Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 3. County, City, and Town Building Codes

Certification Of County, City, Or Town Building Codes

50-60-302. Certification of county, city, or town building codes. (1) A county, city, or town may not enforce a building code unless:

(a) the code enforcement program has been certified by the department as in compliance with applicable statutes and department certification rules;

(b) the current adopted code, a current list of fees to be imposed, and a current plan for enforcement of the code have been filed with and approved by the department; and

(c) all inspectors inspecting or approving any installations, which if accomplished commercially require state licensure, must themselves be properly and currently state-licensed as journeymen in that craft or occupation or be certified by a nationally recognized entity for testing and certification of inspectors that is approved by the department before being permitted to inspect or approve any installations.

(2) (a) Subject to subsection (2)(b), the department shall adopt additional rules and standards governing the certification of county, city, and town building code enforcement programs that must include provisions for prompt revocation of certification for refusal or failure to comply with any applicable statute or rule. The department may allow a county, city, or town a reasonable amount of time, not to exceed 6 months, to correct identified code enforcement program deficiencies, unless the deficiencies constitute an immediate threat to the public health, safety, or welfare, in which case the department may require immediate correction. Failure to correct deficiencies within the time set by the department constitutes a basis for immediate decertification of the code enforcement program. Continued operation of a county, city, or town code enforcement program in violation of a department order to correct deficiencies may be enjoined or subject to a writ of mandamus by a judge of the district court in the jurisdiction in which the county, city, or town is located.

(b) The rules and standards must include provisions for the department to ensure that all code enforcement program functions are being properly performed. The rules may not require a financial audit or a review of fees of a county, city, or town code enforcement program that is in addition to or separate from an audit conducted under 2-7-503.

(3) If the certification of any local government code enforcement program is revoked for any violation or deficiency, the state resumes its original jurisdiction for state building code enforcement within the county, city, or town area and the local government retains the responsibility for completion of inspections and issuance of certificates of occupancy on any incomplete construction projects previously permitted by the county, city, or town, unless the reason for the decertification is directly related to the protection of health, safety, and welfare of the public.

(4) If a county, city, or town voluntarily decertifies its code enforcement program, the department must be given written notification of the intended decertification at least 90 days prior to the date of decertification. The county, city, or town retains the responsibility for completion of inspections and issuance of certificates of occupancy on any incomplete construction projects permitted by the county, city, or town prior to decertifying its code enforcement program.

History: En. Sec. 9, Ch. 366, L. 1969; amd. Sec. 11, Ch. 226, L. 1974; amd. Sec. 3, Ch. 504, L. 1977; R.C.M. 1947, 69-2112(3), (4); amd. Sec. 6, Ch. 488, L. 1997; amd. Sec. 58, Ch. 278, L. 2001; amd. Sec. 16, Ch. 443, L. 2003; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 269, L. 2023.