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Pickett Says Sprinkler Requirement Repeal Headed to Governor

Legislation that will repeal a costly new mandate on owners of new homes is on its way to the governor to be signed, said Rep. Tina Pickett (R-Bradford/Sullivan/Susquehanna). 

House Bill 377, which was voted on concurrence in Senate amendments on Wednesday, repeals the mandate of new residential construction to install sprinkler systems. The mandate went into effect on Jan. 1, 2011, for new single-family homes. 

“This requirement is placing a considerable burden on owners of brand-new homes, the building industry that is already suffering from one of the worst housing markets in history, and rural areas,” Pickett said. “While I agree that we must seriously consider the safety aspect of sprinklers in homes, the decision to install sprinklers should be solely left up to the homeowner, not government. That’s why I voted in favor of this repeal.” 

Some estimates of sprinkler systems can run anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000, especially in rural areas without public water systems. 

The legislation also includes changes by the Senate so that codes adopted by the International Code Council and incorporated into Pennsylvania’s building code are appropriate for the state. 

In addition, the legislation imposes requirements for stronger floor construction and bracing standards to address some of the concerns raised to address the safety of firefighters entering new home construction.  

The governor has 10 days to sign or veto the bill. 

State Representative Tina Pickett
110th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact:  Jennifer Keaton

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