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RE: Building Permit in Monterey County

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I checked out their (Monterey county building department) web site (, it actually looks pretty good,  Hard to believe the building department is not properly staffed.  However I did not find the answer I was looking for on their web site.
Regarding Mr. Joshura Marrow's research, I read some of that before, and they are mainly works done on wine barrel racks.  I'm aware of all the liability issues and structural designs involved.  I just want to find out what's the rule down there.  Wine tank anchor is a thorny issue.  If they are designed by the book, the cost and end result seem to be disproportion to the tanks they are securing.  The winery owners can take the responsibility themselves if they opted not to design the anchors if allowed, and bring the cost down.
Y i   Y a n g  P. E.
Summit Engineering Inc.
Santa Rosa, CA
-----Original Message-----
From: THunt(--nospam--at) [mailto:THunt(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Tuesday, August 20, 2002 6:59 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Re: Building Permit in Monterey County


I was involved recently in the design of a 1000 Megawatt power plant in Monterey County (Moss Landing, CA) and our initial contacts were with the county building official.  Eventually the county completely pulled out of the project (I didn't know they could do that??) and our client ended up hiring a private company to act as the building official (with the OK from the California Energy Commission).  I am not surprised that you are not getting much of a response; neither did I.  At the time (about 2 years ago) they said they were going through a "reorganization" which by the way they said it did not seem too pleasant.  The story I heard was that there was an election and the new elected guy was trying to get rid of the old staff.  From the answers I was getting I do not think the local building official (I think there is only one) had any engineering background; more of an appointed administrator.

Anyway, I would recommend you follow the UBC to the extent you can whether you go for a building permit or not.  There is no reason why a winery should be any less safe than a power plant, 7/11 store, or a donut shop.  It might also help your liability lawsuit if one of those tanks falls over and hurts someone.

Thomas Hunt, S.E.
ABS Consulting

YI <YI(--nospam--at)>

08/19/2002 05:18 PM
Please respond to seaint

        To:        "'seaint(--nospam--at)'" <seaint(--nospam--at)>
        Subject:        Building Permit in Monterey County

Has anyone done any structural work in Monterey County?
I tried to call the building department but I'm getting answers slowly.
I have a winery project in the central cost, I wondering if a building permit is required for wine storage tanks (very large tanks, 12'-15' diameter, 20'-25' height) anchorage.  I think the tank foundation needs to have a permit.  What about the anchor designs, since the tanks are not really designed per any code requirement.  Also the catwalk system that's needed to access the top of the tank.  I think these are considered "process equipment" and does not need any building permit.  
Any ideas?  Thanks
Y i   Y a n g  P. E.
Summit Engineering Inc.
Santa Rosa, CA