dwelling permits, three manufactured home permits and no commercial permits. That is down from 11 new start dwelling permits, eight manufactured home permits and three commercial permits issued in July 2013.

The department did issue more garage or accessory building permits in July 2014 than the previous year, with 21 issued this fiscal year and 18 last year. The number of septic permits remained the same for both years, with a total of 26 issued. Plan review submittals totaled 94, compared to 97 last year.

Permits issued in June 2014, although included in the last fiscal year, were also down compared to 2013. A total of seven new dwelling, three manufactured home and three commercial permits were issued, compared to eight new start dwelling, 11 manufactured home and no commercial permits in June 2013.

Overall, collections for permits issued in June of this year were up by about $120 over the previous June. The total collected was $33,949. The highest total for building permits in June was in fiscal year 2009-10, when the county collected $135,516, much higher than the $84,511 collected in June 2005 when the yearly total reached more than $1.1 million.