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Kouga Municipality launches online portal for building plans

Kouga has become one of the first municipalities in the Eastern Cape to launch a virtual portal for the submission of building plans.

Kouga Planning and Development portfolio chairman, Alderman Ben Rheeder, said the launch could not have come at a better time as it meant the processing of building plans could continue despite Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

“In addition to the new virtual portal for building plans, staff members are available via telephone or email to assist residents and trade professionals with building-related queries and submissions,” said Rheeder.

He said the electronic submission of building plans could be done through the Ovvio portal on the municipal website at http://www.kouga.gov.za.

An access key is necessary to register for this service and can be obtained from Mariske Kleingeld at [email protected] or Adrian Thorne at [email protected]

“Once you have registered, simply follow the prompts to submit the building plans,” he said.

“Please note that the portal cannot be used to make payments. Fees must be paid into the municipal bank account and proof of payment submitted with the plans.”

Payments must be made into Kouga Municipality’s bank account. The banking details are as follows: Kouga Municipality, First National Bank, account number 52540033504 and reference PD + your surname.

He said those who could not access the portal, could submit their building plans manually at the security desks of the municipal offices in Woltemade Street, Jeffreys Bay, or St Francis Bay. Proof of payment must also be included with the submission.

Rheeder said one of the advantages of the virtual portal was that progress on the processing of building plans could also be tracked online through the portal.

Alternatively, the following support staff can be contacted at 042 200 2200 (option 4) or emailed for queries about new or existing plans:

Zimasa Daniso at [email protected], Roelien Augustus at [email protected] or, for St Francis and Oyster Bay, Ann Bezuidenhout at [email protected]

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Rheeder commended the Planning and Development department for the initiative.

“Kouga is once again setting the trend for other municipalities. Not only will the virtual portal help to keep Kouga growing economically, it is another step forward in our efforts to keep Kouga smart.”

Covid-19 measures for land-use applications and site inspections

Kouga Municipality has put in place measures to receive and process land-use applications, as well as to conduct site inspections, during level three of the nationwide Covid-19 lockdown.

Kouga Planning and Development portfolio chairman, Alderman Ben Rheeder, said land-use applications could now be submitted via email to Binadene Meyer at [email protected] or Yanga Nobaza at [email protected]

Queries about land-use applications can be submitted to Elsa van Biljon at [email protected] or Lawrence Ramakuwela at [email protected]

Requests for zoning certificates can be referred to Sadrick Grootboom at [email protected]

“Site inspections can also once again take place but must be booked via telephone or email,” he said.

The following support staff can be contacted at 042 200 2200 (option 4) to book a site inspection or email them at: Zimasa Daniso at [email protected], Roelien Augustus at [email protected] or, for St Francis and Oyster Bay, Ann Bezuidenhout at [email protected]

“Please note that due to Covid-19 safety protocols no workers are allowed on site during the inspection,” he said.

He said any long-outstanding issues could be taken up with the Manager: Development Planning, Kobus Marais, on [email protected] or the Director: Planning, Development and Tourism, Fezeka Mabusela, on [email protected]

Photo: Darren Peens