46:3B-13. Findings, determinations, declarations
1. The Legislature finds, determines and declares:
a. Within the past decade, the building codes of this and other states have permitted, and builders have employed, fire-retardant treated (FRT) plywood roof sheathing as an approved mode of construction to provide fire safety in multi-unit structures.
b. It has recently been discovered that, in many instances, plywood treated for fire retardancy has proven liable to suffer material deterioration and premature structural failure. As a result, many condominiums, cooperatives, fee simple townhouses and similar structures built in recent years have been, and many more may soon be, faced with premature problems of replacing sheathing and roofing on a large scale.
c. The difficulty of dealing with such unanticipated structural failure potentially falls most acutely on planned real estate development associations and home owners in condominiums, cooperatives, fee simple townhouses and similar housing developments that employ the type of firewall-separation construction to which FRT plywood sheathing is commonly applied. This failure constitutes a major construction defect under existing law, but because of the varied response of warranty guarantors, including private warranty guarantors under "The New Home Warranty and Builders' Registration Act," P.L.1977, c.467 (C.46:3B-1 et seq.), it appears likely that the difficulties of many owners may be compounded by resistance to their claims for compensation, and that if they may collect at all it will be only after prolonged negotiation or litigation.
d. It is, therefore the intention of this legislation to establish a funding mechanism, based upon the State's New Home Warranty program and not dependent upon general revenues of the State, to make immediate funding available to homeowners faced with emergent needs for immediate remediation of the major construction defect, as well as to builders and warranty guarantors who honor the claims of such owners.
e. It is the further intention of this legislation to provide practicable means for pursuing claims against any responsible party, where appropriate, to recover costs of remediation due to material defects for which a responsible party may be held liable.
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Last modified: October 11, 2016