You may recall that two years ago, The House and the Senate passed legislation that would have allowed condominiums in excess of 75 in height to opt out of a mandatory engineered life safety system. Legislation already existed that allowed these condominiums to opt out of sprinkler requirements. Condos opted out of the sprinkler requirements, only to be told that they are still required to install a perhaps even more expensive engineered life safety system.
Two years ago, The House and The Senate passed legislation to help alleviate the perceived financial burden of an engineered life safety system. The bill simply needed the signature of then Governor Scott. While the bill was waiting to be signed, the tragic fire in London, England occurred where dozens of people died. As a result, Governor Scott vetoed the proposed legislation.
Last year, another attempt was made in the Florida Legislature to waive the engineered life safety system requirement. It failed.
So, the bottom line is that condos are still under the gun. If your Fire Marshall says install that engineered life safety system — you now have no choice. And if you don’t have the money, you better find it. Can’t afford the special assessment to install the engineered life safety system? Too bad. You may be foreclosed on.
This year, House Members Grieco and Rommel filed a bill that again attempts to protect condos from having to install an ELSS if they already voted to opt out of the sprinkler requirement. In addition, the deadline to opt-out of installing sprinklers or an ELSS would be extended from 2016 to December 31st, 2019.
So what do you think? Is this good legislation? Should Floridians be able to opt of the engineered life safety system and fire sprinklers?