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§ 317.2. Churches--Temporary overnight accommodations

Oklahoma Statutes AnnotatedTitle 74. State Government

Oklahoma Statutes Annotated
Title 74. State Government (Refs & Annos)
Chapter 11. State Fire Marshal (Refs & Annos)
74 Okl.St.Ann. § 317.2
§ 317.2. Churches--Temporary overnight accommodations
A. The Oklahoma Uniform Building Code or any building code adopted by any political subdivision of this state, or any rules or regulations promulgated thereto, may permit the authority having jurisdiction to allow a church that is occupancy-rated an A3 building pursuant to any codes adopted by the Oklahoma Uniform Building Code Commission to utilize its building space for temporary overnight visitors for the purpose of religious retreats, ministry programs, overnight or lock-in events, emergency or catastrophic occurrences, to shelter transient persons or to accommodate displaced persons due to hardship or inclement weather. Such building use shall not constitute a change in code occupancy rating, purposes or activities. Provided, any temporary overnight visitor space utilized by a church within its existing buildings as authorized by this section shall be authorized only for a limited duration, unless the Governor has declared a state of emergency or exigent circumstances exist. The church acting pursuant to the provisions of this section shall not charge for its accommodations nor be deemed a bed and breakfast, hotel or motel for any code occupancy rating purposes.
B. Churches which temporarily accommodate overnight visitors as provided in this section shall have one of the following:
1. An automatic sprinkler system in the area of overnight accommodations that is monitored by a third party; or
2. A hard-wired stand-alone fire and smoke alarm in the area of overnight accommodations in addition to an exit door or window opening directly to a public way, exit court or yard area.
C. Nothing in the Oklahoma Uniform Building Code or any code adopted by any political subdivision of this state, or any rules or regulations promulgated pursuant thereto, shall be construed to cause a church to be in violation of the Oklahoma Uniform Building Code or any building code adopted by a political subdivision of this state for the sole reason the church offers temporary overnight visitor services within the authority of this section.
D. As used in this section:
1. “Church” means a facility that is owned by a religious organization and that is used primarily for religious services;
2. “Religious organization” means any church, seminary, synagogue, temple, mosque, religious order, religious corporation, association or society, whose identity is distinctive in terms of common religious creed, beliefs, doctrines, practices or rituals, of any faith or denomination, including any organization qualifying as a church or religious organization under Section 501(c)(3) or 501(d) of the United States Internal Revenue Code; and
3. “Temporary” means no more than seventy-five (75) days in a calendar year.


Laws 2016, c. 378, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2016; Laws 2017, c. 250, § 1, eff. July 1, 2017.
74 Okl. St. Ann. § 317.2, OK ST T. 74 § 317.2
Current with emergency effective legislation through Chapter 3 of the Second Regular Session of the 59th Legislature (2024). Some sections may be more current, see credits for details.
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