Florida Senate - 2019                              CS for SB 908
       By the Committee on Banking and Insurance; and Senator Hooper
       597-03202-19                                           2019908c1
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to firesafety systems; amending s.
    3         553.792, F.S.; requiring that a uniform fire alarm
    4         permit application, along with certain other
    5         information, be used and submitted to the local
    6         enforcement agency for any project requiring a fire
    7         alarm permit; providing that such application may be
    8         submitted by certain means; providing a signature
    9         requirement; specifying information required in, and a
   10         form for, such applications; providing applicability
   11         of certain building permit application procedures;
   12         authorizing contractors, under certain circumstances,
   13         to begin repairs of fire alarm system upon filing the
   14         uniform fire alarm permit application; amending s.
   15         633.216, F.S.; conforming a cross-reference; amending
   16         s. 633.312, F.S.; authorizing local authorities having
   17         jurisdiction to accept uniform summary inspection
   18         reports of certain fire hydrants and fire protection
   19         systems by certain means; requiring the State Fire
   20         Marshal to adopt rules implementing a uniform summary
   21         inspection report and certain submission procedures;
   22         providing requirements for such uniform report and
   23         procedures; providing that such procedures may not
   24         require a contractor to submit certain information;
   25         amending s. 718.112, F.S.; requiring that condominium
   26         association bylaws provide requirements for the
   27         association’s reasonable compliance with the Florida
   28         Fire Prevention Code; defining the term “reasonable
   29         compliance”; providing construction; specifying
   30         authorized means of compliance for certain residential
   31         condominiums; deleting a requirement for association
   32         bylaws to contain a certain certificate of compliance
   33         provision; deleting an exemption from a requirement to
   34         retrofit certain condominium property with a fire
   35         sprinkler system; deleting procedures for such
   36         exemption; extending the date before which a local
   37         authority having jurisdiction may not require
   38         completion of retrofitting with a fire sprinkler
   39         system; specifying the date before which a local
   40         authority having jurisdiction may not require
   41         completion of installation of an engineered life
   42         safety system; requiring a residential condominium
   43         association that is not in compliance with certain
   44         requirements to perform certain duties by specified
   45         dates; providing a penalty; requiring the Division of
   46         Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes of
   47         the Department of Business and Professional Regulation
   48         to collect such penalty payments and remit them to the
   49         Firefighter Assistance Grant Program within the
   50         Division of State Fire Marshal of the Department of
   51         Financial Services; deleting an obsolete provision;
   52         deleting requirements for condominium associations to
   53         report certain information to the Division of Florida
   54         Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes and for the
   55         division to report certain information to the Division
   56         of State Fire Marshal; providing an effective date.
   58  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   60         Section 1. Section 553.792, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   61  read:
   62         553.792 Building permit application to local government;
   63  fire alarm permit applications.—
   64         (1) Within 10 days of an applicant submitting an
   65  application to the local government, the local government shall
   66  advise the applicant what information, if any, is needed to deem
   67  the application properly completed in compliance with the filing
   68  requirements published by the local government. If the local
   69  government does not provide written notice that the applicant
   70  has not submitted the properly completed application, the
   71  application shall be automatically deemed properly completed and
   72  accepted. Within 45 days after receiving a completed
   73  application, a local government must notify an applicant if
   74  additional information is required for the local government to
   75  determine the sufficiency of the application, and shall specify
   76  the additional information that is required. The applicant must
   77  submit the additional information to the local government or
   78  request that the local government act without the additional
   79  information. While the applicant responds to the request for
   80  additional information, the 120-day period described in this
   81  subsection is tolled. Both parties may agree to a reasonable
   82  request for an extension of time, particularly in the event of a
   83  force major or other extraordinary circumstance. The local
   84  government must approve, approve with conditions, or deny the
   85  application within 120 days following receipt of a completed
   86  application.
   87         (2) The procedures set forth in subsection (1) apply to the
   88  following building permit applications: accessory structure;
   89  alarm permit; nonresidential buildings less than 25,000 square
   90  feet; electric; irrigation permit; landscaping; mechanical;
   91  plumbing; residential units other than a single family unit;
   92  multifamily residential not exceeding 50 units; roofing; signs;
   93  site-plan approvals and subdivision plats not requiring public
   94  hearings or public notice; and lot grading and site alteration
   95  associated with the permit application set forth in this
   96  subsection. The procedures set forth in subsection (1) do not
   97  apply to permits for any wireless communications facilities or
   98  when a law, agency rule, or local ordinance specify different
   99  timeframes for review of local building permit applications.
  100         (3)For any project requiring a fire alarm permit, a
  101  uniform fire alarm permit application must be used and submitted
  102  to the local enforcement agency along with any required
  103  drawings, plans, and supporting documentation. The uniform fire
  104  alarm permit application may be submitted electronically or by
  105  facsimile and must be signed by the owner, contractor, or
  106  authorized representative of either such person. The uniform
  107  fire alarm permit application must contain the following
  108  information in substantially the following form:
  110                UNIFORM FIRE ALARM PERMIT APPLICATION              
  112         Tax Folio No.: ....
  113         Application No.: ....
  114         Owner or Representative Name: ....
  115         Property Address: ....
  116         City: .... State: .... Zip: ....
  117         Phone: ....
  118         Fee Simple Titleholder’s Name (if other than owner): ....
  119         Fee Simple Titleholder’s Address (if other than owner):
  120  ....
  121         Description of Work: .... New Install .... Replacement ....
  122  Addition .... Other ....
  123         Construction Type: ....
  124         Proposed Use: ....
  125         Alarm Contractor’s Name: ....
  126         Alarm Contractor’s Address: ....
  127         City: .... State: .... Zip: ....
  128         Phone: ....
  129         Alarm Contractor’s License No: ....
  131         Application is hereby made to obtain a permit to do the
  132  work and installation as indicated. I certify that no work or
  133  installation has commenced before the filing of this permit
  134  application. I certify that all of the foregoing information is
  135  true and accurate.
  137         ...(Signature of Owner, Contractor, or Agent)...
  138         Printed Name: ....
  140         (4) The procedures set forth in subsection (1) do not apply
  141  to the installation or replacement of a fire alarm system if a
  142  plans review is not required by the local enforcement agency.
  143         (5)For repairs to an existing fire alarm system that was
  144  previously permitted by the local enforcement agency, the
  145  contractor may begin the repair upon filing the uniform fire
  146  alarm permit application with the local enforcement agency.
  147         Section 2. Subsection (1) of section 633.216, Florida
  148  Statutes, is amended to read:
  149         633.216 Inspection of buildings and equipment; orders;
  150  firesafety inspection training requirements; certification;
  151  disciplinary action.—The State Fire Marshal and her or his
  152  agents or persons authorized to enforce laws and rules of the
  153  State Fire Marshal shall, at any reasonable hour, when the State
  154  Fire Marshal has reasonable cause to believe that a violation of
  155  this chapter or s. 509.215, or a rule adopted thereunder, or a
  156  minimum firesafety code adopted by the State Fire Marshal or a
  157  local authority, may exist, inspect any and all buildings and
  158  structures which are subject to the requirements of this chapter
  159  or s. 509.215 and rules adopted thereunder. The authority to
  160  inspect shall extend to all equipment, vehicles, and chemicals
  161  which are located on or within the premises of any such building
  162  or structure.
  163         (1) Each county, municipality, and special district that
  164  has firesafety enforcement responsibilities shall employ or
  165  contract with a firesafety inspector. Except as provided in s.
  166  633.312(2), and (3), and (4), the firesafety inspector must
  167  conduct all firesafety inspections that are required by law. The
  168  governing body of a county, municipality, or special district
  169  that has firesafety enforcement responsibilities may provide a
  170  schedule of fees to pay only the costs of inspections conducted
  171  pursuant to this subsection and related administrative expenses.
  172  Two or more counties, municipalities, or special districts that
  173  have firesafety enforcement responsibilities may jointly employ
  174  or contract with a firesafety inspector.
  175         Section 3. Present subsections (4) and (5) of section
  176  633.312, Florida Statutes, are redesignated as subsections (5)
  177  and (6), respectively, and subsection (3) of that section is
  178  amended, to read:
  179         633.312 Inspection of fire control systems, fire hydrants,
  180  and fire protection systems.—
  181         (3)(a) The inspecting contractor shall provide to the
  182  building owner or hydrant owner and the local authority having
  183  jurisdiction a copy of the applicable uniform summary inspection
  184  report established under this chapter. The local authority
  185  having jurisdiction may accept uniform summary inspection
  186  reports by United States mail, by hand delivery, by electronic
  187  submission, or through a third-party vendor that collects the
  188  reports on behalf of the local authority having jurisdiction.
  189         (b) The State Fire Marshal shall adopt rules to implement a
  190  uniform summary inspection report and submission procedures to
  191  be used by all third-party vendors and local authorities having
  192  jurisdiction. For purposes of this section, a uniform summary
  193  inspection report must record the address where the fire
  194  protection system or hydrant is located, the company and person
  195  conducting the inspection and their license number, the date of
  196  the inspection, and the fire protection system or hydrant
  197  inspection status, including a brief summary of each deficiency,
  198  critical deficiency, noncritical deficiency, or impairment
  199  found. A contractor’s detailed inspection report is not required
  200  to follow the uniform summary inspection report format. The
  201  State Fire Marshal shall establish by rule a submission
  202  procedure for each means provided under paragraph (a) by which a
  203  local authority having jurisdiction may accept uniform summary
  204  inspection reports. Each of the submission procedures must allow
  205  a contractor to attach additional documents with the submission
  206  of a uniform summary inspection report, including a physical
  207  copy of the contractor’s detailed inspection report. A
  208  submission procedure may not require a contractor to submit
  209  information contained within the detailed inspection report
  210  unless the information is required to be included in the uniform
  211  summary inspection report.
  212         (4) The maintenance of fire hydrant and fire protection
  213  systems as well as corrective actions on deficient systems is
  214  the responsibility of the owner of the system or hydrant.
  215  Equipment requiring periodic testing or operation to ensure its
  216  maintenance shall be tested or operated as specified in the Fire
  217  Prevention Code, Life Safety Code, National Fire Protection
  218  Association standards, or as directed by the appropriate
  219  authority, provided that such appropriate authority may not
  220  require a sprinkler system not required by the Fire Prevention
  221  Code, Life Safety Code, or National Fire Protection Association
  222  standards to be removed regardless of its condition. This
  223  section does not prohibit governmental entities from inspecting
  224  and enforcing firesafety codes.
  225         Section 4. Paragraph (l) of subsection (2) of section
  226  718.112, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
  227         718.112 Bylaws.—
  228         (2) REQUIRED PROVISIONS.—The bylaws shall provide for the
  229  following and, if they do not do so, shall be deemed to include
  230  the following:
  231         (l) Firesafety.An association must ensure reasonable
  232  compliance with the Florida Fire Prevention Code. For purposes
  233  of this paragraph, the term “reasonable compliance means the
  234  ability to select alternative solutions to ensure that the
  235  property meets the level of firesafety required by the Florida
  236  Fire Prevention Code. As to a residential condominium building
  237  that is a high-rise building as defined under the Florida Fire
  238  Prevention Code, the association may either retrofit a fire
  239  sprinkler system or install an engineered life safety system as
  240  specified in the Florida Fire Prevention Code Certificate of
  241  compliance.— A provision that a certificate of compliance from a
  242  licensed electrical contractor or electrician may be accepted by
  243  the association’s board as evidence of compliance of the
  244  condominium units with the applicable fire and life safety code
  245  must be included. Notwithstanding chapter 633 or of any other
  246  code, statute, ordinance, administrative rule, or regulation, or
  247  any interpretation of the foregoing, an association, residential
  248  condominium, or unit owner is not obligated to retrofit the
  249  common elements, association property, or units of a residential
  250  condominium with a fire sprinkler system in a building that has
  251  been certified for occupancy by the applicable governmental
  252  entity if the unit owners have voted to forego such retrofitting
  253  by the affirmative vote of a majority of all voting interests in
  254  the affected condominium.
  255         1. The local authority having jurisdiction may not require
  256  completion of retrofitting with a fire sprinkler system or
  257  completion of installation of an engineered life safety system
  258  before January 1, 2023 2020. A residential condominium
  259  association that is not in compliance with the requirements for
  260  a fire sprinkler system or an engineered life safety system
  261  shall:
  262         a. By July 1, 2020, submit a final fire sprinkler permit
  263  application and supporting documents to the authority having
  264  jurisdiction;
  265         b. By July 1, 2021, obtain all necessary permits; and
  266         c. By December 31, 2022, pass final inspection.
  268  If a residential condominium association fails to timely comply
  269  with the requirements of this subparagraph, the authority having
  270  jurisdiction shall assess a penalty against the association in
  271  the amount of $500 per day until it attains compliance. The
  272  Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes
  273  of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation shall
  274  collect all such payments and remit them to the Firefighter
  275  Assistance Grant Program created under s. 633.135 By December
  276  31, 2016, a residential condominium association that is not in
  277  compliance with the requirements for a fire sprinkler system and
  278  has not voted to forego retrofitting of such a system must
  279  initiate an application for a building permit for the required
  280  installation with the local government having jurisdiction
  281  demonstrating that the association will become compliant by
  282  December 31, 2019.
  283         1. A vote to forego retrofitting may be obtained by limited
  284  proxy or by a ballot personally cast at a duly called membership
  285  meeting, or by execution of a written consent by the member, and
  286  is effective upon recording a certificate attesting to such vote
  287  in the public records of the county where the condominium is
  288  located. The association shall mail or hand deliver to each unit
  289  owner written notice at least 14 days before the membership
  290  meeting in which the vote to forego retrofitting of the required
  291  fire sprinkler system is to take place. Within 30 days after the
  292  association’s opt-out vote, notice of the results of the opt-out
  293  vote must be mailed or hand delivered to all unit owners.
  294  Evidence of compliance with this notice requirement must be made
  295  by affidavit executed by the person providing the notice and
  296  filed among the official records of the association. After
  297  notice is provided to each owner, a copy must be provided by the
  298  current owner to a new owner before closing and by a unit owner
  299  to a renter before signing a lease.
  300         2. If there has been a previous vote to forego
  301  retrofitting, a vote to require retrofitting may be obtained at
  302  a special meeting of the unit owners called by a petition of at
  303  least 10 percent of the voting interests. Such a vote may only
  304  be called once every 3 years. Notice shall be provided as
  305  required for any regularly called meeting of the unit owners,
  306  and must state the purpose of the meeting. Electronic
  307  transmission may not be used to provide notice of a meeting
  308  called in whole or in part for this purpose.
  309         3. As part of the information collected annually from
  310  condominiums, the division shall require condominium
  311  associations to report the membership vote and recording of a
  312  certificate under this subsection and, if retrofitting has been
  313  undertaken, the per-unit cost of such work. The division shall
  314  annually report to the Division of State Fire Marshal of the
  315  Department of Financial Services the number of condominiums that
  316  have elected to forego retrofitting.
  317         2.4. Notwithstanding s. 553.509, a residential association
  318  may not be obligated to, and may forego the retrofitting of, any
  319  improvements required by s. 553.509(2) upon an affirmative vote
  320  of a majority of the voting interests in the affected
  321  condominium.
  322         Section 5. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.