GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA

SESSION 2013

 

 

SESSION LAW 2013-118

HOUSE BILL 120

 

 

AN ACT to require approval from the North Carolina building code council before a unit of local government may require building inspections in addition to those required by the building Code; to specify the frequency and effective dates of Code updates; and to exempt cable television equipment installation from building code requirements.

 

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

 

SECTION 1.(a)  G.S.153A-352 reads as rewritten:

" 153A-352.  Duties and responsibilities.

(a)        The duties and responsibilities of an inspection department and of the inspectors in it are to enforce within the county's territorial jurisdiction State and local laws and local ordinances and regulations relating to:

(1)        The construction of buildings;

(2)        The installation of such facilities as plumbing systems, electrical systems, heating systems, refrigeration systems, and air-conditioning systems;

(3)        The maintenance of buildings in a safe, sanitary, and healthful condition;

(4)        Other matters that may be specified by the board of commissioners.

These duties and responsibilities include receiving applications for permits and issuing or denying permits, making necessary inspections, issuing or denying certificates of compliance, issuing orders to correct violations, bringing judicial actions against actual or threatened violations, keeping adequate records, and taking any other actions that may be required to adequately enforce the laws and ordinances and regulations. The board of commissioners may enact reasonable and appropriate provisions governing the enforcement of the laws and ordinances and regulations.

(b)        Except as provided in G.S. 153A-364, a county may not adopt a local ordinance or resolution or any other policy that requires regular, routine inspections of buildings or structures constructed in compliance with the North Carolina Residential Code for One- and Two-Family Dwellings in addition to the specific inspections required by the North Carolina Building Code without first obtaining approval from the North Carolina Building Code Council. The North Carolina Building Code Council shall review all applications for additional inspections requested by a county and shall, in a reasonable manner, approve or disapprove the additional inspections. This subsection does not limit the authority of the county to require inspections upon unforeseen or unique circumstances that require immediate action."

SECTION 1.(b)  G.S. 160A-412 reads as rewritten:

" 160A-412.  Duties and responsibilities.

(a)        The duties and responsibilities of an inspection department and of the inspectors therein shall be to enforce within their territorial jurisdiction State and local laws relating to

(1)        The construction of buildings and other structures;

(2)        The installation of such facilities as plumbing systems, electrical systems, heating systems, refrigeration systems, and air-conditioning systems;

(3)        The maintenance of buildings and other structures in a safe,  sanitary, and healthful condition;

(4)        Other matters that may be specified by the city council.

These duties shall include the receipt of applications for permits and the issuance or denial of permits, the making of any necessary inspections, the issuance or denial of certificates of compliance, the issuance of orders to correct violations, the bringing of judicial actions against actual or threatened violations, the keeping of adequate records, and any other actions that may be required in order adequately to enforce those laws. The city council shall have the authority to enact reasonable and appropriate provisions governing the enforcement of those laws.

(b)        Except as provided in G.S. 160A-424, a city may not adopt a local ordinance or resolution or any other policy that requires regular, routine inspections of buildings or structures constructed in compliance with the North Carolina Residential Code for One- and Two-Family Dwellings in addition to the specific inspections required by the North Carolina Building Code without first obtaining approval from the North Carolina Building Code Council. The North Carolina Building Code Council shall review all applications for additional inspections requested by a city and shall, in a reasonable manner, approve or disapprove the additional inspections. This subsection does not limit the authority of the city to require inspections upon unforeseen or unique circumstances that require immediate action."

SECTION 2.  G.S. 143-138(d) reads as rewritten:

"(d)      Amendments of the Code. - The Building Code Council may periodically revise and amend the North Carolina State Building Code, either on its own motion or upon application from any citizen, State agency, or political subdivision of the State. In addition to the periodic revisions or amendments made by the Council, the Council shall revise the North Carolina State Building Code: Residential Code for One- and Two-Family Dwellings, including provisions applicable to One- and Two-Family Dwellings from the NC Energy Code, NC Electrical Code, NC Fuel Gas Code, NC Plumbing Code, and NC Mechanical Code only every six years, to become effective the first day of January of the following year, with at least six months between adoption and effective date. The first six-year revision under this subsection shall be adopted to become effective January 1, 2019, and every six years thereafter. In adopting any amendment, the Council shall comply with the same procedural requirements and the same standards set forth above for adoption of the Code. The Council, through the Department of Insurance, shall publish in the North Carolina Register and shall post on the Council's Web site all appeal decisions made by the Council and all formal opinions at least semiannually. The Council, through the Department of Insurance, shall also publish at least semiannually in the North Carolina Register a statement providing the accurate Web site address and information on how to find additional commentary and interpretation of the Code."

SECTION 3.  G.S. 143-138(b8) reads as rewritten:

"(b8)    Nothing in this Article shall extend to or be construed as being applicable to the regulation of the design, construction, location, installation, or operation of (1) equipment for storing, handling, transporting, and utilizing liquefied petroleum gases for fuel purposes or anhydrous ammonia or other liquid fertilizers, except for liquefied petroleum gas from the outlet of the first stage pressure regulator to and including each liquefied petroleum gas utilization device within a building or structure covered by the Code, or (2) equipment or facilities, other than buildings, of a public utility, as defined in G.S. 62-3, a cable television company, or an electric or telephone membership corporation, including without limitation poles, towers, and other structures supporting electric electric, cable television, or communication lines."

SECTION 3.5.  The Department of Insurance shall post and maintain on its Web site written commentaries and written interpretations made and given by staff to the North Carolina Building Code Council and the Department for each section of the North Carolina Building Code.

SECTION 4.  If any provision of this act or its application is held invalid, the invalidity does not affect other provisions or applications of this act that can be given effect without the invalid provisions or application, and to this end the provisions of this act are severable.


SECTION 5.  This act becomes effective July 1, 2013.

In the General Assembly read three times and ratified this the 13th day of June, 2013.

 

 

                                                                    s/  Daniel J. Forest

                                                                         President of the Senate

 

 

                                                                    s/  Thom Tillis

                                                                         Speaker of the House of Representatives

 

 

                                                                    s/  Pat McCrory

                                                                         Governor

 

 

Approved 4:09 p.m. this 19th day of June, 2013