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The Florida Senate

CS/CS/HB 1021 — Construction

by Commerce Committee; Appropriations Committee; and Rep. Avila (CS/CS/SB 1312 by Appropriations Committee; Community Affairs Committee; and Senators Perry and Campbell)

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Communications, Energy, and Public Utilities Committee (CU)

The bill authorizes the manufacture or sale of solar energy systems in Florida if they either meet the standards established by the Florida Solar Energy Center and display accepted results of approved performance tests as prescribed by the Center, or are certified by an engineer licensed pursuant to ch. 471, F.S., using the standards contained in the most recent version of the Florida Building Code. It exempts employees of municipal gas utilities performing construction, maintenance, or development work from the contractor licensing requirements of part I of ch. 489, F.S.

The bill prohibits a political subdivision of the state from adopting or enforcing any ordinance or imposing any building permit or other development order requirement under certain circumstances. The prohibition applies retroactively, and all such ordinances and requirements are preempted and superseded by general law. The prohibition does not affect any requirement for design and construction in the Florida Building Code, and does not apply to property located in a designated historic district.

The bill creates an internship path for certification as a building code inspector or plans examiner. It requires the Florida Building Code Administrators and Inspectors Board to issue a provisional certificate to any building code inspector or plans examiner who meets certain eligibility requirements. Furthermore, a person may perform the duties of a plan examiner or building code inspector for 120 days if he or she submits a provisional certificate application and is under the direct supervision of a certified building code administrator. The bill prohibits independent districts and special districts from requiring at any time, including at the time of application for a permit, the payment of any additional fees, charges, or expenses associated specified activities.

The bill requires the Florida Building Commission (commission) to use the International Code Council, the National Electric Code (NFPA), or other nationally adopted model codes and standards for updates to the Florida Building Code. The commission must adopt an updated Florida Building Code every three years through reviews of the International Building Code, the International Fuel Gas Code, the International Mechanical Code, the International Plumbing Code, and the International Residential Code. At a minimum, the commission must adopt any updates to such codes as are necessary to maintain eligibility for federal funding from the National Flood Insurance Program, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development. The commission is also required to review and adopt updates based substantially on the International Energy Conservation Code; however, the commission must maintain the efficiencies of the Florida Energy Efficiency Code for Building Construction pursuant to s. 553.901, F.S. The commission must adopt the Florida Building Code, and amendments thereto, by at least a two-thirds vote of the members present at a meeting.  The commission is required to amend the Florida Building Code-Energy Conservation to either eliminate duplicative commissioning reporting requirements or authorize commissioning reports to be provided by specified professionals and to prohibit the adoption of American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers Standard

The bill prohibits a county, municipality, special taxing district, public utility, or private utility from requiring an impact fee or payment for a separate water connection for a one-family or two-family dwelling fire sprinkler system if the capacity required is hydraulically available at the property line. The bill imposes certain requirements on accountholders and utilities with respect to separate water connections for family dwelling fire sprinkling systems.

The bill prohibits a local government from requiring an owner of a residence to obtain a permit to paint such residence, regardless of whether the residence is owned by a limited liability company.

The Department of Education, in conjunction with the Department of Economic Opportunity, is required to develop a plan to implement the recommendations of the Construction Industry Workforce Task Force Report dated January 20, 2017. The Department of Education shall provide the plan to the Construction Industry Workforce Task Force on or before July 1, 2018.

CareerSource Florida, Inc., is required to develop and submit a plan to the Construction Industry Workforce Taskforce of the potential opportunities for training programs to implement the recommendations of the Construction Industry Workforce Taskforce Report dated January 20, 2017, using existing federal funds awarded to the corporation and using the previous statewide Florida ReBuilds program as an implementation model for such programs. CareerSource Florida, Inc., must provide the plan to the Construction Industry Workforce Taskforce on or before July 1, 2018.

The Florida Building Commission is required to adopt an amendment to the Florida Building Code-Residential, relating to Door Components, to provide that, relating to substitution of door components, such components must either:

  • Comply with ANSI/WMA 100; or
  • Be evaluated by an approved product evaluation entity, certification agency, testing laboratory, or engineer and may be interchangeable in exterior door assemblies if the components provide equal or greater structural performance as demonstrated by accepted engineering practices.

The bill allows a certified electrical or alarm system contractor to act as a prime contractor when the majority of the work to be performed under the contract is within the scope of his or her license and to subcontract to other licensed contractors any remaining work that is part of the project contracted.

If approved by the Governor, these provisions take effect July 1, 2017.

Vote: Senate 34-2; House 116-0