A message from SEAOC President Janah Risha
Wednesday, February 28, 2018
SEAOC and the four MOs run on volunteer power! It never ceases to amaze me to see the commitment and dedication of the committee chairs and members. This was very evident over the last two months with the flurry of legislative activities that required swift and focused efforts, lead by the Legislative Committee with input and support from the Existing Buildings Committee and the Resilience Committee. The members of all three committees rose to the challenge led by Daniel Zepeda, chair of Existing Buildings, Josh Gebelein, chair of Resilience, and Ryan Kersting, chair of Legislative. They all worked so hard to develop SEAOC’s recommendations and amendments to AB 1857 and AB 2681; and for that we should all be very grateful. Then, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that Ryan Kersting went the extra 5,486 miles and continued to work on behalf of SEAOC on his way to Paris and while he was vacationing with his family there. If this is not the ultimate example of dedication and commitment, I don’t know what is. So Ryan, a heartfelt thank you on behalf of the rank and file of SEAOC.
The SEAOC Board of Directors has been quite busy tackling a multitude of issues. Here are a few of the items that we are considering, with updates:
Wind Design Manual: Chair Chris Kamp and representatives of the WDM Task Group met with ICC and are ironing out the finer points of the WDM as it moves toward production. Topics of discussion now include the manual’s exact title, the line-up of organizational logos on the cover, and other production details. The examples are being refined between ICC and SEAOC with comments and edits. It is hoped that the manual will be ready for publication by mid-year.
2018 SSDM: Work on the next edition of the SSDMs is underway. Project Co-Managers Rafael Sabelli and Katy Briggs are working diligently, continuing to flesh out the new problems, coordinating with authors and volume managers.
2018 Convention: This year’s convention is from September 12-14 at the JW Marriott Spa and Resort in Palm Desert. The second call for papers is out already and the theme of "Innovation & Resilience: Strengthening the Past, Building the Future" has been chosen for the Technical Program. The abstracts are due March 16. With 30 exhibitors and 1 sponsor already on board, this convention is promising to be very educational and lots of fun. So please send in your abstracts and mark your calendar.
Update of SEAOC Policies and Procedures: The policies and procedures are outdated and lack coordination and consistency; they need to be updated and perhaps modernized. Don Schinske will spearhead the effort, assisted by a few members of the Board.
And lastly, from ICC we hear that the recently passed Federal Budget includes the Federal Cost Share Reform Incentive, a provision that encourages states to adopt the latest building codes, incentivizes states to invest in the resiliency of their communities, and includes additional disaster relief funds of nearly $90 billion. ICC advocated for this incentive highlighting the importance of pre-disaster mitigation. The Federal Cost Share Reform Incentive allows post-disaster federal cost-sharing with states to increase from seventy-five percent to as high as eighty-five percent on a sliding scale, based on a number of factors including the adoption and enforcement of the latest building codes; the adoption of a mitigation plan; and investments in disaster relief, insurance and emergency management programs. SEAOC partners with ICC on many of our publications and we appreciate ICC’s leadership and vision in taking steps to reduce the financial impact of natural disasters.