State Of The NFPA

petersonra

Senior Member
Location
Northern illinois
Occupation
engineer
Love it. The president of a non-profit can make a million dollars a year. Isn't America grand!
A million dollars a year for a chief executive of a $80 million organization is probably about right these days. That's just what it takes to get somebody competent to run the organization.

Would you prefer they get somebody for $30,000? Or maybe $100,000? Why would anybody who is able to run an organization like this even consider taking it on unless the renumeration makes it worthwhile.
 

Josh111

Senior Member
Location
USA
I’m not totally sure that as a bot for profit, paying your president more than 1% of gross earnings when you’re a multi million dollar company is reputable. There are certainly companies paying their CEOs tens of millions of dollars but those are companies that make tens of billions of dollars. The reference someone put in here showed them bringing in some thing like $92,000,000 in gross revenue and then paying the president something like $1,100,000.

That’s just an observation though. I would just like it if some of the issues I mentioned at the beginning could be addressed.
 
A million dollars a year for a chief executive of a $80 million organization is probably about right these days. That's just what it takes to get somebody competent to run the organization.

Would you prefer they get somebody for $30,000? Or maybe $100,000? Why would anybody who is able to run an organization like this even consider taking it on unless the renumeration makes it worthwhile.
Actually I find the NFPA to be very incompetent and dysfunctional (at least judging by the NEC, I am not familiar with any of the other publications). Also I doubt you need to pay millions to get a competent person. They're all just people.
 

jim dungar

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Wisconsin
Occupation
Retired Electrical Engineer - Power Systems
Not for Profit does not mean cheap or free. It simply means that all profits are reinvested into operating the organization rather than being returned to stakeholders.
 

petersonra

Senior Member
Location
Northern illinois
Occupation
engineer
Actually I find the NFPA to be very incompetent and dysfunctional (at least judging by the NEC, I am not familiar with any of the other publications). Also I doubt you need to pay millions to get a competent person. They're all just people.
You won't find many competent electricians for minimum wage. They are just people too. There is a very limited number of people willing and able to run larger organizations. Those people know what they are worth on the open market.

I would suggest this about the nfpa. They have a lot of stakeholders to satisfy. On the whole they do a reasonable job of it. You cannot satisfy everyone 100%. Btw, do you hate the word stakeholder as much as I do?
 

Josh111

Senior Member
Location
USA
Each cycle, there's more informational notes that really amount to commercial breaks in the NEC to sell more standards. Think about how many times the NEC repeatedly has informational notes for NFPA 70E, for example. I mean, if someone doesn’t know but cares to know, just 1 note in article 110 will be enough. It makes it a document with less relevant material per page.

I also think there's too many engineers on the committees, making requirements that will require more studies for simple installations that most contractors can't do. I think these engineers should instead be working to standardize products and applications instead of doing what they are doing. Just like we have tables for ampacity, we should be doing more studies to standardize tables for new things they are requiring, for instance arcing current in 240.87.

It also seems like we have more and more manufacturers submitting public inputs in the name of safety just to drive more business to themselves.

I think they should make a change: just like they want to make sure there is even representation of manufacturers, utilities, insurers, inspectors, contractors, etc; I think they should have at least 1 non-leadership level, average journeyman electrician on each committee. In general, I think they need more electricians and less big industry representatives.
 

SceneryDriver

Senior Member
Location
NJ
Occupation
Electrical and Automation Designer
Josh111 the funny thing about the NEC is that its copyrighted (c) material owned by the NFPA. But then it becomes a public law, as it gets adopted by reference.
There results this odd tension around this.
An author like the NFPA gains ‘exclusive rights’ in their work "immediately upon the work’s creation” (quoting 17 U.S.C. § 106)).
It is only once a jurisdiction subsequently incorporates a privately authored standard (NEC) that government makes
any decisions vis-à-vis the already created and copyrighted expressive work.
At that point, though, the state should require, by law, the standard remove its copyright.
see

What interests me is the way the RFC standards (codes) that run the internet are in the public domain, and can't be copyrighted


The 'internet' works just fine without a NFPA owning all the standards, so I see no value in the NFPA owning the current electrical code in 2021.
The thing to do would be make a copy of the last NEC that was not owned by the NFPA (1968?) and make a public domain electrical code panel to ammend it up to a modern standard , keep it in the public domain like the RFC internet standards and get a state to adopt it.
They way to do force this is to get your state legislature / governor to pass a bill banning codes that are not in the public domain and banning adopting standards by reference that are not in the public domain.
Cheers
A friend of mine is a city clerk. One of his many job duties is the distribution of information, codes, and laws to residents who request them. I asked, and he told me that if a resident (or contractor doing work within the city limits) requested a copy of the NEC, he's bound by state law to provide it free of charge since the state and the city have both adopted the NEC as a legally enforceable code. "You can only be held accountable for the information you've been given" is how he put it.


SceneryDriver
 

retirede

Senior Member
Location
Illinois
A friend of mine is a city clerk. One of his many job duties is the distribution of information, codes, and laws to residents who request them. I asked, and he told me that if a resident (or contractor doing work within the city limits) requested a copy of the NEC, he's bound by state law to provide it free of charge since the state and the city have both adopted the NEC as a legally enforceable code. "You can only be held accountable for the information you've been given" is how he put it.


SceneryDriver

That’s interesting because anytime I’ve ever requested a copy of anything from our county clerk’s office, I’ve been charged a nominal fee to cover the cost of producing the material. I don’t recall exactly but it was something like a couple dollars plus $0.25 per page. It’s the same price whether it’s a copy of an ordinance, a birth certificate, property deed, or whatever.
I’d really be surprised if they’d provide anything at no cost. I don’t know if my area is the norm, or yours is??
 

don_resqcapt19

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Illinois
Occupation
retired electrician
....

I think they should make a change: just like they want to make sure there is even representation of manufacturers, utilities, insurers, inspectors, contractors, etc; I think they should have at least 1 non-leadership level, average journeyman electrician on each committee. In general, I think they need more electricians and less big industry representatives.
One of the issues is the cost to the panel members to participate in the panel meetings. While this year was different because the meetings were online,, there was still a few weeks of time where the panel members were doing code work and not real work. Who would pay the average JW for that lost time? In more typical years, there is also the travel costs for the meetings. In most cases, that is paid by the organization that the panel member represents, and that does become an issue that prevents many from even trying to get on a CMP.
 

petersonra

Senior Member
Location
Northern illinois
Occupation
engineer
One of the issues is the cost to the panel members to participate in the panel meetings. While this year was different because the meetings were online,, there was still a few weeks of time where the panel members were doing code work and not real work. Who would pay the average JW for that lost time? In more typical years, there is also the travel costs for the meetings. In most cases, that is paid by the organization that the panel member represents, and that does become an issue that prevents many from even trying to get on a CMP.
It seems to me that this just about guarantees that there will only be representation from organizations that can afford it, and they are going to want to get something from the money they spend on it.

My guess is the travel expenses are far exceeded by the cost of the time the people involved are spending on these activities. It is not like someone on one of these committees is only spending a few weeks a year on it. It is probably closer to a near full time job.
 

don_resqcapt19

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Illinois
Occupation
retired electrician
It seems to me that this just about guarantees that there will only be representation from organizations that can afford it, and they are going to want to get something from the money they spend on it.

My guess is the travel expenses are far exceeded by the cost of the time the people involved are spending on these activities. It is not like someone on one of these committees is only spending a few weeks a year on it. It is probably closer to a near full time job.
That is why the electricians that are on the CMP panels are typically representing the IEC or the IBEW, however a lot of the IEC guys are more on the contractor side than the JW side of the business. NECA also has representatives on the CMPs.

Yes, the loss of wages would exceed the travel expenses and while keeping the meetings online would eliminate the travel expense part, you would still have the cost of the time. Most of the first draft meetings were a full week, and that does not include the task group meetings the were held prior to the first draft meetings.

I think, other than the manufacturer representatives, it is really only a matter of a few weeks over the 3 year code cycle. The job title of some of the manufacturer reps is "codes and standards" and for those people it is their full time job. However they often deal with standards other than just the NEC and are often involved in UL's "Standards Technical Panels, that write the product listing standards.
 
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Josh111

Senior Member
Location
USA
I understand very well that it is the cost factor that largely contributes to only corporatized interest being represented. I think though it is something that it would be good if we could try to resolve. I think that just having the IEC represent contractors or labor organization represent tradespersons is not sufficient.
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
Actually I find the NFPA to be very incompetent and dysfunctional (at least judging by the NEC, I am not familiar with any of the other publications). Also I doubt you need to pay millions to get a competent person. They're all just people.
Since about the turn of the century anyway... Some things before then maybe didn't make sense but not like they are now.
 
Since about the turn of the century anyway... Some things before then maybe didn't make sense but not like they are now.
I actually really do find the NFPA to be dysfunctional and incompetent. Obviously I can't speak to the inner workings of the organization, but judging by the NEC. just the continually poor wording they come out with, and hardly ever fixing older poor wording it just goes on and on without getting fixed. There are these ambiguous things in the code and poor wording that we've been talking about on this form for decades and they just never fix it. Then look at that debacle with SER ampacity that they fussed around with over several code cycles and then ended up just putting it back the way it was. Another thing is all these ridiculous things, that have been in the code forever with no scientific backing, like that 25 ohm ground rod requirement, and they never update or address that. it's just unbelievably to me how poor a job they do despite this standard being adopted almost everywhere in the United States and many places abroad.
 

kwired

Electron manager
Location
NE Nebraska
Exactly the biggest problem is they are in a push to 'publish' a new standard every 3 years and they have a financial interest in making as many changes as possible.
I don't understand why they think it must be every three years myself.

Looking back in the History and Development of NEC that is published near the front of the books (for as far back as I have been around the NEC) it lists every edition (year) some those early ones might been one, two or three years between. I think the longest gap was 43 to 47 (probably somewhat because of WWII), then you have 53 to 59 where there was a new edition every year. But I think it was every three years since 59. Some them during that time probably had little need to develop a new edition when they did though. Been many that had a lot of structural and organizational changes but little or no changes that effect how we actually install things.
 

hbiss

EC, Westchester, New York NEC: 2014
Location
Hawthorne, New York NEC: 2014
Occupation
EC
Again, do states purchase the rights to use the NEC? I have to assume that the answer is yes and in which case how the "purchaser" is allowed to use the material will be spelled out in the agreement. For the price, the NEC can relinquish all rights to the purchaser if they desire, making that particular writing able to be copied and distributed at the purchaser's discretion. The NEC can also prohibit any changes or modifications and all kinds of other things.

Another possibility is that states just purchase, distribute or tell you to buy "the book" as provided by the NEC and pay a fee to the NEC to incorporate that edition into its law.

-Hal
 

don_resqcapt19

Moderator
Staff member
Location
Illinois
Occupation
retired electrician
Again, do states purchase the rights to use the NEC? I have to assume that the answer is yes and in which case how the "purchaser" is allowed to use the material will be spelled out in the agreement. For the price, the NEC can relinquish all rights to the purchaser if they desire, making that particular writing able to be copied and distributed at the purchaser's discretion. The NEC can also prohibit any changes or modifications and all kinds of other things.

Another possibility is that states just purchase, distribute or tell you to buy "the book" as provided by the NEC and pay a fee to the NEC to incorporate that edition into its law.

-Hal
As far as I know, adopting agencies do not pay anything to the NFPA, other than paying for the copies of the code that they buy for their use.
 
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