Washington State

House of Representatives

Office of Program Research



Local Government Committee

HB 2303

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

Brief Description: Adopting the international wildland urban interface code by reference for purposes of the state building code.

Sponsors: Representatives Van De Wege, Dunshee, Tharinger, Pettigrew, Moeller and Goodman.

Brief Summary of Bill

  • Adds the International Wildland Urban Interface Code to the State Building Code.

Hearing Date: 1/13/16

Staff: Michaela Murdock (786-7289).


The State Building Code.

The State Building Code (SBC) establishes minimum performance standards and requirements for construction and construction materials in the state, consistent with accepted standards of engineering, fire, and life safety. The SBC comprises a number of model codes and standards, developed and published by international and national organizations, which are adopted by reference in the State Building Code Act (Act). Model codes and standards adopted in the Act include the International Building Code, the International Residential Code, the Uniform Plumbing Code, and the Uniform Plumbing Code Standards.

The State Building Code Council (Council) is responsible for adopting, amending, and maintaining, as appropriate, the model codes and standards adopted by reference in the Act. Amendments to the model codes and standards adopted by the Council are codified in the Washington Administrative Code. The Council regularly reviews updated editions of each model code and standard every three years.

The International Wildland-Urban Interface Code.

The International Wildland-Urban Interface Code (IWUIC) is a model code developed and published by the International Code Council, Inc. (ICC). The ICC is a nonprofit organization that develops and publishes model codes for building, construction, and design standards. Updates to the codes are developed and published on a three-year cycle.

The IWUIC establishes minimum regulations for land use and the built environment in designated wildland-urban interface areas for the stated purpose of mitigating wildfire hazard. The IWUIC applies to the construction, alteration, movement, repair, maintenance, and use of any building, structure, or premises within the "wildland-urban interface areas" of a jurisdiction. "Wildland-urban interface area" is defined in the IWUIC as the geographical areas where structures and other human development meets or intermingles with wildland or vegetative fuels.

Although the IWUIC is not currently one of the model codes comprising the SBC, the Council adopted the 2012 International Wildland-Urban Interface Code with amendments in 2012 as an optional code that local jurisdictions may adopt and enforce within their respective jurisdictions.

Summary of Bill:

The International Wildland-Urban Interface Code, published by the International Code Council, Inc., is added as one of the model codes adopted by reference in statute as part of the State Building Code.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Available.

Effective Date: The bill takes effect 90 days after adjournment of the session in which the bill is passed.