Before you can obtain a building permit you must verify if zoning approval is required. Some examples would be opening a business, constructing a building or addition, erecting a sign, or a number of other activities. A site plan or special use permit application may be required. Certain types of zoning approval can be issued by the Zoning Administrator; other situations require action by the Planning Commission.
Building permits are required for new construction, additions, alterations and many improvement projects to residential and commercial buildings in the City. Also included would be garages, storage buildings, sheds, pools, roofing, siding and signs. Permits are required whether you do the work yourself or hire a contractor. Some projects may require a mechanical, plumbing or electrical permit instead of or in addition to a building permit.
The type of project will determine at what stage and how many inspections are required. It is the permit holders’ responsibility to call for inspections prior to construction, wiring, plumbing and mechanical being covered. Please allow at least twenty four (24) hours’ notice for inspections. Please call inspectors directly to set up dates and times for inspection. Additional fees apply if you call for an inspection and the project is not ready when the inspector arrives.
Starting a Business in Whitehall
Downtown Whitehall is a great place to start a business with a variety of spaces available. If you are interested in starting a business in Downtown Whitehall we recommend that you meet with the Service Corp of Retired Executives (SCORE) chapter of Muskegon County.
Commercial Rehabilitation District
The district, which mainly covers the central business area in Whitehall, will allow business owners to apply for tax exemptions on structural and aesthetic improvements that exceed 10 percent of the value of the building. The taxes, except for local school operating taxes and the state education tax, are exempt for the improvement only. The county is eligible to opt out of having its taxes being captured. Contact Scott Huebler at 231-894-4048 for more information.
State of Michigan Facade & Signature Building
The Michigan State Housing Development Authority, with CDBG money, makes available grants for specific projects in non-entitlement communities, like Whitehall, that create jobs. Contact Scott Huebler at 231-894-4048 for more information.