Posted by Jolene Nieves on September 15, 2016 at 12:30 PM
Councilman Henon introduced three pieces of legislation during September 15's City Council session, including one bill on behalf of the Kenney Administration, which strikes Balfour Street from Ontario Street to Russell Street, and one resolution.
The resolution calls on the General Assembly to amend the Pennsylvania Construction Code Act to exempt cities of the First Class and to allow those cities to adopt their own construction codes.
Why does the Pennsylvania Construction Code need changed?
In 1999, the Commonwealth created the Pennsylvania Construction Code Act because many municipalities had no code or were operating under multiple codes.
In an attempt to streamline and to make building codes across the state uniform, the Commonwealth has recreated the problem that it was trying to fix.
The Construction Code currently being used across the Commonwealth is from 2009. But, certification exams for our L&I inspectors are based on the Codes from 2012 and 2015. And, inspectors must enforce the 2009 Code.
Additionally, the different Codes create confusion and delays for development projects. And, the 2009 Code is out of date, difficult to amend and creates obstacles in the appeals process.
What could change?
- If the Commonwealth allowed Philadelphia to adopt the international codes recommended by the International Code Council, we would have codes that reflect the needs of a major metropolitan City. For Philadelphia, those needs include building codes that reflect our commitment to building a safer, more energy efficient city. The code could also be updated in a more timely way and enforcement may improve.
City Council resumed its regularly scheduled session on Thursday, September 8, 2016. During that session, Councilman Henon introduced one bill and one resolution. The bill, which was introduced on behalf of Council President Darrell Clarke, identified properties to be included in the Keystone Opportunity Zone, also known as a KOZ. Councilman Henon's resolution highlighted September 27's National Voter Registration Day and the efforts of City Commissioner Lisa Deeley in promoting it. Councilman Henon and his staff will join City Commissioner Deeley and her staff at two schools, St. Hubert Catholic School for Girls and Lincoln High School, later this month for mock elections and to register of age students to vote.