Health and Safety

Building and Plumbing

CHAPTER 76. County or Municipal Building, Plumbing, Electrical and Other Codes

§ 7601. Promulgation of building, plumbing, electrical and other codes; building permits; fees.

The Levy Court of Kent County and the County Councils of New Castle County and Sussex County may adopt and enforce building codes, plumbing codes, electrical codes or other similar codes. The said Levy Court and County Councils may charge reasonable fees for the enforcement of said codes.

16 Del. C. 1953, §  7521;  56 Del. Laws, c. 40875 Del. Laws, c. 85, §  1

§ 7602. Code for Energy Conservation.

(a) Except as herein noted, no county or municipal building or plumbing code shall contain any provision which shall be materially at variance with most recent version of the International Code Council (ICC), International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). In effect, the highest available energy conservation code of the ICC/IECC as determined by the Delaware Energy Office shall be the referenced energy code for all new detached 1- and 2-story family dwellings and all other new residential buildings 3 stories or less in height. Energy standards for all other new buildings, to include high-rise residential, shall be established to meet the latest available standard of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers/Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (ASHRAE/IESNA) as determined by the Delaware Energy Office; provided, however, the respective county or municipal governments may exclude agricultural structures from these provisions. The Delaware Energy Office shall adopt these updates pursuant to Chapter 101 of Title 29.

(b) The Delaware Energy Office, or its successor, shall promulgate procedures for certification of compliance with these codes and standards to be utilized by respective local governments; provided, however, with respect to compliance with these codes and standards, for a commercial building of less than 5,000 square feet in size, the respective local government, rather than requiring that such compliance be certified by licensed engineers or architects, as is required with commercial buildings of 5,000 square feet or more, may elect to utilize a commercial buildings ASHRAE/IESNA Compliance Guide, to include computerized software compliance packages such as the Department of Energy developed COMcheck compliance software for insuring commercial energy code compliance and the Department of Energy developed REScheck compliance software for residential energy code compliance. An alternate compliance method for residential code compliance using ENERGY STAR documentation software may be used in lieu of the REScheck software. Code officials shall allow submission of documents that demonstrate energy efficiency that exceeds the requirements of the code when these state, local or national programs have been demonstrated to exceed the requirements of the code.

(c) The Delaware Energy Office, or its successor, in consultation with the Green Building Council of the Home Builders Association of Delaware, shall establish programs to promote the construction of zero net energy homes. A “zero net energy home” or “zero net energy building” is defined as a residence or commercial building that, through the use of energy efficient construction, lighting, appliances and on-site renewable energy generation, results in zero net energy consumption from the utility provider. Therefore, a net zero energy capable home must be energy efficient enough that if the home or building owner chooses to add on-site generation, net zero energy consumption could be achieved. As of December 31, 2025, all new residential building construction in the State of Delaware shall be zero net energy capable. As of December 31, 2030, all new commercial building construction must also be zero net energy capable.

(d) The Delaware Energy Office shall review the State Energy Code triennially for potential updates to the IECC energy code and ASHRAE energy code standard.

(e) This section shall become effective on July 1, 2010.

(f) From January 1, 2010, to June 30, 2010, sellers of new construction shall notify buyers of an option to purchase the construction built to the ICC/IECC 2009 code standard.

(g) The Delaware Energy Office will conduct energy code training work shops for code officials, builders, architects, and engineers prior to July 1, 2010.

62 Del. Laws, c. 133, §  170 Del. Laws, c. 72, §  170 Del. Laws, c. 539, §  171 Del. Laws, c. 116, §  174 Del. Laws, c. 418, §  177 Del. Laws, c. 187, §  1

§ 7603. Lighting efficiency standards for new and existing buildings [Repealed].

Repealed by 70 Del. Laws, c. 72, § 1, effective June 23, 1995.