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Re: 1999 L. A. County Building Code Chapter 22

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At 07:00 AM 6/24/99 -0700, you wrote:
>I'm not sure you can legally do this in California. [ie, locally adopt a
more stringent provision than given in the Cal Bldg Code version of UBC.]  What
>were the findings of local climatic, geological or
>topographic conditions that necessitated the deviation from
>the "Model Code" as required by Cal H&SC 18941.5?
>
>Bob Bossi
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"You" can't do it legally without such findings. But since when has local
government worried about complying with the law in this manner? They can
always temporarily reverse such an adoption, or declare the required
"findings", if someone with adequate standing wins a lawsuit against the
local jurisdiction-- a long and costly process resembling spitting into the
wind.

I have read two Calif appellate court decisions where local code adoptions
of this sort were challenged in superior court, but upheld on appeal. The
courts are loath to disturb local legislative actions that purport to
provide better protection and safety to their constituents. Any finding of
special conditions and necessity by the local government that shows a
measure of due process is sufficient; their judgment is final and beyond
appeal if so, no matter what the technical arguments in a court pleading
that they made a mistake or were heeding false advice.

One case was in Lancaster over a prohibition on ABS waste plumbing (soil
pipes) in residential buildings; cast iron was required. The other was over
a Livermore adoption that new residential construction and alterations had
to be fire sprinklered. Local findings in each case looked pretty lame and
flimsy to me, included was mention of seismic risk and local government
incapabilities that would apply most anywhere, but the court system in each
case would not override the local decision and substitute its own judgment. 

Charles O. Greenlaw  SE      Sacramento CA