Builders in Pennsylvania are declaring victory after a contentious campaign to remove a residential fire-sprinkler requirement from the state's recently updated building code. The Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code (UCC) is closely based on the 2009 IRC and included the model code's residential-sprinkler requirement when it became effective on January 1 of this year. Like similar groups elsewhere, however, Pennsylvania builders associations successfully appealed to state lawmakers for relief from what they called a burdensome and unnecessary mandate (see "State Legislators Deal Blow to Residential-Sprinkler Codes," 10/10).

A matter of choice. In March, the state House of Representatives approved a version of the sprinkler-repeal bill by a sweeping 154-to-39 majority. The Pennsylvania Builders Association (PBA) had lobbied strenuously for its passage, claiming that the requirement would add thousands of dollars to the cost of new homes, pricing potential buyers out...

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