H.B. NO.














relating to fire protection.





     SECTION 1.  The purpose of this Act is to clarify and update the authority of the county fire chief to review plans and specifications for the construction, alteration, and other installations for buildings or properties, as authorized by each county.  This section of statute used language that was applicable over thirty years ago.  Building occupancies and classifications have since changed and each county fire chief’s plans review authority varies depending on agreements with their respective building officials.  This Act broadly defines the fire chief’s jurisdictional authority to review building plans for all counties as determined by the adopted fire code.

     SECTION 2.  Section 132-9, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

     "§132-9  Submission of building plans for approval.  [Before work commences upon the construction of any building of the types hereinafter enumerated, or upon an alteration or addition to any building, the plans and specifications for the work shall be submitted to the county fire chief.  Neither the person causing the construction, alteration, or addition to be made, nor the person's architect or agent, shall authorize, order, or permit the work thereon to start and no contractor, builder, or other person may start the work, before approval of the plans and specifications by the county fire chief.

     The foregoing provisions shall be applicable to buildings, the whole or any part of which are being, or intended to be, used as:

     (1)  Hospitals, sanitariums, asylums, children's nurseries, and other such institutions;

     (2)  Hotels, apartment houses, rooming houses, and tenement houses; provided that when any such building to be constructed or upon which alterations or additions are to be made, is only one story high, with living accommodations permanently designated and intended for less than twenty-five persons, this section shall not apply;

     (3)  Schools, churches, auditoriums, halls, gymnasiums, dance halls, nightclubs, factories, office buildings, stores, and all other such buildings where persons work, congregate, or assemble; provided that when any such building to be constructed, or upon which alterations or additions are to be made, is only one story high, and is permanently designated and intended for a total accommodation at any one time of less than one hundred persons, this section shall not apply.]

The county fire chief shall be authorized by each county’s jurisdiction to require plans, and/or documentation to show compliance with the fire code and fire and life safety standards for the following:

     (1)  Construction, alteration, rehabilitation, or addition to any building, structure, or property; 

     (2)  Change in use of buildings or property, or change in occupancy; and

     (3)  Installation or alteration of any procedures, equipment, property or structure for any life safety or fire protection systems. 

No work shall be authorized or started before plans and specifications are approved by the county fire chief and other agencies having jurisdiction, and the issuance of approved permits.

     This section shall be applicable to the State and the counties, and other municipal subdivisions, and their officers, as well as to private persons."

     SECTION 3.  This Act shall apply to any building plans submitted for approval after the effective date of this Act.

     SECTION 4.  Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken.  New statutory material is underscored.

     SECTION 5.  This Act shall take effect upon its approval.








Report Title:

State Fire Council Package; Fire Chiefs; Fire Code; Life Safety Standards; Construction



Authorizes the county fire chiefs to require that various types of construction comply with the fire code.




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