Kevin Egilmez

April 2, 2020

MN Code adoptions

On Tuesday March 31, 2020, six new Minnesota construction codes are scheduled to take effect. Although this adoption is occurring during the COVID-19 pandemic, the construction industry has been fully engaged in the process of developing changes to the new codes over the past two years and are anticipating their implementation. The department’s spring training educational seminars will be provided in an online format in the coming weeks.

New codes effective March 31, 2020 with the exception of the Mechanical Code that takes effect on April 6, 2020.

The following codes have been approved for adoption:

  • 2020 Minnesota Conservation Code for Existing Buildings
  • 2020 Minnesota Residential Code
  • 2020 Minnesota Building Code
  • 2020 Minnesota Energy Code (Note: The 2015 Minnesota Residential Energy Code remains in effect.)
  • 2020 Minnesota Accessibility Code
  • 2020 Minnesota Mechanical/Fuel Gas Code – Effective April 6, 2020
  • 2020 Minnesota State Fire Code

February 3, 2020

MN Department of Labor and Industry (DLI) continues to submit the 2018 I-Codes, with amendments, for review by the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH).

The following 2018 I-codes have been approved for adoption:
• International Building Code,
• International Residential Code,
• International Existing Building Code,
• commercial provisions of the International Energy Conservation Code, and
• International Fire Code.

Updates to the administrative provisions of the Minnesota State Building Code and the Minnesota Accessibility Code have also been approved. DLI will submit for approval the adoption of the 2018 editions of the International Mechanical Code and International Fuel Gas Code, with amendments, and an update to the code for elevators and related devices.

All I-codes with amendments will be effective March 31, 2020.


December 27, 2019

New Jersey adopted the 2018 editions of the IBC, IRC, IMC, IFGC, IECC, NSPC and the 2017 edition of the NEC with amendments effective September 3, 2019. Visit NJ DCA website (www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/codes/codreg/) for additional information.

Rhode Island adopted the 2015 editions of the IBC, IRC, IPC, IMC, IECC and the 2017 edition of the NEC with amendments effective August 1, 2019. Visit RI Building Code Commission website (www.ribcc.ri.gov) for additional information.


March 15, 2019

Under the State Uniform Construction Code (UCC) Act, the Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs is charged with adopting model codes as part of the Uniform Construction Code (UCC). In order to implement the most recent published technical standards, the Department proposes the 2018 editions of the IBC, IRC, IMC, IFGC, IECC, and NSPC, and the 2017 edition of the National Electrical Code (NEC) to update the above referenced subcodes of the UCC with amendments. These proposed amendments reflect the changes to the IBC/2018, IRC/2018, IMC/2018, IFGC/2018, IECC/2018, NSPC/2018, and NEC/2017 that modify the codes to align with New Jersey conditions and law.

For additional information visit www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/codes/codreg/pdf_rule_proposals/2018_code_prop.pdf


January 25, 2019

Where are smoke alarms required to be installed? Section R314.1, General, of the International Residential Code/2015 (IRC/2015) [NJ Edition] and Section 907.2.11, Single- and Multiple-Station Smoke Alarms, of the International Building Code/2015 (IBC) [NJ Edition], along with the specific smoke alarm location regulations seem to be causing some confusion among officials. Because the New Jersey editions of the IRC/2015 and the IBC/2015 have specific requirements for the location of smoke alarms, these locations are what need to be complied with, as opposed to the extra locations in the 2013 edition of NFPA 72 at Section 29.5.1, Required Detection. Some officials are seeing the reference to NFPA 72 in the general code sections as a pointer to go directly to NFPA 72 for the additional smoke alarm locations. Some of the extra alarms being required include divided basements, on ceilings spaced not more than 30 feet apart or, coverage areas greater than 1000 ft2. If the IRC/2015 and IBC/2015 were silent on the required locations, this section would apply. However, because the locations are specifically mentioned in the codes, the reference standard locations do not apply.

NFPA 72 Sections 29.8, Installation, and 29.8.3.4, Specific Location Requirements, must be used for smoke alarm installation criteria so that alarms operate correctly and don’t cause nuisance alarms. Some examples of specific location requirements in these sections include, but are not limited to: within 12 inches of the ceiling, on the wall, different ceiling locations, or within 21 feet of the sleeping areas due to the smoke alarms being interconnected (not within 10 feet), as well as items not covered by the code, such as: within 36 inches of ceiling fan blades or HVAC supply registers.

In the past code cycle, the members of the International Codes Council (ICC) actually added to the locations in both codes to help clear up some confusion code officials were having. These new sections are R314.3 item 4 and R314.3.1, Installation Near Cooking Appliances, from the IRC/2015 and 907.2.11.3, Installation Near Cooking Appliances, and 907.2.11.4, Installation Near Bathrooms, of the IBC/2015.

Reprinted with permission CCC – Fall 2018


January 25, 2019

The Ad Hoc Code Review and Rulemaking Committee of the Minnesota Plumbing Board is reviewing the 2018 Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC) and proposed amendments for possible adoption as the Minnesota Plumbing Code.

The current Minnesota Plumbing Code incorporates and adopts the 2012 UPC with amendments. The Plumbing Board has not decided whether to move forward with adopting the 2018 UPC with amendments. The Ad Hoc Committee will complete its review of the 2018 UPC and make a recommendation to the Plumbing Board about the 2018 UPC and any recommended modifications to it.

Propose a code amendment

The Ad Hoc Committee is currently reviewing requests for action (RFA). RFAs can be completed and submitted by anyone who has a proposed amendment to the 2018 UPC for use in Minnesota. Download an RFA form and view those already submitted at www.dli.mn.gov/about-department/boards-and-councils/plumbing-board-requests-action.
The web page is updated frequently so check back often.

Meetings and agendas

Agendas and a schedule of meetings of the Ad Hoc Committee are at www.dli.mn.gov/about-department/boards-and-councils/plumbing-board-ad-hoc-rulemaking-committee. Committee meetings are conducted at the Department of Labor and Industry and are open to the public.

Source: CCLD Review Winter 2018-19


October 12, 2018

Following recommendations from advisory groups, DLI has begun the adoption process for the 2018 I-Codes and the administrative requirements of the State Building Code.

The Construction Codes Advisory Council (CCAC) met June 21, 2018, to review a report from Technical Advisory Groups about seven of the 2018 I-Codes and the administrative requirements of the State Building Code. With the exception of the model residential energy code, the CCAC recommended DLI move forward with the adoption of the 2018 I-Codes with amendments and revisions to the administrative requirements of the State Building Code.

The CCAC will review the model residential energy code at a later meeting following the U.S. Department of Energy’s determination regarding energy efficiency of the 2018 Residential Energy Code.

Rulemaking process

DLI recently began the formal rulemaking process to adopt the I-Codes by publishing a Request for Comments in the State Register. Follow the rulemaking process and view rulemaking dockets at
www.dli.mn.gov/about-department/rulemaking/construction-codes-and-licensing-rulemaking.

Submit comments about a code or rule by sending an email to dli.rules@state.mn.us. Please include the rule chapter number in the email subject line.

Source: CCLD Review Fall 2018


April 18, 2018

Section 1030.1, the “General” section for the emergency escape and rescue openings (EERO) requirements of the International Building Code/2015, has created some confusion. Here it states, “In addition to the means of egress required by this chapter, provisions shall be made for emergency escape and rescue openings in Group R-2 occupancies in accordance with Tables 1006.3.2(1) and 1006.3.2(2) and Group R-3 occupancies.”

All Group R-3 occupancies, and certain Group R-2 occupancies, are permitted to have one means of egress. The above code, which references requirements for EEROs, is applicable only to those R-2 and R-3 occupancies with one means of egress.

For example, a 3-story Group R-2 with no more than 4 dwelling units per story is permitted to have one means of egress as long as common travel distances are maintained to 125 feet (see Table 1006.3.2(1)). If the designer chooses to use this option, then the building is required to have EEROs installed in sleeping areas. Note that I do not reference Table 1006.3.2(2); this is because, as per Note C, this table is used for R-2 occupancies consisting of sleeping units, and I specifically state dwelling units in my example.

In all cases, if there are two means of egress provided, then EEROs are not required.

Source: Rob Austin, Code Assistance Unit, (609) 984-7609

Reprinted with permission CCC – Spring 2018


April 18, 2018

The first phase of the Construction Codes Advisory Council’s (CCAC) recommendation to the department about the Minnesota State Building Code is almost complete.

The process began in January 2018 when the CCAC established Technical Advisory Groups (TAGs) to review seven of the 2018 I-Codes and make recommendations for their potential adoption with amendments to Minnesota Rules. Three additional TAGs were tasked with reviewing the administrative requirements of the model codes, fire and building code compatibility and the structural provisions of the I-Codes. Each TAG consists of a minimum of six members and two of them are Department of Labor and Industry staff members.

Review recommendations and comment

When the TAGs complete their review of the 2018 I-Codes, a report will be submitted to the CCAC and stakeholders for review and comment. The CCAC will review the report and comments to make recommendations for the adoption of the 2018 I-Codes and potential amendments to Minnesota Rules. Then, the next phase begins as DLI staff prepare drafts of each rule for possible adoption.

View TAG meeting notes, sign up for email updates and follow the process at www.dli.mn.gov/Ccac.asp.


August 29, 2017

Since the Code Assistance Unit receives many questions regarding the four (4) general glazing in windows criteria listed in Section 2406.4.3 of the International Building Code/2015 (and the identical code requirements at Section R308.4.3 of the International Residential Code/2015); this article provides the simple answer.

The “Glazing in Windows” section states: Glazing in an individual fixed or operable panel that meets ALL of the following conditions shall be considered to be a hazardous location.

  1. The exposed area of an individual pane is larger than 9 square feet;
  2. The bottom edge of the glazing is less than 18 inches above the floor;
  3. The top edge of the glazing is more than 36 inches above the floor; AND
  4. One or more walking surfaces are within 36 inches, measured horizontally and in a straight line, of the glazing.

The code clearly states that all four criteria must be triggered for the window glazing to be considered a hazardous location requiring safety glazing (criteria #3 has an “and” to inform the user that all four criteria are required). If only one, two, or three of the conditions are triggered, this would not require safety glazing.

Source: Rob Austin Code Assistance Unit (609) 984-7609

Reprinted with permission CCC – Spring 2017


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