Review committees Incentives

Senators propose incentives for fire sprinkler installation


Washington – A bipartisan bill seeks to improve building fire safety by providing incentives to owners who install fire sprinkler systems in older buildings.

The Fire Sprinkler Incentive Act (S. 1163) reclassifies fire sprinkler retrofits as a 15-year depreciable property, which would allow businesses to more quickly receive tax benefits. Currently, fire sprinkler retrofits depreciate during a 39-year period. The bill also would allow small businesses to qualify to receive an immediate tax benefit on fire sprinkler upgrades.

The death rate per fire in most types of buildings with a sprinkler system is at least 57 percent lower than properties without a system, and the average loss per fire is as much as 68 percent lower, according to the National Fire Protection Association.

The bill was introduced June 14 by Sens. Thomas Carper (D-DE) and Susan Collins (R-ME), and at press time had been referred to the Senate Finance Committee.