City of Glens Falls Vacant Buildings Law
In December 2020, the City of Glens Falls adopted a local law titled "Chapter 206 - Vacant Buildings". The purpose of this Chapter is to provide an orderly procedure of identifying and registering vacant buildings while imposing reasonable responsibilities for the property owners.
All vacant buildings within the City must be registered with the Office of Buildings and Codes no later than 30 days of becoming vacant or after being notified by a Code Enforcement Officer.
A full text version of Chapter 206 – Vacant Buildings law is available online at http://ecode360.com/GL0215
If you have any questions, feel free to contact the Office of Building and Codes at 518-761-3848.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What qualifies as a “Vacant Building” that must be registered?
A: Any building which meets one or more of the following conditions:
1) Unoccupied and unsecured;
2) Unoccupied and unsafe or in violation of NYS Fire & Building Codes;
3) Occupied by persons with no legal authority to occupy;
4) Unoccupied for more than 90 days.
Q: When must a building be registered?
A: A building must be registered with the Building & Codes Dept. within 30 days after becoming vacant or after the purchase of a vacant building. The building must be re-registered each year that it remains vacant and contact information must be updated as soon as a change occurs.
Q: How do I register my vacant building?
A: Owners may obtain a Vacant Building Registration Form on the City’s website or from the Building and Codes Dept. Upon request, the Department may also provide you a form by mail or email.
Q: Are there any fees involved with registering my vacant building?
A: Yes. An annual registration fee must be paid to the City of Glens Falls. This fee must be submitted to the Department of Buildings & Codes along with a completed registration form. Registration fees are set by the Common Council and copies of the fee schedule can be obtained through the City Clerk’s Office (518-761-3800) or the Building and Codes Dept. (518-761-3848).
Q: Are there any exceptions to the registration fee requirements?
A: Yes. The law provides for certain conditions where an owner may request a wavier of registration fees. These conditions include:
1) A building which is actively be marketed for sale or lease.
2) A building that is under active renovation and has a current building permit.
3) Hardship – This wavier can only be granted will common Council approval.
An application for Fee Exemption must be submitted and approved by the Building and Codes Dept.
Q: Are there any penalties if I do not register my vacant building?
A: Yes. While the City’s focus is to seek voluntary compliance, the law does provide for penalties for owners who fail to register. Upon conviction, an owner can be found guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to a fine of not less than $1,000.