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Friday, February 17, 2012
Insurance Institute: HB2358 Would Weaken State Building Code
By News Release @ 1:40 PM :: 5122 Views :: Energy, Environment

News Release from IBHS

Tampa, Fla. (Feb. 17, 2012) - The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) today said legislation under consideration (HB 2358) in Hawaii would weaken the state’s building code regime by removing key representatives from the Building Code Council.

“HB 2358 would remove the building official, state fire marshal representative and the structural engineer from the Hawaii Building Code Council. IBHS believes each of these positions is extremely important to maintaining a balanced and technically sound Council,” said Wanda Edwards, IBHS’ director of code development. “Removing the building official and the state fire marshal’s representative from the Council is not in the best interest of Hawaii’s citizens because they are responsible for enforcing the codes, and play a very important role in the code review and adoption process.

"Both these representatives are generally well versed in the provisions of the code, and fully understand the challenges of enforcing the technical provisions of the code from firsthand experience,” explained Edwards. “Similarly, the structural engineer brings certain skills to the Council that none of the other representatives are likely to possess. Architects and structural engineers work together to design buildings but have different skills, which combine to produce a finished set of drawings for construction. That is why it is important for the Council to have both disciplines represented.”

“The bill would replace representatives who have considerable building code expertise with representatives of non-technical organizations who would not typically have knowledge of the codes. Passage of this legislation would result in a state Building Code Council that does not appear to reflect all the stakeholders involved in the construction of commercial buildings, which is essential to ensuring the state has a strong, well-enforced code,” concluded Edwards.

To arrange an interview with IBHS, contact Joseph King at 813-675-1045/813-442-2845, jking@ibhs.org or via direct message on Twitter @jsalking.

###

About the IBHS
IBHS is an independent, nonprofit, scientific research and communications organization supported by the property insurance industry. The organization works to reduce the social and economic effects of natural disasters and other risks to residential and commercial property by conducting building science research and advocating improved construction, maintenance and preparedness practices.

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