Bill Summaries: H291 (2021)

Tracking:
  • Summary date: May 6 2021 - View summary

    House committee substitute to the 2nd edition makes the following changes.

    Instead of amending GS 160D-1106, moves proposed new (c1), (c2), (c3), (c4) and (c5) into new GS 160D-1104.1 and makes the following changes to that proposed language. Requires an initial plan review to be completed and a building permit decision to be issued within 21 days for commercial and multifamily building plans that require a design professional seal under the North Carolina Building Code (was, under the Building Code Council rules). Expands upon the entities that the local government may use if it is unable to complete the initial plan review within 21 days to include a third-party architect or engineer (was, engineering firm only); makes conforming changes. Adds the specified provisions do not limit a local government and a building permit applicant from entering into a mutual agreement to complete an initial plan review in a timeframe that differs from the one specified. Amends the two conditions that apply when the local government does not issue a building permit decision within 21 days or when additional information or a plan resubmission is requested and the local government does not issue a building permit decision within 15 days of receiving the information or resubmitted plan, to now provide that: (1) the building permit applicant may use a third-party architect or engineer that has a valid certificate or the Department of Insurance and its marketplace pool of qualified Code-enforcement officials to review and approve the submitted plans, after such review and approval the local government must issue all necessary building permits within 72 hours; and (2) if the building permit applicant uses such a review process, then the local government must refund or waive all plan review fees and building permit fees for the project upon issuing the building permit. No longer requires a local government, when it requires specifications or manufacturer engineering information on an element, component, or fixture related to the submitted plan, to obtain that information from the manufacturer. Adds that upon issuance of a building permit using a third-party review, the local government, its inspection department, and the inspectors are discharged and released from any liabilities, duties, and responsibilities with respect to or in common law from any claim that arises out of or is attributed to a plan review performed by a third party or the Department of Insurance's pool of code-enforcement officials. Updates internal cross-references and makes conforming changes to GS 143-151.12. 

    Amends GS 143-151.13 by making conforming changes, including allowing an architect with a valid certificate who is not employed by the State or a local government to use the certificate for performing initial plan reviews.

    The above provisions are now effective October 1, 2021 (was, when the act becomes law).

    Enacts new GS 143-138.2 requiring the Commissioner of Insurance, through the Division of Engineering, to promote consistent application of the NC Building Code through the general oversight of all inspection departments. Requires the Commissioner to: (1) establish a consistent Building Code permit application process for all local inspection departments; (2) develop a mechanism to determine the consistent application of the Building Code; (3) establish a new educational program and certification for permit technicians; (4) establish a Building Code Awareness educational program for the general public and county and city officials; (5) develop an insurance credit program for buildings and structures certified as built above the minimum Building Code requirements to increase insurability; and (6) develop annual mandatory two hour code education programs for plan reviewers. Enacts new GS 143-138.3 requiring local inspection departments to annually remit 2% of all Building Code permit fees to the Department of Insurance to support Building Code consistency and associated programs. Effective July 1, 2021.

    Makes conforming changes to the act's titles.


  • Summary date: Apr 22 2021 - View summary

    House committee substitute to the 1st edition makes the following changes.

    Amends GS 160D-1106 to require a local government to complete an initial plan review and issue a building permit decision (was, initial plan review only) within 21 days (was, 15 days) for commercial and multifamily building plans (was, commercial buildings only) submitted that require a design professional seal pursuant to NC Building Code Council rules. Amends the consequences for not issuing a building permit decision within the specified time frames, to allow the permit applicant to use the Department of Insurance and its marketplace pool of qualified Code enforcement officials or hire a third-party engineering firm that has a valid certificate to review and approve the submitted plans (previously was limited to hiring a third-party firm to review the plans). Adds that if the local government determines that it is unable to complete the initial plan review within 21 days, the local government may use the Department of Insurance and its marketplace pool of qualified Code enforcement officials or contract with a third-party engineering firm that has a valid certificate to perform the initial plan review if the total time for the initial review does not exceed the 21 days. Adds that if a local government's ordinance conflicts with this statute, then the statute supersedes and preempts the ordinance. Makes additional conforming changes.

    Amends GS 143-151.12 by making conforming changes to the purposes for which the Department of Insurance's pool of qualified Code-enforcement officials can be used.

    Amends GS 143-151.13 by making conforming changes to allow an engineer with a valid certificate who is not employed by the State or a local government to use the certificate for performing initial plan reviews as now allowed under GS 160D-1106.

    Amends the act's long title.


  • Summary date: Mar 11 2021 - View summary

    Amends GS 160D-1106 to require a local government to complete an initial plan review within 15 days for commercial plans submitted that require a design professional seal pursuant to NC Building Code Council rules. Requires the local government to communicate with the design professional to resolve any issues with the submitted plan within that time period. Requires the local government to review any requested information or a resubmitted plan within 15 days from receipt. Provides for the following in the event that the local government does not issue a permit for the submitted plan within 30 days of initial plan submission, or, if additional information or plan resubmission is requested, within 15 days of the receipt of the information or resubmitted plan: (1) reduction of the fee charged for plan submission and review by 10% each day and (2) allows the permit applicant to retain a third-party firm to review the submitted plans and the local government to issue all necessary permits for the project within 72 hours of third party review and approval, with the local government responsible for reimbursement of the cost of the third party review. Requires that a local government must obtain information from the appropriate manufacturer when either the local government or its agents require information regarding specifications or manufacturer engineering information on an element, component, or fixture related to the submitted plan. Prohibits delaying or denying the issuance of a permit or certificate of occupancy based upon the receipt of such information from the manufacturer. Applies to plans submitted on or after the date the act becomes law.