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Summary of Member Meeting on February 12, 2015

posted Feb 27, 2015, 7:42 AM by Robert DuPont

Alliance for Regulatory Coordination

Summary of Member Meeting

Meeting Date: February 12, 2015

Location: Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin

The meeting was convened at 9:02 a.m. by Bob DuPont, of Regulatory Guidance and Design, LLC. Attendees introduced themselves and identified the organizations they were representing.

The meeting agenda focused on five aspects of Governor Walker’s recent budget proposal that relate to the safety and buildings programs of the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services.

1.) Concerning Creation of a Department of Financial Institutions and Professional Standards, (by merging the current Department of Financial Institutions and Department of Safety and Professional Services) DuPont asked if members want to take a position on the merger or focus on desired outcomes.

There was general agreement to focus on desired outcomes and to communicate ARC desires to the Governor’s Office, legislators and agency leaders. Steve Breitlow suggested requesting a meeting with agency leaders, and perhaps with the Governor’s Office to discuss desired outcomes and services.

DuPont suggested focusing on desired outcomes, and in addition, providing suggestions for how to achieve those outcomes. Focusing staff experts on code development tasks and asking state and regional associations for nominations to advisory code councils were process improvements he raised.

Wrapping up discussion of the proposed merger, DuPont said he would draft a desired outcome document and communication outline for review of all ARC members within the next few weeks.

2.) Concerning Transfer of hospice and CBRF building plan review to DHS, DuPont suggested the Alliance write a letter to all members of the legislative Joint Finance Committee communicating support for the Governor’s proposal.

There was general agreement to write a letter to members of the Joint Finance Committee in support of the Governor’s proposal to transfer hospice and CBRF plan review to DHS.

3.) Concerning Transfer of the Private Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems (POWTS) program from the DSPS to the DNR, DuPont asked if ARC members wanted to take a position or leave it to individual organizations to express their positions; in light of the impacts being primarily on the plumbing industry and trade.

DuPont offered to work with Steve and Jeff Beiriger in trying to meet with Representative Al Ott, the Chair of the Assembly Natural Resources Committee, to discuss the proposed POWTS program transfer. There was general agreement that the ARC would not take a position on this topic.

Bob Neale recommended the Alliance consider building more awareness of building safety programs in general by working with the International Code Council to encourage not only the Governor but both houses of the legislature to sign proclamations supporting May, 2015 as National Building Safety Month. He suggested such an effort could help build positive relationships with legislative leaders. There was agreement that the Alliance should participate with the ICC in this regard.

DuPont said he would work with Neale and suggested the possibility of also working with DSPS leaders and the Division of Wisconsin Emergency Management since resilient building construction is a theme of the 2015 ICC National Building Safety Month program.

4.) Concerning Elimination of POWTS $2.4 million grant program (Wisconsin Fund), DuPont asked if ARC members wanted to leave this topic for the plumbing industry to discuss along with the proposed POWTS program transfer. There was general agreement that the ARC would not take a position on this matter.

5.) Concerning Continuation of lapsing through State Fiscal Year 2016-17, DuPont recommended the Alliance write to members of the Joint Finance Committee expressing concern over the Governor’s proposal to continue lapsing through the biennium. The letter could contain the same points made in the ARC letter sent to Governor Walker in early January 2015. There was general agreement that such a letter be sent to all Joint Finance Committee members.

DuPont said he would prepare draft letters as agreed during this meeting and send them to all ARC members asking for review and comment. He reminded that the Alliance will not take an action or engage in lobby activity concerning an issue if any Classic Member objects to doing so.

With all planned agenda items addressed, DuPont asked if there were additional issues to be discussed. Richard Paur expressed concern over the apparent lack of effort on the part of the DSPS to implement credentialing of persons who perform inspection of fire detection, prevention or suppression devices as required by 2013 Wisconsin Act 270. He asked if anyone had information concerning this issue. Dave Bloom said the Fire Chiefs and Fire Inspectors Associations are working on training curriculum for such credential candidates.

Paur expressed concern about how the DSPS is handling approval of continuing education courses related to fire detection, prevention or suppression devices. He recounted how, after some delay and prodding, the DSPS ultimately approved such courses but only for certified building inspectors employed by the City of Milwaukee.

Paur and Martin King both expressed the need for all inspectors of fire safety systems to be knowledgeable about fire detection, prevention and suppression devices. There was general agreement that administrative rules are needed concerning how the DSPS will grandfather currently certified building inspectors, and how the DSPS will credential new candidates for fire safety system inspections.

DuPont reminded that Act 270 requires fire safety system inspectors to be DSPS certified by April 2017. He said that with the administrative rule promulgation process taking approximately two years, now is the time for the DSPS to begin such promulgation. DuPont recounted how the current State Commercial Building Code does not reflect current state statutes, with the application section of the code still saying the code is a minimum code for buildings other than multifamily dwellings. He also said the new statutory mandate for commercial building inspectors to be DSPS certified is not reflected in the code.

DuPont suggested that the meeting with DSPS officials, which Dave Bloom had recommended during the last member meeting, be expanded from focusing solely on review of municipal ordinances. He suggested such a meeting address the implementation of Act 270 in general; including promulgation of administrative rules and explanation of the DSPS ordinance review process and standards utilized.

There was general agreement that a meeting with DSPS officials should be requested, and that those ARC member organizations which were most involved in development of Act 270 should be involved. Those organizations include: the Associated Builders and Contractors of Wisconsin, the Wisconsin State Fire Chief’s Association; the Wisconsin Fire Protection Coalition, the Wisconsin Code Officials Alliance and the Wisconsin State Fire Inspectors Association. DuPont said, since ABC was not at this meeting, he would work towards such a meeting by talking next to John Schulze and John Mielke of ABC.

The next meeting of Alliance Members was scheduled for April 30, 2015, from 9:00 to 10:30 a.m., followed by a meeting of the ARC Fire Safety Team from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m.

Both meetings will be held at the offices of the Associated Builders and Contractors – Wisconsin.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:00 a.m.


Meeting Attendees

Organization Represented

A J Wilson

Plumbers Local 75

Bob Neale

International Code Council

Brian Flannery

Wisconsin Code Officials Alliance

Corey Gall

Wisconsin Fire Protection Coalition

Dave Bloom

Wisconsin State Fire Chiefs Association

James B. Smith

Wisconsin Code Officials Alliance

Joe Jameson

International Association of Electrical Inspectors, Wisconsin Chapter

Joel Meier

Professional Fire Fighters of Wisconsin

Martin King

Wisconsin Fire Protection Coalition

Rachel Jaeb

National Electrical Contractors Association – Wisconsin Chapter

Richard P. Paur

Wisconsin Code Officials Alliance

Scott Wegner

Wisconsin State Fire Inspectors Association

Steve Breitlow

Plumbers Local 75

Tom Johnson

Wisconsin Code Officials Alliance

Bob DuPont

Regulatory Guidance and Design, LLC

This summary was prepared by Bob DuPont, Regulatory Guidance and Design, LLC.

It was issued on February 27, 2015.