Edition: Vol. 03, No. 09
Edition date: October 6, 2010

Printable version

Important information from the Oregon Building Codes Division to local building departments.

BCD Office Closures


Board meetings

October 6: Residential Manufactured Structures Board - Rescheduled to Nov. 3

October 21: State Plumbing Board

Public meetings and hearings

October 11: Radon Gas Mitigation Standard Committee (tentative)

October 12: HB3462 Committee

October 13: Reach Code Committee

October 19: Rulemaking Hearings

October 22: Electrical Code Committee (tentative)

October 25: Radon Gas Mitigation Standard Committee (tentative)

October 27: Reach Code Committee


News Updates - October 6, 2010

Certification Renewal Reminder

All individuals certified to conduct plan reviews or inspections in Oregon should have received a letter and renewal form for the Oregon Inspector Certification (OIC) last month. If you or any of your staff did not receive these documents, please contact the licensing staff at the number listed below. Renewal requires completion of a renewal application and payment of the $125 renewal fee. Please be sure that BCD receives your renewal and renewals for your staff by November 1, 2010. Certifications not renewed by November 1, 2010 will expire and work requiring a certification cannot be performed until the renewal is completed. If you have questions or need assistance, please contact the licensing staff at 503-373-1268 or email them at license.bcd@state.or.us.

House Bill 3462 Certification Training Survey

House Bill 3462 was passed in 2009 and charged the Building Codes Division with creating a pilot program for training and certifying specialized inspectors. These inspectors will be authorized to perform broader specialty code inspections, which will give local jurisdictions more flexibility in providing crucial inspection services.

The division has been working over the past year to implement the broad requirements of this bill. Most recently, the division convened an advisory committee to help develop the four initial specialized inspector certifications: Specialized Solar PV, Specialized Plumbing, Specialized Electrical, and Specialized Systems. The Solar PV and Specialized Plumbing certifications are tentatively set to be implemented in the first part of 2011.

While these certifications are nearly complete, the division is seeking further state-wide input on some final details related to training. A brief survey will be emailed to all Oregon Building Officials on Monday October 11th. Please take the time to complete this survey by Monday October 18th.

Your quick response is crucial to the success of this innovative program. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Policy Analyst, Trevor Johnson at 503-373-1354 or trevor.w.johnson@state.or.us or Policy Analyst, Jim Hanson at 503-373-1227 or james.m.hanson@state.or.us.

Support for the Oregon Solar Installation Specialty Code

The Oregon Solar Installation Specialty Code became effective October 1. To accompany the code the division is providing a few resources for installers and jurisdictions, which will help in the administration and enforcement of the code. The division has developed a commentary version of the code that will be available on-line for jurisdictions. The commentary is a section-by-section explanation of the provisions of the code. It should act to clarify the intent of the code, the considerations behind it, and how to implement it.

The code applies to commercial and residential installations alike. It contains a streamlined permitting path for simple solar installations. The division has developed a checklist for permitting simple prescriptive installations. Jurisdictions can modify and utilize the checklist to assist their permitting and inspection staff.

The division also developed standards to accompany the code for local building departments permitting and inspecting simple solar installations. We developed a consistent fee methodology for permitting of solar systems structural components. The city or county will establish a flat fee, for prescriptive installations and a fee schedule for engineered systems using the valuation of the structural components. We hope that this will provide predictability, encouraging installations. We have expanded the methodology for figuring electrical renewable energy permitting fees. We also have provided clarification for jurisdictions reviewing plans for the structural and electrical components of solar installations.

Over the past year, while the code was in development, a number of jurisdictions looked toward the standards contained in the code. It fills a gap for local building departments that were previously without a set of statewide standards for solar installations. The division brought some minor last minute code changes to the Construction Industry Energy Board. These minor changes have helped address some limitations and expanded the usability of the code.

The solar code was developed without the benefit of a national model code. While the 2010 version focuses on PV installations, rather than solar thermal or solar hot water, future versions may address additional systems. We will need to rely on the assistance of the jurisdictions to flag issues with administering and enforcing the new code. We anticipate that the code will need to evolve as new issues are brought to light.

If you have any feedback or encounter any issues please let us know so we can keep this code moving in the right direction. Questions or additional information can be presented to Aeron Teverbaugh at aeron.teverbaugh@state.or.us or at 503-373-2160.

Residential Code & Plumbing Code head to the boards -
Electrical Code Change Committee expected to begin soon

The Oregon Residential Specialty Code and Oregon Plumbing Specialty Code (ORSC and OPSC) committees have completed their work on reviewing their respective codes.

The committee's recommendation will be considered by the State Plumbing Board at the board's October 21st meeting. Following the board's recommendation, a public hearing will be held on the proposed draft code, in December. BCD expects the 2011 OPSC to become effective April 1, 2011.

If you have questions or need further information regarding the Oregon Plumbing Specialty Code, please contact Terry Swisher, Plumbing Chief at terry.l.swisher@state.or.us or at 503-373-7488.

On September 15th, the residential code review committee completed its review of the proposed 2011 ORSC. The committee's recommendation will be considered by the Residential and Manufactured Structures Board at the board's November 3rd meeting. Following the board's recommendation, a public hearing will be held on the proposed draft code in January 2011. We expect the 2011 Oregon Residential Specialty Code to become effective July 1, 2011.

All board meetings, and public hearings are video streamed live over the internet. Click the "view live meetings" link on BCD's website.

If you have questions or need further information regarding the Oregon Residential Specialty Code, please contact Mike Ewert, residential and mechanical code specialist, at mike.d.ewert@state.or.us or at 503-373-3729.

In mid September 2010, the division began the solicitation process to gather names for the 2011 Oregon Electrical Specialty Code (OESC) code review committee. This code will be based on the 2011 National Electrical Code (NEC), published by the National Fire Protection Association and is anticipated to be effective April 1, 2011. The committee will review both changes to the model code and current Oregon amendments. They will make a recommendation to the Electrical and Elevator Board to approve the proposed code. Once this board sanctions the code changes, the division reviews and adopts the changes as the 2011 OESC.

There was a healthy response from qualified members of the electrical industry to the division's request. The members of the code review committee are Keith Anderson, Marion County; Rod Belisle, NECA-IBEW Electrical Training Center; Scott Hall, Electrical & Elevator Board Member; Vernon Palmrose, Portland General Electric; Dave Parkin, Parkin Electric - IEC; Nathan Philips, National Electrical Contractors Association; John Powell, Electrical Training and Consulting; Mike Weaver, M&W Electric Inc.; Brett Welland, City of Portland Electrical Inspector.

A public notice will be sent out opening the 45-day time period for submitting code change proposals to the division, as soon as the 2011 NEC is available to the public. The estimated date is the first week of October 2010.

All committee meetings are video streamed live over the internet. Click the "view live meetings" link on BCD's website.

If you have questions or need further information regarding the Electrical Code Review Committee, contact Dennis Clements, Chief Electrical Inspector at dennis.l.clements@state.or.us or at 503-378-4459.

New Board Appointments Include Two Building Officials

Jay Winchester of Carlton succeeds Guy Sperb in the building official position on the Mechanical Board. Jay is actively involved in the Oregon Mechanical Officials Association and has served on several code committees for the Building Codes Division.

Melanie Adams of Albany succeeds Michael Broomfield on the Electrical and Elevator Board. Ms. Adams fills the municipal building official position and is the current building official for the City of Albany.

Other members recently confirmed by the senate:
Board of Boiler Rules:
Blake Alexander, Beavercreek,
Boiler installation and repair position

Kenneth Hill, Cottage Grove
Pressure vessel owner and user position

Gregory Moyer, Salem
Practical steam operating engineer position

Anthony Barsotti, Portland (reappointment)
Manufacturer of boilers and pressure vessels position

Building Codes Structures Board:
Ted Wenk, Tigard
Disabilities commission representative

Electrical and Elevator Board:
Bruce Freeman, Clatskanie
Industrial plant employing electricians position

Mechanical Board:
Karen Thompson, Portland
Public member position

State Plumbing Board:
Skai Dancey, Lake Oswego (reappointment)
Mechanical engineer position

There is one vacancy for the public member position on the Residential and Manufactured Structures Board. Please visit the Governor's website if you are interested in this position. All board information is posted on the division's website.


Summary of enforcement cases presented
to the State Electrical and Elevator Board

Summary report: These cases were resolved by the division's enforcement section without going to a contested case hearing. No action was required by the State Electrical and Elevator Board.

License suspensions

Published by the State of Oregon Building Codes Division.
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