November 29, 2021

Jed Holmes, Community Outreach Facilitator,
Whatcom County Executive’s Office
(360) 410-5139

Whatcom County Waives Emergency Repair Permit Fees

In response to the extraordinary needs of County residents resulting from recent flooding, the County permit fee for emergency building repairs has been waived per an executive order signed by County Executive Satpal Sidhu on November 24, 2021.

“Many families, farms and businesses have been devastated by the floods. It’s important to make the rebuilding process as efficient as possible, and we want to help those who have been displaced get back into their homes as quickly and safely as possible,” said Executive Sidhu. “Waiving these fees, which County Council has actively supported, is just a one small thing that we can do assist the recovery.”

The emergency repair requests must be received by Whatcom County Planning & Development Services (PDS) no later than January 31, 2022, in order for the fee waiver to apply. The waiver only applies to Whatcom County permits. For residents of incorporated towns and cities, please contact your local jurisdiction for repair permit information.

“If you have experienced damage to your home or business due to recent weather events, PDS is ready to help you quickly assess your property damage and determine your permit path,” said Mark Personius, Director of Planning & Development Services. “It is important that you carefully and safely assess any structural damage to your home or business. Please do not enter the building if you observe the structural integrity is compromised.”

PDS advises residents to take photos to document the damage and verify that repairs are necessary. Photos can be submitted via email to In-person appointments can be made via an online form or by phone (360-778-5900). Permit Center staff will use the County’s Emergency Repair Permit policy to assess your situation and determine if you will be eligible to use this expedited process.

If it is determined you can do an emergency repair, a PDS inspector will come out to your location to verify the damage and permit the scope of work. Please note that any damage to the electrical system due to flooding or impact from debris will require a separate permit through Washington State Labor & Industries for the electrical work.

More information is available on the PDS webpage:

Media Contact: Jed Holmes, Community Outreach Facilitator, County Executive’s Office, 360-410-5139. 

        We acknowledge that Whatcom County is located on the unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples. They cared for the lands that included what we’d call the Puget Sound region, Vancouver Island and British Columbia since time immemorial. This gives us the great obligation and opportunity to learn how to care for our surrounding areas and all the natural and human resources we require to live. We express our deepest respect and gratitude for our indigenous neighbors, the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe, for their enduring care and protection of our shared lands and waterways.
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