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Re: SE requirements

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Tom, thanks for the info on state limitations for design by an SE.  Over the 
weekend I was able to view some of the CA codes via  
Previously I had had problems with this site, but this time I was able to 
search and view some of the code requirements.  I searched all codes for 
"structural engineer" (if you include quotes, the terms must occur side by 
side).   It confirmed what you wrote about schools and hospitals and I didn't 
see anything about high rises in the state code.  However, there was also a 
requirement for structural engineers under the Military and Veterans Code 
(1224).  I read most of the Business and Professions (B&P) Code references to 
"structural engineer" but did not read all the Education Code references as 
there are so many.   
One interesting item I found under the B&P Code (6763) is a description of 
what the authority to use the title Structural Engineer (or "Soil's Engineer") 
is intended for: "an identification of competence and specialization in a 
subspecialty of civil engineering".  
I haven't seen anything that specifically says that local jurisdictions cannot 
require an SE for other types of designs, such as LA has done for high rises.  
Does anyone know what the legal basis would be to challenge a local 
requirement to use an SE?

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In response to Tom Harris and Bill Sherman:

A few years ago I got a handout called "Design Limitations for Professionals"
that listed applicable statutes found  in the California Code of Regulations.
BTY:  Business and Professions (B&P) and Health and Safety (H&S)

Quoting from the handout:

Structural Engineers may design any building type. (Statutes:  B&P 6731,
6736, 5537.1)

Civil Engineers may design any building except hospitals or schools.  (H&S
15013, B&P 5537.6, 6731, 6735) In the City of L.A. may not design buldings
more than 160 feet in height. This is per local ordinance so it might be
challanged at the state level.  Any CE's out there have a high rise they
would like to use as a test case?     : )

Architects may design any type of building with these exceptions 1) the
structural portion of a hospital, 2) in LA can design building exceeding 160
feet in height, but structural engineers must design all structural portions
when a building  exceeds 160 feet in height (15048 of H&S, 5500.1, 6737 of
B&P code,  LA City Code.)

As for the plan checking of private schools, check out 39159 of the Education

I recall there was some bill last year that required the state to but all the
administrative codes on the internet by next summer.  So in the interem you
might try West's Annotated Calfornia Codes, published by West Publishers, St.
Paul Minn. You can order a CD rom. 

Tom VanDorpe, P.E.
VCA Engineers
Orange, CA

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