August 2019
Damper/Smoke Control Testing
Effective January 1, 2020, smoke control systems must be certified annually, and regular damper certification will be required for high-rises, hospitals, and special assemblies in accordance with Bill No. 171112. Affected occupancies will receive notification from the Department in coming months.

Review the Smoke Control Certification Form and the Damper Certification Form for testing parameters and instruction. A Smoke Control and Damper Deficiencies Report is also available for submitting deficiencies, when necessary.
Waste Hauler Form
Effective October 1, 2019, all building and complete demolition permit applications requiring the submission of plans must include the identification of the waste hauling company via the Waste Hauler Form in accordance with Section A-301.9 of the Philadelphia Administrative Code. Copies of all tipping receipts and evidence of proper disposal must be retained for audit upon request for three (3) years after the building permit is finalized. 
Construction Safety
EZ Alterations
Effective October 1, 2019, EZ alteration permits for one- and two-family dwellings will only be issued when the homeowner is the primary occupant. Proof of residency must be demonstrated through a PA or Municipal identification card. All other permit applications for alterations will require the submission of plans.  

REMINDER: Effective August 1, 2019, all excavations within 3’ of an existing building and more than 3’ below grade must be monitored by a special inspector unless a PA licensed engineer demonstrates that no special precautions are necessary. Review Code Bulletin B-0503 for full detail.
Have construction safety questions?
Submit your questions about code changes, policies, or procedures.
Energy Code Checklists
The following Energy Code Checklists utilized by L&I Permit Issuance staff are now available to review:

Check back as we post additional checklists to the L&I website to aid in the preparation of design and permit documents.  
Use Checklist
A Use Category Checklist has been developed to assist applicants in determining which use category best describes their proposed use. In some cases, after the specific use is determined, additional information may be required in order to confirm code compliance; this checklist is designed to be a guide for the information that may be requested. Review the  Philadelphia Zoning Code   for a full description of the Use Categories.  
Lead Testing for Existing Family Childcares

For more information, contact the Lead and Healthy Homes Program at (215) 685-2788.  
Plumbing Code
On August 17, 2017, Mayor Kenney signed an executive order for the re-establishment of the Plumbing Advisory Board (PAB) to propose substantial updates to the city’s plumbing code. The PAB’s recommendations included the adoption of an updated Philadelphia Plumbing Code based on the 2018 International Plumbing Code (IPC). The recommendations also included amendments which would increase sustainability, decrease the use of lead and other antiquated materials and take into consideration existing local conditions. On June 20, 2019, City Council unanimously voted to approve  Bill No 190455   which adopts the 2018 IPC and the recommendations of the PAB. The bill was enacted when it was signed by the mayor on July 24, 2019. The bill will be effective October 1, 2019. 

Changes effectuated by the adoption of the IPC include the following:
  • Expanded use of non-metallic pipe.
  • Energy Efficiency and Water Conservation
  • Use of pipe-bursting methodology and materials.
  • Separation of sanitary and stormwater drainage lines.
  • Number of required plumbing fixtures.
  • Eliminate the requirement for building traps on storm drains

The following provisions which are unique to the Philadelphia Code have been retained:
  • Philadelphia single stack venting system
  • Building traps on sanitary drains
  • Terminology specific to Philadelphia 

Fire Code
On June 20, 2019, City Council unanimously voted to approve  Bill No 181006  which adopts the 2018 International Fire Code (IFC) along with existing local amendments. The bill was enacted when it was signed by the mayor on July 3, 2019. Prior to the enactment of this bill , the department was enforcing the Philadelphia Fire Code, which was based upon the 2009 International Fire Code. The adoption of the latest version of the International Fire Code provides the City of Philadelphia with the most up-to-date fire prevention standards in the country.
eCLIPSE Professional Registration is Now Open
Permitting is moving to eCLIPSE, L&I’s online platform. Attorneys and Design Professionals need to complete a free, one-time registration (that never expires) to file permit applications in their name.

If you have not yet already registered — use the  Quick Guide  to start the registration process now.

Unconvinced? Review the  top 5 reasons  you should register early!

Website Announcement 
As part of a Citywide initiative to create more modern and streamlined websites, L&I will be migrating to its new website in mid-September! The updated website will be easier to use and navigate to find exactly what you're looking for. But the URL will remain the same: .
Streets Department Rolls Out Commercial Waste Report
Philadelphia businesses must now submit a yearly Commercial Waste Report on their recycling and other waste diversion practices to the Streets Department via this portal . The Commercial Waste Report replaces the Streets Department’s Commercial Recycling Plan requirements.

Get more information about the Commercial Waste Report
Focus Group Summary
You spoke, we listened! L&I held focus groups in June 2019 to gather public feedback on the services we provide. Below is a summary of some of the feedback that we received and our plans to address items gathered:

Feedback : Improve transparency of process
Department Action :
  • Provide an index of current and retired Code Bulletins online.
  • Post additional examiner checklists on our website.
  • Post process for abandoning and expiring permits.
  • Improve website content for pre-requisite approvals.
  • Review communication around Sign Permits and consider hosting a learning session.
  • Display review status across departments with the implementation of eCLIPSE.
  • Introduce ‘How To’ videos online to help support eCLIPSE.

Feedback : Improve efficiency of process
Department Action :
  • Will introduce combination permits to allow for all trades to be submitted together and assigned to a single examiner.
  • Allow related projects to be managed by a single examiner.
  • Add the ability to have co-applicants and interested parties to share permit application updates.
  • Reduce re-review times and automate tax clearance for electronic submissions in eCLIPSE.
  • Upgrade to new concourse queuing system to allow for scheduled appointments.
  • Increase staff presence in ticket/waiting area for questions.

Feedback : Add additional communication avenues and content
Department Action :
  • Pilot pre-construction meetings.
  • Provide escalation process when issues arise.
  • Upgrade concourse screens to improve messaging/announcements.
  • Increase community outreach.
  • Provide mechanism to submit questions relating to new code development bulletins.
  • Enhance Notices of Violation reports to include inspector comments.

We will be working on implementing these initiatives over the next year and look forward to seeking your feedback again next summer!