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Re: Building Codes Online?

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Before offering up an opinion, I'd suggest first reading the briefs. If you find this sort of thing interesting, this one is a doozy. Veeck (any relation to the Eddy Gydell Veeck?) is supported by some law professors and 10 states(including Texas) vs. BOCA supported by the AMA and the Texas Municipal League--plus a whole bunch of other interested parties. Legal citations back to the Tax Laws of Caligula. At first glance, Veeck seems to have the better of the legal argument. Be interesting to see if the Supremes want to take this one on. Having first learned my engineering working with rules written by NASA & the FAA, I've been appalled at how the building codes are created (both the process and the results). Construction is the economic engine that drives our economy. Natural disasters cost us all billions of dollars. And yet the rules are written and enacted by an odd assortment of volunteers, building inspectors, and commercial interests; then copywrited by private companies with no liability who are free to charge whatever the market will bear; and enacted into laws by jurisdictions who don't even have the right to publish them for the public to examine. California has had good success writing its own Energy Conservation code (available for free I would add). It seems to me that building codes are way too important to be cobbled together & copywrited by a few private companies. IMHO if it is going to be the law of the land, it has to be freely available to the populace (and paid for by them).
Chuck Utzman,P.E.

Bob Shaw wrote:

This page compiles all the data (or provides links to get it.) Currently,
SBCCI has taken it to the US Supreme Court. It normally takes a while to
determine if they will even hear the appeal.

From the Texas opinion (in favor of Veeck), it appears to me that it would
apply to building codes such as SBCCI Standard, BOCA National, ICBO Uniform,
and ICC's IBC. It would not apply to AWS, AISC, ACI or other "standards"
that are adopted solely by reference, and are written for many purposes
beyond just a set of government laws.

Bob Shaw
Steel Structures Tech Center

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