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Letter to Congressional Leaders on Seismic Safety of Existing Federally Owned or Leased Buildings

December 01, 1994

Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

Under Public Law 101-614 the President is to adopt, no later than December 1, 1994, "standards for assessing and enhancing the seismic safety of existing buildings constructed for or leased by the Federal Government which were designed and constructed without adequate seismic design and construction standards." The statute gave the task of developing the standards to the Interagency Committee on Seismic Safety in Construction (ICSSC), which is chaired by the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

The ICSSC developed a set of "Standards of Seismic Safety for Existing Federally Owned or Leased Buildings and Commentary" (Standards), and recommends that Federal departments and agencies adopt these Standards.

The intent of the Standards is to identify common minimum evaluation and mitigation measures for all Federal departments and agencies, and to allow all Federal entities to have an agency-conceived and controlled seismic safety program for their existing owned or leased buildings. I have signed an Executive order adopting these Standards. A copy of that order is attached.

The Executive order adopts the Standards as the minimum level of seismic safety for federally owned and leased buildings. It requires seismic evaluation and, if necessary, rehabilitation under certain conditions identified in the Standards. The order directs all Federal departments and agencies to develop an inventory of their owned and leased buildings within 4 years of signing, and to estimate the cost of mitigating unacceptable seismic risks in their buildings.

Adoption of these Standards provides the critical first step for determining how these Standards can be applied to buildings that receive Federal financial assistance or are regulated by a Federal agency.



NOTE: Identical letters were sent to Thomas S. Foley, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and Albert Gore, Jr., President of the Senate. The Executive order is listed in Appendix D at the end of this volume.

William J. Clinton, Letter to Congressional Leaders on Seismic Safety of Existing Federally Owned or Leased Buildings Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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