By Mike Buehner, SE – SEAU Legislative Committee Chair
Courtesy of Structural Engineers Association of Utah
The 2023 Utah Legislative Session did not sprout any surprises in regards to bills that affect structural engineering practice. HB 409 State Construction and Fire Codes Amendments repealed Tall Wood Buildings of Mass Timber Construction from the state code. Tall wood building provisions from IBC 2021 were adopted as an amendment to the state building code last year. It was repealed because IBC 2021 will be adopted which includes provisions for construction of tall wood buildings. HB532 Building Code Revisions is the one we’ve been waiting for. This is the bill that adopts IBC 2021, IRC 2021, and IEBC 2021. However, the homebuilders lobby successfully argued that the new energy efficiency provisions in IRC 2021 Chapter 11 would increase residential construction costs too much so IRC 2021 Chapter 11 is replaced with IRC 2015 Chapter 11 by amendment. It is also the homebuilders group who asked for and received a one-year delay to adopt the 2021 codes to give them time to study the cost effects of new provisions. HB532 also changes the definition of Assisted Living and Child Care Facilities and includes quite a bit of technical language revisions. There is also a significant amount of technical language clean up and revisions to statewide amendments to the IBC and IRC. I encourage you to go through those changes. A link to the bill is HB0532 (utah.gov)
Otherwise, there were no other bills that cause change to our practice – unlike two years ago when the requirement for “good moral character” was stricken from the books.
For the original post, visit: https://seau.org/articles/Mar_2023_Utah_Legislative_Session_Update