Bill to Help Community Colleges Build Facilities Passes Senate Committee
Senator George Runner (R-Antelope Valley) has joined forces with Senator Denise Ducheny (D-San Diego) with legislation to eliminate unnecessary and costly building regulations for community colleges. "California's community colleges are vital to our educational system and to our communities. This legislation will allow community colleges to build and modernize their facilities faster and with fewer unnecessary regulatory hurdles," said Senator Runner. Senate Bill 1290 will authorize community colleges to use the Uniform Building Code instead of the Field Act. Community colleges currently fall under the requirements set forth by the Field Act, while the University of California and California State University systems do not. This legislation will bring parity for community colleges by including them with the other segments of higher education in the exemption from the Field Act. The Field Act requires additional standards for public school buildings where students are required to attend. Since community colleges serve higher education students, they should have the same facility and building requirements as the other segments of higher education.
Eliminating this discrepancy will streamline the construction process and reduce the cost of building these facilities while maintaining a high level of safety by using the Uniform Building Code. Runner continued, "This legislation is common sense. It's important to end the greater regulatory burdens placed on community colleges in order to build and modernize facilities faster." SB 1290 passed the Senate Education Committee with a 9-0 vote. The legislation will be heard in Senate Appropriations Committee in April.