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Commissioners Court Adopts International Fire Code for Unincorporated Areas

Hays County Courthouse, San Marcos, TX (Dec. 17, 2019) – The Hays County Commissioners Court Tuesday adopted the 2018 International Fire Code (2018 IFC) for the unincorporated areas of Hays County.

Counties with 250,000 or more residents and counties that border a county with 250,000 or more residents have the authority to adopt a fire code, which most counties in Central Texas along the I-35 corridor have elected to do.

“We don’t want to create an unnecessary bureaucracy,” Hays County Interim Director of Emergency Services told the Court before asking County Fire Marshal Scott Raven to explain what the code will and won’t cover. “But, we’re at a point where a code is needed to protect lives and property.”

“This is a huge endeavor for the County,” County Judge Ruben Becerra said, referencing the several years of development and collaboration with other fire departments in developing the code, and the need to ensure life and property safety for residents and businesses as the County grows.

Fire codes ensure the standardization of installation and maintenance of fire protection features and the fire safety of persons and property. They regulate building construction, exits, fire protection equipment, hazardous material and processes, heat-producing devices, public assembly, fire department access roads, and water supply.

The fire code applies to:

-All new commercial and public buildings or developments

-All new multi-family homes

-All new additions and and/or remodeling of 50% or greater to commercial, public buildings or developments, and multi-family homes

-All new residential subdivisions for review of site plans for the fire department water supply requirements and access roads. Building plans for single-family homes and duplexes are not reviewed.

The 2018 IFC goes into effect on January 1, 2020.

The Hays County Fire Marshal’s Office will review site plans and building plans and when approved will issue stamped plans and all required permits. Inspectors will also do all of the necessary inspections throughout a construction project and issue a Certificate of Compliance prior to approving the building for occupancy.

Visit the Fire Marshal’s web page for the link to the application and the fee schedule for the plan reviews, permits, and inspections. Contact the Hays County Fire Marshal’s Office at or 512-393-7355.


Hays County