SI.9 Is Defective | RIAI EGM Consensus

by Bregs Blog admin team


Following an editorial team meeting the BRegs Blog have decided not to publish attributed comments made at last week’s Extraordinary General Meeting held by the RIAI, the representative body for architects (Link to earlier notice of withdrawal post:); the reason being that speakers were not aware in advance that comments made on the night might be published. It is feared such publication could impact on the openness and frankness, witnessed on the night of the debate, at any future such gatherings. The BRegs Blog Admin. Team have decided to give some more detail of the event instead.

It was clear, to all in attendance, that the single most important issue to emerge was the clearly articulated view among the overwhelming majority of those present that the S.I.9 legislation is defective. Speaker after speaker, including representatives of many large architectural firms outlined the manifest problems with S.I 9 and their concerns about being able to implement the legislation without unsustainable risk. No one spoke in favour of S.I. 9 which is in clear contrast to the impression that had been given by some RIAI council and staff to date that S.I.9 had been broadly accepted by the architectural profession.

Given this apparent consensus view at the EGM, discussion centered on what would be the most appropriate and effective method for reversing the S.I.9 legislation. The alternative vote for a deferral by three-months of the motion for a call to revoke S.I.9 was agreed to allow further development of an alternative building control system. This alternative building control system is one underpinned by third party independent inspections as opposed to continuing the current system of self-certification. It was a working paper that the EGM was advised had been discussed at the July RIAI Council meeting. The background to the development of this paper over the last number of years was explained on the night. A previous post on the BRegs Blog (Link to “A Better Way for BCAR / S.I.9:) contains the backbone to the current adopted ‘Change’ paper which is now being discussed further by the current RIAI Council. Within the three month time-frame it is expected that the ‘Change’ paper will be circulated to members for review prior to the motion to revoke S.I. 9 being voted on at another EGM to be held by 12th November 2014.

Of surprise to many members on the night was the fact that a large number of the elected RIAI council members seemed to share the view that S.I.9 is indeed defective and it was alleged, carries toxic levels of liability for the new certifier roles. The spectrum of opinion on Council ranged from some who think S.I.9 may be “fixed” to others who feel it is unworkable and needs to be completely scrapped. All identified serious  implementation, insurance and legal problems with the regulations.

The question that anyone associated with Building Control must be asking now is what impact will this development have on the implementation of S.I. 9 and what action will be taken by the executive, staff and elected council of the RIAI in response to this mandate from their members? Many must also wonder what does the newly appointed Minister for the Environment, Alan Kelly T.D. make of it all?

For your information we list out recent opinion pieces by current elected RIAI council members here, all looking at various defects in SI.9:

Friday Follow | Eoin O’Cofaigh FRIAI

S.I.9 and Employees: Eoin O’Morain FRIAI

S.I. 9 and Insurance Claims: Deirdre Lennon MRIAI

S.I. 9 and Construction Products: Orla Hegarty MRIAI RIBA

Vivian Cummins MRIAI: Are small architectural practices under threat from S.I.9?

Shrapnel and Spin – Caomhán Murphy MRIAI

Eoin O’Cofaigh: missed opportunity? BC(A)R SI.9

News Alert | RIAI EGM Report

In addition to the opinion pieces listed above by current RIAI council members a number of open letters were submitted to the Bregs Blog which may be of interest to readers – we will list these in a separate  post.