News Updates - January 10, 2013
Still time to register for Specialized Finals
The division is planning to offer a revamped version of the
Specialized Finals Inspector (SFI) Course starting on January
21. The first day of class has moved back from January 7.
BCD is continually trying to find ways to improve upon the
successes of the 3462 pilot program.
After collecting feedback from participants and jurisdictions
we are implementing some changes for the upcoming SFI course.
The reason for these key changes to this new SFI Certification
training is to make it more flexible for jurisdictions. This
An expert instructor to coordinate both the live class
sessions and alternate evaluations
Making the live class sessions of the course easily available
and custom fit to participant schedules
An alternate evaluation in lieu of fieldwork
Making sure that the certification examination focuses
on the scope of work an individual will be providing
In order to assist with implementing changes to the pilot
program the division has hired John Powell to lead many of
the division's training efforts in all programs. John has
ben engaged in developing study-guides and individually evaluating
specialized inspector participants. He has also been developing
new questions for the examinations. Unlike the cross training
programs, Mr. Powell will be evaluating individuals who opt
for the alternate path to the fieldwork evaluations. He is
working with jurisdictions and individuals to provide ride-alongs,
individual evaluations, and administering the certification
The first portion of the course is available through the
Chemeketa Community College eLearn system. The online class
is available 24/7 from January 21 until March 18. That gives
participants 8 weeks to complete the curriculum. The second
portion of the course is made up of live classroom sessions.
When, where, and what scheduling format these take will depend
on the participants schedules and time availability. BCD understands
the concern for inspector's time and we want to be as flexible
The new certification process allows for an assessment to
determine that there is adequate knowledge and skills to perform
the scope of work under the certification. The scope of a
certification can be tailored (but not expanded) to meet an
individual's skill level, allowing them to utilize at least
a partial certification while they get up to speed on more
challenging areas. Applicants may choose to use the fieldwork
BCD also recognized the difficulties in adapting the existing
exam data base to a new and different type of certification.
We have developed new questions specific to the 3462 pilot
program. Additionally, while certification can't be obtained
until all the requirements are met, students will take the
certification exam at the end of the course, before the evaluation
process is completed.
There is still space available for the newest version of
the Specialized Inspector Course; applications
will be accepted until January 21.
To participate, or if you have any questions, please contact
or Sherri West.
Plumbing Board approves FOG code amendments
The Oregon State Plumbing Board, at its December 20, 2012
meeting, approved amendments to Chapter 10 of the 2011 Oregon
Plumbing Specialty Code regarding grease inceptors for fats,
oils, and greases (FOG). The code
amendments became effective January 1, 2013.
Representatives of Oregon's local governments, plumbing contractors,
businesses, and the building codes division developed these
amendments, which were subsequently approved by the Plumbing
Board. These amendments support the statewide building code
model, reduce confusion, and will ultimately reduce the amount
of FOG introduced into the wastewater collection system. FOG
in the wastewater collection system causes blockages, increases
utility costs, and disrupts wastewater treatment plant operations.
Key changes to the code are:
1. Dishwashers and garbage disposals are required to be
connected to grease interceptors.
2. If a garbage disposal is used on a system also using
a hydromechanical grease interceptor, a solids separator
must be installed downstream of a garbage disposal and upstream
of the grease interceptor.
3. A dishwasher may be connected to a hydromechanical grease
4. Maintenance requirements were removed from the code.
Maintenance is not covered under the state building code.
Maintenance provisions are not enforceable by building officials
or plumbing inspectors as part of the state code.
The division suggests that businesses follow best practice
guidelines suggested by product manufacturers and continue
working with waste water utilities on best practices. Additionally,
nothing in these amendments allow any individual to require
different plumbing products or materials after final approval
by the building official.
For more information, contact Terry
Swisher at 503-373-7488.
Expedited Permitting of Geothermal Power Plant
Building a large geothermal power plant with new technology
and aggressive construction timelines can be challenging especially
for jurisdictions in the more remote and rural parts of the
state where local building departments have limited resources.
The 23 megawatt geothermal power plant near Vale known as
the Neal Hot Springs project used the State's Rapid Approval
Assessment Process and did not hit these road blocks.
Business Oregon designated Neal Hot Springs as "essential
to the economic well-being of the state" that enable
BCD to expedite the permitting. Approved by the Oregon Legislature
in 2003, the Rapid Approval Assessment Process (ORS 455.466)
allows BCD to provide assistance and determine what combination
of state and local resources will most effectively move the
For more information on the Neal Hot Springs project go to
the Better Buildings
for Oregon blog or contact Jerod
Broadfoot, BCD eastern regional coordinator, at 541-240-1256.
2010 Oregon Structural Specialty Code Updated
- Radon Mitigation Public Buildings
The adoption of the 2013 amendments to the 2010 OSSC radon
provisions represents the final step in implementing Senate
Bill 1025 as approved by the 2010 Legislature. The bill required
the Building Codes Structures Board to adopt radon mitigation
standards for certain types of new residential buildings and
new public buildings. These requirements are applicable in
Baker, Clackamas, Hood River, Multnomah, Polk, Washington
and Yamhill Counties. New public buildings located in the
affected counties must comply with the new provisions sections
when submitted for plan review on or after April 1, 2013.
While standards existed for the mitigation of radon in residential
structures, there were no contemporary promulgated standards
available for commercial "slab on grade" construction.
In the absence of the same, BCD worked with stakeholders
in the development of a new section 1811 addressing "slab
on grade" installations. The BCSB adopted this section
in the fall of 2010 with the understanding that further
refinements would be offered prior to the April 1, 2013 implementation.
The 2013 updates to Chapter's 1, 17, 35 and section 1811
represent the culmination of the continued work with the stakeholders
in providing the necessary enhancements as noted above.
Exemption in section 1811 for buildings achieving prescribed
ventilation/air change rates.
Addition of several clarifying definitions in section
Deletion in section 18184.108.40.206 thru 18220.127.116.11 of redundant
requirements addressing concrete mixture, handling and
placement. Topics are adequately addressed elsewhere in
Augmented prescriptive requirements in section 1811.3
for both "Active Soil Depressurization" systems
and "Gas Conveyance Piping Systems."
Adoption of specific referenced standards in Chapter
Inspection expectations for jurisdictions and special
inspectors (Chapters 1 and 17).
The changes have been prepared as insert pages for the 2010
Oregon Structural Specialty Code and are formatted
for insertion in loose leave binders.
2010 OSSC chapter 11 Accessibility Revisions online course
In an effort to provide a very affordable and easily accessed
course on the 2010 OSSC Chapter 11 Accessibility Revisions,
BCD designed an online class that has been available on Chemeketa
Community College's (CCC) eLearn system since January 2012.
Due to the magnitude of changes that have been made to the
OSSC's Chapter 11, BCD is requiring a class on the revisions
as part of the code change continuing education obligations
for inspectors and plans examiners stated in 918-098-1450
of the Oregon Administrative Rules. This is in addition to
the requirement to complete a course on the OSSC.
This online course is self-paced and there is a link to access
it on BCD's website CCC
eLearn page. The course is the equivalent of four hours
of classroom training. There are four lessons that each consist
of several presentations, an assignment, and a quiz. There
is a printable certificate available at the end of the course.
The registration fee for the class is only $35 and is paid
directly to Chemeketa. Once registered for the course, students
will have access to the site 24/7 and can go at their own
pace. Just remember that you must finish the course within
the same Chemeketa quarter as you started. For example the
winter quarter started January 7 and if you register any time
soon (up to March 8) you must finish the course by March 23.
The spring term for the course will begin April 1.
For more information contact BCD training coordinator Sherri
West at 503-373-7509.
2014 Oregon Energy Efficiency Specialty Code
Beginning January 14th, the division will begin accepting
code amendment proposals for the 2014 Oregon Energy Efficiency
Specialty Code. The current energy code in Oregon is the 2010
edition of the Oregon Energy Efficiency Specialty Code (OEESC),
which is based on the 2009 International Energy Efficiency
Code (IEEC) with Oregon amendments. The OEESC code update,
as part of the Structural program, will follow the same schedule
as the Oregon Structural Specialty Code (OSSC) and the Oregon
Mechanical Specialty Code (OMSC) codes. The division anticipates
that the versions of these codes will become effective April
Read more about the OEESC
code amendment process. If you have questions please contact
Summary of enforcement cases presented
to the State Plumbing Board
These cases were resolved by the division's enforcement section
without going to a contested case hearing. No action was required
by the State Plumbing Board.