The Fredericksburg Area Builders Association will provide updates that we are aware of from each of the local governments in the Fredericksburg area regarding changes, closures, inspections, and building permits that may impact day-to-day residential construction operations. Each locality in our service area is listed below alphabetically.
If you have additional information or questions for FABA regarding COVID-19 closures or disruptions, please email Maria Moore at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 540-898-2730.
November 13, 2020 Governor Northam Announces New Statewide Measures to Contain COVID-19
~ Includes limit of 25 individuals for in-person gatherings, expanded mask mandate, on-site alcohol curfew, and increased enforcement ~
RICHMOND—As COVID-19 surges in states across the country, Governor Ralph Northam today announced new actions to mitigate the spread of the virus in Virginia. While the Commonwealth’s case count per capita and positivity rate remain comparatively low, all five health regions are experiencing increases in new COVID-19 cases, positive tests, and hospitalizations.
“COVID-19 is surging across the country, and while cases are not rising in Virginia as rapidly as in some other states, I do not intend to wait until they are. We are acting now to prevent this health crisis from getting worse,” said Governor Northam. “Everyone is tired of this pandemic and restrictions on our lives. I’m tired, and I know you are tired too. But as we saw earlier this year, these mitigation measures work. I am confident that we can come together as one Commonwealth to get this virus under control and save lives.”
Governor Northam shared a new video to update Virginians on the additional steps the Commonwealth is taking to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, which is available here.
The following measures will take effect at midnight on Sunday, November 15:
- Reduction in public and private gatherings: All public and private in-person gatherings must be limited to 25 individuals, down from the current cap of 250 people. This includes outdoor and indoor settings.
- Expansion of mask mandate: All Virginians aged five and over are required to wear face coverings in indoor public spaces. This expands the current mask mandate, which has been in place in Virginia since May 29 and requires all individuals aged 10 and over to wear face coverings in indoor public settings.
- Strengthened enforcement within essential retail businesses: All essential retail businesses, including grocery stores and pharmacies, must adhere to statewide guidelines for physical distancing, wearing face coverings, and enhanced cleaning. While certain essential retail businesses have been required to adhere to these regulations as a best practice, violations will now be enforceable through the Virginia Department of Health as a Class One misdemeanor.
- On-site alcohol curfew: The on-site sale, consumption, and possession of alcohol is prohibited after 10:00 p.m. in any restaurant, dining establishment, food court, brewery, microbrewery, distillery, winery, or tasting room. All restaurants, dining establishments, food courts, breweries, microbreweries, distilleries, wineries, and tasting rooms must close by midnight. Virginia law does not distinguish between restaurants and bars, however, under current restrictions, individuals that choose to consume alcohol prior to 10:00 p.m. must be served as in a restaurant and remain seated at tables six feet apart.
- Virginia is averaging 1,500 newly-reported COVID-19 cases per day, up from a statewide peak of approximately 1,200 in May. While Southwest Virginia has experienced a spike in the number of diagnosed COVID-19 cases, all five of the Commonwealth’s health regions are currently reporting a positivity rate over five percent. Although hospital capacity remains stable, hospitalizations have increased statewide by more than 35 percent in the last four weeks.
On Tuesday, Governor Northam announced new contracts with three laboratories as part of the Commonwealth’s OneLabNetwork, which will significantly increase Virginia’s public health testing capacity. Contracts with Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville, and Sentara Healthcare in Norfolk will directly support high-priority outbreak investigations, community testing events, and testing in congregate settings, with a goal of being able to perform 7,000 per day by the end of the year.
The full text of amended Executive Order Sixty-Three and Order of Public Health Emergency Five and sixth amended Executive Order Sixty-Seven and Order of Public Health Emergency Seven will be made available here.
For information about COVID-19 in Virginia, visit vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus.
Virginia Department of Labor and Industry issues emergency regulations governing employers’ obligations regarding Infectious Disease Prevention
This emergency temporary standard is designed to establish requirements for employers to control, prevent, and mitigate the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) to and among employees and employers.
On July 15, 2020, Virginia became the first state in the country to adopt an Emergency Standard effective July 27, 2020. Although now in effect, employers will not have to do training with their employees on infectious disease preparedness and response plans until 60 days after the Emergency Standard is adopted. Virginia employers will need to comply with the Emergency Standard and, in some cases, revise policies and procedures for dealing with their workforces as soon as possible or potentially face VDOLI enforcement actions. HBAV will host a webinar in the next few weeks to provide further information as to how this affects the Building Industry.
Additional details and the complete emergency standard can be found at the links below:
The following resources have been collected to help you navigate these new regulations.
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR RESOURCES:
A Link to the Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response Plan Template
(Required of all employers with eleven (11) employees or more that are considered “Medium Risk,” which is a majority of employers.
FABA/HBAV MEMBERS ONLY WEBINAR:
- Outline of DOLI Emergency Regulations
- Virginia Employer Requirements to Comply
- Resources for Compliance
- Deadlines for Employer Compliance
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND RESOURCES FROM THE FREDERICKSBURG CHAMBER OF COMMERCE:
A webinar from the Virginia Chamber of Commerce discussing the final regulation and its impact on Virginia Businesses.
A PowerPoint brief prepared by the Chamber’s Government Affairs team walking you through the basics.
Disclaimer: This is not intended to be or should be construed to be legal advice.
On August 4, 2020, the Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce will host a webinar answering questions about the regulations and walking through the requirements, including the Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response Plan.
You must register for that event here.
Forward Virginia Phase Three Guidelines to Slowly Ease Public Health Restrictions
Phase Three guidelines for specific sectors can be found here.
All Virginians must continue to comply with the statewide face covering requirement in indoor public spaces, and Virginians are strongly encouraged to:
- continue teleworking if possible;
- wash hands regularly;
- maintain six feet of physical distance when outside of home; and
- get tested immediately if you have COVID-19 symptoms.
Executive Order Sixty-Seven Prohibits Congregating in Bars, Stresses Caution As Virginia Moves to Phase Three
Executive Order 63 – Face Covering Requirements/Workplace Safety Regulations
On Tuesday, May 26, Governor Northam issued Executive Order 63 requiring Virginians to wear face coverings while in public indoor settings to help contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. The Governor also directed the Department of Labor and Industry to develop emergency temporary standards to prevent workplace exposure to COVID-19. Click here to read to full text of Executive Order 63. For more information on how to wear, make, or clean face coverings, please visit the Center for Disease Control’s website here.
In the meantime, we are urging members to practice common-sense and to err on the side of caution. The following are recommendations:
- Continue maintaining social distancing on job sites and in offices if teleworking is not feasible
- Utilize virtual/electronic meetings with customers and employees to the greatest extent possible
- Wash hands, job site tools, and workspace surfaces frequently
- By-appointment only for model homes and open houses; have employees utilize face coverings during appointments
- While scheduling appointments, have employees suggest that the customer bring a face covering to the appointment
- During local building department inspections:
- Bring face covering in there is a chance that you will interact directly with the inspector
- Plan ahead with the local building inspector – minimize the number of individuals inside the home; if feasible, allow inspector to conduct his or her review while builder/contractors are outside or in a car.
The following information is directly from Governor Northam’s Executive Order 63:
Face Coverings Required: Patrons
All patrons in the Commonwealth aged ten and over shall when entering, exiting, traveling through, and spending time inside the settings listed below cover their mouth and nose with a face covering, as described and recommended by the CDC.
- Personal care and grooming businesses
- Essential and non-essential brick and mortar retail including home improvement, hardware. Building material, and building supply retailers, grocery stores and pharmacies
- Food and beverage establishments, including but not limited to, restaurants, dining establishments, food courts, breweries, microbreweries, distilleries, wineries, tasting rooms, and farmers markets, when permitted to reopen for indoor dining.
- Entertainment or recreation businesses, including but not limited to, racetracks, historic horse racing facilities, theaters, performing arts centers, concert venues, museums, and other indoor entertainment centers, bowling alleys, skating rinks, arcades, amusement parks, trampoline parks, fairs, arts and craft facilities, aquariums, zoos, escape rooms, public and private social clubs, and all other places of indoor public amusement, once permitted to reopen to the public. Face coverings shall also be required when patrons are outdoors at these businesses if a distance of six feet from every other person cannot be maintained.
- Train stations, bus stations, and intrastate public transportation, including buses, rideshares, trains, taxis, and cars for hire, as well as any waiting or congregating areas associated with boarding public transportation. This requirement shall not apply in any area under federal jurisdiction or control.
- State or local government buildings when accessed for the purpose of securing public services, with the exception of students in daycare centers or participating in-person classes in K-12 education or institutions of higher education
- Any indoor space shared by groups of people who may congregate within six feet of one another or who are in close proximity to each other for more than ten minutes. This restriction does not apply to persons while inside their residence or the personal residence of another.
Face Coverings Required: Employees of Essential Retail Businesses
All employees of essential retail businesses as listed in Amended Executive Order 61 and Amended Order of Public Health Emergency Three (section c, paragraph 1) shall wear a face covering whenever working in customer facing areas. This includes employees of:
- Grocery stores, pharmacies, and other retailers that sell food and beverage products or pharmacy products, including dollar stores, and department stores with grocery or pharmacy operations;
- Medical, laboratory, and vision supply retailers;
- Electronic retailers that sell or service cell phones, computers, tablets, and other communications technology;
- Automotive parts, accessories, and tire retailers as well as automotive repair facilities;
- Home improvement, hardware, building material, and building supply retailers;
- Lawn and garden equipment retailers;
- Beer, wine, and liquor stores;
- Retail functions of gas stations and convenience stores;
- Retail located within healthcare facilities;
- Banks and other financial institutions with retail functions;
- Pet and feed stores; l. Printing and office supply stores; and m. Laundromats and dry cleaners.
A face covering includes anything that covers your nose and mouth, such as a mask, scarf, or bandana. Medical-grade masks and personal protective equipment should be reserved for health care professionals.
The requirement to wear a face covering does not apply to following:
- While eating or drinking;
- Individuals exercising or using exercise equipment;
- Any person who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the face covering without assistance;
- Any person seeking to communicate with the hearing impaired and for which the mouth needs to be visible;
- When temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to secure government or medical services; and
- Persons with health conditions that prohibit wearing a face covering. Nothing in this Order shall require the use of a face covering by any person for whom doing so would be contrary to his or her health or safety because of a medical condition.
Any person who declines to wear a face covering because of a medical condition shall not be required to produce or carry medical documentation verifying the stated condition nor shall the person be required to identify the precise underlying medical condition.
Virginia Department of Health Guidelines for Open Houses & Model Homes – CLICK HERE
The CDC provides recommended strategies to protect workers and limit the spread of the coronavirus. Also, in accordance with the Executive Order 53 directive, real estate professionals who conduct open houses, including builders who provide access to spec or model houses, are advised to follow best management practices, limit interior access to no more than 10 persons and adapt social distancing protocols to open houses:
- Have all individuals who enter immediately wash their hands or use hand sanitizer
- Have lots of extra pens and allow each person who signs in to use one pen that they then keep or you sanitize before another person uses
- Ask people for their names and contact information that you write down or record on your electronic device
- Open all doors and turn on lights prior to the start of the open house so that people can walk around the house without touching door knobs and light switches
- Have paper towels near sinks in the event someone wants to turn a sink on/off
- Have individuals wash hands or use hand sanitizer upon leaving
5.27.20: Caroline County Will Partially Reopen County Buildings to the Pubic on JUNE 1, 2020.
The following offices will reopen to the public on June 1, 2020:
- Department of Planning/Department of Fire & Rescue (*Front counter/waiting area only with a maximum occupancy of three (3) people)
- Department of Public Utilities/Public Works
The following offices will reopen on June 1, 2020 BY APPOINTMENT ONLY:
- County Administrator’s Office – (804) 633-5380
- Department of Finance -(804) 633-5380
- Commissioner of the Revenue’s Office – (804) 633-9834
- Treasurer’s Office – (804) 633-5291
- Registrar’s Office*- (804) 633-9083 (*In person voting for the June 23rd primary is by curbside only in front of the Registrar’s Office. Voters will need to call the office and remain in their cars to vote.)
- Department of Economic Development – 804-633-4074
- Department of Social Services**- 804-633-5071 (**Doors will remain locked and appointments will be escorted in by DSS staff. Most needs will be met by meeting clients at the door or in the parking lot.)
Offices to Remain Closed Until Further Notice
The following offices will remain closed to the public until further notice:
- Department of Parks & Recreation (*Contact the Department of Parks & Recreation at (804) 633-7277 for information about available programs)
- Library (**Curbside library service will resume on June 1 Monday through Friday at most branches)
- Caroline County Visitor Center
- DMV Select
- Bathrooms in all buildings will remain closed to the public in the Phase 1 reopening
- County facilities remain unavailable for rental by the public
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION, ENTRY PROCEDURES, AND OTHER DETAILS CAN BE FOUND BY CLICKING HERE
CITY OF FREDERICKSBURG
3.24.20: City Government buildings are closed to public access. City departments are still available for your needs; and phone and emails are being answered. Conduct all City Business Online.
Work on permits and new construction will continue as able.
- Permits can be picked-up in the Council Chambers lobby area accessed off of Hanover Street.
- The City is still performing inspections. Schedule inspections by calling 540-372-1080.
- Please mail in payments to P.O. Box 7447 Fredericksburg, VA 22404.
Planning and Zoning Services:
- You can still submit applications via email by submitting to email@example.com.
- Please submit payments by mail to P.O. Box 7447 Fredericksburg, VA 22404.
- Environmental inspections are currently being limited.
- For information on how to submit for plan reviews, zoning requests and historic information please call 540-371-1179.
3.21.20: Culpeper County Buildings are closed to the Public. If at all possible, please conduct any and all business by phone or email. This includes general inquiries, submission of permits, plans and paperwork.
Building Department: As we strive to provide continuity of services as administered by the Building Department during this time and still comply with Local, State and Federal directives regarding the outbreak of COVID-19, we ask the following of our customers for the foreseeable future:
- If at all possible, please conduct any and all business by phone or email. This includes general inquiries, submission of permits, plans and paperwork. We will accept email submission for permit and application requests. https://web.culpepercounty.gov/Government/DepartmentsA-C/BuildingDepartment/BuildingFormsandDocuments.
- Email submission – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Inspection requests – email@example.com
- Requests for face to face meetings should be severely limited in order to help with social distancing guidelines. We are happy to communicate with you by phone, web meetings, or by other electronic means.
- Certain plan submittals and other paperwork that cannot be submitted via electronic means or postal mail can be left on the table in our lobby with contact information and completed applications. We ask that you please respect the social distancing parameters as marked in our lobby when submitting these plans.
- No customer will be turned away, but we all need to do our part to minimize the spread of COVID-19. We truly appreciate your patience and help during this time.
Daily Inspection Schedule: https://web.culpepercounty.gov/Government/DepartmentsA-C/BuildingDepartment
KING GEORGE COUNTY
King George County Government Offices will close to the public, daily, at 3:30 p.m. to allow time for County staff to clean and sanitize their work areas.
Permit Applications are typically accepted in person, via fax, email or by mail. Our department does not accept digital/PDF plans; therefore applications that require plan review are ideally submitted in person or by mail. If you have difficulty or questions when completing your application, contact the office at 540-775-7111.
Inspections – All inspections are required to be requested by phone one (1) day in advance before 3:00PM by calling 540-775-7111. Please provide the building permit number and the owner or contractor name when calling in for inspections. A two hour inspection time window can be provided if a call is placed to our office on the day of the inspection between 8:00AM and 8:30AM.
Inspections left by voicemail or email will not be honored.
3.20.20: Effective Monday March 23, 2020 all county departments will be operational; however, buildings will be closed to the public until further notice. CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION
05.18.20: Spotsylvania County Buildings are OPEN to the Public in Limited Numbers with Social Distancing CLICK HERE FOR INFORMATION
Buildings and offices are opening to the public through normal business hours or by appointment only. County urges the public to continue using contact-free options. Residents are encouraged to reach staff by phone and email Monday-Friday 8am-4:30pm, use drop boxes at designated locations, as well as utilizing the county’s online resources and payment options.
Inspections: EFFECTIVE APRIL 6, 2020: SUSPENSION OF INSPECTIONS OF OCCUPIED RESIDENTIAL DWELLINGS DUE TO THE CURRENT COVID-19 VIRUS UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. Please click here for additional information. Inspections are continuing, but those inside occupied homes will follow the protocol in the notice from the Building Official found by clicking here.
05.18.20: Utilities Department Open By Appointment Only
The Department of Utilities/Public Works is open by appointment only during normal business hours, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Please call 540-507-7300, Press Option 1, or email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance and scheduling. There is a drop-box located curbside in front of the building for correspondence and start/stop water service applications.
- Permit Center, Building, and E&S: 540-507-7222 email@example.com
- Economic Development: 540-507-7210 firstname.lastname@example.org
- Planning & Zoning: 540-507-7434 email@example.com
- Fully operational, open to the public. The public is encouraged to continue to use online and phone services to conduct business remotely.
- Community Development Services Center: 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Staff is available via phone, email and Live Chat. CDSC (540) 658-8650.
Code Review and Inspections:
- Inspections available, exceptions may apply: Remote Inspection Policy (540) 658 – 8650.
- Capital Construction: 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (540) 658-7300. Projects continuing forward.
- Visit webpage for more information or to schedule a virtual appointments
OTHER COVID-19 RESOURCES:
- CDC: Resources for Large Community Events & Mass Gatherings
- ASAE: Issue Roundup: Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
- World Health Organization (WHO)
- Virginia Department of Health (VDH)
- MPI: Coronavirus Resources for Meeting Professionals
- PCMA: What Business Events Professionals Need to Know About the COVID-19 Coronavirus
- IAEE: Coronavirus Resources
THE FREDERICKSBURG CHAMBER OF COMMERCE HAS SOME BUSINESS RECOVERY RESOURCES ON THEIR WEBSITE
CLICK HERE TO VIEW
#SafeReturnFXBG – A Guide to Responsible Re-entry to the Workplace
The Safe Return Fxbg Guide provides a road map for organizations of all types across the region to use as we re-open our workplaces, while considering the public health needs of our workforce, stakeholders, customers and community. (Work In Progress) The Chamber will continue to update it with the latest and most accurate information.
HBAV & NAHB Information
Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) has issued two new posters notifying employees of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which must be posted or otherwise communicated to workers by April 1, 2020.
The DOL recently made minor updates to the non-federal employee poster. Below, please find the revised posters:
COVID-19 – Impacts on Land Use & Development in Virginia
In response to the COVID-19 emergency, Governor Northam and various state and local officials have issued multiple orders and guidance concerning the continuance of critical state and local government functions during the pendency of the emergency. Click HERE to read more.
NAHB Corona Virus Preparedness and Response resource webpage. CLICK HERE
Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the Workplace: The Coronavirus Advisory Hub (click here) offers the latest insights on navigating business operations and workforce planning during this uncertain times. HBAV issued a 10-point plan for a Safer Job Site during the COVID-19 Outbreak. Please feel free to download and print this and post on all job sites. Click here for HBAV ‘s COVID-19 Update – March 18th – DPOR Extension of licenses, certifications, other credentials – Issues with recording, indexing, and scanning local land records Click here for HBAV ‘s COVID-19 Update – March 17th – Local Building Department Status – Local Board of Supervisors, City Council Planning Commission Meetings – DHCD Meeting Cancellations – OSHA’s Planning Guidelines
HBAV has compiled a comprehensive outline of statewide activities, along with links to a wide range of information sources. Click here to check out the most recent update. If you run into any challenges with these services not being provided, please contact HBAV’s Vice President of Government Affairs, Andrew Clark, at AClark@HBAV.com as soon as possible.