Governor Signs PA Builder Legislation to Fix Building Code Adoption Process
On October 25, 2017 Governor Wolf signed House Bill 409 – PBA’s long-awaited reforms and updates to the Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code (PA UCC). Act 36 of 2017 extensively revises the code review process undertaken by the Department of Labor and Industry’s Review and Advisory Council (RAC) for future updates.
Act 36 immediately halts the RAC’s current review of the 2018 International Code Council (ICC) Model Codes and requires a re-review of all code provisions contained in the 2012, and 2015 editions of the ICC Model Codes.
On October 1, 2018 new regulations will be in effect codifying the RAC re-review the 2012 and 2015 ICC Model Codes providing a reasonable “catch-up” on six years of codes that have not been adopted in Pennsylvania. Moving forward, all subsequent RAC review and adoption of future Model Code provisions will be delayed by a full three years. Under Act 36 the 2018 ICC Model Codes will not be eligible for enactment in Pennsylvania until March of 2022.
Other Key Provisions in Act 36 of 2017 include:
- Increases the UCC permit fee from $4.00 to $4.50 while authorizing the Department of Labor and Industry to contract with the ICC for a “PA Custom Code Book”
- Authorizes the City of Philadelphia to propose an ordinance to adopt the 2018 ICC Commercial Codes (one-time jump ahead for Commercial only).
Speaking on Final Passage of House Bill 409, Prime Sponsor Rep. Eli Evankovich stated,
“House Bill 409 creates a non-agenda-driven process for adopting those codes, and it is a delicate negotiation not just between the builders’ associations, who stand up for the consumers of Pennsylvania, but also environmentalist groups, local government groups, labor unions, companies that are in the industry making products that are sold for residential and commercial construction. It is a good step in the right direction for fixing this process in Pennsylvania.”
PBA members will receive continuous updates through their Local Associations as the process of the RAC 2015 Code Review unfolds