Smith Signs Legislation Repealing Sprinkler Mandate

House Speaker Sam Smith signed his first bill as speaker of the House this week. The bill, also approved by the Senate, is meaningful to Smith in that it repeals the sprinkler mandate and makes significant revisions to the statewide building code. The bill now waits to be signed into law by the governor. After a bill is passed by the House and the Senate, the speaker and president pro tem of the Senate must sign it before it is sent to the governor for signature.

Following final approval in the House of Representatives, House Speaker Sam Smith (R-Jefferson/Indiana/Armstrong) last evening signed legislation repealing the mandate for sprinkler systems to be installed in all new residential homes.  

The legislation has also been finally approved in the Senate and now awaits the governor’s signature before officially becoming law in Pennsylvania.   

“I am extremely pleased to see this mandate, which threatened to end the building of new homes in rural Pennsylvania, removed from the Uniform Construction Code,” Smith said. “As someone who opposed the building code from the beginning, I think this is a good compromise. It’s a true victory for the residents of Pennsylvania who clearly should have the ability to choose which safety features should be part of their homes.” 

Smith said that in addition to the repeal of the sprinkler mandate, the legislation goes a step further to protect state residents from unreasonable building code mandates that may be passed down from the International Codes Council in the future.   

“A provision in this bill requires Pennsylvania’s Uniform Construction Code Review and Advisory Council to hold public hearings to determine the impact new provisions may have on the health, safety and welfare of the public before they are implemented,” Smith stressed.  “A two-thirds vote by this council would be required to enact any of the recommendations in Pennsylvania.” 

Smith said he believes this added step in the process will help protect consumers from the dictates of unelected national code officials and stop unreasonable regulations, like the sprinkler mandate, from becoming a part of the statewide building code. 

State Representative Sam Smith
The Speaker
66th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact: Kelly Fedeli

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