By Errol Castens/NEMS Daily Journal
OXFORD – Lafayette County supervisors voted 5-0 Monday to have the county’s Planning Commission draft an ordinance that would require builders to meet standard building codes for commercial and subdivision construction.
Planning Commission Chairman T.J. Ray cited insufficient plumbing and structural weakness as problems that code-based inspections would help prevent.
“We need this,” he said. “We want developers and builders in the conversation.”
Supervisor Chad McLarty agreed.
“I fully support building codes in subdivisions and commercial property,” he said. “I’ve seen too many of our constituents buy homes that weren’t built to standards.”
Supervisor Robert Blackmon said he’d had constituents complain that banks wouldn’t finance houses without the proof that building codes and inspections would offer. Realtor Dick Marchbanks, who is also a member of the Planning Commission, said people moving in from other states expect a house to be code-certified. Gary Coleman concurred.
“When we’re selling a house to somebody in New York … they want to know these houses are built to code,” Coleman said. “It’s going to get very difficult to sell a house that isn’t inspected and isn’t built to code.”
The proposed ordinance will not affect homes or outbuildings outside of subdivisions.