Photos of projects plan checked or inspected by Willdan


News for California Building Departments
Issue 9, January - March 2006

Index to all issues of The Willdan Letter

Important Dates

January 23-26, 2006

The 2006 ICC Winter Code Official Institute --designed for those preparing for the ICC Certified Building Official Examination.
Phoenix, AZ

See the ICC website for details.

January 25, 2006

Building Standards Commission hearing

Watch the Commission's website for the agenda.

February 28-March 3, 2006

CALBO Annual Business Meeting
Palm Springs, CA

See CALBO website for details.

March 17, 2006

Last date to submit applications for IAMPO code certification examinations to be held in several locations in California on April 22, 2006.

Get more information and apply at IAPMO’s website.

March 20-22, 2006

ICC Codes Forum
Sacramento, CA

For registration and the list of classes offered by the ICC and CALBO, see ICC’s website.

March 22-23, 2006

California Building Standards Commission hearing. It is expected that the 2003 Uniform Mechanical Code adoption and the Chapter 11A rewrite (multifamily dwelling accessibility) and several other updates for the 2001 California Building Code will be considered for approval.

Watch the Commission's website for the agenda.

April 18-22, 2006

100th Anniversary Earthquake Conference
San Francisco

See the event calendar on the ICC website or conference website for information.

What's Up With The State?

  • HCD has issued Information Bulletin 2005-13 announcing the completion of work to implement two legislative bills regarding universal design. The first relates to AB2787, Chapter 726 of 2002, that required HCD to develop and certify a model ordinance that may be adopted by local ordinance on a voluntary basis. The model ordinance is available at HCD’s website and if adopted at the local level, will establish new accessibility requirements for new or altered single family homes and other dwellings. The second is AB1400, Chapter 648 of 2003, that required HCD to develop and certify a universal design checklist format for builder use. Builders of singlefamily homes, duplexes, triplexes, townhomes, and condominiums, must provide the buyer a checklist with information regarding the dwelling’s degree of compliance with universal design standards. The checklist must be provided if the application for a permit to construct the offered dwelling was made on or after January 26, 2006. Plan submittals for the construction of dwellings made after January 26, 2006, must be accompanied by the builder’s checklist. The Information Bulletin and more detailed information is available at HCD’s website for the State Housing Law Program.

  • Information Bulletin 2005-12, issued by HCD announces the voluntary recall of 178,000 gas valves manufactured in July and August of 2005 for residential water heaters. The Information Bulletin is available at HCD’s website for the State Housing Law Program.

  • The California Energy Commission has issued a special BLUEPRINT (newsletter) regarding cool roof requirements for nonresidential buildings. BLUEPRINT #83 provides a Q and A format relating to cool roof requirements and much more. Also, the BLUEPRINT announces the availability of a special overlay for Google Earth that makes it possible to locate specific addresses on the Energy Commission’s updated California Climate Zone Map. To download the new Climate Zone overlay for Google Earth, follow the directions.

  • On December 9, 2005, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger announced the appointment of Frank "Fred" Aguiar as Cabinet Secretary. Fred Aguiar had been serving as Secretary of California's State and Consumer Services Agency (CSCSA) and Chairperson for the Building Standards Commission. The Cabinet Secretary is a direct liaison between the governor and cabinet members, including all agency and department directors. CSCSA Undersecretary George Valverde will assume the responsibility for chairing the Building Standards Commission until a new Secretary of CSCSA is named.

  • The Building Standards Commission has announced plans for its 2007 triennial edition of the California Building Standards Code (California Code of Regulations, Title 24, Parts 1 through 12). The cycle’s proposed adoptions will include the 2006 IBC, the 2005 NEC, the 2006 UMC, the 2006 UPC, the 2006 IRC, the 2006 IFC, and Appendix Chapter A1 of the existing IBC. The state adopting agencies are required to provide the Commission their adoption proposals by May 1, 2006.

  • On January 2, 2006, Ruben Grijalva (pronounced Gri-hall-va) became the acting Director of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection in addition to his State Fire Marshal duties. Ruben will serve in the dual capacity until a permanent CDF Director is appointed by the Governor.

  • DSA’s website lists the 2006 construction cost threshold for use in CBC section 1134B.2.1 Exception 1, as being $113,586.07.

Legislation of Interest to Building Departments

The 2005/2006 Legislative Session reconvened again on January 4, 2006. The deadline for introducing new bills is February 18, 2006. It will be several weeks before we begin to see bills that could impact building departments.

Those bills that passed in 2005 that are now effective include the following:

SB 253 (Chapter 253 of 2005), amends Health and Safety Code section 18400.3, reducing the time allowed to correct violations in mobilehome parks from 90 to 60 days.

AB1078 (Chapter 570 of 2005), enacts the Methamphetamine Contaminated Property Cleanup Act of 2005, with responsibilities for local health officials and information for the local building department responsible for enforcing provisions of the State Housing Law. See new Health and Safety Code provisions beginning with section 25400.10.

Additionally, AB304, AB1064, and AB1194 passed in 2005 and were discussed in our last issue of this newsletter. Find them at

Did You Know?

In our last edition, the difference between a manufactured home and a mobilehome was discussed. There is no difference. With that understood, we should understand what is Factory-Built Housing (FBH). No, it is not the same as a manufactured home!

The California Factory-Built Housing Law, located in a portion of the California Health and Safety Code (Division 13, Part 6, beginning with section 19960), provides a definition of factory-built housing and how it may be constructed and utilized for housing. In short, there are multiple forms of FBH ranging from complete homes transportable on the highways, just like manufactured homes, to completed modules or portions of dwelling units. There is also a FBH building component consisting of completed component parts such as roof, wall and floor panels (e.g. structural insulated panels). All forms of FBH, if sold in California, must bear an insignia of approval issued by HCD.

The major difference between a manufactured home constructed to the National Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and FBH is that the FBH is constructed to the standards of California Code of Regulations, Title 24. As such, FBH is exempt from the national standards for manufactured homes. Administrative regulations are adopted by HCD in Title 25, Division 1, Chapter 3, Subchapter 1, beginning with section 3000, and include requirements for local building departments. FBH is subject to HCD oversight but local government has a required role in the inspection of installations and alterations that is substantially different than with manufactured homes.

For more information about Factory-Built Housing and the inspection responsibilities of the local building department, obtain a copy of the Factory-Built Housing Handbook for City and County Building Departments. This handbook was developed by HCD and is available at their website.

Other News

The education page on CALBO’s website lists training seminars in several locations in California scheduled for January, February, and March 2006. Some offer training on the International Building Code.

On September 28, 2005, the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO) and the International Code Council (ICC) signed an agreement to work towards producing one plumbing code and one mechanical code by the 2009 editions using the governmental consensus process. Their next meeting is planned for February 2006.

The 2004/2005 Annual Report by the State Fire Marshal is available on their website. The report includes information about SFM projects, including code adoptions, and accomplishments of the Office of the State Fire Marshal during the fiscal year.

Useful Websites

Free energy training videos

Current and prior year legislation

State regulations other than Title 24

State laws

International Code Council

National Fire Protection Association

Int'l Assoc of Plumbing & Mechanical Officials