DeKalb County and City of Atlanta Review Procedures and Inspections Update

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DeKalb County and City of Atlanta continue to update procedures.

In DeKalb County, the Planning and Sustainability Department’s Land Development Division staff are working, conducting reviews, and accepting applications through the County’s e-permitting portal. The e-permitting portal is able to accept uploads and the County has provided a guide to assist. We recommend all applicants contact Land Development Division staff for assistance before submitting an application. Contact information can be found on the Planning and Sustainability Department website. Land Development Division staff are also available by email to answer questions and provide assistance in understanding the requirements or comments on a project.

The Planning Division of DeKalb County’s Planning and Sustainability Department is accepting new applications through email. Planning Division staff are able to accept .pdf files via email at Staff will acknowledge receipt of the application and, for certain applications, schedule a pre-application meeting by phone. The community meeting portion of applications has been suspended at this time, though that may change as our population and government become more adept at remote meetings. Payment is currently accepted via mailed check, though the County is working on other options in the coming weeks.

Similarly, City of Atlanta’s Department of City Planning continues to expand their permitting options, rolling out a new process for the first time this week. Some pieces are still not fully mapped out, such how applications that call for Neighborhood Planning Unit review will move forward. Because City of Atlanta is using email to accept new (and to follow up on existing) applications, it is important to abide by the updated instructions, reproduced in substitutive part below, with our annotations. The updated instructions on how to submit applications can also be found on the full flyer.

City of Atlanta Arborists have introduced a method to virtually conduct field inspections in the pre-demolition inspection and final arborist inspection stages. This remote viewing method allows the applicant to provide a video link to the arborist for inspection, providing the arborist with a full view of the property, starting from the street and proceeding around the property clockwise. The applicant is expected to have the tools on hand necessary to complete the inspection, such as: a CFGI Tester, step ladder, tape measure, and level. This list may not be exhaustive, and the applicant should confirm with the arborist what tools are needed prior to the appointment. The City anticipates inspections being performed within two days of the applicant’s request. Requests are to be submitted to

City of Atlanta Updated Department of City Planning Instructions:

1. Applicant submits only the application form to

a. Please use the following subject lines:

i. “Existing Application: [ADDRESS] [APPLICATION OR PERMIT NUMBER]” (Note: This option is only available when directed by Department of City Planning staff.)

ii. “New Application: [ADDRESS]”

iii. “Resubmission: [ADDRESS]”

2. Department of City Planning staff will communicate receipt of the application and direct the applicant to upload plans to a OneDrive location. All plans should be in .pdf format and to a noted scale.

3. The applicant uploads plans to a OneDrive location as directed.

4. Department of City Planning staff will conduct a review for completeness and will ensure all previously obtained approvals are included (e.g. Historic/Landmark District and Zoning approval).

a. If sufficient, staff will accept the information uploaded and create the Accela record.

b. If insufficient, staff will communicate additional requirements to the applicant.

5. Where the application requires fees, staff will invoice the applicant and provide directions for online payment.

6. Applications are considered complete when all fees and required documents are received by the Department of City Planning.

7. Department of City Planning staff will assign plan review according to each office’s internal protocol and begin review.

8. If required, comments will be provided directly from the plan reviewer to the applicant and saved in the Accela Citizen Access portal record. Instructions on how to submit additional documents will be provided to the applicant as necessary.

9. Upon completion of plan review, Department of City Planning staff will digitally stamp the plans, provide final invoices (where applicable), and instruct the applicant to upload any final documentation before approvals are released.

10. Plans and permit cards will be available digitally through the Accela Citizen Access portal or by email.