Post Session Report: April 12, 2011

Senate Bill 377 PN 1520 (Everett): Amends the Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code (UCC) to add provisions related to manufactured housing and log walls of residential structures. The bill also revises the process by which the latest triennial revisions of the UCC are reviewed and adopted by the UCC Review and Advisory Council (RAC). The bill removes the requirement for the installation of automatic fire sprinkler systems in residential structures but requires the use of increased floor standards in homes without sprinkler systems. The bill also removes the wall bracing requirements of the 2009 International Residential Code (IRC). The bill was approved 33-17.

The following amendments failed on the floor:

A01436 (Tartaglione):  This amendment permits subcontractors in the nonresidential construction industry to serve on the Review and Advisory Council; removes the required 2/3 vote for the RAC; and permits the retention of the prior triennial version if no changes are adopted. The amendment failed 22-28.

Sen. Solobay offered the following amendments:

AO1441: This amendment permits municipalities to adopt a resolution adopting the automatic fire sprinkler system provisions of the International Residential Code. No challenge of the ordinance, the Secretary’s ruling or an appeal of the Secretary’s ruling is authorized. The amendment failed 18-32.

A01428: This amendment strikes out the repeal of the automatic fire sprinkler requirement and establishes a 2-year moratorium and a study by the review and advisory council (RAC) on the automatic fire sprinkler requirement. The amendment failed 16-34.

A01429: This amendment requires the design, creation and posting of a sign warning of light floor construction for emergency personnel. State Fire Commissioner will design the sign, the builder has the signs produced and the buyer posts the sign. The amendment failed 16-34.

AO1431: This amendment adds the Secretary of Health and the State Fire Commissioner to the Uniform Construction Code Review and Advisory Council. The amendment failed 20-30.

A01501 (McIlhinney): This amendment permits a second class A county, within 6 months of the effective date of the act, to adopt a resolution adopting the automatic fire sprinkler system provisions of the International Residential Code. No challenge of the ordinance, the Secretary’s ruling or an appeal of the Secretary’s ruling is authorized. This amendment failed 18-32.

AO1482 (McIlhinney): This amendment provides for the E-verification of employees for the construction industry. This is broader than other pieces of legislation which only applied to public works contracts. This amendment failed 23-27.

Senate Bill 654 PN 654 (Argall): This bill amends the Workers’ Compensation Act by further defining the term “occupational disease” as cancer suffered by a firefighter under certain terms and goes into more details about compensation. The bill was unanimously approved.

Executive Nominations

The following nominees were approved unanimously, 50-0

C. Allan Walker, Secretary of Community and Economic Development

Sheri Phillips, Secretary of General Services

Frank Noonan, Commissioner of PA State Police

Barry Schoch, Secretary of Transportation