STATE COMMISSION REVIEWS PROPOSED REWRITE OF ACCESSIBILITY CODE

The Building Standards Commission’s Advisory Committee has just concluded a 3-day marathon session wherein proposed changes to California’s Disabled Accessibility standards were reviewed.  This included the Division of the State Architect’s 350+ page rewrite of the accessibility provisions for all commercial and state-owned buildings.

 

As reported earlier this year, DSA has decided to use the federal Department of Justice accessibility provisions as the basis for California’s updated code with appropriate amendments where California’s code was previously more stringent.  We anticipate 45-Day Language being issued by DSA within the next 3 weeks with adoption by the BSC planned for their January 2013 Business Meeting.

 

The intent of this major “regulatory overhaul” is to significantly reduce the number of lawsuits filed over the minute differences between the state and federal regulations.  In addition, this effort will help facilitate DOJ certification of our state regulations, an administrative action that will help businesses with “burden of proof” issues when litigation is filed in the future.

 

All of this is complementary to the recent signing of our SB 1186 (Steinberg/Dutton), the legislation that reforms ADA in California and establishes a prohibition of “demand for money” letters by attorneys alleging violations of state and federal access standards (see story below).

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