Electrical and Plumbing Ratios on Job Sites

Job sites in Denver cannot have more than three apprentices per journeyman or master electrician or plumber. This is both state and local law. 

City inspectors and staff may inquire about and confirm the number of apprentices, electricians, and plumbers on job sites to ensure compliance with Colorado Revised Statutes Sections 12-23-105 and 12-23-110.5 and the Denver Building and Fire Code. City staff have the authority to ask any person on a job site to provide either a physical copy of an apprenticeship registration or license card or an electronic copy along with a valid driver’s license. If the job site does not meet the correct ratio, city staff may issue a "stop work order" for the electrical or plumbing permit.

If you have received a stop work order:

Immediately cease all electrical or plumbing work onsite and contact Denver's Building Inspections group. Request to speak with the Building Official to discuss the appropriate course of action moving forward as outlined in the Denver Building and Fire Code. 

License Ratio Verification Procedure

When conducting a license inspection, the inspector will contact the electrical and plumbing foreman once they arrive onsite. From there, they will inspect the site by walking a representative sample of the jobsite - based on the size of the job.

Inspectors will:

  1. Visit sites on days an inspection has not been requested,
  2. Take a picture of the roster (if applicable),
  3. Speak to individuals who appear to be performing electrical or plumbing work,
  4. Ask for names to verify the roster, or ask what company they are working with and what their role is,
  5. View master, journeyman, or apprentice license,
  6. Take a picture of valid cards, and
  7. Get a total of workers onsite to establish the ratio.

What to expect based on your project size:

  1. High-rise building:
    • Inspectors will ask to see the roster/sign-in sheet for that day,
    • They will ask to visit the floors that are currently being worked on, and
    • Spot check three floors - or a representative sample depending on the size and stage of construction.
  2. Mid-size construction project:
    • Inspectors will ask if a roster is available,
    • They will walk a representative sample of the site, and
    • View all employee license or apprentice cards.
  3. Single-family residential project: 
    • Inspectors will walk the entire site, and
    • View all employee license or apprentice cards.

Violation Response

When a contractor is found to be in violation of the 3-to-1 supervisor ratio requirement, the inspector will document the violation.

First violation

A written warning letter will be sent to the company license holder from Contractor Licensing. 

Second violation

A meeting with the Building Official and second written warning letter will be sent to the company license holder from Contractor Licensing. Further inspections for that jobsite may also be put on hold until this meeting has taken place.

Third violation

Contractor Licensing will put a hold on the company's license and/or certificate. The licensed company will not be able to pull any new permits on the corresponding license and/or certificate until the contractor can demonstrate proper compliance.