BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The Senate Commerce Committee advanced a measure despite an objection from the bill's author. HB 1048 sought to re-write Louisiana's plumbing code. It would adopt the International Plumbers Code as Louisiana's. Louisiana already has its own code and the fluorescent-green T-shirt clad plumbers want it to stay that way. Proponents say it's high time for a change.
"What we're asking is for our state to join in with 30 some odd other states and embrace a national plumbing code that dovetails and goes hand in hand with an international building code that we use on a day-to-day basis," testified Marcelle Wisznia a New Orleans-based architect.
"I just think adopting one code, uniformed, so our citizens can cross state lines and work in other areas is ideal and best. I think this just makes it more confusing and more difficult for plumbers in our state," says the bill's author Rep. Eric Ponti R-Baton Rouge.
Cindy Glascock who is against the bill was asked if passage would harm people. "We would be more unsafe because we would have more sewerage overflows and that's a health and safety issue," testified Glascock.
The bill was amended to only apply the International Plumbers Code to residential plumbing and not commercial. Supporters of the bill as written were against the amendment.
"There are plenty of issues on the commercial side, not so many on the residential. This amendment basically guts the bill. We're trying to solve the issues on the commercial side," said Michael Wich of the Louisiana Home Builders Association.
The Amended bill passed 6-2 and now moves to the Senate floor.