WABO 2018 Annual Business Meeting - Ocean Shores, WA


WABO members gather for a group shot with ICC Region II "Cuppy"


I am very honored to take the reins of our prosperous professional organization and pledge to do all in my power to maintain and extend the constructive (pun intended) influence we have on all aspects of the built environment across the State of Washington.  I am confident that with your help, our collective resources will make this a reality in the broadest sense.  Building upon previous WABO achievements, we will continue to improve the construction codes as well as the tools and resources necessary to help ensure that work in the field is adequately constructed and  inspected in your respective jurisdictions.  I truly appreciate everyone, and the volunteer assistance each of you and your jurisdictions provide in support of our various WABO programs -- it just could not happen without it.  These programs are maintained for your use in the field.  If you are not already involved, I strongly urge you to find your niche to make a contribution and be part of the solution rather than the problem.

I envision an environment  where WABO continues to put and parlay our resources where they can make the biggest difference.  For example, Vice President Lee Kranz, our former Technical Code Committee chair, has tendered a proposal to procure the help of a professional code consultant to assist in evaluation and pursuing code change proposals.  I believe that the true measure of our collective success is “code compliant construction in the field” to which I refer as my prime objective.  Good, up to date codes cannot happen without active participation by the membership.  Please make sure that your governmental representative ICC Voter Validation is current for cdpACCESS – It’s not too late to validate!

I recognize the importance of all development stakeholders, and stand ready to take what steps are necessary to foster improved relationships when and wherever possible.  We just recently successfully hosted an ICC Board meeting at the Semiahmoo Resort, where we encouraged ICC leadership to fully embrace current President Jay Elbettar’s pursuit of more transparency in organizational governance.  I personally voiced the importance of ICC’s credibility in our ability to effectively enforce the model codes at our local jurisdictions.

Mentoring the next generation of code officials is of utmost importance.  I applaud our Outreach Chair, Todd Blevins’ enthusiasm and creativity displayed at the Annual Business Meeting to recognize new participants among you.  I look forward to seeing you in Walla Walla this fall.

 WABO & ICC Board Members enjoying some off time at Semiahmoo


Congratulations to the 2018 WABO Award Winners



 2018 Jurisdictional Outreach awarded to Clark County*   2018 Outstanding Educational Achievement awarded to Steve Hart* 

* Recipients not present at the Annual Business Meeting to receive the award


Committee Reports

Technical Code Development - Chair Lee Kranz, CBO, ACO

TCD Report for July 12th meeting at the WABO ABM:

  • TCD has a new Chairperson!  Congratulations to Micah Chappell from Seattle SDCI who takes over the role as Chair of Technical Code Development.  Our previous Chairman, Lee Kranz, was elected as the 2nd Vice President and will now join the other WABO Officers.  Lee plans to continue to participate as a member of TCD.  Special thanks to Angela Haupt from Kirkland, who was selected as Finance Committee Chairperson, for all her help in keeping TCD organized and for running the lap-top during the TCD meetings.
  • The Technical Code Development Committee discussed several draft Group A Public Comments to decide if they needed to be changed, rejected or submitted as drafted.  The deadline for submittal to ICC is July 16, 2018. 
  • Lee reminded members to check their status as Governmental Voting Representatives for their jurisdictions.  The deadline to confirm voting status is September 24th.   Status can be checked at the ICC website, access for ICC voting validation must be done by the Primary Representative of a Governmental Member. Contact ICC for questions on this process.
  • TCD will produce a “Voter’s Guide” shortly after the ICC Public Comment Hearings in Richmond, VA this fall.  It is extremely important for WABO members to participate in the Post Hearings voting to insure our code development priorities are met.  TCD should consider doing a “Get out the vote” campaign this fall to help boost participation. 
  • The ICC deadline to publish Group A Public Comments is August 31, 2018.  The Committee will be meeting to review public comments and decide if we will support, oppose or just monitor at the Hearings. 
  • Group B Cycle is going to get started soon; the deadline to submit proposals is January 7, 2019.   A new meeting schedule to get started on developing Group B proposals will be announced soon.  Check the website for more information. 
  • TCD secured a budget line item of $50,000 for administrative support, technical advice and vetting of the State amendments for the 2018 Washington Custom Codes.
  • TCD scholarships are available to cover part or all of the cost to attend the ICC Public Comment Hearings in Richmond, VA on October 24 – 31.  Please fill out the application found on the Code Development tab on the WABO website. 


Government Relations - Chair John Brickey, CBO

WABO Annual Meeting Legislative Committee Report

The Legislative Committee reviewed and discussed the WABO legislative positions.  Three of the eight existing positions were modified and one new position was added. 

The first legislative position considered, Funding for State Building Code Council, was modified to reflect the success of increasing funding by passage of E2SHB 1622 and reinforce WABO’s support for continued adequate funding for the SBCC.  Language was also included to bolster continued efforts to encourage consistency in the application of the surcharge fees by jurisdictions.  The language modification was not ratified by the committee and additional consideration by the committee may be necessary prior to formal adoption of the legislative positions by the WABO membership at the Fall WABO meeting.

The second legislative position considered by the committee was Protect Local Authority.  This position language was simplified to state, “WABO supports protecting local authority to amend, adopt and administer construction codes.”  The committee approved recommending this simplified language.

Legislative position three, Code Cycle, remains the same.

Legislative position four, Underground Economy, remains the same.

Legislative position five, Electrical Code, was modified to state: “WABO supports legislation that provides jurisdictions with equal authority to develop and adopt the Washington State Electrical Code.”  The committee approved recommending this new language.

Legislative position six, Unfunded Mandates, remains the same.

Legislative position seven, Seismic Retrofit, remains the same.

Legislative position eight, IPC (International Plumbing Code), remains the same.

A new legislative position was introduced, Certification and Training, which states: “WABO supports improving the efficiency of the construction permit and inspection process with training and certification for code officials and code technicians.” This legislative position was still under discussion at the conclusion of the committee meeting.  The consensus of the committee was that this new legislative position would need additional discussion and fine tuning prior to formal inclusion with the eight current legislative positions.
No other agenda items were addressed by the committee.



Education Committee - Chair Rick Prosser, CBO

The committee met and discussed holding a two day seminar in Walla Walla prior to the Fall Quarterly Business meeting on October 11-12, 2018.  The seminars will be held on October 9-10, 2018 and will focus on the needs of the eastside members. Todd Blevins from Walla Walla County will talk to the eastside membership and find out what they would like offered.  Possible seminar ideas that were suggested is the ATC 20/45 class, Structures 101 and Commercial Energy Code Inspections.  The committee also started discussions on the 2019 Annual Education Institute.  Update classes will not be held in 2019 and the committee will focus on more advance class offerings.

Certification & Registration - Co-Chair Gary Schenk, CBO, ACO

C&R Committee Report for July 12, 2018

The committee met and considered proposals for how to handle the Mass Wood / Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT) products that are entering the construction market. With overwhelming approval of new mass wood construction at the ICC Committee Action Hearings recently, it was felt that it is prudent to discuss how building officials will be determining ways to approve the fabrication, assembly and sealing of CLT. The committee considered the requirements for fabrication facilities and after much discussion, determined that the approval standards that are in place for fabricators of Glulam’s and similar products should suffice for the fabricators of mass wood/ CLT products. WABO currently does not get involved with built-up wood member fabrication facilities or programs.

Regarding field assembly and sealing of mass timber and whether WABO should develop a new certification category for that discipline, it is not yet certain what needs to be inspected and when that is to happen. The committee decided to refer this question to the WABO/SEAW committee for a guidance document determining what their needs are and how WABO may be able to create a certification category for field inspection. It may be preferred to add a mass wood inspection and sealant endorsement to the Lateral Wood certification, or split that out even further and add a sealant endorsement to the new fire stopping certification. These may be preferable alternatives to creating an entirely new special inspection category which usually takes a couple of years to complete.

The subject of preassembled wall panels and how those are being inspected and approved also came up at the meeting. The L&I representative in attendance stated that it was not part of their scope to regulate these under the Washington State Factory Assembled Structures program like they would do for prefabricated modular homes, etc. The committee confirmed that it was not covered by the WABO program either and that possibly relying on the factory certification by a third party entity like ICC is the most reasonable way to address how these receive preapproval before being accepted by any given jurisdiction. No further action will be taken at this point.