Medicine Lake city hall

The city of Medicine Lake entered into an agreement with the city of Plymouth so Plymouth will conduct Medicine Lake’s permitting process. Medicine Lake’s City Hall is located at 10609 S Shore Drive.

PLYMOUTH — The city of Plymouth decided to take on a bit of extra work on Tuesday, Feb. 11, when the City Council passed a resolution to adopt a joint powers agreement to conduct the permitting process for the city of Medicine Lake.

Building Official Tyson Jenkins explained to the City Council that over the summer of 2019, Medicine Lake city staff approached the city of Plymouth about entering into a joint powers agreement that would have Plymouth to do all inspections and permitting for buildings, plumbing and mechanical work regulated under Minnesota state building code within Medicine Lake.

Under this agreement, Plymouth would get 85% of the building permit code fees, the other 15% would go to administrative costs for Medicine Lake. According to Tyson, over 2017-2018, Medicine Lake made $24,000 in permit fees — 85% of which would be roughly $20,000.

Building permit fees go to the community development portion of the Plymouth’s General Fund, Communications Manager Helen LaFave told Lakeshore Weekly News.

The amount of workload added to Plymouth’s building and code department would not be much, Tyson explained, as Medicine Lake only has 2-3 tinspections per week. In comparison, the city of Plymouth has, on average, 320 inspections per week.

Medicine Lake’s fee structure mirrors Plymouth’s, making the process simple for staff. If the permit fees do not cover Plymouth staff’s work on the permit, there is an hourly rate built into the joint powers agreement so the city wouldn’t lose money, Tyson said.

Staff agreed to report back to the City Council in six to nine months on how the permitting process is going. The agreement only lasts for one year and then can be renewed at that time. Either city can terminate the agreement at any time with 60 days notice, Tyson said.

The city council passed the resolution unanimously.

Frances Stevenson is a reporter for the Lakeshore Weekly News, covering the communities around Lake Minnetonka.

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