The Governor has signed AB 1693 (Ma), the industry-sponsored legislation that will reduce the frequency with which industry and local government have to deal with new changes to the state building code.
For almost twenty years, California’s Health & Safety Code has required the Building Standards Commission and numerous other state agencies to develop, adopt and publish updated building standards in an annual, 12-month administrative cycle. AB 1693 increases this time period by six months by establishing a new, 18-month code adoption cycle.
This annual administrative process was established in 1992. However, due to the increasingly complicated nature of writing and analyzing these highly technical codes, it is difficult for state agencies to complete all of the related administrative work, including the receipt of and response to public input, within the confines of a 12-month administrative cycle. More importantly, the current 12-month schedule leaves very little time for education and training on the code once adopted before the next set of changes are proposed.
Although AB 1693 stretches the current 12-month code-adoption cycle by 6 months, it does not change the current mandate that a new “triennial edition” of the state code be published every three years. Under this proposal, there would simply be one interim update rather than two during any 3-year period.
Bottom line: AB 1693 will provide more time for builders, architects and local code-enforcement officials to prepare for future changes to the code.
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