Since Senate Bill 1186 (Chapter 383, Statutes of 2012) took effect in 2013, local jurisdictions (a city, county, or city and county) have been collecting an additional fee for the purpose of increasing certified access specialist (CASp) services and compliance with construction-related accessibility requirements. The first priority is to spend the funds on the training and retention of CASps in order to meet the needs of the public in the jurisdiction. The funds may also be spent on activities or programs that facilitate accessibility compliance. Below is a list of reported activities that local jurisdictions funded with their portion of fees collected.
Activities to Increase CASp Services and Facilitate Access
- Staff attended Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance training.
- When requested, the city’s CASp inspector conducts site visits at no cost to the business/property owner and conducts a cursory review of the premises to determine what concerns the location may have regarding ADA accessibility. Barstow
- The city’s CASp will meet with any commercial or business owner, tenant or prospective tenant to discuss accessibility questions for all commercial sites within the city, at no charge. When a building permit application is received for tenant improvement work on an existing building, the city will conduct a pre-inspection of the parking lot to review access from the city sidewalk to the entry door. Dublin
- We are developing an ADA compliance website with resources for businesses owners. Fresno
- Training for staff to take the CASp certification exam and fees to renew CASp certification and fees to register and take the CASp certification exam. Glendale
- All new building plans are reviewed by a CASp certified reviewer for compliance. Imperial Beach
- The city works with the local Chamber of Commerce promoting ADA workshops for the general public, provide access training, technical assistance and guidance for plan checkers, inspection staff, design professionals, and contractors. Palo Alto
- The city entered into a service contract with CASp-certified professional planners and building inspectors to alleviate workload backlog. Building inspectors and technicians participate in CASp training sessions. Saratoga
- We host meetings with members of the building community to try to demystify accessibility standards and the work of a CASp. Stanislaus County
- The city hosts a seminar and provides free accessibility consultations for all citizens. The city investigates all access allegations at all commercial and multifamily properties. Vacaville
- Attendance and participation at DSA Academy and other CASp trainings to increase understanding of Federal and State interface of accessibility laws to increase services to customers.
The SB 1186 fee is paid to local jurisdictions by applicants for business license applications and renewals. If no business license or equivalent instrument is issued, the fee is applied to building permits, as amended by AB 1379. The local jurisdictions retain the majority of the funds for use within their jurisdiction and share a portion with the Division of the State Architect (DSA) for program oversight. The local jurisdictions report to DSA on their use of the funds annually.
DSA does not advise the use of funds from the SB 1186 fee by local jurisdictions to directly fund construction projects, nor accessibility work that is not construction-related, as these activities are not clearly permissible in law (see Government Code Section 4467). DSA recommends that local jurisdictions consult their legal counsel for guidance.