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Bill Number: 4700 Ratification Number: 645 Act Number 528 Introducing Body: House Subject: Fire Protection Sprinkler Systems Act
(A528, R645, H4700)
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTIONS 23-45-30, 23-45-40, 23-45-60, 23-45-70, 23-45-80, 23-45-90, 23-45-100, 23-45-110, 23-45-120, 23-45-130, 23-45-135, 23-45-140, AND 23-45-150, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO DEFINITIONS USED IN THE FIRE PROTECTION SPRINKLER SYSTEMS ACT, ENFORCEMENT PROVISIONS OF THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL, FEES AND LICENSES, PROCEDURES FOR ISSUANCE OF A LICENSE, LIMITATIONS AND CONDITIONS ON A LICENSE, EXPIRATION OF A LICENSE, REQUIREMENT THAT A FIRE PROTECTION SPRINKLER CONTRACTOR MUST DELIVER A COPY OF HIS LICENSE TO THE LOCAL BUILDING OFFICIAL IF HE DESIRES TO DO BUSINESS IN THAT JURISDICTION, THE EFFECT OF MUNICIPAL REGULATION ON CONTRACTORS, APPLICATION OF CHAPTER 45, TITLE 23, INAPPLICABILITY OF THE SAME CHAPTER, FEES FOR SPRINKLER PLAN AND SPECIFICATION REVIEW, AND ENFORCEMENT POWERS OF THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL, SO AS TO CHANGE THE NAME OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA LICENSING BOARD FOR CONTRACTORS' LICENSE TO SPRINKLER CONTRACTOR'S LICENSE, DELETE PROVISIONS REFERENCING THE STANDARD BUILDING CODE, DEFINE "BOARD" TO MEAN THE STATE LICENSING BOARD FOR CONTRACTORS, AUTHORIZE THE STATE LICENSING BOARD FOR CONTRACTORS RATHER THAN THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL TO ENFORCE PROVISIONS OF THIS CHAPTER, DELETE PROVISIONS RELATING TO THE REQUIREMENT OF A SWORN AFFIDAVIT FROM THREE PROFESSIONAL ENGINEERS AND OTHER REQUIREMENTS REQUIRED FOR APPLICATION FOR A LICENSE, MAKE THE PLANNING, INSTALLATION, OR ADDITION OF A FIRE PROTECTION SPRINKLER SYSTEM, WATER SPRAY SYSTEM, OR WATER FOAM SYSTEM ON THEIR OWN PROPERTY OR THAT OF THEIR NORMAL EMPLOYER APPLICABLE TO THE PROVISIONS OF CHAPTER 45, TITLE 23, PROVIDE THAT THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL MAY CHARGE FEES FOR PLAN AND SPECIFICATION REVIEW, AND PROVIDE THAT THE BOARD INSTEAD OF THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL MAY ENFORCE THE PROVISIONS OF CHAPTER 45, TITLE 23; TO REDESIGNATE SECTION 23-45-160, RELATING TO THE INSTALLATION OF SMOKE DETECTORS IN APARTMENT HOUSES HAVING NO FIRE PROTECTION SYSTEM, AS SECTION 23-9-155; AND REPEAL SECTION 23-45-155 RELATING TO WAIVER OF A NICET LEVEL III CERTIFICATE IN CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 23-45-30 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"(9) 'Board' means the State Licensing Board for Contractors."
Sprinkler contractor's license defined
SECTION 2. Section 23-45-30(5) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(5) 'Sprinkler contractor's license' means the license issued by the South Carolina Licensing Board for Contractors to a fire protection sprinkler contractor who has submitted (a) an application which is approved; (b) the fee; (c) proof of insurance in an amount and of the type required by this chapter; and (d) proof that the contractor has in its employ a certificate holder who is either a full-time owner, a partner, an officer, or in a management position. The license is issued in the name of the fire protection sprinkler contractor with the name of the certificate holder on the license."
Fire protection sprinkler system defined
SECTION 3. Section 23-45-30(6) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(6) 'Fire protection sprinkler system' means a system of overhead and underground piping to protect the interior or exterior of a building or structure from fire where the primary extinguishing agent is water and designed in accordance with fire protection engineering standards. The system includes the overhead and underground water mains, fire hydrants and hydrant mains, standpipes and hose connection to sprinkler systems, supplied from a reliable, constant, and sufficient water supply, such as a gravity tank, fire pump, reservoir, or pressure tank, or connection by underground piping to a city main. The system is a network of specially sized or hydraulically designed piping installed in a building, structure, or area, generally overhead, and to which sprinklers are connected in a systematic pattern. The system includes a controlling valve and a device for actuating an alarm when the system is in operation. The system is usually activated by heat from a fire and discharges water over the fire area. Fire protection sprinkler systems include the following types: wet-pipe systems, dry-pipe systems, preaction systems, residential systems, deluge systems, combined dry-pipe and preaction systems, nonfreeze systems, and circulating closed loop systems."
Board to enforce provisions
SECTION 4. Section 23-45-40 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-40. The board shall enforce the provisions of this chapter and may promulgate regulations to carry out the provisions of this chapter pursuant to Chapter 23, Title 1. Nothing in this chapter shall alter or limit the Division of State Fire Marshal in the carrying out of its fire protection duties and responsibilities as provided in Sections 23-9-40 and 23-9-60."
SECTION 5. Section 23-45-60 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-60. (A) A person desiring to become a licensed fire protection sprinkler contractor shall submit to the South Carolina Licensing Board for Contractors on standard forms provided by the board an application complete with all information required. The applicant shall include with the application a reasonable fee to be determined by the board not to exceed five hundred dollars.
(B) All fees associated with the NICET Level III Fire Sprinkler Technician's Written Competency Test are the responsibility of the fire protection sprinkler contractor."
Proof of insurance required
SECTION 6. Section 23-45-70 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-70. The board may not issue a license unless the applicant provides proof that comprehensive liability insurance coverage has been obtained. The liability insurance policy must provide coverage in an amount not less than one hundred thousand dollars and cover any loss to property or personal injury caused by the fire protection sprinkler contractor. The policy must be purchased from an insurer authorized to do business in this State."
Board to issue license
SECTION 7. Section 23-45-80 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-80. If a completed application has been approved, the fee has been paid, proof of insurance provided, and the certificate holder found to be at present a full-time owner, partner, officer, or in a management position of the fire protection sprinkler contractor, the board shall issue within thirty days a license in the name of the fire protection sprinkler contractor with the name of the certificate holder noted thereon."
Prohibition on holding license
SECTION 8. Section 23-45-90 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-90. In no case is a certificate holder allowed to obtain a license for more than one fire protection sprinkler contractor at a time. If the certificate holder leaves the employment of the fire protection sprinkler contractor, he shall notify the board within thirty days. The certificate holder is not eligible to obtain a license for more than one other fire protection sprinkler contractor for a period of twelve months. If the certificate holder leaves the employment of the fire protection sprinkler contractor, the contractor has six months to submit a new application on another certificate holder who is at present a full-time owner, partner, officer, or in a management position of the fire protection sprinkler contractor and be issued a new license. If the application is not received and a new license issued within the allotted time, the board shall revoke the existing license of the fire protection sprinkler contractor."
Expiration of license
SECTION 9. Section 23-45-100 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-100. The sprinkler contractor's license shall expire annually at midnight on July thirty-first. At least thirty days before, the fire protection sprinkler contractor shall submit a renewal application. A renewal fee of one hundred dollars must be submitted with the application. A revoked or expired license may be reinstated by making application as before and payment of the fee."
SECTION 10. Section 23-45-110 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-110. If a fire protection sprinkler contractor desires to do business in any part of the State he is required to deliver to the local building official a copy of his sprinkler contractor's license. The local building official shall require a copy of the license before issuing a local license or building permit. The licensed fire protection sprinkler contractor is required to pay any fees normally imposed for local licenses or permits but the local official shall impose no other requirements on the licensed fire protection sprinkler contractor to prove competency other than a valid sprinkler contractor's license."
Chapter does not limit
SECTION 11. Section 23-45-120 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-120. Nothing in this chapter limits the power of a municipality, county, or the State to regulate the quality and character of work performed by contractors, through a system of permits, fees, and inspections which are designed to assure compliance with, and aid in the implementation of, state and local laws for the protection of the public health and safety. Nothing in this chapter limits the power of a municipality, county, or the State to adopt any system of permits requiring submission to and approval by the municipality, county, or the State, of plans and specifications for work to be performed by contractors before commencement of the work. The official authorized to issue building or other related permits shall ascertain that the fire protection sprinkler contractor is licensed by requiring evidence of a valid sprinkler contractor's license."
SECTION 12. Section 23-45-130 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-130. This chapter applies to any fire protection sprinkler contractor performing work for any municipality, county, or the State. Officials of any municipality, county, or the State are required to determine compliance with this chapter before awarding any contracts for the planning, sale, installation, repair, alteration, addition, or inspection of a fire protection sprinkler system, water spray, or water foam system. Bids must be accompanied by a copy of a valid sprinkler contractor's license."
Provisions not applicable
SECTION 13. Section 23-45-135 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-135. The provisions of this chapter do not apply to licensed mechanical contractors performing emergency repair work on existing fire protection sprinkler systems or existing water spray systems or existing water foam systems where the labor cost of the work does not exceed one thousand dollars or to persons engaged in the repair, alteration, maintenance, or inspection of a fire protection sprinkler system or water spray system or water foam system on their own property or that of their normal employer. Plumbing contractors holding a Group 2 or 3 plumbing contractor license are not required to be licensed under this chapter to install standpipe systems, including hose connections, hose cabinets, and related branch lines, provided that they do not supply automatic fire protection sprinklers. A utility contractor holding a Group 2 or 3 utility contractor license is not required to be licensed under this chapter to install underground water mains, hydrant mains, and fire hydrants to the point of the connection to the underground fire protection sprinkler system mains."
SECTION 14. Section 23-45-140 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-140. The Division of State Fire Marshal may charge a fee of one cent a square foot for sprinkler plan and specification review or twenty-five dollars a hose station on standpipe risers for wet or dry standpipe plan and specification review. Sprinkler systems or standpipe systems must be designed and installed according to National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Chapter 13, 1989 Edition, NFPA 13A, 1987 Edition, NFPA 13D, 1989 Edition, NFPA 13R, 1989 Edition, NFPA 14, 1986 Edition, NFPA 20, 1987 Edition, and NFPA 24, 1987 Edition, and all pamphlets referenced in them. All fees collected pursuant to this chapter must be deposited in the state treasury to the credit of the general fund."
Order to cease
SECTION 15. Section 23-45-150 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 23-45-150. Whenever the board has reason to believe that any person is or has been violating any provision of this chapter the board may issue and deliver to the person an order to cease and desist such violation. The board may impose a penalty, not to exceed two hundred fifty dollars, for each day the violation exists. Violation of any provision of this chapter or failure to comply with a cease and desist order is cause for revocation of the license. Decisions may be appealed as provided for in Chapter 23, Title 1."
SECTION 16. Section 23-45-160 of the 1976 Code is redesignated as Section 23-9-155.
SECTION 17. Section 23-45-155 of the 1976 Code is repealed.
SECTION 18. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
Approved the 31st day of May, 1990.