- Associated Press - Friday, October 24, 2014

OXFORD, Miss. (AP) - The Lafayette County Board of Supervisors has voted to opt out of state building codes and instead draw up their own.

The board will hold a public hearing on Nov. 17 to gather input from the community.

A law that took effect Aug. 1 created statewide building codes. Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney pushed for the law, saying buildings that are better able to withstand storms will be safer and could reduce the cost of insurance. The law covers a variety of structures, including those built for hunting and fishing camps, in subdivisions and on farms.

“The state mandate was so open ended that it just wasn’t where we needed to be. We need to get a game plan down for what fits best for Lafayette County, not just a general code that came from Jackson,” Supervisor Chad McLarty told the Oxford Eagle (http://bit.ly/1mM3phe ).

McLarty said he would prefer to see the city and county adopt similar building codes for all homebuilders as far as subdivision and commercial property building codes are concerned. However, when it comes to fire codes, the county might have to have different codes than the city.

“I’m in favor of the building codes for subdivisions and commercial property only,” McLarty said.

He said the board has had several discussions with homebuilders who have even asked for these codes so all builders will be held to the same standard and take pride in their work.

“We have some great homebuilders here and some even build their homes above code, but I want to make sure that we are all on the same playing field,” McLarty said.

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Information from: Oxford Eagle, http://www.oxfordeagle.com

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