GENERAL QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS REGARDING FIRE CODE APPEALS
How do I file an appeal?
Filing an appeal can be accomplished in two ways (Note: A $200 administration fee will be required upon filing the appeal):
- Click here to link to the Bureau of Development Services website and complete the electronic form. (When using the electronic form on this website, remember to select “FIRE” as the appeal type.), or
- Print and fill out the paper copy of the Fire Code Appeal Form and send your packet to:
Portland Fire & Rescue
Attn: Leanna Smith
55 SW Ash Street
Portland, OR 97204
Note: Along with the fee payment and a completed appeal form, the appeal should include supplemental material to demonstrate the need for the appeal. Depending on what is being appealed, additional materials such as blue prints, maps of the area/site plans, or a written letter may be required – anything that will help demonstrate the basis for the appeal. Failure to provide complete and accurate information may cause delays with the appeal review process.
How do I pay for the appeal?
The $200 fee (check or cash) may be mailed or delivered in person to 55 SW Ash Street, Portland, Oregon 97204. (This location does not accept credit/debit cards.)
Who can I contact with questions?
Contact your Fire Inspector or the Plans Examiner to inquire about a violation of a Fire Code. He or she can provide you with information about what Fire Code you are appealing and why. In some cases, your Fire Inspector or Plans Examiner may also provide suggestions on alternate methods of fixing the appeal. If you do not know who your Fire Inspector or Plans Examiner is, call the Fire Code & Inspection helpline at (503) 823-3770.
For Fire Inspector contact information, please reference the following Portland Fire & Rescue listing: http://www.portlandoregon.gov/fire/article/389819
What is the process?
Upon receipt of your appeal packet and fee payment, the administrative appeal board will review the appeal. A decision will be reached and a letter of disposition will be sent to you.
What if I don’t agree with the decision?
If you are not satisfied with the administrative ruling the appeal may be continued to the Fire Code Board of Appeals. To initiate this process, you may send your appeal information and a written request to the address as indicated in your letter of disposition. This information must be received no later than 10 days from the administrative ruling as specified in the disposition letter.
Note: If you do request a hearing before the Fire Code Board of Appeals, please be prepared to show how your appeal demonstrates an alternate means of equivalent safety in regards to the applicable code requirement(s). The Board of Appeals does not have the power to waive any provisions of the code. All appeal requests must demonstrate a substantially equivalent degree of safety is provided and is generally conforming to national standards concerning fire prevention, fire safety measures and building construction requirements for safety.
Who makes up the Fire Code Board of Appeals?
The Board is a three member group composed of volunteers of qualified individuals from the private sector who possess knowledge and experience in the specific code. All meetings are open to the public.
Where in the Fire Code are appeals addressed?
The authority is derived from City Code, Title 31 Fire Regulations, reference 31.10.080.
How do I research appeals?
Click here to access the following building code appeal information provided by the Bureau of Developmental Services:
- Prepare your Appeal
- How to File Your Appeal
- Appeal Process
- View Appeal Results
- Applications and handouts
Additional questions may also be sent to the Appeals Administrator via email at: Leanna.Smith@portlandoregon.gov.