Executive Order

Executive Order  No. 440: Establishing the Building Code Coordinating Council

Date: 09/25/2002
Issuer: Jane M. Swift, Acting Governor
Mass Register: No. 958
Revoked and Superseded by: Executive Order 518

Table of Contents

WHEREAS, a multitude of state regulatory agencies have jurisdiction over different codes and regulations that apply to the construction and rehabilitation of homes and buildings in the Commonwealth;

WHEREAS, regulations and specialty codes that affect housing and building construction and rehabilitation are numerous and complex, necessitating coordination and comparison prior to issuance or revision;

WHEREAS, a lack of coordination or a centralized review process for the promulgation of codes specifically impacting housing and building construction and rehabilitation has resulted in inconsistency, redundancy and conflicts among the various codes and specialty regulations issued by state agencies and boards;

WHEREAS, inconsistency, redundancy and conflict within the competing codes and regulations makes it difficult for consistent, local enforcement of these codes and regulations and further works to stifle and delay the construction and rehabilitation of buildings and homes in the Commonwealth;

WHEREAS, municipal and state officials, builders and ultimately, the citizens of the Commonwealth, will be better and more efficiently served by the coordination and uniformity of the competing building regulations and specialty codes;

NOW THEREFORE, I, JANE M. SWIFT, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Supreme Executive Magistrate, do hereby order as follows:

Section 1. There is hereby established the Building Code Coordinating Council (hereinafter "Council"). The Council shall systematically review the existing state building code and the various existing specialty codes, which shall include, but not be limited to, the state plumbing and gas fitters code, electrical code, fire safety code, elevator code, sanitary code, fire prevention regulations, architectural access regulations, boiler regulations, and drinking water regulations of the Commonwealth to coordinate and make recommendations which will eliminate redundancy, minimize inconsistencies and conflicts and maximize the efficiency of the code promulgation process. In addition to the above-referenced review and recommendation process, the Council shall undertake the following specific tasks:

  • recommend a permanent process for review, comparison and coordination of proposed amendments and new building regulations or specialty codes among the promulgating authorities for use prior to submission to the Secretary of Administration and Finance for final approval pursuant to Executive Order No. 384;
  • review and recommend modifications to existing appeal processes for building code and specialty codes to ensure that such appeals processes are adequate, consistent, timely and effective;
  • recommend a draft guidebook for communities containing a statewide model protocol of the permitting, licensing, inspection and other process necessary for obtaining a certificate of occupancy to promote consistency among local officials in applying the various regulations and specialty codes; and
  • make further recommendations to the Governor as to the specific legislative, regulatory, policy and operation changes necessary to ensure the coordination and promulgation of a unified and consistent building code.

Section 2. The Council shall consist of the following members: the Secretary of the Executive Office of Administration and Finance, who shall serve as co-chair of the Council; the Secretary of the Executive Office of Public Safety, who shall serve as co- chair of the Council; the Director of the Department of Housing and Community Development; the State Fire Marshal; the Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety; the Chairman of the Board of Fire Prevention Regulations; the Chairman of the State Board of Electrical Examiners; the Chairman of the Board of Building Regulations; Chairman of the State Board of Plumbers and Gasfitters; the Commissioner of the Department of Public Health; the Chairman of the Architectural Access Board; the Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Protection; the Attorney General or their respective designees.

Section 3. The Council co-chairs shall be responsible for directing the tasks to be undertaken by the Council. In addition to those tasks enumerated in section I, the Council shall identify and address such additional tasks that may be necessary for the Council to meet its objective.

Section 4. The Council shall meet at such times and places as established by the Council co-chairs but no less than twice monthly. It shall prepare and submit a written report, together with those recommendations and findings adopted by the Council, including a draft copy of the guidebook set forth in Section 1, to the Governor by June 1, 2003.

Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston this 25th day of September in the year two thousand and two.

Jane M. Swift
Acting Governor

William Francis Galvin
Secretary of the Commonwealth

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