Bill Authorizes Funding for Sprinkler Systems and Adds Inspection Requirement
David Weber, PHADA Policy Analyst
Sens. Tina Smith (D-MN) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) introduced the Public Housing Fire Safety Act on December 18, 2019. The simple and straightforward bill will authorize establishment of a competitive grant program for public housing authorities that want to install automatic sprinkler systems in their mid-rise and high-rise buildings of more than four stories. The legislation would authorize $25 million annually, above what is authorized and appropriated for the Capital Fund, in each of the next ten years.
The legislation also requires HUD to begin collecting information on the presence of sprinkler systems as part of its inspections protocol, and to report to Congress after 3 years and completion of a full REAC inspection cycle. This provision is included because there is currently no consolidated data on what properties have or do not have sprinkler systems.
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