Together, with our members, we advocate for architects, the profession and the built environment at the federal, state, and local levels.
- Our active representation at the state legislature, and with state agencies, as well as at the national level on issues is vital to architects, such as licensing, architects’ contracts, building code requirements, sales tax, and various design & construction related issues.
- Improved architects’ selection process at all public client levels through active support of the Qualifications Based Selection (QBS) process.
AIA Connecticut 2021 PRIORITIES
Through our National association and FEMA, architects receive certified training to assist in federal and state disasters as volunteers. Federally, architects are covered under Good Samaritan Law, but not in the state. Certified Architects and Engineers would have the ability to assist towns and cities building inspectors on evaluating post disaster occupancy to buildings and homes. In 2020, we were working with the Trial Lawyers Association and the Judiciary Committee to update verbiage on the Connecticut "Good Samaritan Law" to include architects and engineers.
Energy Efficiency & the 2030 Commitment
Buildings generate nearly 40% of annual global Green House Gas emissions. Approximately two-thirds of the building area that exists today will still exist in 2050. Currently, building renovations affect only 0.5-1% of the building stock annually.
The sustainability, especially the energy efficiency, of the built environment depends on the quality of architectural design and construction.
The energy use of new and renovated structures is primarily governed by the International Energy Code as adopted and modified by each state. States have begun to assess and implement additional energy conservation requirements but achieving them requires measures of compliance and enforcement that are challenging to regulate beyond the established work of CT Codes and Standards Committee. Given these challenges, the AIA 2030 Commitment (toward net zero energy buildings)compels its signatory member firms to design more energy efficient buildings. Architects of AIACT, as such, currently support the work of representatives from the public and private sector (including the Governors Climate Change Council (GC3) and other non-profits)seeking widespread reductions of energy use throughout Connecticut.
Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion
The American Institute of Architects, as part of the global community, champions a culture of equity, diversity, and inclusion within the profession of architecture to create a better environment for all. Achieving this vision has a direct impact on the relevance of our profession and the world's prosperity, health, and future. Harnessing the passion of our members and the broader design community, AIA is taking steps to advance racial justice and equality in our organization, in our profession, and in our communities.
Locally, we are part of the Desegregate CT Coalition of organizations who believe in creating abundant, diverse housing in service of equity, inclusive prosperity, and a cleaner environment.
AIA National Priorities
A Future Economy
When business thrives, America thrives. Architecture firms lead a $1T building construction industry that catalyzes private investment. Most of these firms meet the federal government’s definition of small business. The administration’s tax policies should support small business, innovation, and talent recruitment. AIA commits to voice strong support for a future economy that advances the success of architecture firms and the profession.
Human activity is warming our climate to dangerous levels and carbon from buildings is a primary culprit. Buildings must consume less energy, use only renewable sources, and contribute power back to the energy grid. AIA is taking action to eliminate all building carbon emissions by 2040.
Healthy and Equitable Communities
In towns and cities across the country, deep inequities exist that prevent access to safe and healthy buildings for many Americans. We as a nation must act to provide shelter—a basic human need. AIA commits to a future built environment that improves individual health and prepares communities to weather a variety of storms.
American architecture stands as a testament to our unique place in the world. Our architects work at the leading edge of a $1T construction industry that promotes commerce and drives consumer confidence. Architects have always dared to reach higher and set new standards. Our next architectural achievements will be measured by how well they respond to a post-pandemic world, eradicate inequity, fuel economic recovery, eliminate carbon emissions, and nurture individual and community health.
Now is the time for urgent and decisive action on these issues. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) represents more than 95,000 architecture professionals. We step forward to address the needs of our economy, climate, and communities. We seek support for the crushing student debt of our members; support for disadvantaged businesses; and real progress to end the systemic racism that has existed for centuries and continues to grip our nation. We seek meaningful policies and commit to better buildings that will sustain a healthy country. The Architects Policy Platform 2020 is a concise overview of the policies along with more thorough discussion of each.
Architects Platform Legislation Partisan Analysis provides background on the policy ideas within the AIA Policy Platform 2020. Some of the ideas are new, generated by AIA members and staff. However, many of the ideas are grounded in legislative proposals that have previously been offered or amended. We did this intentionally to ensure that our proposals are rooted in political reality. AIA is committed to working bipartisanly. Many of the policies noted in this piece are based on bipartisan legislation. Others are based on historically Republican ideas, while others are based on historically Democratic ideas.
This guide provides a color-coded snapshot of the policy origins of our recommendations and their partisan affiliation. Red denotes a Republican-only bill, blue is Democratic-only, and green is bipartisan.