Chapter 26.03 Organization and Enforcement


26.03.010 Director.

(Amended by Ordinance No. 176955, effective October 9, 2002.)  The Director of the Bureau of Development Services serves as the Building Official and will be referred to herein as the Director.  The Director shall be responsible for the enforcement of this Title.  The Director shall appoint technical officers, certified inspectors and other employees necessary to enforce this Title.  The Director shall have the power to render interpretations of this Title and the Electrical Code and to adopt and enforce supplemental regulations in order to clarify the application of requirements.  Such interpretations, rules and regulations shall be in conformance with the intent and purpose of the Electrical Code.


26.03.020 Right of Entry.

The Director may enter and inspect any building or premises when:

A.  It is necessary to enforce the requirements of this Title; or,
 
B.  There is reasonable cause to believe a dangerous, hazardous or unsafe condition exists which is in violation of this Title.
 
The Director may inspect occupied buildings or premises at reasonable times by presenting credentials to the occupant(s) and requesting entry.  To request entry to and inspect unoccupied buildings or premises, the Director shall first make a reasonable effort to locate the owner or other persons controlling the property.  If entry is refused or if the owner or persons controlling the property cannot be located, the Director shall have recourse to the remedies provided by law to secure entry.

26.03.030 Conformity Required.

Any electrical equipment, product or material used or intended to be used under the scope this Title must be approved under ORS 479.  To be accepted by the Bureau, such equipment, product or material shall be installed, constructed, altered, renovated, repaired and maintained in compliance with the requirements of this Title.

Nothing in this Title is intended to permit the design, construction, installation, quality of materials, location, operation and maintenance of equipment which is not in accordance with any applicable sections of Title 24 (Building Regulations), Title 25 (Plumbing Regulations), and Title 27 (Heating and Ventilating Regulations), Title 28 (Floating Structures) and Title 32 (Signs and Awnings) of the Code of the City of Portland.

Any portion of any installation, construction, alteration, renovation, or repair made in violation of this Title shall be removed or corrected to comply with the requirements of this Title.Whenever there is insufficient evidence of compliance with any of the requirements of this Title or evidence that any equipment, product, material or construction does not conform to the requirements of this Title, the Director may require tests as proof of compliance.  All tests shall be made by an agency approved by the State of Oregon .  The tests shall be made at no expense to the City.  Test methods shall be as specified by the Electrical Code or by other recognized test standards.  If there are no recognized and accepted test methods for the proposed equipment, product, material, or construction, the Director shall determine test procedures.  Reports of such tests shall


26.03.040 Qualifications Required.

Any person, other than the owner, performing any electrical work regulated by this Title shall possess appropriate State of Oregon electrical license(s) and/or registration(s) indicating qualifications appropriate to the type of work involved.  If requested, the required license(s), and/or registration(s) shall be shown to the Director.


26.03.050 Violations and Penalties.
A.  Violations.
1.  It shall be unlawful for any person to fail to comply with the provisions of this Title.
 
2.  It shall be unlawful for any person to remove correction notices, proceed with electrical work, or cover defective work prior to approval by the Bureau.
 
3.  It shall be unlawful for any person to continue unauthorized work after issuance or posting of a stop work notice unless authorized by the Director.
 
4.  It shall be unlawful for any person to reconnect power to any structure, installation or equipment after issuance of a notice to disconnect or after such power was disconnected by the Director, unless authorized by the Director.
 
5.  It shall be unlawful for any person to remove, alter or destroy any notice to stop work or to disconnect power.
 
6.  It shall be unlawful for any person to overfuse any conductor, motor or apparatus in excess of the amount allowed by this Title.  It shall be unlawful for any person to install any substitute for an approved fuse or circuit breaker or to interfere with or alter any circuit or automatic device so as to remove or reduce the required factor of safety as identified in OAR 918.251 through 918.311.
 
7.  Electrical equipment which was unlawful at the time of installation, and which would be unlawful under this Title if installed after the effective date of this Title, shall constitute a continuing violation of this Title.
B.  Penalties.
1.  In the event the property owner or permit holder, or the agent of the owner or permit holder, fails or neglects to carry out any requirement, or fails to correct any noted violations of this Title, the Director may gain compliance by any of the remedies outlined in Section 3.30.015 of the Code of the City of Portland.
 
2.  Any person, firm or corporation found guilty of violating any of the requirements of this Title shall be subject to civil penalties.  Penalty amounts shall be those established in ORS, OAR and/or the Code of the City of Portland.
 
3.  When electrical work requiring a permit under this Title is commenced prior to obtaining a permit, the Bureau shall conduct an investigation.  (Exceptions to permit requirements are found in Chapter 26.04.)  The investigation may involve inspecting the site for violations, checking bureau files, and notifying applicable parties.  A fee, as set in Section 26.05.030, may be charged for such investigation.  The special investigation shall be made before any permit is issued for the work.  The Bureau’s investigation may include determining the nature and extent of the work, checking the work for compliance with this Title, checking bureau records and notifying applicable parties.
An investigation and investigation fee shall be required for any work done under a temporary permit when an electrical permit application and fee are not received or mailed within the time lines set in Section 26.04.070.

26.03.060 Administrative Appeals and Alternate Methods.

An Administrative Appeals Board, consisting of members appointed by the Director who are especially qualified to provide expert opinions in matters of this Title under appeal, shall act in an advisory capacity to the Director.  The Board shall review appeals and requests for alternate methods and make recommendations to the Director.  Board review shall culminate in a finding by the Director.


26.03.070 Electrical Board of Appeal.
A.  Appointment of Board.  In order to hear appeals where an applicant is aggrieved by the findings of the Director, the Mayor shall appoint three members to serve on the Electrical Board of Appeal.  The Mayor shall appoint three alternate members to serve in the absence of regular members.
1.  One member and one alternate member shall beOregon licensed journeymen electricians whose experience and training provide expertise on matters contained in this Title.  One member and one alternate member shall be Oregon registered electrical engineers with substantial experience in electrical design and construction subject to the requirements of this Title.  One member and one alternate member shall be electrical contractors experienced in electrical design and construction subject to requirements of this Title.
 
2.  Board of Appeal members and alternate members shall serve three-year terms.  Vacancies occurring prior to the end of a term for whatever cause may be filled by qualified persons through appointment by the Mayor for the remainder of the term.
 
3.  Any member may be removed by the Mayor for incompetence, dereliction of duty, incapacity or other sufficient cause.
 
4.  Members of the Board shall neither sit for nor rule on any case in which they are either personally or professionally involved.
 
5.  Members of the Board shall serve without pay.
B.  Fees for Appeals.  The fees for all appeals shall be in accordance with Paragraph 26.05.040.E.9.
 
C.  Powers and Limitations of Authority of the Board of Appeal.  The Electrical Board of Appeal shall determine the suitability of alternate materials and types of construction and provide reasonable interpretations of the requirements of this Title.  Any person aggrieved by the final decision of the Board of Appeal may, within 30 days after the date of the decision, appeal to the Chief Electrical Inspector of the State of Oregon.

26.03.080 Stop Orders.

When any work is being done contrary to the requirements of this Title, the Director may order, in writing, that the electrical work be stopped.  Notice may be served by either posting the premises or issuing notice to the owner or person(s) causing or performing the unauthorized work.  Upon receipt of notice, all unauthorized electrical work shall stop until authorization is received from the Director. 

Continuation of unauthorized work after issuance or posting of a stop work notice shall be considered a violation and subject to penalties outlined in this Title, or the disconnection of power to the site in violation.


26.03.090 Electrical Power Disconnect.
 
(Amended by Ordinance No. 180917, effective May 26, 2007.)
 
A.  The Director may order the person or entity who controls the electrical power to disconnect the power to the structure, installation, portions of the installation, or product if the Bureau determines that an electrical installation or product:
1.  Fails to comply with minimum safety standards; or,
 
2.  Was installed without an electrical permit; or,
 
3.  Is not in accordance with the requirements of this Title.
 
Prior to the power disconnection, the Director shall provide written notice to the property owner and the person(s) affected by the power disconnection.  The notice shall contain a proposed disconnection date.
B.  If the condition of an electrical installation or product constitutes an immediate hazard to life or property, personnel authorized by the Director may cut or disconnect any conductor(s) necessary to remove such hazard.  As soon as practical, the Director shall provide written notice to the property owner and the person(s) affected by the power disconnection.
 
C.  The Director shall thereupon attach a notice, in writing, that the conductors or product will be (or have been) disconnected because the installation or product is unsafe to life or property.  The notice of disconnection shall not be removed by any person except the Director.
 
D.  When any wiring or product in any building has been disconnected or ordered disconnected by the Director or Portland Fire & Rescue, the wiring or product shall not be reconnected until placed in a safe and secure condition, and inspected and approved by the Director.  Unauthorized reconnection of power may result in penalties as outlined in this Title.

26.03.100 Maintenance.

All existing electrical installations shall be maintained in a safe condition.  All required devices or safeguards shall be maintained in conformance with this Title.  To determine compliance with this Section, the Director may inspect any electrical installation.


26.03.110 Electrical Fences.
A.  Where Permitted.  Locations in industrial use categories as defined in Title 33 may have electrically charged fences if the installation meets the requirements of this Title.  Electrical fences and obstructions are prohibited at all other locations.
 
B.  Standards for Electrical Fences.  Electrical fences shall comply with the following standards:
1.  The product shall be listed by a State ofOregon approved testing laboratory. 
 
2.  The product shall be installed and used in accordance with the testing laboratory listing.
 
3.  Electrical permits and inspections shall be required for the installation.
 
4.  Warning signs which notify individuals of a dangerous fence shall be posted on the fence, at intervals not to exceed 50 feet.  The statement, DANGER - Electrified Fence, (or an equivalent statement) shall be on the warning signs.

26.03.120 Liability.

The Director acting in good faith and without malice in the discharge of the duties required by this Title, shall not thereby be rendered personally liable for any damage that may occur to persons or property as a result of any act or by reasons of any act or omission in the discharge of such duties.  Any suit brought against the Director or duly authorized representative of the Director because of such act in the scope of their duties or omission performed by them in the enforcement of any provision of this Title or other pertinent laws or ordinances implemented and enforced by the City shall be defended by the City until final termination of such proceedings, and any judgement resulting therefrom shall be assumed by the City.

This Title shall not be construed to relieve from or lessen the responsibility of any person owning, operating or controlling any electrical installation equipment or product for any damages to persons or property caused by defects, nor shall the Bureau or City be held as assuming any such liability by reason of the inspections authorized by this Title or any permits or certificates issued under this Title.