AAMA Advocates at ICC Committee Action Hearings

Window & Door
June 3, 2019
Meetings & Events

The American Architectural Manufacturers Association represented its members, working with other industry groups and interested individuals to take positive action on behalf of the fenestration industry, during the International Code Council Committee Action Hearings last month.

"AAMA was able to earn committee approval on a number of proposals which had failed to earn approval in previous code cycles," says Kathy Krafka Harkema, AAMA codes and regulatory affairs manager. "Earning committee approval on code proposals is an important step in the ICC code development process. The next hurdle AAMA will work to clear is public comment hearing approval."

"AAMA also worked hard to oppose changes that might harm those in our membership and the industry," says Jen Hatfield, AAMA codes consultant. "By strategizing and working with others throughout the code hearings, AAMA was able to find ways to protect our members' interests. All aspects are important strategic pieces in the code development process in order to be successful."

AAMA will represent the interests of its members and the industry at public comment hearings in October in Las Vegas as the process draws to a close later this year.

Among the residential fenestration-focused highlights from Committee Action Hearings:

Residential energy proposals

RE6-19-IECC – R, Section 202 — The committee approved this AAMA proposal as submitted on a 15-0 vote. This adds TDDs to the definition of skylights, clarifying that requirements for skylights also apply to TDDs. It also ensures alignment with the definition of skylights in the IECC-C (commercial), IRC and International Building Code.

RE24-19 — Agreeing with the fenestration industry testimony, the committee disapproved with a vote of 8-3. AAMA opposed RE24-19 because it sought to implement code requirements that exceeded those of Energy Star. Fundamentally, fenestration industry representatives from numerous organizations noted that the intent of Energy Star is to recommend guidelines above code levels in terms of energy efficiency.

RE83-19 — The committee voted to disapprove on a vote of 8-3. The fenestration industry opposed this proposal related to non-typical window shape framing areas because if those installing foam insulation do it improperly, it can have a negative impact on the performance of windows.

RE161-19 — The committee voted to approve on a vote of 7-4, consistent with the fenestration industry's position.

Skylight and tubular daylighting device-related proposals

CE39-19 — The committee moved to approve this as submitted on a 15-0 vote. This proposal ensures more appropriate standards for tubular daylighting devices, which differ from skylights.

RE83-19 — AAMA earned committee approval 11-0. This clarifies that screens are not required below skylights and sloped glazing when laminated glass is used. Although this proposal passed on the residential energy side of committee action, the structural commercial committee failed to approve a similar proposal (S190-19), stating it favored existing code language and ordering, compared with the proposed revision.

RE161-19 — AAMA negotiated with opponents to earn committee approval 7-4. It adds criteria for consideration of skylights in standard reference design building, when performance-based design is used for residential buildings. Skylights were inadvertently removed from the table when "glazing area" was redefined as "vertical fenestration" and "skylights and sloped glazing" in a prior code cycle. This issue went unresolved in prior code cycles.