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Tell The State Legislature to Keep Affordability in the Residential Code

The State Legislature is considering a bill that would remove affordability as a factor when considering a new code.  We must act today to stop this from happening.


We need you to contact your Senator and Assembly Member and tell them to oppose S.6210(Skoufis)/ A.3559 (Hunter). This legislation would eliminate a requirement that the state fire prevention and building code council consider whether the building code remains cost effective. 

This bill eliminates an important consideration of the Code Council prior to amending or adopting a new code provision. The Code Council is currently required to consider if the cost of materials and their installation to meet proposed code changes would be equal to or less than the present value of energy savings expected over a period of ten years. 

Cost should be an important consideration prior to adopting a code change. This cost provision ensures that cost of construction is considered so additional cost is not added by code provisions without examining whether there is a payback. This provision does not mandate a decision based on solely on payback, it only requires consideration of cost. 

The United Sates Department of Energy (DOE) performs assessments of savings of the International Energy Conservation, which includes savings and cost effectiveness with individual states. The DOE’s assessment underlines the importance of examining cost considerations, particularly as new technologies expand in the marketplace. 

There is no sound public policy rationale for eliminating cost benefit considerations in codes. Cost is inextricably linked to affordability. The availability of affordable housing remains a continuing issue, which must be balanced against growing costs. 

With skyrocketing lumber and material costs, as well as a limited available housing stock, New York State is currently facing a housing affordability crisis. Now, more than ever, New York State and the Code Council should take cost increases in to consideration when it concerns new homes.

This bill also mandates that the Building Code Council make a determination on updated code changes within twelve months after the publication of the proposed code changes. This is nothing more than a brazen attempt by the International Code Council to sell more code books annually.

The Building Code Council has jurisdiction over nine codes There are often significant changes included in code updates, which are the product of years of consideration on the national level. Many proposed code changes are complex and have significant consequences based not only on cost but also based on geography. Code changes need to be carefully evaluated for their impact on New York State. The Building Code Council should be allowed to perform their responsibilities without an artificial deadline. 

Please act today, and encourage your state legislator to oppose this unnecessary bill.


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