Tuesday, July 20, 2010

NYC DEP Plans Increase In Enforcement On Asbestos Investigators

New York City Department of Environmental Prot...Image via Wikipedia
The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYC DEP) released plans to increase the scrutiny of Certified Asbestos Investigators.  As discussed in the New York Times article linked above, NYCDEP has hired two additional inspection monitors to review the work of the Certified Asbestos Investigators and plans to nearly double the number of office audits it conducts each year, to 75, up from 40; the agency will check the records and activities of nearly 15 percent of the 543 asbestos investigators it certifies, and perform 500 spot-check field inspections.  What caused this increase in oversight of the Certified Asbestos Investigators?  Mr. Saverio Todaro's guilty plea to federal environmental crimes, fraud and making false statements.  In our refresher classes we have discussed Mr. Todaro's case, who operated an environmental inspection and testing company, and acknowledged that he had submitted clean asbestos and lead test results for at least a decade without performing any tests.
Not only has Mr. Todaro's case caused increased scrutiny of Investigators, it also has exposed our industry to reckless statements such as "The city environmental agency regulates private asbestos inspectors, who play an important role in what has long been viewed as one of the more corrupt sectors of the construction industry."  I don't think the New York Times has accurately portrayed our industry.  Our industry like many others has individuals that will do anything for the money.  However, we have many individuals and companies in our industry that do not give into this weakness and perform their jobs in accordance with the regulations.  We provide our clients with an important service and help them protect their properties and the people who use the property.  I am very disappointed with the NY Times, in painting our industry with such a broad brush stroke based on the guilty plea of a few individuals.
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