You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to www.journalgazette.net/newsletter and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.

Indiana

  • Indiana reading test results inch higher
     INDIANAPOLIS – New test results show the reading levels among Indiana’s third graders made slight progress from last year.
  • Fatal cabin blaze under investigation
     SEVIERVILLE, Tenn. – The state fire marshal’s office has taken over the investigation of a fatal blaze at a rental cabin in Sevierville that killed a child and his relative from Indiana.
  • Indiana faces deadline on new education standards
    As the first state to drop the national Common Core learning standards, Indiana is rushing to approve new state-crafted benchmarks in time for teachers to use them this fall, and education leaders from across the nation are closely
Advertisement

Bloomington backs wired-only smoke alarms for rentals

– The city of Bloomington argues in its defense of an ordinance requiring hard-wired smoke detectors in rental properties that Indiana law allows local rules to be tougher than state regulations.

Bloomington property owners sued in July to block the smoke-detector ordinance after the city council passed the rule in November 2012 requiring rental property owners to install hard-wired smoke detectors by Dec. 31, 2018.

Their suit argues that Bloomington’s ordinance is ineffective and unenforceable because state law allows for multiple types of smoke detectors, while the city requirement would limit landlords to one type.

But Bloomington assistant attorneys Greg Small and Patty Mulvihill wrote in their request for summary judgment in the case that Indiana’s smoke-detector regulations allow city ordinances to be tougher than state code, the Herald-Times reported.

“State law says smoke detectors can be either battery-operated or hard-wired. The city, in the interest of public safety, chose to pursue the more stringent requirement of hard-wired systems,” Small and Mulvihill wrote.

Indiana law requires all smoke detectors to be battery-operated or hard-wired. It also allows for city regulations to be more stringent or detailed, although they cannot conflict with state code.

Attorney Michael McBride filed the suit in Monroe County on behalf of Fierst Rentals LLC, Hays Building LLC, the trusts of Marjorie Hudgins and Donald E. Geels and John and Sharon Kirtland. He also has requested summary judgment in the case.

Bloomington’s requirement has not been sent to the Indiana Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission for approval. McBride argues that it should be subject to approval by the commission because it was “established to safeguard life or property from the hazards of fire,” which makes it a fire safety law and building law.

Small and Mulvihill contend the panel does not need to approve the ordinance because it involves installation of residential smoke detectors, which are exempt from commission approval.

Advertisement