Panel Recommends L&I Be Split in Two

Report comes in wake of last year's deadly Salvation Army collapse.

Photo by Bradley Maule from  June 5, 2013 collapse at 22nd and Market.

Photo by Bradley Maule from June 5, 2013 collapse at 22nd and Market.

The Inquirer reports this morning that a “blue-ribbon panel” is recommending that the Department of Licenses & Inspections be split into two agencies — one focused on construction, the other on the remaining licenses offered by the existing department.

The report comes a year after demolition on a neighboring building caused the deadly collapse of the Salvation Army thrift store at 22nd and Market streets.


As proposed, a new Department of Buildings would oversee construction projects, demolition, and property inspections as it deals with the building code, the sources said.

That department would be under the deputy mayor for public safety, who now oversees the Police and Fire Departments. L&I is under the deputy mayor for economic development.

The sources said the second agency described in the draft would take over issuance of licenses — along with any other L&I duties not covered by the Buildings Department. The proposed name and responsibilities of the second agency could change before the final report is released, according to the sources.

The report becomes public next Thursday. Implementing its recommendations would take a voter-approved revision to the City Charter.