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September 16, 1999 

Schimminger: Act quickly on new building code

Assemblyman Robin Schimminger (D-Erie) has urged the state to "act with a sense of urgency" in developing a new, uniform building, fire safety, and energy code.

Earlier this summer, Governor Pataki and the state Legislature agreed to change the state's codes to match national models. This reform, which The Business Council had long advocated, will reduce construction costs by 5 to 15 percent, the Governor's office estimated.

In a Sept. 8 letter to Secretary of State Alexander Treadwell, who also chairs the state Fire Prevention and Building Code Council, Schimminger urged prompt action to enact revised codes.

The state budget includes $1.44 million to enable New York to join a model code organization, buy training materials for the conversion, and begin converting to a model code.

"I am troubled at reports predicting that it would take as long as three years to implement a new state building code," Schimminger said. "We cannot afford to let the momentum of our progress dissipate and slow our efforts to cut construction costs, spur new building and rehabilitation, and create new jobs while ensuring our homes and workplaces are safe."