Prior Lake debates business growth vs. sprinkler systems 22 Nov 11

Prior Lake’s fire chief is hoping the City Council will not have to sacrifice safety for economic development as it considers changing fire codes to encourage business growth.

The Prior Lake American reports the council is considering repealing an optional subdivision of state law that allows the city to require sprinkler systems in new commercial buildings or existing businesses that expand.

A business expansion project at River Valley Veterinary Services is on hold while the council decides whether the law is too restrictive to business development.

The city of Northfield debated the same issue in 2006 and ultimately repealed its code. Prior Lake Fire Chief Doug Hartman told the council he does not support the change.