Weekly Poll (123)


A recent report indicated that death rates for the construction industry have remained unchanged for 10 years, despite efforts made by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration. Do you believe additional action is needed to lower this rate?


Chicago City Council recently passed its 2022 Energy Transformation Code, making the city one of the first major U.S. cities and the first city in Illinois to adopt and exceed the 2021 edition of the International Energy Conservation Code. Do you think other cities will follow suit for decarbonization?


Last month, the U.S. Department of Labor published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on classifying employees and independent contractors under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Do you believe this proposed rule would help prevent misclassification of workers?


The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has recently recommended approving the surrender of the Klamath River Dam license in California, including its decommission and removal. Do you agree with the recommendation?


The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration recently announced a final rule to strengthen the safety and environmental protection of more than 300,000 miles of onshore gas transmission pipelines. Do you believe these changes will further prevent tragedies like the San Bruno pipeline explosion in 2010?


The Canadian government recently published a renewed version of its Federal Agenda regarding volatile organic compound (VOC) controls on industry products. Do you believe the new actions will improve air quality in the country?


At the end of June, the Supreme Court ruled that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency does not have the authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. Do you agree with the ruling?


The City of Portland, Oregon, recently announced the approval of recommendations to add Concrete Embodied Carbon Threshold requirements for city construction projects. Do you think these requirements should be adopted in other states?


Last month, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced $520 million in funding to better protect low-income households from lead-based paint and other home health and safety hazards. Do you think this funding will successfully promote reduced lead exposure and negative health effects?


The new Clean Hull Initiative calls on regulators, shipping companies, ports, coatings manufacturers, technology and service providers, as well as academic and research institutions to focus on biofouling management. Do you believe there should be a worldwide regulation for proactive hull cleaning?


A recent report by the Beacon Hill Institute points out that a rule proposed by the Department of Labor makes the Davis-Bacon and Related Acts wage determination process more inaccurate, inflationary and biased. Do you think that the rule should be adopted?


The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development recently released a report on the commercial availability and current uses of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances found in various paints, coatings and varnishes, recommending further work is needed to understand the health and environmental risks. Do you believe enough is being done to better protect painters from these substances?


For the first time in 40 years, the U.S. Department of Labor is proposing a rulemaking for the Davis-Bacon Act and Davis-Bacon and Related Acts to speed up prevailing wage updates, create several efficiencies in the current system and ensure that prevailing wage rates keep up with actual wages. Do you agree with the proposed changes?


A recent request to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency asked the agency to reconsider its final risk evaluation regarding C.I. Pigment Violet 29. The shared belief between the requesters is that hazards associated with PV29 should be identified at the manufacturer level and that facilities use OSHA-regulated safety measures to reduce risks of exposure. Do you believe that the EPA’s rulemaking should remain in effect?


New Florida legislation seeks to require mandatory building inspections for all apartment and condo buildings taller than three stories and larger than 3,500 square feet. The inspections would be required once a building is 30-years-old and every 10 years after. Do you believe this time frame for inspections is reasonable?


In 2021, OSHA reached a settlement including an agreement to make changes to its communication about beryllium. Do you believe OSHA communication regarding its beryllium rules was not clear enough at the time?


A new initiative from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration prioritizes heat-related interventions on days when the heat index exceeds 80 F. Do you believe this threshold temperature is low enough?


Recently, Wyoming announced its intentions to sue other states blocking its exports of coal—an issue that’s resulting in the shutdown of its coal-fired power plants. Do you think it’ll be the only state to send such a strong message?


For the first time in the agency’s history, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission recently completed a climate change review. Do you think more projects will be required to undergo this type of review?


Do you believe the natural gas and oil industry will have an important role in helping the economy recover from the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic?


At the end of January, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued stronger worker safety guidance to aid employers in implementing a COVID-19 prevention program and to better identify risks that could lead to exposure and contraction of the virus. Do you think the changes will be effective?


In August, the DOL issued its Final Beryllium Standard for Construction and Shipyards. According to OSHA, the final rule is slated to impact approximately 12,000 workers employed in nearly 2,800 establishments. When do you think affected entities will successfully reach compliance?


Last month, OSHA issued a directive that provided safety and health officers with guidance on how to enforce silica standard requirements. Do you think clarification on the enforcement of this rule was necessary?


Last month, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued further interim enforcement guidance on the reusing of disposable N95 filtering face piece respirators. Do you think the additional guidance has been beneficial to the industry?


In April, PaintSquare Press published “Cool Roof Policy Updates Trend in US Cities” regarding the installation of reflective roofing products on new and existing buildings in the United States. While the last 10 years have shown a major uptick in adopting policies by U.S. cities, how long do you believe it will take to incorporate a policy in each of the nation’s states?


Last month, OSHA announced the revision of the National Emphasis Program to identify and reduce or eliminate worker exposures to respirable crystalline silica in general industry, maritime and construction. Do you think the revision will provide best practices in keeping workers safe from the hazardous material?


At the end of November, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that the ban on all retail distribution of methylene chloride to consumers for paint and coatings removal officially went into effect. Do you believe the ban will help protect consumers from the chemical’s health and safety risks?


The EPA announced last month that it would be receiving comments regarding a draft risk evaluation of more than 70 uses for methylene chloride until Dec. 30. Do think the information collected will successfully promote a list of actions needed to address those risks within the timeframe, as required by TSCA?


Last month, the European Commission officially decided to classify titanium dioxide in its powder form as a substance that is “suspected of causing cancer in humans” despite various objections. Do you believe that the TiO2 classification will increase health and safety protection for those within the coatings industry?


The comment period ends next week for U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s August request for feedback on its current respirable crystalline silica standard as it applies to construction. In receiving feedback on “the effectiveness of engineering and work practice control methods not currently included for the tasks and equipment,” do you think appropriate control measures for pieces of equipment connected to silica exposure will be revised?


In June, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced new lead standards to protect children, lowering dust-lead hazards from 40 micrograms of lead per square foot to 10 micrograms on floors and 250 micrograms to 100 micrograms on windowsills. In addition to the grant program passed in March, do you believe the EPA’s efforts will prove effective?


Florida Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, D-Orlando, recently brought forth a bill that would set a statewide standard for those working outdoors in relation to heat illness prevention. Currently, OSHA has guidelines and recommendations to avoid heat hazards, but there is no set standard for heat exposure. Should OSHA write its standards or should warmer states be pushing their own legislation?


In March, the EPA issued a final rule to prohibit the manufacture and importing, processing and distribution of methylene chloride in all paint removers for consumer use, but not for contractors and professionals. Based on the number of health risks, medical claims and even deaths, do you think this is fair to workers who will have to continue to work with the common chemical?


California officially approved the requirement for solar panels on new homes, which will now be added into the building code. Do you think the savings in energy costs justify the regulation?


A group of workers and environment and public health advocates recently notified the Environmental Protection Agency of its intent to sue the agency over its failure to finalize a ban on the use of methylene chloride in paint strippers. Do you think enough action has been taken against methylene chloride to date?


OSHA recently released its Top 10 violations for 2018, with fall protection, hazard communication, scaffolds, respiratory protection and lockout/tagout making up the top five violations at least three years in a row. Is this what you expected?


OSHA recently released its Top 10 violations for 2018, with fall protection, hazard communication, scaffolds, respiratory protection and lockout/tagout making up the top five violations at least three years in a row. Is this what you expected?


As a result of London's fatal Grenfell Tower fire last June, government officials in the United Kingdom officially announced a ban on combustible materials in the exterior walls of new residential buildings that are 18 meters and taller. Do you think these measures are sufficient?


The CDC recently suggested current guidance on guarding workers against heat hazards may not be sufficient. In your experience, are heat risks taken seriously enough on construction sites?


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced last month that it has decided to move forward on its original ruling on methylene chloride, prohibiting the consumer and commercial paint-stripping uses for the chemical. Do you agree with this move?


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has announced that in the six months that it has been enforcing its new silica rule it has issued 116 violations. The majority of companies were cited for not measuring silica levels at all. Does this surprise you?


Elon Musk's Boring Company is seeking an exemption from a traditional environmental review for its tunneling project, but neighbors are suing to make sure a review takes place. Should L.A. require a full review?


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently issued a new bulletin regarding hearing loss brought on by solvent exposure. Is the painting industry properly educated on ototoxicity?


OSHA recently renewed its alliance with the National Association of Women in Construction, aiming to safeguard women in the building trades. In your experience, are women at special risk for workplace injury in the construction industry?


A Canadian worker’s recent death has been blamed on an allergic reaction to walnut-shell blasting media. Should these products be subject to further safety regulations?


The retaliation portion of OSHA's Final Rule to Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses puts another layer of enforcement on Section 11(c) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, which prohibits any person from discharging or discriminating against an employee who reports a fatality, injury or illness. Do you think this is necessary?


California recently passed the “Buy Clean California Act,” requiring state contractors to use materials with low carbon impact. Are laws like this a positive step?


OSHA recently released its list of the top 10 violations cited in the past fiscal year, with fall protection again topping the list. Does the industrial painting industry do enough to ensure safety from falls on jobsites?


OSHA recently began enforcement of its new silica standard in the construction industry. Has your company made adjustments to comply with the new rule?


In response to Hurricane Irma, the secretary of Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation suspended the regulation that a licensed general, building or residential contractor is required to subcontract out roofing work, allowing repairs in the state to get done quicker. Do you agree with this decision?


Black market OSHA training cards are on the rise again, according to an investigation last month. The agency is reportedly releasing new, plastic cards equipped with QR codes to curb the fraud. Do you think this will help?


Two wood-framed buildings under construction were destroyed in separate fires in Boston last month. Some officials are now considering stricter rules with the all-wood building method that’s gaining in popularity. Is this a good idea?


Several states have passed or discussed “Buy American” rules for steel and other materials on public works projects recently, in addition to President Donald J. Trump’s executive order calling on pipeline companies to use U.S.-made materials. Are these laws a step in the right direction?


In recent months, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has delayed or proposed changes to several rules that were promulgated under the Obama administration. Is this good or bad news?


How much do you think regulations regarding lead paint abatement will relax during the Trump administration's tenure?


The European Chemicals Agency’s Committee for Risk Assessment (RAC) announced that it concluded that TiO2, a substance commonly used in paints, construction materials and other industrial and consumer goods, meets the criteria to be classified as a suspected cause of cancer via inhalation, under Category 2. Do you think the label is warranted?


Environmental Protection Agency officials have proposed to cut two programs that help much of the country with lead paint safety in order to comply with President Donald J. Trump’s budget cuts. Do you think states will be able to pick up the slack if these federal programs are cut?


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently launched its “Safe and Sound” campaign, to encourage employers in certain states to review their safety protocols to better protect workers. Do companies in the protective coatings industry review and update protocols often enough in your experience?


Several lawmakers have introduced legislation to limit or repeal the Davis-Bacon Act, which ties wages on construction projects to a “prevailing wage” for the type of work being done and the area it’s being done in. Is this a good or bad idea?


President Trump recently called on executive departments to identify regulations that might serve well to be repealed or modified. Will the coming regulation reduction be positive for the industry on the whole?


Changes to EPA rules for hazardous waste generators are changing April 28, with major alterations set to affect many, including coating manufacturers and field paint removal contractors. Is your firm preparing for the new regulations?


OSHA’s recent “Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses” rule requires employers to submit detailed injury and illness logs to the Agency and some of this information will be made public. Is this regulation a good or bad idea?


Do you find safety rules and regulations governing scaffolds and scaffold-related hazards such as falls, failing objects, structural instability, overloading and electrocution easy to understand and follow? *Editor's Note: Poll answer options were updated Nov. 22.


Upcoming federal regulations governing injury reporting have been put on hold after an industry lawsuit; the new rules would effectively prohibit employers from drug testing employees after an injury or illness is reported, because testing could be considered to be retaliation. Are these rules a good idea?


OSHA recently finalized its rule to better protect workers from respirable silica dust exposure, but several industry groups are against it. What do you think?


What do you think of OSHA's proposed fine increases for 2016?


Should a federal agency, like private companies, receive a monetary penalty of some kind when OSHA finds safety or health violations at one of their worksites?


What do you think of OSHA's proposed rule on Beryllium limits?


A Pennsylvania roofer is facing 25 years in prison for lying, and ordering employees to lie, to OSHA inspectors after a worker was killed in a 45-foot fall. Does the potential punishment fit the crime?


Does OSHA need more authority to address its most flagrant repeat violators?


California regularly sets up “stings” of unlicensed contractors by posing as homeowners, soliciting bids for projects that require licenses, then arresting the individuals. What do you think of this strategy?


Should federal agencies have the right to mandate safety and security rules (such as hair length and protective gear) that may conflict with religious preferences?


NIOSH has recommended that all U.S. workplaces be smokefree (including e-cigarettes). Do you support this idea?


OSHA will not investigate a scaffolding collapse in Portland that damaged property but did not injure anyone. Should some federal agency be required to review job-site accidents that occur when no one is working?


After numerous warnings, federal OSHA has rejected Arizona’s residential fall-protection guidelines as too lenient. Should states be allowed to craft standards that are looser than federal OSHA’s?


M/W/DBE fraud has been widely reported lately. What's the best way to address that problem?


M/W/DBE fraud has been widely reported lately. What's the best way to address that problem?


A new market forecast shows booming demand for silica sand in North America, just as OSHA prepares to limit silica exposures. So what’s the take-home message?


What is your general impression of OSHA inspectors who visit your site?


After 4½ years, the EPA is set to announce Dec. 19 whether it will reclassify coal ash as hazardous waste. What’s your prediction?


The family of a U.S. worker killed on the job is calling for a $50,000 mandatory fine if a workplace hazard is found to "materially contribute" to a fatal incident. (The fine in their case was $2,300.) What do you think?


A proposed U.S. rule would ban “pay secrecy” by federal contractors and allow those workers to openly share wage information. What do you think?


About how often do you see full compliance with fall protection on a project?


The U.S. will force companies that owe federal fines for hazmat violations to pay up or shut down. Good plan or bad plan?


Which of these would be most likely to change your safety practices?


A new U.S. Executive Order will require bidders for major federal contracts to report recent wage, safety or other labor law violations. Good idea or bad idea?


OSHA is considering increasing “whistleblower” protection for employees who report health and safety problems. Good idea or bad idea?


Four years on, how would you describe EPA’s enforcement of the Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Program?


New U.S. rules are in effect to increase hiring of veterans and individuals with disabilities. Have these mandates affected your hiring practices?


What do you think of OSHA’s proposal to move injury and illness reporting online and make it available to the public?


California is targeting two specific chemicals used in paint stripper and spray polyurethane foam. What do you think?


Here come the public hearings on OSHA’s proposal to slash silica exposure in the workplace. What should OSHA do with this proposal?


OSHA is asking (but not requiring) commenters on the federal silica proposal to disclose funding sources and conflicts of interest. Good idea or bad idea?


OSHA is proposing that employers’ Form 300 illness and injury logs be put online for public access. Good idea or bad idea?


Admitting that its own chemical exposure standards are inadequate, OSHA is urging employers to voluntarily follow tighter rules. What do you think of this strategy?


Construction employers want three more months to comment on OSHA’s proposed silica rule. Should OSHA grant the extension?


Some parties involved in fatal structural collapses are facing criminal charges. Should such collapses be investigated as civil matters, criminal matters, or both?


After decades of non-regulatory approaches, OSHA has proposed a rule to limit worker exposure to respirable crystalline silica. Do you favor this rule?


OSHA has finally announced a proposed rule to limit worker exposure to respirable crystalline silica. Do you support this plan?


A UK contractor will serve three years in prison for allowing an untrained employee to do work that cost him his life. What do you think of this sentence?


Three years after it was implemented, what’s your impression of compliance with the residential Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule?


“I know we have to protect the employees, but sometimes they don’t listen,” one employer cited by OSHA said recently. What should happen in such cases?


The fertilizer plant that exploded in West, TX, was last inspected in 1985, causing some people to question OSHA’s oversight. Overall, how do you feel about OSHA’s oversight?


The buyer of a foreclosed, century-old home sold for $3,600 was awarded $115,000 because she did not receive an EPA lead notice. Who should be responsible for such notifications?


Federal lawmakers have reintroduced a bill to allow homeowners to opt out of the EPA’s lead-safe painting requirements. Do you support this plan?


What industry trends do you follow most closely?


The U.S. EPA has revived its plan (required by a court agreement) to mandate lead-safe practices on public-works and commercial projects. What’s your take on this?


EPA has been deliberating for more than two years on whether to regulate Coal Combustion Residuals (slag, ash) as hazardous waste. What do you think?


Some cities are considering regulating exterior paint colors for commercial buildings. Is this a good idea?


OSHA’s UK counterpart is adapting a “loser pays” system, in which companies that break health and safety laws would have to help pay for investigation and enforcement. What do you think of this idea?


An asbestos contractor will serve 10 years in prison for a shoddy removal job. What’s your take on that sentence?


A Pennsylvania painting company owner faces criminal charges for the electrocution of an employee. Authorities say he ignored the presence of high-power lines on a job site. Is the charge fair?


In your experience, how honestly are workplace injuries and illnesses reported in OSHA logs?


In a major decision in the climate-change debate, The U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C. on June 26 ruled that the EPA is correct in its plans to regulate heat-trapping gases (so-called greenhouse gases), dismissing arguments that the science of global warming is suspect. What is your opinion of this decision?


Which regulation would you dump to spur the most job creation?


It takes OSHA an average of about eight years to issue a rule, and some rules have taken more than 17 years. The General Accountability Office says this slow process leaves workers at risk. What do you think?


How do you feel about EPA and OSHA regulations (VOCs, heavy metal pigments


What should the federal government do about environmental regulations in light of weakness in the economy, especially construction?


Congress is considering slashing EPA’s and OSHA’s authority and/or funding. How will this affect the coatings industry?


Would your business be better off with or without the EPA?


What will happen to the regulatory climate, especially with OSHA and EPA, in 2011?


What is the most important effect of EPA and OSHA safety and ennvironmental regulations on coating work?


A new audit shows that OSHA is quick to drastically reduce fines for workplace violations—even repeat violations. Safety advocates say the agency has fallen down on its enforcement mandate. What do you think?


 
 
   

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