In October 2021, Florida professional engineers and building experts released the Surfside Working Group’s Florida Building Professionals Recommendations, which focus on preserving the long-term health of buildings by assessing environmental and other degradation of structures and their systems over the life of a building.
The Recommendations were provided to lawmakers for their consideration in establishing mandatory minimum structural inspections and post-occupancy whole building safety inspections.
ACEC Florida supports Inspection of Existing Structures, which calls for:
- A two-phase inspection process: 20 years for buildings within three miles of the coast, and 30 years for inland structures. Buildings officials should be responsible for ensuring repairs are completed. It is also recommended that the inspection of existing buildings be incorporated into the Florida Building Code.
ACEC Florida is monitoring HB 771 Powers of the Florida Building Commission which would require the Florida Building Commission to develop uniform standards for the maintenance and periodic inspection of existing building structures.
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ACEC Florida supports transportation projects that allow the Florida Department of Transportation to implement the use of “progressive design-build contracts” in its procurement process. SB 398 / HB 157
provides definitions and rules for the use of this technique.
ACEC Florida supports SB 736 / HB 583 which expands on the existing “right to cure procedures” in chapter 558, F.S. Importantly, the bills provide for a four-year limitation period for bringing a cstruction defect action, whether the action is based on a patent or obvious defect or a latent or hidden defect. The statutory language authorizing a 10-year statue of repose for latent defects would be repealed.
Several bills that are bad for Florida’s engineering community have been introduced, and ACEC Florida is actively opposing these efforts:
- HB 6083 Fuel Sales Tax
- HB 6089 Purchase of Plant Material for Construction Projects
- HB 6091/SB 1520 Acquisition of Professional Services
- SB 886 /HB 515 Municipal Water & Sewer Utility Rates
- HB 621 / SB 1162 Infrastructure Project Funding/Transfers of Utility Revenues