This just in from the San Francisco Planning Department regarding sign permit waivers
Supervisor Carmen Chu introduced legislation allowing for permit fee waivers for small businesses (100 employees or less) during the month of May, when the City traditionally celebrates small businesses. The legislation would provide a permit fee waiver for 1) awning replacements (not new installations) and 2) pedestrian-level lighting. The legislation is up for its first reading at today’s Board meeting, with a final vote next Tuesday. There is language in the ordinance allowing for the retroactive application of this fee waiver so that the permit fees will be waived from May 1 through 31, 2012.
The rationale behind this legislation was to provide small businesses with incentives to improve their storefront appearance, and to improve public safety along our commercial corridors. While working on a storefront improvement project involving awning replacements on Taraval Street, we learned that the City requires permit fees even if a property owner is just replacing an awning. These permit fees can add up. There are separate fees for different types of replacement work, such as if you are 1) replacing the canvas/plastic covering; 2) replacing awning sign with wording on it; 3) replacing the awning structure.
For the lowest tier of replacement work involving all three components, here’s what the permit fees would look like:
1) replacing awning sign: $326 fee through Planning Dept
2) replacing awning sign with wording on it: $130 fee through Planning Dept
3) replacing entire awning structure:
DBI Plan Review Fee: $155.75 for the first $500.00 or less; plus $3.15 for each additional $100.00 or fraction thereof, to and including $2,000.00
DBI Permit Fee: $66.75 for the first $500.00 or less plus $1.35 for each additional $100.00 or fraction thereof, to and including $2,000.00
STOREFRONT LIGHTING INSTALLATIONS
In terms of pedestrian-level (downward, sidewalk facing) lighting installations, the permit fees through DBI are generally $160 for up to 10 outlets.
This is a pilot program, and we hope that small businesses throughout the entire city will take advantage of the opportunity to improve their storefronts.
Attached are flyers available in English, Spanish and Chinese.