City to vote on code al­ter­na­tives

The Covington News - - FRONT PAGE - BRYAN FAZIO news@cov­news.com

The City of Cov­ing­ton will present some amend­ments to its fire code or­di­nance at Mon­day’s city coun­cil meet­ing af­ter reach­ing a con­sen­sus on it in a work ses­sion Tues­day.

Cov­ing­ton Fire De­part­ment Chief John McNeil pre­sented three changes to the or­di­nance, which con­sists of con­sol­i­da­tion and amend­ments to the code on ex­ist­ing build­ings. The city would not only con­sol­i­date its codes now to com­ply with state stan­dards, but also make amend­ments avail­able for build­ings, such as historic struc­tures, that may not cur­rently com­ply with code.

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“It’s for an al­ter­na­tive where com­pli­ance to fire code is not prac­ti­cal for one rea­son or another,” McNeil said. “It of­fers an al­ter­na­tive to busi­nesses or build­ing own­ers in terms of look­ing at our op­tions.

“It’s not a waiver of the fire code but a com­pli­ance al­ter­na­tive.”

In order to make an ap­pro­pri­ate amend­ment to the code, the busi­ness owner or de­vel­oper would need to ap­ply in writ­ing, and McNeil and Fire Mar­shall Tony Smith would ap­prove or not ap­prove of the changes to the code.

If the rul­ing is in fa­vor of code al­ter­na­tives, it will be­come the new stan­dard for that build­ing, as long as it re­mains the same busi­ness clas­si­fi­ca­tion.

“If we’re deal­ing with a busi­ness or re­tail of­fi­cer, mer­can­tile, and we make one of those ad­just­ments, now we have a new stan­dard,” Smith said. “As long as that build­ing main­tains its oc­cu­pancy class of busi­ness or mer­can­tile, that’s the new stan­dard. If some­one wants to put in a church or assem­bly, there needs to be a new stan­dard.

Maple re­moval Fri­day

The city will be­gin ac­tion on its im­prove­ment plan to the Square Fri­day when it re­moves some Maple trees from the park.

The tree re­moval is in prepa­ra­tion for the renovations, which were ap­proved in April. In­cluded in the renovations are a paved area around the war vet­er­ans mon­u­ment, new land­scap­ing, added benches and the re­place­ment of trees.

The renovations are sched­uled to be­gin Aug. 11. City Man­ager Leigh Anne Knight said the hope is to have the Square renovations com­pleted by Septem­ber’s Con­cert on the Square.

Back-to-school event

The coun­cil also came to a con­sen­sus al­low­ing for any over­flow into the Eter­nal Flame Park dur­ing an event at Con­nex­ion Church Satur­day.

The church, lo­cated at 2160 Church Street, is host­ing a back- toschool event from noon to 3 p. m., fea­tur­ing sup­plies, food, mu­sic and more.

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