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S.F. No. 1784 - Needs of Hearing-Impaired People Capital Improvement Projects - the First Engrossment
Author: Senator Ann H. Rest
Prepared By: Stephanie James, Senate Counsel (651/296-0103)
Date: March 19, 2015


Section 1 [Accommodation for Hard-of-Hearing in State-Funded Capital Projects]

Subd. 1 [Accommodation for Hard-of-Hearing in State-Funded Capital Projects] precludes the head of an agency from approving a contract for, or granting state funds for, a capital improvement project to construct or renovate a building unless certain accommodations for the hard-of-hearing are part of the project.  Specifically, a public gathering space that is constructed or improved as part of the project must:

(1)  be equipped with audio-induction loops to provide an electromagnetic signal for hearing aids and cochlear implants; and

(2) be built to meet certain acoustic standards on background noise and reverberation times. 

Subd. 2 [Exceptions] permits an exception to the requirements to meet certain acoustic standards when a commissioner or agency head determines it is not feasible or is in conflict with another law or with other project requirements.  The commissioner or agency head must consult with the Commission of Deaf, Deafblind, and Hard-of-Hearing Minnesotans before making the determination.

Subd. 3 [Definition] “Public gathering space” is defined as a space intended to be used for gatherings of 15 or more people. 

This section is effective August 1, 2015, and applies to contracts entered into and grants made after that date.


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