Code Squawkers

Unions and developers battle over proposed building regs

Baker says, "I don't think we're riding any particular horse in the race – we're just wondering why we're in the race."

Phoenix is in the race because of Dave Siebert. The councilman will be the first to tell you that.

One person close to the process who has spoken extensively with Siebert says, "It was like trying to discuss abortion. It's like a religious issue with him."

Siebert says the whole thing started with polybutylene pipe. When Siebert, a plumber, found that such pipe was still allowed to be used under the IBC's plumbing code in 1996, he says he was irate.

Like many people close to the process, Siebert is quick to say that he's not an expert on building codes. In his case, he was upset only about the polybutylene pipe. And yes, he's right: The IBC does still allow for the use of polybutylene pipe in municipal water distribution and service.

The Uniform Plumbing Code endorsed by NFPA prohibits the use of the pipe.

That's good enough for Siebert.

"We've been known to have the best-run city in the world," he says, "and we're going to continue to."

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