(1) Only counties or incorporated cities and towns in Montana have the option of adopting their own code enforcement programs. A city, county, or town code enforcement program must be certified in accordance with ARM Title 24, chapter 301, subchapter 2 before the local government entity may begin enforcing building regulations. Where a county adopts such a program, the county must enforce the building regulations on a county-wide basis, except where an incorporated city or town already has a certified code enforcement program in place or where the city or town is later certified for operation of such programs. Cities, counties, and towns may enter into contracts for enforcement of building regulations within their respective jurisdictions, but those contracts must be submitted to the department as part of an application for certification, or as an amendment to a previously approved plan before the contract may be performed.

(2) Specific alternative examples of code enforcement jurisdictional relationships and responsibilities are as follows:

(a) In counties where no certified county code enforcement programs are in effect:

(i) the department will enforce Montana's building regulations in all unincorporated cities and towns;

(ii) incorporated cities and towns which also do not have certified code enforcement programs in effect will have Montana's building regulations enforced by the department; and

(iii) incorporated cities and towns which do have a certified code enforcement program in effect will operate that program and enforce Montana's building regulations within their jurisdiction.

(b) A city or town that incorporates can choose to:

(i) apply for certification to operate its own code enforcement program;

(ii) be regulated by a county code enforcement program, if one is in effect; or

(iii) have the department provide permitting and inspection services inside the city limits in accordance with Montana statutes and administrative rules.


History: This rule is advisory only, but may be a correct interpretation of the law, 50-60-203, MCA; IMP, 50-60-103, 50-60-106, 50-60-117, 50-60-301, 50-60-302, MCA; Ch. 443, sec. 25, L. 2003; NEW, 2003 MAR p. 1991, Eff. 10/1/03; AMD, 2022 MAR p. 911, Eff. 6/11/22.