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On Tuesday, September 21st, Coral Gables City Manager Peter Iglesias spoke before the Miami-Dade County Commission’s Subcommittee on Infrastructure and Innovation, at the invitation of Commissioner Raquel Regalado.
The subcommittee has been looking into safety protocols following the building collapse in Surfside on June 24th.
Iglesias informed the subcommittee that since June 30th seven meetings have taken place of the Building Officials Discussion Group, made up of building officials from Miami-Dade County to address changes that may need to be made to the County Code to ensure better oversight of building maintenance.
The Discussion Group has made six recommendations:
- Early notification mandate (to be issued by jurisdictions two years prior to a recertification becoming due (i.e., year 38) so property owners have more time to prepare.
- Shorten the recertification mandate to year 30 (instead of 40; in this case, courtesy notice noted above would occur in year 28).
- Mandate the exclusive use of structural engineers for the structural component on threshold buildings (4 stories and above); statutes today allow engineers latitude to qualify more broadly to submit in multiple building code trade disciplines. Similar mandate to be included for electrical component.
- Require as a condition of any time extension an engineer’s letter certifying that buildings may be kept in their legal occupancy while reports are being completed or while repairs are being undertaken; when repairs require extended time frames, continued statements for safe occupancy will be required in at least 6-month increments.
- Legislate an affirmative “duty to report” to the Building Official any adverse findings on a structure whether within or outside of the recertification process.
- In structures with multiple unit ownership scenarios where recertification requirements fall to an association or other entity, require that unsafe notices be posted in a conspicuous location and require that associations notify all unit owners and residents of the declaration.
“I thank Commissioner Regalado for bringing attention to this matter which is critical to the health and safety of so many in our community,” said Peter J. Iglesias, Coral Gables City Manager. “We have been working with the county to develop recommendations that will further strengthen the code. Maintenance is key for the integrity of structures,” said Iglesias.
To watch the video of the meeting and the Manager’s presentation, click here.