After nearly two months of meetings, the Department of Labor & Industry’s Technical Advisory Groups (TAGs) are nearing the end of their work reviewing changes to Minnesota’s building codes.
BATC-Housing First Minnesota was granted appointees to four TAGs:
Code Administration TAG: Mike Swanson
Energy Code TAG: Ross Anderson
Residential Building Code TAG: Brent Nygaard
Structural Building Code TAG: Mike Barden
Housing First Minnesota’s staff and TAG appointees have worked to keep affordability front-of-mind during the code update process. In addition to BATC-Housing First Minnesota’s four appointees, Regulatory Affairs Manager Nick Erickson and Political Engagement Manager Mark Foster has attended TAG meetings on behalf of the housing industry.
While most of the work has been complete, two potentially costly decision have yet to be made. Last month, a group of fire officials notified the Department it intends to reintroduce the sprinkler mandate at an upcoming meeting. The Energy Code TAG, once it completes its review go the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code, will issue its recommendation on whether or not to adopt a new Energy Code. BATC-Housing First Minnesota staff will play a prominent role in both of these discussions.
Once the TAGs complete their work, changes to the various codes will be passed along to the Minnesota Construction Code Advisory Council, which will prepare recommendations for the Commissioner of Labor & industry. Minnesota’s new building codes, after working though he state’s rulemaking process, will go into effect March 2020.
The Department of Labor & Industry is looking to wrap up TAG meetings in the next two weeks.
Nicholas Erickson, director of research and regulatory affairs, serves as Housing First Minnesota's point of contact for the housing industry's regulatory agencies and local government entities. He also leads the Housing Affordability Institute's research programs. Follow Nicholas on Twitter: @nserickson