Building Official Membership Council Chair Steve Shapiro and Vice Chair Becky Baker address attendees of the first in-person Membership Council meeting.
The five discipline-specific Membership Councils met Oct. 30 for their firs face-to-face meeting to discuss their charters, future plans and issues pertaining to their industry.
The Building Official; Fire Service; Plumbing, Mechanical and Fuel Gas (PMG) Official; Global and Sustainability Membership Councils held open meetings, allowing 2011 Annual Conference participants to attend and have a discussion with the various groups.
Items such as future involvement in the ICC from young professionals, use of technology and social media as tools to expand the Membership Councils and how the Councils will facilitate Membership growth were discussed in the two-hour meetings.
The Building Official Membership Council, lead by Chair Steve Shapiro and Vice Chair Becky Baker, has 479 ICC Members currently enrolled in the Council, covering 339 jurisdictions.
"This brings a lot of different viewpoints and opinions," Shapiro said. "All these different voices now have a place to speak, and this make us all better at what we do."
The same benefit of differing viewpoints was also expressed in the Global Membership Council meeting.
"We need to understand that there are different cultures and socio-economic backgrounds," ICC staff liaison Drew Azzara said. "We have to listen to the global community. Because things are different everywhere."
The Global Membership Council, headed by Chair Lynn Underwood and Vice Chair Martin Reiss, echoed this idea, as having many voices in an open forum is a key initiative all of the Councils will have in common.
Fire Service Membership Council Chair Fulton Cochran and Vice Chair Jackie Gibbs led the Council to approve their charter. The Council will also look into how to make certifications more viable to the Membership.
The Council also discussed mentoring opportunities while increasing fire service participation with ICC at all levels.
During the Fire Service Membership Council meeting, the Sustainability Membership Council, led by Chair Ayla Erfingen and Vice Chair Douglas Wise, went over many items on their agenda. They discussed the significant changes in the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code and held an open forum with all attendees to discuss the courses of actions the Council will take in the future.
Attendees of the PMG Official Membership Council discuss the future plans of the Council.
The PMG Official Membership Council Chair Jim Olk and Vice Chair McKenzie James led their group’s meeting. The Council discussed important topics pertaining to the PMG industry, and how the Council will be a positive influence on the industry as well as ICC’s Membership.
The Membership Councils will hold more meetings in the near future. Any updates, announcements or additional information can be found on the Membership Councils Web page. The Membership Councils will also continue their discussion in the Membership Councils Blogs, which can be read by all ICC Members.
Presenting retired Lieutenant General Russel L. Honore’ an ICC shirt and hat are, from left, Bruce McCullen and Leslie Chapman-Henderson of the ICC Foundation, ICC Board of Directors President Jimmy Brothers, and Code Council CEO Rick Weiland.
There are things America needs to fix to improve its response to natural disasters, retired Lieutenant General Russel L. Honore’ told Annual Conference delegates during Monday’s ICC Foundation Luncheon.
“How you respond or how you survive is in a direct proportion to how prepared you are,” he said. “Disasters are going to happen. The difference is how resilient we are in our communities.
Prior to his command of Joint Task Force Katrina–leading the U.S. Department of Defense’s (DOD) response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana–Honoré supported DOD planning and response for Hurricanes Floyd in 1999; Lili and Isidore in 2002; Isabel in 2003; and Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne in 2004. He identified four key areas in need of immediate action:
- 1. Loss of electric power. Honore’ pointed to last weekend’s snow storm in the Northeast that caused more than 1 million to lose power, and called for better construction and location of electrical substations and distribution systems, as well as widespread ownership of generators in homes, businesses and other facilities.
- 2. Better early warning and evacuation systems. Honore’ said 70 percent of residents do not take heed to severe weather warnings, and 20 percent do not evacuate when a disaster such as Hurricane Katrina is approaching. If they survive the disaster, in addition to a lack of electric power, the residents are without essential items such as water and medicine. “They’d rather live at home miserable than go live in a high school gymnasium somewhere,” he said.
- 3. Improved infrastructure on Railroad Street. In every community, Honore’ said there is a section known as Railroad Street where poor, elderly and disabled citizens live because the housing is affordable—and more prone to disasters. “When a disaster hits, Railroad Street is a place where the government will spend most of its resources,” he said.
- 4. Smarter building in disaster prone areas. Honore’ used the Native American name for the Mississippi River, the “Father of Waters,” as a metaphor for building in disaster prone areas, and called for stronger building codes—especially for hospitals and other emergency facilities—and better design of structures. “We can’t continue to build our houses out of glass unless the glass is unbreakable,” he said.
Honore’ said mitigation is the key to disaster response. “Every dollar you put on the left side of a disaster sees $12 on the other side,” he said. “That is significant.
“On any given day Mother Nature can overmatch us,” he continued. “Whether we survive or not is based on the work you do.”
Code Council Governmental Voting Representatives took action on 22 proposed changes to the International Swimming Pool and Spa Code during Final Action Hearings on Monday. The Final Action Hearings for the International Green Construction Code begin Wednesday at 1 p.m. Click here to view the webcast.
International Code Council (ICC) President Rick Weiland and outgoing ICC Board President Jimmy Brothers presided over the Chapter President’s Breakfast in North Hall B/C of the Phoenix Conference Center. Weiland announced the acceptance of two new ICC Chapters since the last Annual Business Meeting and Conference Hearings in Charlotte: The District of Columbia Code Officials Association and the Wisconsin Code Officials Association.
“Congratulations to all of you and welcome to the ICC family as the newest Chapters of the International Code Council,” Weiland said. “We hope you will play an active role in your organization and look forward to building a partnership with you that would be beneficial to your Chapter and the Code Council.”
Brothers announced the two Chapter Merit Award Winners, the Code Administrators Association of Kentucky, and the Northwest Building Officials and Code Administrators of Illinois.
“The Code Administrators Association of Kentucky, in part, was selected for the award for its passion for education,” Brothers said. “The Northwest Building Officials and Code Administrators Chapter, in part, earned its award for initiatives to support its Members who have lost their jobs as a result of the economy.”
Brothers announced the Virginia Plumbing and Mechanical Inspectors Association as the 2011 Chapter of the Year award recipient. THE VPMIA is a state Chapter that is very involved in its communities, statewide and regionally.
“The association is extremely active in code development and other professional activities and has been since its inception in 1962,” said Brothers. “The organization’s diverse make-up includes members from 39 cities, 148 counties and 190 towns.”
Formal and public recognition of Chapter award winners will take place in front of Conference attendees on Wednesday at the Awards Luncheon.
Weiland began his remarks by thanking the host Chapters – the Arizona Building Officials and the individual Arizona Chapters of ICC: Grand Canyon, Central Arizona, Southern Arizona and the Arizona Fire Marshals – for this year’s conference.
“The Members of those Chapters devoted a lot of personal time, effort and resources to make this conference a success for all of us,” said Weiland. “They have been working closely with Code Council staff for more than a year to plan this week’s events.”
Weiland then conveyed his appreciation for the outstanding job Chapters do in providing professional development and networking opportunities for thousands of code officials and other industry professionals.
“Chapters also provide a great deal of support for I-Code adoption efforts and other important Code Council initiatives,” Weiland said, “from Building Safety Month to the Code of Honor Scholarship Program, partnerships with the building community, and increased public awareness of the value of code enforcement. Thank you for all you do.”
Weiland also mentioned the new “My Chapters” area on the ICC website, and invited those interested in learning more to attend ICC Vice President of Chapter Relations Laura Scott’s session at the Cracker Barrel lunch on Tuesday.
Weiland also noted that because of prudent decisions ICC has made during the down economy, he expects that the 2012 budget will make a revamped Chapter Rewards program possible, phasing in newer, simpler rewards that will benefit more Chapters and Members.
Brothers invited the newly reengineered Membership Council Chairs and Vice Chairs to introduce themselves at the microphones located on each side of the hall where breakfast attendees were seated.
Steve Shapiro, Chair of the Building Official Membership Council, gave an update on the progress of the five discipline-specific Membership Councils (Building Official, PMG, Sustainability, Global and Fire), and mentioned the good turnout at each Council’s meeting on Sunday afternoon.
“This is a venue for you, the Members, to get with other people with like interests, network with your peers and talk about things that are important to you,” Shapiro said.
The team of Dennis Holden, Mike Picallo, John Goss and Raburn Chamerski fired a nine-under par 63 to win the Arizona Building Officials Golf Tournament. The foursome claimed the title by birding hole number four, which is rated the toughest at the Aguila Golf Course.
Also shooting a nine-under 63 and finishing second was the foursome of William Mears, Mick Kaehler, Jim Sherman and Don Thomas. Randy Noland won the longest drive contest.
Vice President Sara Rice officiated over this year’s meeting of Women in Code Enforcement and Development (WICED), a national Chapter of the International Code Council (ICC). WICED President Shirley Muns, building code official in Houston, and Secretary/Treasurer Eirene Oliphant, former building official for Leawood, Kansas, were not in attendance.
The first WICED meeting took place at ICC’s Codes Forum and Final Action Hearings in Rochester, New York, in May 2007. The purpose behind the formation of the group was to promote advocacy, education and mentoring for women in the code industry.
The agenda included approval of the minutes of the group’s previous gathering at ICC’s Annual Business Meeting and Final Hearings in Charlotte, North Carolina, in 2010; introduction of the new WICED logo (the woman symbol capped with a hard hat), and the election of new executive board Members: Eirene Oliphant, President; Amber Amstrong, Vice President, Plan Review Specialist, City of Edmond, Oklahoma; and Kecia Lara, Secretary/Treasurer, Residential Building Inspector, Richland County, Columbia, South Carolina. It was also noted that the WICED website is up and running. Because WICED Members are spread throughout the country, the website is a crucial means of communication within the group, as well as a method for getting word out about the group’s existence and activities to potential Members.
The atmosphere at the meeting was convivial and informal. Rice, a certified building official and staff Member of the Cincinnati-based Preview Group, noted that it’s like “old home week” on the rare occasions that a majority of WICED Members are able to meet together, which is generally once a year at ICC’s Annual Business Meetings. She also noted that WICED has faced some challenges since its founding and inception as a Chapter in 2008.
“It isn’t good when your Chapter President gets breast cancer and your Vice President gets laid off,” said Rice. Fortunately, Mums is now a successful breast cancer survivor, and Oliphant is gainfully employed as a Codes Specialist at BRR Architecture in Overland Park, Kansas.
Patrick Parsley, Building Official, Fairmont, Minnesota, who is a candidate for Secretary/Treasurer of the ICC Board of Directors, addressed the group as a candidate, and also said he would discuss having a Board liaison for WICED, as most ICC Chapters have. The ICC Board currently has two women board Members, of whom Cindy Davis, Building Official for Butler Township, Pennsylvania, also in attendance at the meeting, will be stepping down on Tuesday, when the new board elections take place at the Annual Business Meeting in Phoenix. Tina Rakes will be the remaining female board Member. ICC Senior Vice President of Government Relations Sara Yerkes attended the meeting, as well as ICC Senior Regional Manager for Government Relations Kevin Scott and ICC Government Relations Executive Assistant Sean Wallace. There were 13 attendees in all.
Barbara Koffron, former ICC Board Member and retired Fire Marshal for the city of Phoenix, Arizona, was also in attendance at the meeting. She strongly suggested that a WICED Member seriously consider running for the ICC Board, and to “do what you can to support [women board Members] … We need some strong women….to give the group some guidance.”