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Swimming Pool and Spas Program

Construction

All public swimming pools and spas in Iowa must be designed by licensed engineers and architects to comply with 641 IAC Chapter 15, Swimming Pools and Spas. Before the construction of a new public pool or spa or reconstruction of an existing public pool or spa, the owner or their designated representative must submit an application to the Iowa Department of Public Health at least 15 days prior to the start of construction.

Reconstruction

Reconstruction includes the replacement or modification of a swimming pool or spa shell or deck, a swimming pool or spa recirculation system, a perimeter overflow gutter or skimmer, or a bathhouse associated with a public swimming pool or spa. Reconstruction does not include the replacement of equipment or piping of the original type and size to that return the swimming pool or spa to the specifications of its design, nor does it include normal maintenance or repair.

Complete Applications for New Construction/Reconstruction Include:

  • Plan Certification: Plans and specifications must be sealed and certified in accordance with the rules of the engineering and land surveying examining board or the architectural examining board by an engineer or architect licensed to practice in Iowa.
  • Plan Submission: Complete plans and specifications (site, architectural, mechanical, electric, and pool plans) may be submitted electronically. If paper copies are submitted, three sets of plans and specifications need to be submitted with the application.
  • Plan Review Fees: A plan review fee for each pool, spa, or water slide must be submitted with the construction permit application.

What Happens After an Application is Submitted?

The Swimming Pool and Spa Program will not begin the plan review if the application is incomplete, plans are not received, or if the applicable fees are not submitted. Facilities are responsible for submitting the required documentation or contacting the Swimming Pool and Spa Program to determine if they have submitted all of the requirements.

Once a properly completed application has been submitted a permit letter will be forwarded to the owner noting that construction will be permitted to begin based on the sealed and certified plans while the department begins a review of the plans and specifications.

After the construction plan review has been completed, a copy of the construction plan review will be forwarded to the owner. Any deficiencies from the rules identified through the plan review or any subsequent inspection will be required to be corrected to comply with the rules.

The owner or their designated representative shall complete the Request for Inspection Form and the Registration Form and submit to the Swimming Pool and Spa Program no later than 15 days prior to the scheduled opening date. The department will reply to the owner with a date and time for the final construction/pre-opening inspection. The registration cards will be provided at the completion of the inspection.

Iowa's Contractor Law- Registration and Bonding

The State of Iowa requires that “construction contractors” register with the Iowa Division of Labor, and renew that registration annually. The law is found in Chapter 91C of the Iowa Code. For more information, please visit the Division of Labor Services.

Request to Waive the Requirements for Certified Plans and Specifications

If the reconstruction project is the addition or replacement of a chemical feed system, including a disinfection system, or a simple replacement of a filter or pump or both the requirement of engineered plans may be waived by the Swimming Pool and Spa Program if the owner of the facility assumes full responsibility for ensuring that the reconstruction complies with 641 IAC Chapter 15 and with any other applicable federal, state and local laws, rules and ordinances. This requirement may only be waived if:

  • the facility owner completes and submits the Request to Waive the Requirement for Certified Plans and Specifications form,
  • a completed Construction Permit Application is submitted, and
  • a copy of the product specifications, installation, operations, and maintenance manual for all installed equipment to maintain with the department's facility records is submitted.