Recently, Code received a commercial score of 1 and a residential score of 2 on audit results from the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) for the Building Code Effectiveness Grading Schedule (BCEGS).
The ISO audit assesses building codes in effect in a particular community and how the community enforces its building codes, with special emphasis on mitigation of losses from natural hazards. Mecklenburg County Code Enforcement is one of a very few authorities across the United States with an ISO score of 1, which greatly benefits the local business community by lowering insurance rates for construction executed under a grade of 1 (a grade Mecklenburg County has held since 2001).
“With our expectations tempered by the ravages of the recession, the commercial side of this score far exceeds what we hoped for,” said James N. Bartl, director of Code Enforcement. “This is owed to a lot of hard work by management and line staff to meet ISO standards.”
The BCEGS program assigns each municipality a BCEGS grade of 1 (exemplary commitment to building-code enforcement) to 10. ISO develops advisory rating credits that apply to ranges of BCEGS classifications (1-3, 4-7, 8-9, 10). ISO gives insurers BCEGS classifications, BCEGS advisory credits, and related underwriting information.
ISO (International Organization for Standardization) is the world’s largest developer of voluntary International Standards. International Standards give state of the art specifications for products, services and good practice, helping to make industry more efficient and effective.
The concept is simple: municipalities with well-enforced, up-to-date codes should demonstrate better loss experience, and insurance rates can reflect that. The prospect of lessening catastrophe-related damage and ultimately lowering insurance costs provides an incentive for communities to enforce their building codes rigorously.