In the previous issue of this newsletter, we looked at some electrical inspection rules covered in 80.13 (in Annex H). Also in 80.13, we find that the authority having jurisdiction (AHJ) has the authority to conduct investigations of electrical fires, explosions, or other hazardous conditions [80.13(11)]. This is one of the five major functions identified in 80.1.

But who determines who the AHJ is? "The governing body" does [80.13]. Just who is this "governing body?" It's the "electrical board," and we find the requirements for it in 80.15.

Each state determines which standard to adopt as its electrical regulations. This may be the current NEC. In some cases, it's the previous edition of the NEC with the state's amendments.

Per the NEC, the governor appoints (and the state legislature approves) the board members. Some cities have additional requirements, and thus their own electrical board (the mayor does the appointing). The board must consist of at least five members, including:

  • Chief electrical inspector from a local government (for state boards).
  • Electrical contractor operating in that jurisdiction.
  • Licensed professional engineer engaged primarily in the design or maintenance of electrical installations.
  • Journeyman electrician.
Additional board members must be one of several other occupations, including master electrician, fire marshall, and electric utility representative. The board can also include a member of the public not affiliated with any other designated group. Board members are compensated and serve for specific terms. The board has specific duties, which we'll examine in our next issue.