Each tightening in regulations (notably the classification of the village as a remarkable heritage site) requires tighter checks upon their application. Following the provision of a building permit (or a certificate of non-objection to an advance notification of building, for work not requiring a permit), the next administrative step is the provision of a Certificate of Compliance.
Once the building works are over, a property owner should in principle register a Statement of Work Completion and Compliance, leading to an on-site inspection by an agent and the delivery of the Certificate, which is considered to be provided by default in the absence of a reply from the Town Hall within two months.
In practice, few owners register this statement, despite it being required by notaries in the event of the sale of the property. But this does not relieve the Town Hall of the responsibility for the verification of completed building works because it has been noted and demonstrated that too many households do not strictly respect the permits they have received.
The local warden is supposed to do this but apparently does not have the time – nor, we suspect, the necessary skills. The Town Hall argues that in the absence of the statement of completion, it is not aware that the works have finished and cannot therefore carry out the inspection. This argument may be true for some more remote properties, but is very dubious in the village where works are visible from the public highway. Given it is not the Association’s place to report homeowners who have not complied with building permits, it formally requests that the Town Hall discharge its responsibilities and take all the necessary steps to make these checks, even in the absence of a Statement of Completion.
The Association once again requests that the Town Hall provide the resources or create a position to undertake this job, the required time for which to be determined. Resolution unanimously adopted by all present and represented. Patrick Merle had proposed in 2019 that the Apt municipal services could be solicited to provide an agent once a month, perhaps paid for by Ménerbes, which would allow the checks to be carried out in a neutral manner. We considered this an excellent idea, but it has not borne fruit. Perhaps Patrick Merle’s new position at the Communauté de Communes Pays d’Apt Luberon (CCPAL) could provide a catalyst?