March 1, 2017

For immediate release:

Atlanta, GA — Yesterday, more than 45 AIA members gathered at the Georgia Capitol to advocate for a variety of important issues. Architects from the Atlanta, Savannah, and Middle Georgia chapters were in attendance, as well as the Northeast Section of AIA Atlanta.  The main issues that members focused on were:

HB 41:  The Alternative Path to Licensing – which allows the architecture schools in Georgia to pursue NCARB approved programs that help students complete all three legs of licensure in parallel:  a degree, experiential hours, and sitting for the ARE.

HB 59:  Historic Building Tax Credits – this bill expands the existing historic tax credit bill, raising or eliminating financial ceilings, leveling the playing field so that adaptive reuse is a viable option for some of our most beloved old buildings.

SB 2:  Streamlining Permitting – this legislation puts in place a requirement that all cities and counties establish a fee schedule for building permits, and then publish a timeline for when reviews will be completed.  Failure to meet the timeline would force the agencies to forfeit part of their fee.  This bill would also apply to professional licenses, however, and there are some concerns about how it would affect architects and add an unnecessary burden to the Secretary of State’s office.

Ownership of Instruments of Service – a small group of members also talked with leaders in the House and Senate about a growing area of concern for the profession – the ownership of intellectual design property like BIM drawings.  Expect more on this in the future from AIA.

Building Codes – Ted Miltiades, of the Department of Community Affairs, also provided a great update on the work of his department on building codes in the state.  AIA’s Ryan Taylor currently serves as Vice-Chair of the committee – giving us a great voice there. Miltiades talked about changes to the International Building Code, energy codes, swimming pool codes, and efforts to find solutions to make the construction of tiny houses legal in Georgia.

You can learn more about all of these issues at https://www.aiaga.org/govtaffairs/2017-session/.