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ACCA Applauds New Legislation Protecting Copyrights for Codes and Standards Developed by Non-Profits

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As an official American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accredited Standards Development Organization (SDO), ACCA stands with ASHRAE, IAPMO, the International Code Council (ICC), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), and Underwriters’ Laboratories (UL) in applauding the introduction of the Protecting and Enhancing Public Access to Codes Act, H.R. 6769.

The proposed legislation will ensure that SDOs, like ACCA, retain copyright for codes adopted or incorporated by reference into law, as long as they are made available on a publicly accessible website for viewing.

“ACCA invests a large amount of time and money developing standards, getting its standards included in codes, and fighting to ensure that codes are implemented in ways that serve public’s best interest. This investment should have always been protected, and now this legislation is a vital first step to ensuring that they are protected,” said Barton James, ACCA president and CEO. “This legislation has far-reaching benefits for organizations, like ACCA, who follow recognized standards and codes that keep our industry professional and safe. ACCA supports this legislation, and we look forward to working together with other Standards Developing Organizations to push for its passage.”

Introduced by U.S. Representatives Ted Deutch (FL-22) and Darrel Edward Issa (CA-50), H.R. 6769, is meant to preserve copyright protection of codes and standards when incorporated by reference into federal regulations. The statute would allow full access to standards incorporated by reference in laws or regulations through free viewing on a publicly accessible website while still preserving public-private partnership standards development infrastructure at no cost to taxpayers.

Model codes and standards created by non-profit SDOs have served to protect public health, safety, and security for more than a century. ACCA’s Quality Standards, Technical Manuals, Speed-Sheets, which assist in learning Technical Manuals, approved software, and building codes will be granted this copyright protection if the bill passes.

“This proposed legislation would be a big win for the code enforcement community and for the HVAC professionals who follow its minimum requirements,” said Wes Davis, ACCA director of technical services. “Compliance with ACCA’s standards in the codes will support healthy and safe homes, which is something we can all promote.”

Codes and standards are created from thousands of hours of compiling, editing, and distributing proposals, comments on drafts, and modifications. This legislation will ensure that codes and standards adopted or incorporated by reference will retain their copyright, thus allowing SDOs to sell manuals of standards in order to fund the resources required to create these lifesaving works.

ACCA is working to secure champions to offer companion legislation for this act. To learn more about the statute, click here.

Posted In: Government

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