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Friday, February 14, 2014

“Delegate McDermott Proposes A Bill To Help Contractors”

ANNAPOLIS – A bill sponsored by Delegate Mike McDermott (R – Worcester & Wicomico) will change how permits are issued to contractors and builders by making the process fairer.

In Maryland, there is currently no law requiring a permitting office to specify why a particular permit was rejected. The absence of this requirement, according to Delegate McDermott’s testimony, creates a costly back and forth process between the contractor or homeowner applying for the permit and the permitting officials.

“This complex permit process goes back and forth, back and forth, often times taking six months to a year to figure out exactly what is wrong with the proposed plans,” said Delegate McDermott at the bill hearing. “What House Bill 213 does is deal with fundamental problems in a regulatory process that makes things way too complex and costly for the people.”

“The unnecessary back and forth process costs people time, and time is money, whether you’re a homeowner or a contractor,” Delegate McDermott continues. “This bill says that if the people are denied a permit, the government must simply tell them why they were denied.”

A veteran contractor was also on hand in Annapolis to give testimony of the complex process currently in place. William Schmitt, who has been in the contracting business since 1987, welcomed the changes that Delegate McDermott’s bill would bring.

“As absurd as it sounds, I can tell you that this is a real problem,” Schmitt said. “During my last encounter trying to get plans approved, I had to go back and forth ten times, and never once did they tell me what specifically I had gotten wrong in my plans.”

“There are thousands of regulations,” Schmitt continued. “Knowing exactly which one the permit official is looking for you to correct can be a daunting task.”

“If the government is going to take actions against the citizens of this state and deny them the right to do something on their property, it must simply tell them why,” McDermott concluded.

The bill awaits a vote by the Environmental Affairs Committee.


Anonymous said...

more common sense and cutting of the red tape. thank you again Del. McDermott.

Anonymous said...

Help us even more by hiring a License Enforcement person to enforce our laws against contracting without a license. Currently, there is no one in that position.

I volunteer. Joe knows who I am.

I can't compete against those who pay no payroll taxes, license fees, liability insurance fees and workman's comp. It's a real problem!

Anonymous said...

It is interesting that you say this regarding licensed contractors. One of the men who testified with me at the hearing told me that due to the extensive regulatory environment, he must now charge more for his jobs. This, in turn, makes many homeowners turn to those who lack proper licensing and permits simply because they can do the job for considerably less money. It seems this is a vicious cycle where everybody loses.
-Del. Mike McDermott

Daddio said...

As a licensed contractor, I can tell you that my annual costs for all the licenses I am required to have run over 1000 dollars.

This includes the corporate filing fees (MD went from $40 a year to $300), professional licenses, business licenses, etc.

This does NOT include the costs of permits and inspections which are additional to those other overhead costs.

Not to mention things like liability insurance, workman's comp, unemployment, etc.

You betcha I have to charge more to pay for all these things, while fly-by-night jack legs don't have any of these costs.