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NYC Dept. of Buildings Raises Facade Report Filing Fees Facade Inspection Safety Program (FISP) Compliance Just Got a Lot More Expensive

The New York City Department of Buildings (DOB) recently published an amended rule that increases the filing fees for Facade Inspection Safety Program (FISP) Reports required to be conducted cyclically by owners of buildings taller than six stories. Public-facing facades and appurtenances are mandated to be inspected every five years by a qualified exterior wall inspector (QEWI), with the findings submitted to the DOB in a technical report. These reports must classify the building as Safe, Unsafe, or Safe with a Repair and Maintenance Program (SWARMP).

Types of FISP Reports

Three categories of FISP Report exist: the Initial Report indicating the building's status as Safe, Unsafe or SWARMP; an Amended Report to upgrade a previously filed Unsafe status to SWARMP or Safe; and a Subsequent Report, which can change the status of a building previously classified as Safe or SWARMP, or extend the deadline for completing repair of SWARMP and/or Unsafe conditions. In addition, the inspecting QEWI may file Time Extension requests while repairs are in progress to avoid fines being levied on owners for not correcting Unsafe conditions.

The new filing fees will take effect on July 15, 2020, and are as follows:

Report

    Old Fee

     New Fee

Initial Report

    $265

     $425

Amended/Subsequent Report

    $100

     $425

90-day Extension Request

    $135

     $305

The 9th FISP Cycle

The 9th FISP cycle began on February 21, 2020, and has instituted a number of significant changes aimed at increasing public safety, in part by increasing the pressure on building owners to bring their properties into compliance. In addition to the above filing fees, owners must have their buildings inspected and their 9th Cycle Reports filed with the DOB by their filing deadline (determined by the last digit of the building's block number) to avoid $1,000 per-month and $5,000 per-year penalties. Unsafe conditions must be corrected within 90 days of filing a report with an Unsafe status, or a Time Extension must be filed; otherwise, owners face a penalty of $1,000 per month, with additional penalties if the conditions remain uncorrected for over a year. Finally, an Amended Report must be filed within two weeks of completing the cited repairs.

All reports must be submitted electronically through DOB NOW: Safety. For more information on the new 9th Cycle rules, see RAND's "New Rule Issued for Facade Inspections."

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