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ICC Board? Right, Wrong, Needs Work, The Future?

Discussion in 'Talk to the ICC Board' started by jpranch, Apr 26, 2017.

  1. jpranch

    jpranch Platinum Member

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    In Wyoming we are required by state law to have copies on hand for the public. As I understand it a lot of other states have the same laws and / or provide the same access. The discussion revolves around "Equal Access Unto the Law" and I surely get that and I'm surly very sensitive to that. We do not charge any fees to the public. Just my humble opinion but that would be just plain wrong. I would expect that, that is a decision made at the state and local levels but I have not heard of any jurisdiction charging for the access. Anybody else heard of fees for access??? Btw, yes the codes & standards are copyrighted but you can as a legal purchaser / owner print selected pages, tables, formulas, to assist your customers with there projects. I do it all the time and use copy and paste from the codes for plan review. Not when you print the whole thing in total and make it available wholesale that is a very different story. And its just not the text, tables, formulas, etc... You also have to take into account such things a logos, registered trademeaks, etc...
     
  2. steveray

    steveray Sawhorse

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    Our amendments to the model codes are available for free download on the State Building Inspectors website and ICC was nice enough to publish CT specific IRC and IBC books so that users are not constantly flipping around different docs looking for the info here...If a customer wants to see the code, we will let them view it here, or send them links to OSBI and the Ecodes at ICC...
     
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  3. jpranch

    jpranch Platinum Member

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    Jcarver, to continue. Committees. I hear you. But believe it or not there is a method to the madness. The decision(s) to create a committee or council are looked at very carefully by the board. Is the juice worth the squeezing? Some committees take on major topics and some I will admit might not be quite so focused on our core mission. But there is more to it than that. Your point is well taken in that why would we want to create a committee to study and report back to the board about the impact of fly crap on glazing! Just kidding. There is no committee for that. Just making a point. The board is moving slowly back to our core mission. I foresee this as a mid to long term transition with of course, ever watchful on the budget and well being of our financial health. The dollars spent on committees is looked at throughout the year and in each and every years budget. I can tell you absolutely that we are doing more with less as that budget item(s) have not seen an increase in years that amount to a spit in the river.

    5 Year code cycle. Our current revenue stream and business model is based on the 3 year cycle and I do not see that changing anytime soon. ICC already has contracts 3 to 4 years out with hotels, convention centers, etc... The 3 year code cycle itself presents challenges at even that time interval. When you have a revenue stream that cycles you have to really plan you budgets carefully for the up years and the down years. This is why I mentioned in an earlier post about diversifying ICC's financial portfolio. So the revenues are more steady, predictable, and stable year over year.

    Voting methods. Now come on and let's say what it is. We (ICC) have failed in at least one major regard. The electronic voting devices. We all know it and have seen it first hand. This goes back to our I.T. discussion. For this particular issue I'm expecting an update in a couple of weeks from ICC staff. Stay tuned and I can hopefully get you a better answer soon. I can tell you this, the solution will not be cheap. Of course we are looking at the options of renting the technology or possibly buying and owning the equipment. Both have their pro's and con's. Quite frankly we have not had great experiences with outside vendors in this regard.

    Please let me know if I missed anything in your comments and thanks for the feedback.
     
  4. Min&Max

    Min&Max Silver Member

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    The 3 year code may be ICC's business model but it is a model that many/most jurisdictions are not buying in to. With a three year cycle we will always skip at least one cycle. Whereas with a 5 year cycle I do not believe many would skip a cycle and be 10 years between code updates. With the ever increasing number of codes it has become cumbersome to have hearings without running into the evening making these 12+ hour marathons with participation waning as the day drags on. The argument that we need a 3 year cycle to keep up with new technology is BS. I only need to ask for testing documentation from ICC, UL or numerous other testing agencies to make a determination as to whether or not to allow a product. ICC may have a 3 year cycle but most are running a 6 year cycle.
     
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  5. jpranch

    jpranch Platinum Member

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    Wyoming skipped the 2009 editions as I recall. Your point is well taken about having a UL, ICCES, FM, etc... to approve new products. I rely on them too. It could be argued and I think successfully so that there are jurisdictions that are already on code cycles longer than 3 years. From a business model standpoint ICC's revenues follow the code cycle with up and down years. The bigger challenge is how to "flatten our" the revenue stream without the peaks and valleys that cycles have or at least minimize them which would make yearly or multi yearly budget projections / assumptions a bit more predictable?
     
  6. Pcinspector1

    Pcinspector1 Platinum Member

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    Isn't the ISO the big hammer forcing the jurisdictions to update the codes, I was perfectly fine enforcing the 2006 I-codes in this community. I had three sets of books, had the commentary, had taken the test and got certified in a few codes. Then the ISO waltz's in with three people from New Jersey and claimed they were going to raise the fire protection class which would in turn raise property insurance. The citizens will be at city hall with pitch forks and shotguns if they get wind of an increase. So... here we go, adopt new codes again, skip the 2009 and adopt the 2012.
     
  7. jpranch

    jpranch Platinum Member

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    The ISO is an interesting thing. I did all the paperwork for the ISO report and their rep came here for 1/2 a day and we received a better score than I expected for our very first time out. I reached out to as many local insurers as I could about our score. Now they were local insurers but represented large national companies. State Farm, etc... The interesting thing was I asked them about our rating and none of them has even heard of ISO and had never used any of their information. So our department went through all of that paper work for nothing. Wind the clock forward 3 or 4 years (I cannot remember the exact time) and we get letters sent to our department as well as to the Mayors office that we need to do this all over again or the insurance rates will be going up. I contact the insurers again and get the same response. That is, we do not use any information from ISO to set insurance rates. So we told ISO that we are not interested and have not participated in years and have no plans to do so in the future.
     
  8. Mark K

    Mark K Platinum Member

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    Building officials do not have the authority to approve new products based on ICC-ES reports since that would effectively give them the authority to modify the building code. The building code as well as any law or regulation can only be modified by the legislative body that adopted it. If this were not the case then why does your local city council or state legislature need to adopt the building code in the first place.

    If the building code provides performance standards, such as for post installed concrete anchors, then the product can be used without approval from the building official as long as it can be shown that the product meets the criteria specified in the code.

    This means that we need to find a legal way to update the code on a more frequent basis. Where states have adopted a building code the state could create a state program to approve new products and systems.

    The building official does not have the power to unilaterally modify the building code and provisions in the IBC that attempt to give the building official such authority are not legal because they either violate the US or the State Constitutions. The primary problems have to do with the separation of powers and improper delegation of legislative authority.

    Our system of building regulation is broken and we need to find legal ways that address the problem but giving the building official dictatorial powers is not one of them.

    IBC Section 104.11 was intended to deal with unusual cases and cannot be used to implement code changes unless we ignore our system of laws.
     
  9. tmurray

    tmurray Sawhorse

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    Canada does have a 5 year cycle. The issue is that in order to do this, you need a performance based code to allow for some type of alternate solution that can be approved by local building officials. It took us 10 years to change our code into a performance based document. It would be a huge hit to the ICC revenue stream to do this. The other thing I've always found interesting is that standards are also based on a 3 year cycle. Even here in Canada. So in a ten year code cycle, there is a standard that is simply not used here.
     
  10. jpranch

    jpranch Platinum Member

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    I believe that the Building Official can indeed approve products or materials that the codes have not addressed as long as the whatever meets or exceeds the intent of the code in accordance with IBC 104.11. A judgement call by the Building Official. Now with that being said one really needs to be careful on that slippery slope. Example: The IMC for air changes for nail salons. The codes have not caught up with the source capture systems yet. I do believe that nail salons that have the source capture system(s) do not need as many air changes per hour as required by the IMC.
     
  11. Mark K

    Mark K Platinum Member

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    If the building official can "approve" the general use of a product not allowed by the adopted code how does this differ from modifying the building code?
     
  12. jpranch

    jpranch Platinum Member

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    Two different things. Not allowed (prohibited) and not addressed. To my knowledge the IMC is silent on source capture systems. So this system is not addressed by the code. If the codes say that source capture systems are prohibited then that is a huge difference. Again a judgement call from the Building Official and a slippery slope to be used with great care. I always ask myself this question for those very rare times that I have used Section 104.11: Would I be able to defend a decision in a court of law and in a court of law case would a "reasonable" person(s) take the same action?
     
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  13. Mark K

    Mark K Platinum Member

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    A violation of a law, and a regulation is a law, is not excused because the law is unreasonable. Defenses of a violation of a law are of the form that it was impossible to comply, and that compliance would create an unsafe situation.

    The concept of what a reasonable person would do is likely tied to the issue of standard of care defense used when negligence is alleged. The problem is that violation of a law is considered negligence per say and you do not even get to present a standard of care defense..

    If something is not required by the code then how can you require it unless you have the authority to modify the code.

    If a system is not addressed in the code you probably cannot prevent somebody from using it.
     
  14. CodeWarrior

    CodeWarrior Member

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    Asking for a test is ok but you don't know for sure the product you're using is the same as the one tested. That's where research reports are useful since most of the publishers also inspect.

    Here's some down sides.

    What I noticed when searching for ICC reports lately is that more an more reports are not being renewed but are still on the website. Does ICC still back these past due reports? Are they still inspecting the products? Makes using them questionable.

    Trying to find listings from UL & Interek is a challenge and you probably need a class to use either website effectively.
     
  15. Min&Max

    Min&Max Silver Member

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    I do not try to find anything, they want to use it they have to produce test reports. When they produce documentation of testing I am good to go.
     
  16. Mark K

    Mark K Platinum Member

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    I do not believe that ICC-ES actually inspects the products. My understanding is that IAS, which is owned by ICC, periodically reviews the quality assurance program.
     
  17. steveray

    steveray Sawhorse

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    Mark....Usually a product approval (ICC ES or UL or whatever) works with code (performance) to meet a code requirement (prescriptive), I have never thought of it as a modification of code. Listed and or tested is used throughout all of the codes and the ES reports just say that it is tested to meet "X" section....
     
  18. Mark K

    Mark K Platinum Member

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    ICC-ES ESR's come in two types and ICC-ES does not go out of their way to distinguish them. For product that are addressed in the code the report addresses the code required standards.

    There are some other products, probably more than you think, where the product is not addressed in the code or where the product does not comply with some code provision which are justified based on IBC Section 104.11. Where you effectively approve these products on a generic basis you are effectively modifying the code.

    Some ESR's are a combination. For example an ESR for post installed adhesive anchors. The reported design values associated with installation of the anchors in concrete were developed in accordance with ACI 355.4 which is referenced in ACI 318 which is referenced from the IBC. But the values for the installation of the adhesive anchors in masonry are justified based on an interpretation of IBC Section 104.11.

    In many situations where the product complies with the code ICC-ES imposes additional criteria on the product that has required manufacturers to modify their product in order to obtain an ESR. I have not seen a compelling reason for these additional criteria but this additional criteria has had the effect of excluding some code compliant products from use due to the fact that building officials require evaluation reports. Manufacturers of products that comply with this enhanced criteria like it because this helps get rid of competition. Because building officials require evaluation reports that impose this additional criteria they are effectively modifying the code.
     
  19. CodeWarrior

    CodeWarrior Member

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    ICC Claims they inspect -- that's how the report reads -- but they subcontract the work to non employees. IAS uses a lot of subcontractors too.
     
  20. Mark K

    Mark K Platinum Member

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    Unless you can provide a clear statement to the contrary from ICC-ES I stand behind my statement that their focus is on the Quality Control system. It is about documentation. They do not make inspections of products.

    Some of the manufacturers only run an assembly line when the need arises thus they are not necessarily making any product when IAS makes their periodic visit. This does not stop IAS from reviewing the paperwork and signing off on the inspection.
     

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