Will New Building Standards Hurt Business in Arkansas?

WEST MEMPHIS, AR (KAIT) - Arkansas fire marshals are proposing new building standards in the Natural State but some are saying that these standards may encourage businesses to go elsewhere.

State officials are paying close attention to what is called the "seismic code."  Those are plans to protect structures from earthquakes.

The new standards include a mandate that will make structures capable of withstanding earthquakes so stong, they only occur once every 2,500 years.  Currently, code mandates that structures can withstand a 'once every 500 years' quake.

State officials now must review actual costs verses benefits from the jump in strictness of standards.

Dr. Seth Stein, an expert geologist, says there is a risk of spending significantly more than the benefits are worth.