A variance is an approval or waiver issued by the Department that authorizes a deviation from one or more requirements
of the Maricopa County Environmental Health Code (MCEHC) for the construction
or modification of a public or semi-public pool, wading pool or special use pool, spa or artificial bathing
lake if, in the opinion of the Department, a health hazard, safety or nuisance will not result from the deviation.
A variance can be granted if the requirements of Chapter VI, "Bathing Places - Public and Semipublic Swimming Pools"
of the MCEHC is more restrictive than the requirements of
Arizona Administrative Code (AAC) Title 18, Chapter 5, Article 2, "Public and Semi-Public Swimming Pools and Spas"
and/or AAC Title 9, Chapter 8, Article
8, "Public and Semi-Public Swimming Pools and Bathing Places".
Variances are typically requested when an unusual or unreasonable hardship exists resulting from a literal interpretation
of the rules and regulations. A separate variance must be obtained for each deviation from the requirements of the MCEHC.
A variance may be granted provided that the proposed alternative method or work conforms to the general intent of the rules and regulations.
To assist you, the Department has posted a reference tool for
commonly submitted pool and spa features that are not addressed in the regulations. The document provides design guidance for a list of features
that can be approved in plan review without a variance, and features that can be approved through a time-saving, direct appeal variance process.
It also lists features that must be submitted through the formal variance process. Typical stipulations are included for each variance.
A variance may be requested by submitting a Variance Request application for the construction or modification of public and semi-public pool,
wading pool or special use pool, spa or artificial bathing lake with explanatory documentation, pertinent material, exhibits,
photographs, and any material necessary to inform one as to the reason for the variance request. The Variance Request application and instruction
forms can be obtained from the Forms/Applications page.
Variance Request Submittal Deadlines and Hearing Schedule
The table below lists the submittal deadline for variance requests and the scheduled variance hearing dates of the Swimming Pool Advisory Committee (SPAC).
Swimming Pool Advisory Committee Variance Hearing Dates
January 1, 2016 – December 31, 2016
|Request Submittal Deadline Date||Advisory Committee Hearing Date
|Dec. 03, 2015||Jan. 14, 2016
|Jan. 07, 2016||Feb. 11, 2016
|Feb. 04, 2016||Mar. 10, 2016
|Mar. 03, 2016||Apr. 14, 2016
|Apr. 07, 2016||May 12, 2016
|May 05, 2016||June 09, 2016
|June 02, 2016||July 14, 2016
|July 07, 2016||Aug. 11, 2016
|Aug. 04, 2016||Sept. 08, 2016
|Sept. 01, 2016||Oct. 13, 2016
|Oct. 06, 2016||Nov. 10, 2016
|Nov. 03, 2016||Dec. 08, 2016
|Dec. 01, 2016||Jan. 12, 2017
Variance request applications submitted prior to 3:00 p.m. on the submittal deadline date are guaranteed to be on
the agenda of the next meeting of the SPAC provided the application form is completed correctly, a check for the
proper fee is submitted and the required number of copies of the plans, specifications and other documentation are
received by the deadline.
The 2016 Variance Meeting Schedule for the Swimming Pool Advisory Committee (SPAC) can be downloaded from
the Forms/Applications page. Submittal deadlines for variance requests and committee
hearing dates are listed on this meeting schedule.
Variance Review and Approval Process
Variance requests are reviewed by the Swimming Pool Advisory Committee (SPAC) at a hearing open to the public. Swimming
Pool Variance hearings are scheduled to be heard every second Thursday of the month when properly filed with the Division.
A letter is sent to the Applicant in advance of the hearing notifying the Applicant of the date, time and location of the hearing.
Once the hearing has been completed, the SPAC recommends the approval or disapproval of the request to an Environmental Health
Officer. The Environmental Health Officer renders a final decision within ten (10) days of receiving the Committee recommendations.
A letter will be sent to the Applicant notifying the Applicant of the decision.
If the Applicant for the variance request is dissatisfied with the decision of the Environmental Health Officer, the Applicant
may appeal to the Board of Health. Such appeals shall be presented to the Secretary of the Board of Health in writing, within
thirty (30) days after the filing of the decision of the Environmental Health Officer.