Big Stakes for Building Owners and Industry – Weigh In!

Broward Feedback Graphic

Expensive lighting protection and conduit requirements are key issues 
Posted on April 5, 2021

The Broward County Board of Rules and Appeals (BORA) BDA Committee held a virtual meeting on Monday, March 29th, where they presented the latest updates to their BORA rules and guidelines pertaining to BDA’s. Industry must provide feedback to avert expensive overreach in the areas of lightning protection and conduit requirements.

In addition to the BDA rules discussion, presentations were also made regarding:

  1. Current proposed Florida legislation pertaining to BDA’s, proposing changes to Florida Statute 633.202(18).
  2. Coverage in elevator lobbies.
  3. Broward County P25 system update.
  4. Training.

Full agenda can be downloaded here: 

The Good News
The Broward County BORA BDA Committee was convened in response to the infamous South Florida DAS-mageddon incident [read details here] in 2015. Broward BORA took the admirable approach of convening a cross-stakeholder committee to study the problem and to develop and adopt rules and guidelines for the proper use of solutions used to solve for the lack of critical public safety radio coverage inside buildings.

Under the leadership of Chair David Rice, and supported by the rest of the BDA Committee, Broward has led the way and a whole lot of good has been accomplished through their efforts. 

There is a fair amount of sausage-grinding and public input needed to get the guidelines correct. Again, the committee led by Chair David Rice can be commended for conducting a fully transparent, public process to arrive at the best possible outcome. 

This is where your involvement is key. Read on.

BORA Guideline Feedback Sought
We encourage you to read through their proposed guidelines (and this article) and then submit feedback to them. Contact information to submit direct feedback may be found on page 7 of the agenda. Direct your feedback to BDA Committee Chair David Rice.

We Urge Feedback to remove NFPA 780 Lightning Protection from Broward Guidelines
One very important issue to follow is language pertaining to Lightning Protection for in-building public safety solutions.

Current code points to NFPA 780, which is a very expansive requirement that was inserted into fire code in error. This has been corrected in upcoming editions of the code, but since  Florida is operating on 2016 code, this correction has not been realized yet.

Please read this month’s accompanying article on NFPA 780 HERE