Forms and Permits
The Permit/Code Enforcement Office has a wide array of responsibilities which touch on many aspects of City policy and function. The Permit Office at City Hall provides a one-stop shop for most matters dealing with the construction and demolition of buildings and structures as well as dealings with code enforcement, zoning, health inspection, sewage enforcement, and housing rehabilitation. A lot of these permit forms are now available through this site. This department employs a Code Enforcement/Inspections Officer, a Code Enforcement/Building Inspections Officer, a Zoning/Subdivision/Code Enforcement Officer, and a Secretary.
An amusement device permit is for any person, persons, firm, or corporation that has in their possession, any mechanical or electronic device, machine, or apparatus whatsoever for the playing of games, amusement or entertainment, or any juke box, music box, phonographs, or other similar musical device, all of which are played through the insertion of a coin or any metal disk, slug or token whatsoever.
$50.00 per unit per year.
With the Certificate of Compliance, the applicant grants the City the right to enter onto their property for the purpose of making the necessary inspection required when person intends to transfer any interest in any occupied real property within the City. This includes the physical inspection of both sanitary sewer and on-lot septic systems.
Sanitary Sewer – $30.00 – residential uses plus $25.00 per hour over one hour of time. $50.00 – commercial and industrial uses up to 5,000 square feet plus $20.00 for each additional 5,000 square feet of building.
Septic System – $50.00 – residential, commercial and industrial uses.
Driveway permits must be obtained to construct or repair a driveway or private road that enters onto the right-of-way of any City street. If the road is owned by the State, the resident must obtain a Highway Occupancy Permit from PennDOT.
$20.00 for installation of less than 24′ of drainage pipe.
$35.00 for installation of over 24′ of drainage pipe.
$50.00 for curb cuts plus $30.00 per l.f. deposit.
Excess maintenance agreements are required for trucks that are over the posted weight limit for the road. Forms are to be filled out and submitted to the Permit Office at City Hall. The street superintendent first inspects the road for any current damage to the road and then again after the hauling operation is complete to check for any possible damage that may have been done by the truck drivers.
$50.00 for the first mile of road; $25.00 per mile thereafter
$25.00 for annual permit for road.
Fireworks permits are required for public and private displays of fireworks for any occasion within the City of St. Marys. An approved permit may be requested by a fireworks retailer before items can be purchased. The application requires site information, dates of displays, rain dates for displays, admission fees and the posting of at least a $500.00 Bond with the City. The permits must be approved by the City Manager and the Fire Chief, so please apply for the permit well in advance of the anticipated display date.
$10.00 Application Fee
A Junkyard License is required by the City of Saint Marys whenever anyone engages in the reclaiming, salvaging, or selling of scrap metal, vehicle parts, etc. Certain restrictions apply concerning the operation and location of junkyards and should be discussed with the Zoning Officers at City Hall.
$50.00 – 15,000 square feet of property or less
$100.00 – 15,001 to 40,000 square feet of property
$200.00 – over 40,000 square feet of property
The improvement of two or more contiguous residential lots or one non-residential lot (commercial or industrial) constitutes a land development. The Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance regulates land developments. Applications for land development must be approved prior to a building permit being issued. In addition to zoning regulations, the City must ensure that these developments meet all other codes and regulations. Plans must be reviewed by City staff and the fire department for conformance with building and fire codes. Soil erosion and sedimentation permits must also be obtained from the Elk Conservation District in many cases.
$25.00 – Land Development Application
Property owners may petition the City to rezone their property. Applications shall be filed with the Zoning Officer, upon which they shall pay an advertising fee and filing fee in accordance with the fee schedule affixed by the City. Applications will be reviewed by the Zoning Officer, Planning Commission, and City Council.
$3.75 per page – stenographic services (if required)
All properties that are accessible to and within 150′ of the sanitary sewer line must connect to the sewer. A sewer tap permit must be obtained from the City Permit Office. All connections must be performed in accordance with established rules and regulations in the City ordinances. In addition to the connection, customers must also pay a tapping fee. The tapping fee pays a portion of the cost and maintenance of the wastewater treatment plant. Each fee is set per equivalent dwelling unit. Each EDU amounts to 400 gallons of flow per day and is equal to one single family residence.
$1,050.00 – tapping fee per EDU (plus costs) 1 – 3 EDU’s
$500.00 tapping fee per EDU (plus costs) – 4+ EDU’s
$11,650.00 – maximum fee
$25.00 – inspection fee
Septic systems are required on property where sanitary sewer is not available. The permitting process includes a soil probe and a perc test of the property to determine the type and size of the septic system. These tests can only be done during the warmer months of the year (April to October, weather permitting) so that accurate readings can be obtained. Testing schedules are to be set up with the Sewage Enforcement Officer (SEO) during the week so that he can work closely with the applicant during this process. The City utilizes a third-party SEO for its on-lot sewage facilities testing and permitting. Application forms are only available by visiting City Hall, and the fee must be paid before the permit can be issued.
$450.00 – probe, perc tests, design. inspection and permit.
$200.00 – repair/modification permit that do not require soils testing or alterations to absoprtion area.
$125.00 – investigate complaints and malfunctions.
$75.00 – return per extra visit to a site not properly prepared by the applicant.
$100.00 – re-issue expired permit.
$50.00 per hour – miscellaneous work.
$175.00 – preliminary site suitability testing for DEP Planning module.
$20.00 – for each additional soil probe for above.
$350.00 – complete site suitability testing for DEP Planning module
$250.00 – replacement area testing for DEP Planning module
$50.00 – review of pending DEP Planning module
$75.00 – residual tract inspection of existing on-lot system for non-building waivers and DEP Planning Modules
Permits are required for many types of signage in the City of Saint Marys. Zoning Permit applications for signs are available in the Permit Office at City Hall and through the link below. The Zoning Ordinance is used as a guideline to determine if the sign meets regulations including size, location, and type of sign. Refer to Saint Marys City Code Book Chapter 27, Section 315 to review the regulations.
The City of St. Marys also regulates the placement of signs in the Boulevard area on S Saint Marys Street. Placement of signs in this area is limited to non-profit or community organizations, and a permit application is required. The permit application can be downloaded through the link below called “Boulevard Sign Permit” and there is no fee for the application.
$25.00 – Zoning Permit for Sign
A Soliciting Permit (which includes Transient Retail) is required when a person engages in the peddling, soliciting, or selling either by sample or otherwise of any type of goods, wares, or merchandise anywhere within the City of Saint Marys whether it be by telephone, door-to-door or by standing at local businesses asking for donations, etc on a temporary basis.
$50.00 per week
No fee for non-profit organizations
The adoption of the Elk County Stormwater Management Plan in 2010 required the City of St. Marys to revise its Stormwater Management Ordinance to regulate all construction of impervious surfaces. Luckily, the City was able to exempt most common Residential improvements from the Stormwater Engineering requirements, however, the improvements must still be documented. Most impervious surface improvements can be documented though the Small Project Stormwater Management Application, which is part of the Zoning Permit Application. Almost all impervious improvements require the issuance of a Zoning Permit before construction begins. The Non-residential aspect of Stormwater Management ia essentially the same as the prior Stormwater Management Ordinance, unless the development requires the issuance of a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination Permit (NPES).
$0.00 – Small Project Stormwater Management Application (Included as part of the Zoning Permit Review).
$50.00 – Stormwater Management Permit (less than 20,000 square feet).
$100.00 – Stormwater Management Permit (more than 20,000 square feet).
+$100.00 – Engineer/Legal fees incurred by City to review application and plans.
Whenever a road or street right-of-way is dug up by a resident, utility, or any other agency, a street excavation permit is required. City inspectors will inspect the repair work to the road for compliance to City ordinances.
$11.00 per square foot – improved streets and berms
$7.00 per square foot – unimproved streets and berms
$50.00 – untravelled portion of the right-of-way
$50.00 – curb breaks (plus $30.00 per foot refundable deposit)
If you want to divide a larger parcel of land into one or more parcels, whether to sell or build on, subdivision approval is required by the City. A subdivision application, along with a layout of the property and other pertinent information, is to be submitted to the Permit Office for review by City Zoning Officers. From there it is reviewed by the City Planning Commission and then City Council. Depending on the nature of the subdivision, minor or major, approval could take a few months. Contact a City Zoning Officer who will guide you through the process.
$25.00 per lot – minor and major subdivisions
$10.00 – Elk County review fee
$250.00 – legal fees (if required)
$10.00 – clerical fees (if required)
A Permit is required when a new business starts up in an existing building or for a business operated out of the home, or changing the use of a building or a section of a building to a different one. The Zoning Permit must be applied for and issued prior to the business opening, and confirms that the use of the land and/or building is in compliance with the City’s Zoning Ordinance.
FEES: $25.00 – Zoning Permit for Change in Use
In the past, both building and zoning were incorporated in one permit. Since the State-wide building code (UCC 45) has been implemented, it was best that we separate the two permits. Some construction that takes place such as accessory structures less than 1,000 square feet may be exempted from the building code and building permits, but proper set back distances, height, use, and other zoning issues must still be complied with. Whether the construction that takes place requires a building permit or not, it may still require a zoning permit.
Zoning permit applications are available in the Permit Office at City Hall. One of three zoning officers will review the application for compliance with the applicable regulations of the Zoning Ordinance. Part of the application incorporates a site plan that shows the location of the proposed construction including the setback distances from each property line. The City Zoning Ordinance contains requirements for front, rear and side yard setback distances, lot size, height, use, and other matters. Normally, zoning permit applications are reviewed within three to five days and approved if everything is in compliance with the Zoning Ordinance.
$25.00 Zoning Permit
The City of Saint Marys requests the Saint Marys Water Authority to install fire hydrants locations which have adequate water pressure and volume, and pose a significant fire risk. Typically, these areas are around housing and other growing developments. The City accepts requests for fire hydrants from residents and refers them to the Fire Department and Water Authority. After review, the City will annually add several new hydrants, normally in the fall of the year.
The City has a numbering system that it utilizes for new homes and businesses. This system is intended to establish a consistent, uniform method for numbering buildings within the City. It makes it easier for delivery people, emergency services, etc. to locate a house or business on a given street. All buildings are issued a number and are required to display this number on the side of the house or building that faces the road or street it is addressed to. House numbers issued by the Elk County GIS Department and the application form should be submitted there.
The numbers must be at least three inches high and in such a color that they are visible from the street or road.
The City has adopted regulations in keeping with the Postal Service requirements for placing mailboxes along City roads. Improperly placed mailboxes present a hazard to the motoring public and are more likely to be damaged by the City while trying to maintain the road. In any event, the City considers mailboxes a convenience for the public and does not accept any of the responsibility for repairing or replacing damaged mailboxes that are hit by plows or pushed over by snow piles. The City crew is conscientious in performing their duties, but cannot avoid occasional damage. Repair and replacement of mailboxes is the responsibility of the homeowner.
The City has adopted a Property Maintenance Code, as well as various building and fire codes, which are designed to protect the health, safety, and general welfare of the residents. The City does not intend to interfere with the use of your property. However, if you create a nuisance for neighbors by neglecting the proper maintenance of your property, the City may be forced to take action against you. Lots must be kept free of trash and debris which could harbor vermin. Broken windows, and other structural or maintenance problems must be corrected within a reasonable amount of time. Yards must be kept mowed and ditch lines should be periodically trimmed. Abandoned or junk vehicles should be removed at once. Sidewalks must be kept free of snow and ice. Naturally, a reasonable amount of time is necessary for the removal of snow, but if someone falls on your sidewalk due to improper maintenance or repair, you are legally responsible. Also, snow must not be deposited onto the streets to melt nor is it permissible to plow snow across the roadway. These practices create serious hazards to motorists and are illegal. Suspected property maintenance issues can be submitted via the City’s My Civic Report an Issue Application or a Resident Request form can be submitted.
The Resident Request Form can be used to alert the City of issues such as missing street signs, potholes, or other hazardous street conditions as well as suspected property maintenance and other code violations. You submit a request for these common issues via the City’s My Civic Report an Issue Application. The form can also be filled out and submitted to City Hall via mail, email (firstname.lastname@example.org), or in person.
The City has adopted a Property Maintenance Code, as well as various building and fire codes, which are designed to protect the health, safety, and general welfare of the residents. The City does not intend to interfere with the use of your property. However, if you create a nuisance for neighbors by neglecting the proper maintenance of your property, the City may be forced to take action against you. Lots must be kept free of trash and debris which could harbor vermin. Broken window and floor boards and other structural or maintenance problems must be corrected within a reasonable amount of time. Yards must be kept mowed and ditch lines should be periodically trimmed. Abandoned vehicles should be removed at once. Sidewalks must be kept free of snow and ice. Naturally, a reasonable amount of time is necessary for the removal of snow, but if someone falls on your sidewalk due to improper maintenance or repair, you are legally responsible. Also, snow must not be put onto the roadway to melt nor is it permissible to plow snow across the roadway. These practices create serious hazards to motorists and are illegal.
The City provides street lights along numerous roads within the more urbanized portions of town and at intersections in the developing areas. The cost for these street lights is borne by all property owners through the real estate taxes. As neighborhoods develop and pedestrian and vehicular traffic increases, the City attempts to expand its street lighting system to those areas. Property owners may petition the City for installation of street lights. The petition will be considered in light of need, available finances, safety priorities, installation costs, and other relevant factors. The street lights are maintained by the electric utility company, but the City of St. Marys alerts them to the street light problems.
If you see a malfunctioning street light, you may report the issue via the City’s My Civic Report an Issue Application or you may contact the utility company directly under Service Requests – Report A Lighting Issue and report the light problem, the nearest street intersection, and the nearest property address, so it can be corrected.