Capitol Advocacy & Education

From its Harrisburg headquarters, AIA Pennsylvania manages state government affairs on behalf of all its members. The Government Affairs Committee, in collaboration with staff, oversees these responsibilities:

  • Reviews and monitors state legislative activities
  • Develops AIA Pennsylvania’s positions on legislative issues
  • Represents AIA Pennsylvania’s interests involving state agencies
  • Plans and implements advocacy and communication strategies
  • Informs and engages AIA members in government affairs activities (e.g., Architects Action Day)
Find Your Lawmaker Inside GraphicKey Government Contacts Inside Graphic

Major Legislative Issues and Initiatives

Building Codes 

2018 I-Codes Effective Early 2022
The implementation date of the 2018 ICC Codes throughout Pennsylvania is set for February 14, 2022. There will be a 6 month grace period* in effect for projects that have contracts signed prior to February 14th and permits applied for within 6 months of the effective date. If a permit is applied for before August 14, 2022, 2015 ICC standards may be utilized in the project.

As reported by AIA Pennsylvania, the effective date for the updated building codes was made public on October 14, 2021, at the UCC Review & Advisory Council (RAC) meeting. As detailed in the UCC Review and Advisory Council (RAC) report adopted by the Department of Labor and Industry, the updated codes and modifications, as well as the effective date of February 14, 2022, should publish in a forthcoming edition of the Pennsylvania Bulletin and subsequently be available on the Department’s website. See the regulations published in 2018 for reference.

For more information on the code changes, download or order the ICC’s “Significant Changes to the International Building Code, 2018 Edition.”

AIA Pennsylvania has included information throughout 2021 on the status of the building codes updates in the “Advocacy on the Boards”/Government Affairs corner of aiapa.org and the “Pennsylvania Architect” newsletter.

*AIA Pennsylvania advises members to check with their local AHJ to verify grace period timeframes and specifics.

review the updated building codes and modifications >

2021 Accessibility Codes Implementation Date Moved Up
The implementation date of the accessibility provisions of the 2021 ICC family of codes formerly reported to be January 1, 2022, has been moved up to December 25, 2021. The accessibility provisions, as outlined in a letter from the PA-UCC Review & Advisory Council Chair include:

International Building Code, 2021 edition

Chapter 11 – Accessibility
Appendix E – Supplementary Accessibility Requirements

ICC A117.1-2017 Standard and Commentary

International Plumbing Code, 2021 edition

403.4 – Signage
403.5 – Drinking Fountain Locations404 – Accessible Plumbing Facilities
405.3.1 – Water Closets, Urinals, Lavatories and Bidets

International Swimming Pool & Spa Code, 2021 edition

307.1.4 – Accessibility

International Existing Building Code, 2021 edition

306 – Accessibility
1101.2 – Creation or Extension of Nonconformity
1508 – Accessibility
Appendix B – Supplementary Accessibility Requirements for Existing Buildings &
Facilities

Pennsylvania’s Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) approved the regulation on December 9, 2021, and published its regulatory analysis. The updated regulation will officially publish in the December 25th, 2021 edition of the Pennsylvania Bulletin, thus making the final regulation effective on the date of publication.

There will be a grace period* for contracts signed prior to December 25, 2021, and permits must be applied for prior to June 25, 2022. If a permit is applied for before June 25, 2022, 2018 accessibility standards may be utilized for the project.

*AIA Pennsylvania advises members to check with their local AHJ to verify grace period timeframes and specifics.

review the accessibility code regulations >

Change is Coming | AIA PA Update on UCC & Accessibility Code Changes
For more on the building code changes coming to Pennsylvania, register to access the on-demand webinar held on November 30, 2021, featuring Matthew Kegg, Director of the Bureau of Occupational and Industrial Safety with L&I, James Mehaffey, AIA, AIA PA Building Codes Subcommittee Chair, and Chuck Parker, AIA, Building Codes Subcommittee member.

stream the webinar >

School Construction Reimbursement/PlanCon (Planning and Construction Workbook)

Stream the AIA Pennsylvania panel discussion, “Designing Schools for Success” below to learn more about the PlanCon process, k-12 building lifecycle and maintenance, how learning spaces have changed, public involvement in planning and high performance schools.

PlanCon Update

Mandatory Continuing Education

Green Building & Sustainable Design

Student Loan Forgiveness

Mechanics’ Lien

PA Department of General Services (DGS)

Public Works Town Hall Meetings

Professional Selections Committee


2016 Architects Action Day Legislative Blueprint

(click on the blueprint to download the PDF)

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Need to know where your elected officials stand on the issues, review voting records and campaign finances?

Visit www.vote-smart.org for a non-partisan, comprehensive evaluation of your elected leader’s available public policy positions and public record.