DOB To Issue Fines and SWOs beginning this Wednesday, July 8th

Please see an update from the NYC Department of Buildings related to the issuance of fines and Stop Work Orders beginning on Wednesday, July 8th.  Beginning Wednesday, July 8th, non-compliance with the Department of Building's COVID-19 Guidance will result in in the issuance of a violation carrying a $5,000 penalty. In particular, failure to have either a COVID-19 Safety Plan, affirmation, or a hand-hygiene station on site will also result in the issuance of a Stop Work Order. The Department has been sending weekly emails to all permit holders, and associated design professionals and owners reminding them of the COVID-19 Guidance. Additionally, we have been sending separate weekly emails to permit holders, and associated design professionals and owners when an inspection of their sites has revealed non-compliance. These emails include a checklist showing where they came up short. Pasted below are samples of both emails. Please be sure to be in compliance with the COVID-19 Guidance to avoid receiving a violation and Stop Work Order and to keep us all safe.


Sample Email #1: All Active Permits

From: COVID19DOBNOTIFICATION@buildings.nyc.gov Sent: Sunday, July 5, 2020 4:42 PM To: AAAAAAA Subject: NYC Department of Buildings Reopening Guidance – NYC Construction Activity Importance: Low Greetings,  As New York City continues to re-open, the resumption of all permitted construction work can be seen across every corner of our City. In response, on Monday, June 8th, Department of Buildings (DOB) Inspectors began a citywide inspection sweep of every permitted site to verify compliance with State and City Phase 1 restart requirements.  For the first month of the sweep, there are no monetary penalties associated with our Phase 1 restart enforcement actions, but effective this Wednesday, July 8th, 2020 sites found out of compliance will be subjected to violations that carry financial penalties of $5,000 per violation with the potential for a Stop Work Order. Continued noncompliance may result in additional summonses with accompanying civil penalties of up to $10,000 for each offense. To reiterate, if during DOB’s sweep, any Construction Code and Electrical Code non-compliances are observed, Inspectors will take appropriate enforcement actions, including the potential issuance of violations with monetary penalties. To be clear, if a single Phase 1 restart violating condition is observed on your site on or after this Wednesday, July 8th, 2020 – your site will be assessed a violation that carries a financial penalty of $5,000. If your site does not have a Safety Plan and State Affirmation conspicuously posted and/or is lacking a proper hand hygiene station, your site will be issued a Stop Work Order in addition to the financial penalty.  The Safety Plan you must have on-site should be filled-out completely and posted for all to see. The Safety Plan’s intent is to outline how your workplace will prevent the spread of COVID-19. You should follow the Safety Plan template located on the State’s website, which you can access by clicking here. Your State Affirmation should be posted as well, you can fill-out your Affirmation by clicking here. All sites must also provide and maintain (at least one) hand hygiene station that is accessible for all personnel. This could include a handwashing station with soap, water, and paper towels, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing 60% or more alcohol for areas where handwashing is not feasible. To understand what is expected of your site, please refer to the Interim Guidance for Construction Activities During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency, our “Do’s and Don’ts” Document, and our “What To Know” One-Pager. Also please remember as City Employees performing essential regulatory duties, DOB Inspectors and other Field Staff with face coverings who visit construction sites are self-monitoring for any COVID-19 symptoms every day to ensure they do their work safely for themselves and the public. As such, Inspectors and Field Staff are not subject to screening and must be permitted access to a construction site. Failure to provide access will result in the issuance of a Stop Work Order. For additional information on the Phase 1 re-opening, please visit nyc.gov/buildings. On our Phase-1 re-opening webpage, you will find resources including DOB’s Phase 1 Re-Opening GuidanceFAQs, and the State’s Interim Guidelines. If you have any questions, please reach out via email to COVID19@buildings.nyc.gov. Thank you

Sample Email #2: Active Permits with Non-Compliance

From: COVID19DOBNOTIFICATION@buildings.nyc.gov Sent: Sunday, July 5, 2020 4:35 PM To: AAAAAAAA Subject: Phase 1 Re-Opening: DOB Enforcement Update for Permit: AAAAAAAAAAAAAA Importance: Low Greetings, As New York City continues to re-open, the resumption of all permitted construction work can be seen across every corner of our City. In response, on Monday, June 8th, Department of Buildings (DOB) Inspectors began a citywide inspection sweep of every permitted site to verify compliance with State and City Phase 1 restart requirements. We continue to visit permitted work sites.  As part of this sweep, a site where you are the permit holder, associated applicant of record, and/or owner was inspected and found to be in violation of either NYS Governor’s Executive Order 202.34, the State’s Interim Guidance for Construction Activities During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency and/or the Mayor’s Executive Orders 120 and 123. We have included a checklist noting your sites deficiencies during its most recent inspection. Please review the below checklist and make the necessary corrections immediately. Additionally, below you will find a refresher on the requirements to restarting construction on your site under Phase 1 of the State’s re-opening plan.  For the first month of the sweep, there are no monetary penalties associated with our Phase 1 restart enforcement actions, but effective this Wednesday, July 8th, 2020 sites found out of compliance will be subjected to violations that carry financial penalties of $5,000 per violation with the potential for a Stop Work Order. Continued noncompliance may result in additional summonses with accompanying civil penalties of up to $10,000 for each offense. To reiterate, if during DOB’s sweep, any building and electrical code non-compliances are observed, inspectors will take appropriate enforcement actions, including the potential issuance of violations with monetary penalties. To be clear, if a single Phase 1 restart violating condition is observed on your site on or after this Wednesday, July 8th, 2020 – your site will be assessed a violation that carries a financial penalty of $5,000. If your site does not have a Safety Plan and State Affirmation conspicuously posted and/or is lacking a proper hand hygiene station, your site will be issued a Stop Work Order in addition to the financial penalty. Also please remember as City Employees performing essential regulatory duties, DOB Inspectors and other Field Staff with face coverings who visit construction sites are self-monitoring for any COVID-19 symptoms every day to ensure they do their work safely for themselves and the public. As such, Inspectors and Field Staff are not subject to screening and must be permitted access to a construction site. Failure to provide access will result in the issuance of a Stop Work Order. The Safety Plan you must have on-site should be filled-out completely and posted for all to see. The Safety Plan’s intent is to outline how your workplace will prevent the spread of COVID-19. You should follow the Safety Plan template located on the State’s website, which you can access by clicking here. Your State Affirmation should be posted as well, you can fill-out your Affirmation by clicking here. All sites must also provide and maintain (at least one) hand hygiene station that is accessible for all personnel. This could include a handwashing station with soap, water, and paper towels, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing 60% or more alcohol for areas where handwashing is not feasible.



* Non-compliance with checklist item (on/after July 8th, 2020) will lead to Stop Work Order being issued.

The requirements outlined in the Governor’s Executive Order and State Interim Guidance require the following before you start working:

  • Read, understand, and act on the State’s Interim Guidance for Construction Activities During The COVID-19 Public Health Emergency.

  • Prepare a Safety Plan that is specific to each of your job sites. The General Contractor can develop one plan including all subcontractors and their employees, or each contractor can develop their own.

  • Implement all aspects of your Safety Plan on your job site.

  • Post the Safety Plan at your job site in a highly visible location at all points of egress from the construction site.

  • Affirm to the State that you have read and understood your obligation to operate your site in accordance with the State’s guidance.

  • Print this affirmation and keep it on site


To ensure compliance with these new health requirements, DOB Inspectors are looking for the following

  • Safety plan specific to the site is available and posted where it can be easily seen. This plan needs to include a copy of the affirmation to the State.

  • Compliance with social distancing protocols.

  • All site personnel and visitors must wear acceptable face coverings appropriate for their task.

  • Readily available hand hygiene stations, using either: Soap, running warm water, and disposable paper towels orAlcohol-based hand sanitizer where hand washing stations are not practical.

  • COVID-19 signage that is visible to all reminding personnel to adhere to proper hand hygiene, physical distancing rules, appropriate use of PPE, and cleaning and disinfecting protocol.

  • Properly completed and updated cleaning and disinfection logs.

  • Tightly confined spaces (e.g., elevators, hoists) occupied by 50% maximum allowed number of people –50% capacity must be posted within the cab AND at each landing.

  • A communication plan for employees, visitors, and clients on site.

  • Correctly completed and updated logs of every person who may have had close contact with others on site to ensure effective contact tracing.

 For additional information on the Phase 1 re-opening, visit nyc.gov/buildings. On our Phase-1 re-opening webpage, you will find resources including DOB’ Phase 1 Re-Opening GuidanceFAQs, our “Do’s & Don’ts” Document and a “What To Know” one-pager our Inspectors have been distributing during the sweepIf you need help achieving your obligations please reach out via email to COVID19@buildings.nyc.gov.

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