Council Member Joseph Borelli’s (R-Staten Island) legislation allowing smoke alarm plans to be filed online with the New York City Fire Department (FDNY) instead of in-person and paper filings at MetroTech Center in Brooklyn was heard today during a meeting of the Committee on Fire and Emergency Management. This represents significant progress toward bringing the bill to a general stated meeting of the New York City Council and having the full body vote on it, which Borelli’s office expects to occur sometime this fall.
The current, in-person or paper submission of plans requirement adds significant costs and delays to everything from small apartment renovations to new constructions and has been a hurdle for everyday New Yorkers as contractors must physically be at MetroTech Center, wait in an application submission line, submit plans, and wait for an inspection to be scheduled. With this bill, the entire filing process at FDNY would be digitized and interfaced online, significantly streamlining an essential bureaucratic process integral to the construction trades.
“Anyone who has ever had to even just replace a water heater knows that bureaucratic hurdles in this city can be cumbersome and discouraging,” said Council Member Borelli. “This bill is going to modernize the plans-submission process and make things a whole lot easier for homeowners, construction trades professionals, and FDNY inspectors, while saving New Yorkers thousands of dollars in costs by eliminating inefficiencies like the requirement to file archaic, paper submissions in person.”
“This simple yet important bill would dramatically modernize the FDNY submission process for fire alarm plan examinations. Currently, someone must physically travel to FDNY and wait on line to file applications, which is archaic, inefficient and costly. With this bill, the entire filing process at FDNY would be digitized and interfaced online, significantly streamlining an essential bureaucratic process integral to the construction trades,” said Edwin Lopez, Executive Secretary, New York Electrical Contractors Association.
“The Subcontractors Trade Association strongly supports Int. 1054 and urges the Council to pass this legislation, a small but important step in making NYC a more business-friendly environment,” said Henry C. Kita, Executive Director, Subcontractors Trade Association.
“The JIB strongly supports the enactment of Intro. 1054-2018,” said Dr. Gerald Finkel, Chairman, Joint Industry Board of the Electrical Industry.
“This important bill would dramatically modernize the FDNY’s submission process for fire alarm plan examinations…the BTEA strongly supports Int. 1054 and urges the Council to pass this legislation,” said Louis J. Coletti, President and CEO, Building Trades Employers’ Association.
“Int. 1054, sponsored by Council Member Borelli, presents an important such opportunity for our members by enabling — but not requiring — buildings to download and to file their fire alarm plan examination applications online. This will harness the value and convenience of 21st century technology while also acknowledging that many buildings and their owners have not quite arrived at the point of comfort with online filings,” said Mary Ann Rothman, Executive Director, The Council of New York Cooperatives & Condominiums.