Posts Tagged ‘mold legislation’

47th Tip of 50 by Kurt Billings

Friday, November 30th, 2012

This is a reprint of an article posted by Kurt Billings, co-author of Mold: The War Within. Thanks to Kurt for his recommendations. Please check out his Facebook page for a ongoing educational blog.

TIP OF THE DAY:

Day 47 of Our 50 Days of Fun—no sugar/no grains. Building a house or making repairs to an already existing house can be a daunting task. There are so many choices to research and decisions to make. Even more overwhelming,  is trying to make sure that the choices we make will result in a mold-free structure for years of problem-free living.

Preventing structural mold in our homes and work places is imperative to maintaining a healthy quality of indoor air. Many structural mold problems begin innocently enough—a threaded pipe under the sink becomes unscrewed causing water to leak into the cabinet, a crack forms in the wax ring under the toilet allowing water to leak into the flooring and subflooring, or blowing rainwater enters under a front or back door where the weatherstripping has become cracked and dried with age. Other times, structural mold is a direct result of errors made in the design stage or during the construction process.

How do we, as mere lay people—non contractors—protect ourselves and our properties from these all-too-commonly occurring maintenance and construction mishaps? It’s not likely we can become experts in all phases of the remodeling or building processes, but some helpful tips from someone who is an expert in mold-free construction can give us the shortcut to knowledge that will work for our tight-schedules.

Such invaluable tips can conveniently be found in the book, Mold-free Construction, which is authored by Doug Hoffman, Executive Director of the National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors (NORMI). His straight-to-the-point advice is drawn from his years of experience as a professional in the building industry with certifications and licenses as a general contractor, roofing contractor, plumbing contractor, indoor air quality consultant, mold inspector and remediator. As the head of NORMI, Mr. Hoffman is a uniquely qualified expert to guide us, the property owners, through the process of creating a mold-free structure.

In Mold-Free Construction, Mr. Hoffman addresses the decisions property owners face in all facets of the building process and details the impact each decision has on the goal of creating a mold-free structure:

• Lot selection, grading and drainage
• Foundation considerations
• The “dry-in” stage
• Plumbing considerations
• Roofing considerations
• HVAC considerations
• Indoor air quality considerations
• Finishes and furnishing considerations

The best time to educate ourselves regarding the many subspecialties in home construction and remodeling is before design and construction begins. We can’t rely on budget-focused general contractors or time-pressed crews. We have to become knowledgeable ourselves about the details that make a difference in creating a mold-free home or workplace. We don’t want to learn the hard way—as it can not only put our pocketbooks in peril but also our health in distress.

Mold-Free Construction is now available on Kindle for only $4.99; and Amazon Prime members can “borrow” it for free. Just click on this embedded link:

 

Earthquake Doesn’t Stop Training

Sunday, August 28th, 2011

Abita Springs, LA

NORMI, the National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors, conducted its first Virginia Mold Licensing class in Alexandria last week between an earthquake and impending Hurricane Irene. The successful training provided three days of mold training for professionals who were interested in being trained as Mold Inspectors and Mold Remediator Supervisors which include a curriculum sponsored by NORMI, a Virginia Board-Approved training provider. This training included 24 hours of training centered on the techniques of assessment and remediation including hands-on training, lectures, and the specifics of mold, its helath effects and mold management for removal.

“We started the week with a thundering earthquake and finished with flight to prepare for the impending hurricane,” reported Doug Hoffman, Executive Director of NORMI. “Amidst the excitement we provided excellent mold training from four highly experienced and dedicated trainers who converged on Alexandra, PA from Florida, South Carolina, New Jersey and Louisiana. All in all we were impressed with the dedication and commitment of these mold professionals who came and stayed for the express purpose of getting the training they need to comply with the Virginia Mold Licensing law. We will be in Pennsylvania next week and anticipate another great group of guys who want to learn better how to practice their craft.”

For more information on classes designed specifically to meet the Virginia Mold Licensing Law contact Best Training School at 888.856.4803 or view the easy-to-understand mold training video for more information. Classes are being conducted in Virginia and other states. The next class will be held in Pennsylvania, PA at the Schapers Supply store. For information on NORMI, contact 877.251.2296 or email support@normi.org. Facilities Maintenance Directors, Home Inspectors, General Contractors and other professionals who deal with toxic mold removal should consider taking this course to understand the correct standards that should be utilized to remove toxic mold from indoor environments.

FLORIDA HB 5007 Passes the House

Friday, April 8th, 2011

Abita Springs, LA

NORMI, the National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors, announced today that a very important step in the direction of changing the current Mold-Related Services Licensing Law was taken in Tallahassee by the House of Representatives passing legislation that would deregulate 14 businesses, professions and occupations. The bill passed along party lines with a 77-38 roll call vote and Republicans touted it as a victory for the consumer and businessman while Democrats complained that this type of deregulation puts the public at risk.

The bill deregulates sports agents; auctioneers; sellers of business opportunities; charitable organizations; hair braiders; dance studios; health studios; instra-state movers; sellers of travel; travel agents; telemarketing; and yacht brokers. Those in the mold industry successfully lobbied to have the Mold-Related Services Licensing Law removed from this bill and legislators introduced another bill, HB 5007 that would not deregulate but revise the existing law which went into effect July 1, 2010.

“It is our opinion that deregulation was not the route to take,” said NORMI Executive Director Doug Hoffman, “but we do believe that a ‘tweaking’ of the current law would enhance the ability of mold professionals to do their work more efficiently. Though we are still looking closely at HB 5007, it appears to benefit the profession while continuing to protect the public from unscrupulous assessors and remediators who have plagued this profession for years. We are pleased that the law was not completely repealed and Florida seems to be setting standard that, in our opinion, could and should be accepted by other states.”

The House also voted 80-38 passing HB 5007 that would reduce penalties for violating business regulations and modifying various regulations including a reduction in licensing, examination and training for mold assessors and remediators. Rep. Franklin Sands, D-Weston, argued, “people will die” because of the mold changes. He went on to say, “The charlatans and the scammers are going to move to Florida to be in the mold and mildew business.”

According to legislative experts, the bill’s prospects are uncertain when it goes to the Senate because no similar legislation has been filed there as yet.

NORMI was established on July 4, 2004 to provide training and certification for mold professionals throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. NORMI is also an approved Training Provider for the Mold-Related Services Board (#0003605) and CILB (#050148598) under the DBPR in the State of Florida. For more information on training programs, certification processes, or mold, in general, you may contact NORMI at 877.251.2296 or contact support@normi.org

NORMI Weighs In on New York Toxic Mold Report

Saturday, January 8th, 2011

Abita Springs, LA

“I read, with interest, the New York State report on toxic mold and concluded that you can spend a lot of money to study a problem and land in the same place that many before you landed. For years we have taught on the following: 1) you must use proper procedures for removing mold from contaminated environments. 2) if you don’t fix the moisture source (whether inside the envelope or a penetration in the envelope of the building) the problems will come back. 3) even with the use of good protectants, a wholistic approach must be used that includes proper lifestyle changes, indoor air quality equipment, and safe/biodegradeable cleaners. 4) sometimes contamination levels are so high that materials need to be discarded rather than cleaned. 5) the industry should be properly regulated with good, fair legislation that requires mold professionals to be trained, licensed and insured.

In my book at www.MoldFreeConstruction.com I talk about the importance of all of these issues and this book becomes a guideline for homeowners who have or are concerned about having mold-related problems in their home. There is not doubt that the good health of our families depend on these kinds of environmental issues.

So, I encourage you to read the full report and use it as a document to help explain why good training organizations, like www.BestTrainingSchool.com, good certifying organizations, like www.NORMI.org, and good companies providing mold removal products, like www.BestLivingSystems.com continue to improve indoor living environment, one building at a time.” D. Douglas Hoffman, Executive Director of NORMI, National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors 

NYS Toxic Mold Task Force Completes Final Report

Section 1384 of the New York State (NYS) Public Health Law established the NYS Toxic Mold Task Force. The goals of the NYS Toxic Mold Task Force was to:

  • assess and measure, based on scientific evidence, the adverse environmental and health effects of mold exposure, including specific effects on population subgroups at greater risk of adverse effects;
  • assess the latest scientific data on mold exposure limits;
  • identify actions taken by state and local government and other entities;
  • determine methods to control and mitigate mold; and prepare a report to the Governor and Legislature.

To achieve these goals the NYS Toxic Mold Task Force activities were organized into four main areas of inquiry:

  • health effects of molds in indoor environments;
  • exposure limits and assessment of mold in buildings;
  • approaches to mold mitigation and remediation;
  • building codes, regulations and other actions taken by other governments and private-sector organizations that relate to building mold problems.

In reading the executive summary it is clear that the NYS Toxic Mold Task Force came to the usual conclusions regarding mold that the many in the industry already know. For example:

  • Since mold problems in buildings are preventable with proper building construction, maintenance, and housekeeping aimed at preventing excess building dampness, mold exposure is preventable.
  • Overabundant growth of any mold or other dampness-related organisms is undesirable and can be addressed by removing contaminants and correcting water problems. Whether or not exposure to mold toxins is likely when mold growth occurs in a damp building does not substantially change the need for mitigation of the water and mold problem.
  • Continue to improve building code requirements that address building design, construction techniques, and property maintenance so that they prevent or minimize the potential for water problems to occur.
  • The presence and power of the code enforcement official (CEO) can also help minimize the potential mold problems in buildings when approving construction documents, during construction inspections of new buildings, and when issuing property-maintenance violations related to moisture conditions in existing buildings during required inspections.
  • Regulating the mold assessment and remediation service industry is dependent upon how desirable it is to have persons poperly trained and following acceptable protocols. The main public health goal of any regulation or additional guidance to the mold industry will be to reduce the potential for mold exposures and the risk of health effects in damp buildings. Costs for such a program can range from $150,000 for using already developed general recommended work practices and certification programs to $4.5 million per year for a full regulatory program like the NYS asbestos program.
  • The development of reliable, health-based quantitative mold exposure limits is not currently feasible.
  • Their is limited evidence of the benefits of chemical disinfectants or encapsulant treatments for mitigating or preventing mold growth on building materials.
  • The main approach to mold control and mitigation should be focused on identifying and repairing water damage in buildings and removing mold source materials. This method of mitigation is less complicated to implement than mitigation based on attaining a numerical clearance critertion, because the main goal is to return the building to a clean and dry condition.

The document is 150 pages including tables and exhibits. It will be interesting to see if this document actually goes anywhere in regulating the mold assessment and remediation industry.  REPRINTED from futureen.blogspot