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Washington, D.C. — The International Code Council (ICC) applauded the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee’s June 13 passage of S.3041, disaster recovery reform legislation. Modeled off the House-passed Disaster Recovery Reform Act, the legislation makes new resources available, both pre- and post-disaster, to support the adoption and implementation of current model codes.

Studies confirm that the adoption and implementation of current model building codes is one of the nation’s best defenses against hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, flooding and other natural disasters.  An Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety study following Hurricane Charley found that post-Hurricane Andrew code improvements and code enforcement in Florida (the Florida Building Codes are based on the ICC Family of Codes) reduced the frequency of property damage by 60 percent and the severity of damage by 42 percent. A Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) analysis from 2014 estimated approximately $500 million in annualized loss avoided in eight southeastern states due to do the adoption of modern building codes. Building codes save lives, protect our homes and businesses and ensure that during a disaster our communities continue to function by minimizing interruptions and damage to property.

The Code Council is working closely with members of Congress and their staff to highlight the importance of pre-disaster mitigation and adoption of the latest building codes. The Code Council recently helped lead a coalition of state/local government, construction industry, and emergency management stakeholders in promoting adoption and implementation of modern codes in disaster recovery reform legislation, as one of the most reliable means to enhance community resiliency.

“Following a devastating hurricane season and tragic wildfires last year, and with the current hurricane season now upon us, investing in critical, cost-effective, disaster mitigation measures like modern code adoption and effective implementation is more important now than ever,” said Code Council Chief Executive Officer Dominic Sims, CBO. “I thank Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Johnson and Ranking Member McCaskill for their leadership on this critical issue and look forward to continuing our work to advance disaster recovery reform legislation through Congress.”

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