Agenda Item: 8


CITY OF SANTA CLARITA
AGENDA REPORT

NEW BUSINESS

City Manager Approval:

__________________________

Item to be presented by:

Damon Letz


DATE:


November 12, 2013

SUBJECT:

FIRST READING OF AN ORDINANCE TO ADOPT THE 2013 CALIFORNIA BUILDING STANDARDS CODE WITH LOCAL AMENDMENTS, AMENDING TITLES 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 24, AND 25 OF THE SANTA CLARITA MUNICIPAL CODE

DEPARTMENT:

Public Works

_____________________________________________________________________________

RECOMMENDED ACTION


City Council introduce and pass to second reading an ordinance entitled "AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA CLARITA, CALIFORNIA, REPEALING AND REPLACING TITLES 18 THROUGH 22, AND TITLES 24 AND 25 OF THE SANTA CLARITA MUNICIPAL CODE AND ADOPTING BY REFERENCE THE 2013 CALIFORNIA ADMINISTRATIVE, BUILDING, RESIDENTIAL, ELECTRICAL, MECHANICAL, PLUMBING, ENERGY, EXISTING BUILDING, HISTORICAL BUILDING, FIRE, GREEN BUILDING STANDARDS, AND REFERENCED STANDARDS CODES WITH CERTAIN APPENDICES AND LOCAL AMENDMENTS," and set the public hearing for November 26, 2013.

BACKGROUND

State Code Adoption Process

The California Building Standards Code (building code) is updated and published every three years under the direction of the California Building Standards Commission. The building code comprises Title 24 of the California Code of Regulations and is intended to provide for the safety and welfare of all citizens through the implementation of the latest technology, materials, engineering, construction, and sustainability methods, as regulated by the latest adopted building codes.

The State of California (State) mandates that local jurisdictions adopt and commence enforcement of the latest State building codes within six months of the adoption by the State. The City has complied with this requirement since incorporation in 1987. Recently, the State published the 2013 building code with an effective date for enforcement of January 1, 2014. The City of Santa Clarita (City) must adopt the 2013 building code to be in compliance with State law.

The proposed ordinance repeals the 2010 building code and adopts the 2013 building code along with local amendments, which comprises the following titles of the Santa Clarita Municipal Code:

  • Title 18, City Building Code

  • Title 19, City Electrical Code

  • Title 20, City Plumbing Code

  • Title 21, City Mechanical Code

  • Title 22, City Fire Code

  • Title 24, City Energy Conservation Code

  • Title 25, City Green Building Standards Code

Local Amendments to the State Codes

State law allows local jurisdictions to amend the building code to be more restrictive where deemed necessary to address adverse local conditions related to climate, geology, and/or topography. The proposed City amendments included in this ordinance provide for higher standards for both fire and earthquake protection for buildings constructed throughout the City. These provisions are consistent with similar amendments being adopted by other jurisdictions in the Southern California region.

The proposed amendments also set forth administrative provisions providing for enforcement, collection of fees, and clarifying work that is exempt from permits, all of which are consistent with the City’s current practices and adopted amendments.

As part of an outreach effort to involve local stakeholders, Building & Safety staff conducted public meetings at City Hall on September 26 and October 3 to review the proposed local amendments and explain the building code adoption process. Invitations were sent to 109 local contractors, design professionals, developers, and others in the construction industry, as well as the local chapter of the Building Industry Association. At the meetings, the public had an opportunity to evaluate and provide input regarding the proposed amendments. The presentation was well received by those in attendance with no opposition to the proposed amendments. Additionally, once the building code is adopted, Building & Safety will plan future workshops to provide more opportunities for local designers and builders to become familiar with the changes to each section of the building code.

Public Hearing Requirement

In accordance with Government Code Section 50022.3, a public hearing will be held at the next City Council meeting on November 26, 2013, to consider adoption of the ordinance. The format for holding a public hearing at the second reading rather than at the first reading is specifically set forth in this Government Code section. Public notice will be duly published as required, and a copy of the proposed codes and amendments will be available in the City Clerk’s office for public review prior to the public hearing.

Effective Date

The ordinance establishes an effective date of January 1, 2014, to commence enforcement of the 2013 building code. This date conforms to the effective date established by the State for mandatory enforcement of the new building code. Any application for a building permit submitted on or after that date will be subject to the provisions of the 2013 building code along with local amendments.

The building code continues to become more complex and extensive with each code cycle, which may increase staff time to review plans and inspect building/structures to ensure compliance with the new building code.

ALTERNATIVE ACTIONS

Should City Council elect not to adopt the proposed State codes and local amendments, the City would still be required to enforce the new State codes as set forth in Health & Safety Code 17922 and 17958 et al. Additionally, the updated local amendments, if not adopted, would not be enforceable. Failure to adopt the ordinance could also result in a downgrading of the City’s Insurance Services Office rating, thereby negatively affecting the insurance rates paid by property owners for new construction.


FISCAL IMPACT


This ordinance contains no provisions for increased permit-related fees nor does it modify any fees charged to the public for Building & Safety provided services.


ATTACHMENTS

Ordinance
Title 18 City Building Code - adoption and local amendments
Title 19 City Electrical Code - adoption and local amendments
Title 20 City Plumbing Code - adoption and local amendments
Title 21 City Mechanical Code - adoption and local amendments
Title 22 City Fire Code - adoption
Title 24 City Energy Conservation Code - adoption
Title 25 City Green Building Standards Code - adoption






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