The City and Cosumnes Fire Department have teamed up to assist Old Town business owners on a project to establish occupancy status for each business in Old Town. A Certificate of Occupancy (CO) is required by state law for each business and building. When Elk Grove incorporated as a City in 2000, many of the businesses in Old Town were originally permitted from the County of Sacramento and assumed the occupancy type established at that time. Many of the businesses in Old Town have since changed or have new ownership, and a lot of the records on file at City hall don’t match the businesses that are out there. So, the City and Fire Department are teaming up with business owners to get them the CO’s needed for their business.
Occupancy Only Permit Application
Common Fire Violations:
Fequently Asked Questions:
What is the purpose of a Certificate of Occupancy?
A Certificate of Occupancy (CO) is a document that certifies the use of a building, ensuring that all state codes and requirements are being followed for the type of business operating in that location. A CO is mandated by State Law for all businesses. For more information, please visit http://www.bsc.ca.gov/default.htm.
How long does a Certificate of Occupancy last?
The Certificate of Occupancy goes with the life of the building. If the occupancy type of the buildings is identified as retail because the business inside is a clothing store, then future tenants occupying that space need to fall under the same use. If a new business comes in and wants to change the clothing store to a Hair Salon, a number of tenant improvements will need to be made and that will require a change in occupancy use, which the business owner will then need to reapply for a change in use and Building Permit for their CO.
What are the steps I need to follow to get my Certificate of Occupancy?
Step 1: Confirm that your business has a current business license.
Step 2: Complete an Elk Grove Building Permit application for Occupancy Only form and submit back to the citys building counter (Elk Grove Building Counter, 8401 Laguna Palms Way Elk Grove, CA 95758).
Step 3: Once you submit your application for an Occupancy Only permit, with or without required floor plans, contact Angela Frost at (916) 478-2203 or to schedule an inspection. The inspection will be performed by the Citys Chief Building Official and the CCSDs Fire Marshall. Once your inspection is approved by both parties, you will be issued a CO or Temporary CO. This Temporary CO will last 120 days or until you submit floor plan drawings for your business. If you already have a copy of blueprint drawings, you may submit them with your application in step 2. If you do not have blueprint drawings for your building, please continue with step 4.
Step 4: Floor plan/blueprint drawings for your business are required by state law to be on file with the Fire Department for your building. If you wish to do your own blueprint drawing, a sample is provided below to illustrate what the plans should look like. Also attached is a sheet that details what needs to be included in your drawing. If you dont want to do your own drawings, another option for you is to utilize a partnership program the City has with Cosumnes River College (CRC). Students in the department of Architectural Design will come out to your business and complete your drawings for free. Because this is a new program and the idea behind the program is to give students some experience in the field, drawings may take up to 4 weeks. If interested in the program, please contact Angela Frost at or (916) 478-2203. And the last and final option for blueprint drawings is to hire a knowledgeable contractor or an architect and have them drawn for your business. This may have an additional cost. Regardless of how you go about getting your plans drawn, you will need to have them in order to receive a permanent Certificate of Occupancy from the City.
Step 5: After submittal of plans and approval of inspection, you will be notified by a city staff member that your Certificate of Occupancy is ready for pick-up.
What do I need to do to get my blueprint drawings done to comply with the CO process?
The first step in getting your blueprint drawings done for your business is to complete an Elk Grove Building Permit application for Occupancy Only. Then you need to decide how you’d like to get your drawings accomplished. If you wish to draw or provide your own blueprint drawing, a sample is attached to illustrate what details need to be noted. If you don’t want to do your own drawing, another option for you is to utilize a partnership program the City has with Cosumnes River College (CRC). Students in the department of Architectural Design will come out to your business and complete your drawings for free. Because this is a new program and the idea behind the program is to give students some experience in the field, drawings may take up to 4 weeks. If interested in the program, please contact Angela Frost at or (916) 478-2203. And the last option for blueprint drawings is to hire an Architect or knowledgeable contractor (architect required for specific occupancies, such as restaurants) and have them come out and do the drawings for your business.
Regardless of how you go about getting your business plans drawn, you will need to have them in order to receive a Certificate of Occupancy from the City.
When do I need to apply for a change in use for my Certificate of Occupancy? Will I ever need a new CO?
You only need to apply for a new change in CO when you change the use of the building. Some changes in use require more tenant improvements than others, and that’s what ultimately triggers the change in occupancy. For example, if you change the use from retail (M) use to an assembly (A) use (i.e. church or large restaurant) or occupancy, the code requirements will require that’s a big difference and would require significant changes. If you keep the businesses within the same use or occupancy, a change in CO will not be needed.
What’s a duplicate CO?
A duplicate CO is simply another copy of the original CO but with a change of business name noted on the certificate. The administrative and reprinting costs are what constitute the nominal fee owed by the new business owner requesting a duplicate copy of the CO with their business name on it.