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The City of Portland, Oregon

Development Services

From Concept to Construction

Phone: 503-823-7300


1900 SW 4th Ave, Portland, OR 97201

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Electrical FAQ

1. Is an electrical permit application always required to obtain an electrical permit?

Yes, an electrical permit application is always required regardless of the electrical work being performed.

2. What can hold up issuance of my permit?

a. An incomplete application
    • Associated Building permit number not supplied
    • Missing Project Reference number/Billing number
    • Incomplete licensing information
    • Missing address/tenant name/suite number
    • No signing supervisor signature
b. Obtaining an online permit instead of applying through the FPP process

3. Is a permit required for an access reader?

Yes. Access readers do require an electrical permit, building permit (the location of the access reader may impact emergency egress from a tenant space or building), and possibly a permit through Portland Fire & Rescue.

4. What permits are required for a new or modified fire alarm system?  

    • An electrical permit for the wiring of the system
    • A Portland Fire & Rescue permit for the design of the system and layout of the devices

5. Can there be multiple electrical permits on a project?

Yes, each contractor is responsible for obtaining a permit for the scope of the work they are performing. For example, there may be multiple electrical permits on a project:
    • Power (power to the suite you’re working in)
    • Fire Alarm (new or alteration of systems or devices)
    • Low Voltage (access readers, voice/data, audio/video, etc.)

light bulb If you coordinate the timing of your electrical inspections, multiple electrical inspections for the same project can occur simultaneously.
light bulb All electrical permits are required to be finaled prior to the building permit being finaled.

6. When are electrical plans required?

Electrical plans are submitted as part of the building permit process. If the electrical reviewer needs additional information, they’ll send a checksheet to the permit applicant.

7. What work cannot be processed through FPP and will be required to go through the standard commercial electrical process?

    • Services
    • Feeders exceeding 400 amps
    • Circuits & feeders over 1,000 volts
    • Photovoltaic systems
    • Sign Permits

8. Who should call for the inspections?

The contractor doing the work should call their senior FPP Electrical Inspector directly to schedule inspections.

light bulb Always leave the request on the desk phone of your inspector. Although you can contact your Senior FPP Electrical Inspector via email or cell phone, leaving a message on their desk phone ensures your inspection request will be received in a timely manner.

9. What information should be provided as part of the request for inspection?

    • Permit Number
    • Site Address
    • Type of Inspection
    • Contractor Information
    • Site Contact Information

10. Can I use the MEPP/Inplant Inspections program in this building?

Yes, the MEPP/Inplant inspections program is available. An orientation meeting will be required. Please call 503-823-5996 and ask for the FPP Project Coordinator.

11. Can I use a minor electrical label?

No, the FPP Program Guide does not allow the use of Minor Electrical Labels. Contact your Senior Electrical Inspector with further questions.