Catch Basin
Winter 2006

Plumbing and Engineering Construction Codes and Licensing Division

Construction Codes and Licensing Division merged under one roof

Plumbing, water conditioning exams

Spring test dates Building upon Governor Tim Pawlenty’s Drive to March 14 — Duluth, Detroit Lakes and Mankato Excellence initiative, the state’s five construction March 16 — St. Paul code and licensing units are now under one roof at the Application deadline for the Spring exam: Feb. 15. Department of Labor and Industry and have formed a single Construction Codes and Licensing Division Fall test dates (CCLD). Sept. 19 — Mankato, Duluth and Detroit Lakes Sept. 21 — St. Paul CCLD consists of five units: • Building Codes and Standards • Plumbing and Engineering • Electrical Licensing and Inspection • Residential Building Contractors • Boilers, High-pressure Piping and Boats-for-hire The group has established its mission to promote safe, healthy work and living environments in Minnesota by establishing code standards, maintaining consistent administration of construction codes and licensing construction and code professionals. Besides the physical moves, CCLD’s leadership team has begun to identify ways to improve and streamline its operations and structure. The CCLD staff has formed six function teams – licensing, plan review, education, code development, enforcement and inspection – to develop a plan for its future operations. Each team will recommend ways to implement the division’s vision and strategies, with special focus on ways to better align previously separate activities. Products of the team’s work will include: • business process improvement recommendations; • other recommendations to improve services in this area; and • suggested organizational structure to support the function. Application deadline for the Fall exam is Aug. 15. Completed application must be received with a $50 nonrefundable fee postmarked on or before the application deadline. The test application forms are available online at Online registration is not available at this time. To receive an application form via the mail, call the Plumbing and Engineering office at (651) 284-5067.

Plan review demand grows
Plumbing plan submittals continue to rise — a 24.5 percent increase during the past seven years. Fiscal year 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 Plans 3,269 3,079 2,825 2,587 2,507 2,564 2,472

443 Lafayette Page N. ·• St. Paul, MN 55155-4342 Winter 2006 • Minnesota(651) 284-5067 · Fax:Labor and Industry Road 1 The Catch Basin • • • Phone: Department of (651) 284-5748 · TTY: (651) 297-4198

Plumbing inspection requests

The Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry must be contacted for inspections on state-funded or licensed facilities where there is no local inspection department. Engineering Program Please contact the plumbing standard representative (PSR) in your area of the state to request plumbing inspections or answer code or licensure questions (map below). You may also get information about when to request an inspection online at Reminder on plumbing plan submittals To minimize delays in the plan review process, please remember to include the following when submitting plumbing plans for review: • Utility site plan • Floor plan • Water and waste and vent riser diagrams • Fixture and pipe material specifications • Roof plan • Signature Fee — see the online application at Please note that failure to submit any of these items will result in a correction letter and delay of project approval. Failure to submit plans on site utilities (water and sewer lines) is one of the most frequent causes of delays, according to plumbing contractors

New contact information for Plumbing and Engineering
Supervisor, Randy Ellingboe (651) 284-5879 Plan Review Engineers Brad Erickson (651) 284-5880 Colleen Erickson (651) 284-5881 Corey Frain (651) 284-5882 Todd Schaefer (651) 284-5884 Cathy Tran (651) 284-5898 Marise Widmer (651) 284-5887 Fax: (651) 284-5748 Plumbing Program Supervisor, Jim Peterson (651) 284-5889 Plumbing Standards Representatives Web site: Northeast Region Brad Jensen (218) 733-7839 Counties: Aitkin, Beltrami, Carlton, Cass, Cook, Itasca, Koochiching, Lake, Lake of the Woods, St. Louis Northwest Region Gary Topp (218) 739-1386 Counties: Becker, Clay, Clearwater, Douglas, Grant, Hubbard, Kittson, Mahnomen, Marshall, Norman, Otter Tail, Pennington, Polk, Pope, Red Lake, Roseau, Stearns, Stevens, Todd, Traverse, Wadena, Wilkin East Central Region Chuck Olson (651) 284-5888 Counties: Anoka, Benton, Chisago, Crow Wing, Hennepin, Isanti, Kanabec, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Pine, Ramsey, Sherburne, Washington, Wright South Central Region James Shay (651) 284-5890 Counties: Bigstone, Carver, Chippewa, Dakota, Kandiyohi, Lac qui Parle, McLeod, Meeker, Renville, Scott, Sibley, Swift, Yellow Medicine South Region Mike Freiderich (507) 389-6507, ext. 6 Counties: Blue Earth, Brown, Cottonwood, Dodge, Faribault, Fillmore, Freeborn, Goodhue, Houston, Jackson, LeSueur, Lincoln, Lyon, Martin, Mower, Murray, Nicollet, Nobles, Olmstead, Pipestone, Redwood, Rice, Rock, Steele, Wabasha, Waseca, Watonwan, Winona

Page 2 • The Catch Basin • Winter 2006 • Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry

Enforcement actions
Please be reminded that all persons or companies contracting to do plumbing in Minnesota are required to file a plumbing code compliance bond annually with the State of Minnesota and register the bond with the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry. A number of companies listed on license examination applications and apprentice registrations did not have the required bond, which has resulted an administrative penalty order (APO) with monetary penalties to those parties. APO’s can include monetary penalties. Enforcement actions may also lead to license suspension or revocation. Examples of violations include the following: • Installing plumbing prior to plan approval. • Installing plumbing without the required license or bond. • Allowing apprentices to perform plumbing on a jobsite without the required supervision. • Attaching an unlicensed plumber’s name to another plumber’s license, and then installing plumbing in a city with a population greater than 5,000.

Well setback reminder
Please note that buried sewer lines must be set back 50 feet from wells, unless using sewer pipe materials approved and tested as per the Minnesota Plumbing Code, in which case the setback distance is 20 feet.

Accelerated review
Accelerated review has been an extremely popular option since instituted in 2003. Nearly 50 percent of the plans coming in at the end of 2006 were accelerated. We have recently hired additional staff to be able to keep up with this demand, and to improve service delivery for standard fee plans. Our hope is that by improving turn-around times on standard fee plans, the need and demand for accelerated review will decrease.

Auditing residential plumbing
We will begin auditing installations of residential plumbing projects in cities that have municipal water supply or sewer systems that do not have a local building official. The plumbing standards representatives will be stopping in and auditing for code compliance, contractor bond, licenses where needed, and registration and supervision of apprentices.

Please remember it is the duty of the responsible master plumber or plumbing contractor to: ensure plans have been submitted and approved prior to installing any plumbing; verify that any person performing plumbing is properly licensed or registered prior to performing plumbing onsite; provide the required immediate and personal supervision for apprentices performing Remember that apprentices must be under the direct and plumbing; and properly file evidence of code compliance personal supervision of either a licensed journeyman or master plumber, or in cities of less than 5,000 population, bond if contracting to do plumbing. an unlicensed but bonded plumbing contractor. Contact Look-up licenses and bonds online by cell phones is not direct or personal supervision. Licensed plumbers lists: To locate a licensed plumber or determine whether your plumber is licensed by the State of Minnesota. Plumbing license types: PM – Master Plumber PJ – Journeyman Plumber WC – Water Conditioning Contractor WI – Water Conditioning Installer Plumbing bond list: A list of businesses that have filed their Plumbing Bond with the State of Minnesota and paid their filing fee.

License exam applications and results
The exam application forms are available on the Web site: Online registration is not available at this time. Applicants can call Plumbing and Engineering at (651) 284-5067 to request that an application form be sent to them. Exam results are online at

Page 3 • The Catch Basin • Winter 2006 • Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry


Catch Basin

construction codes and licensing division

plumbing and Engineering 443 lafayette road n. st. paul, mn 55155-4343

Prsrt Std US Postage Paid Permit No. 171 St. Paul, MN

The Catch Basin goes online in Fall; sign up to receive e-mail notification
As of Fall 2006, this newsletter will no longer be sent via the mail. In order to eliminate printing and postage expenses, The Catch Basin will become an online-only publication and subscribers will be notified via e-mail when a new issue is posted online. To subscribe to The Catch Basin e-mail distribution list, go to and select The Catch Basin.

Plug in new contact information
The Plumbing and Engineering unit (formerly with the Department of Health) has moved to the Department of Labor and Industry in St. Paul. The unit’s address, telephone and fax numbers have changed and are listed below. Please ensure that you use our new contact information for future correspondence. Plumbing and Engineering Construction Codes and Licensing Division 443 Lafayette Road N. St. Paul, MN 55155-4343 Phone: (651) 284-5067 Fax: (651) 284-5749 TTY: (651) 297-4198

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Page 4 • The Catch Basin • Winter 2006 • Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry