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Wednesday, May 03, 2023

PACNY's 26th Annual Environmental Conference - NYSDOL Entertains on the First Day and Then Drops a Bombshell on Second Day! - Part One.

Future Environment Designs Training Center (FEDTC) was a Sapphire Sponsor for the Professional Abatement Contractors of New York's (PACNY's) 26th Annual Environmental Conference held at Turning Stone Resort & Casino in Verona, New York.  The two-day event featured several presentations that were noteworthy and a presentation by Mr. David Ramos, Safety & Health Inspector from the NYS Department of Labor (NYSDOL), called "Common ICR 56 Violations" had the audience in stitches.  

Our booth in the Vendor Exhibit Hall

This year PACNY tried a new format for the morning & early afternoon sessions on the first day Thursday, March 16, 2023.  Side-by-side presentations (or two tracks though it was hard to discern if each track had a theme).  Because of some issues with Turning Stone the Onondaga Room was smaller than it was supposed to be.  The two-track presentations did require us to go back and forth between the two rooms to gauge the presentations for those following us on Twitter (#FEDTCPACNY).  It was interesting that the smaller Onondaga Room worked out for the presenters in that room since it seemed a smaller number of attendees still made the room seem fuller.  In the morning session, the presentation by Mr. Peter DeLucia, Director of Safety of the Riedman Companies and President of the Environmental Information Association (EIA)  "Exposure Assessments: The First Step In Compliance" had us again utterly confused with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA's) position on respirator use for asbestos.  Based on his presentation and reference material he presented OSHA does not recognize hoods or helmets even when their protection factor exceeds the required protection factor for the exposure assessment or monitoring.  This would imply then that individuals who cannot shave for whatever reason could not work in the asbestos industry.  Sounds like another blog post for the future.  Mr.Chris Alonge, Senior Engineer for the Dormitory Authority for the State of New York (DASNY), presented on "Managing Typical Regulated and Hazardous Wastes Generated on Abatement/Remediation Projects in NYS" a timely presentation considering all the talk lately about Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) in asbestos materials, like mastic and caulk, and how to handle universal wastes.  In the early afternoon sessions Lisa Rogers, President of Mycometer, presented "One Data Point Isn't Enough! The Fungal to Allergan Index, A New Diagnostic Concept" which discussed how air sampling using the Mycometer could assist in diagnosing mold issues strongly recommend those in the indoor air quality/mold industry look into this, and Brent Kynoch, Managing Director, EIA presented on "Environmental Trends Throughout the US" discussing the potential federal asbestos ban and different state regulations for environmental (lead, etc.) and mold regulations. 

Mr. Peter DeLucia, Director of Safety of the Riedman Companies and President of the Environmental Information Association (EIA)  "Exposure Assessments: The First Step In Compliance"

Other presenters and their topics included:

  • Ms. Donalea Maloney, OSHA Compliance Assistant Specialist - "All About OSHA, OSHA Update, and A Heat Stress Enforcement Case." 
  • Ms. Michelle McGowan, EMSL's VP Asbestos Division - "Bridging the Gap Between Field Sampling & Laboratory Analysis
  • Ms. Maddie Davis & Lauren Battagllia, Livingston Associates - "Engage to Retain: How Fostering Employee Engagement Can Help Reduce Turnover"
  • Alex Dell, Esq., Law Firm of Alex Dell, PLLC - "What Your Injured Employee Thinks Of You, Navigating the NYS Workers' Compensation Law and Related Benefits".  Saw his presentation at the North Country Chamber of Commerce's 2022 Business Expo and it provided good information and was very interesting.  A side note - Save the Date for the North Country Chamber of Commerce 2023 Business Expo & Conference is on Thursday, June 8, 2023, at SUNY Plattsburgh Angell Center.
  • Michael A. Pinto, CEO, Wonder Makers Environmental - "The Ins and Outs of the EIA's Mold Guide"
  • OneGroup - Brett Findlay, John Schmidtt, Michelle Namisniak, & Paul Coderre - "Where to Focus Your Efforts in Controlling Insurance Costs"
  • Nicole Henry - Business Development Representative, CompanyCam - "A Better Way to Survey; Gathering and Sharing Data More Effectively"
  • Jacob Hutton, Architectural Designer, CPL & Kevin Hutton, President & CEO, East Centers of NY - "Blueprint Reading 101: For Environmental Projects"
Ms. Michelle McGowan, EMSL's VP Asbestos Division - "Bridging the Gap Between Field Sampling & Laboratory Analysis

For the remainder of the afternoon, it returned to a one-track format finishing with Stefan A. Borovina, Esq., from Goldberg Segalla, presenting "How to Avoid OSHA Citations and Create a Safer Worksite".  Being prepared was a big part of his presentation on how to avoid OSHA citations including preparing your employees to be interviewed by OSHA.  

David Ramos, Safety & Health Inspector from the NYS Department of Labor (NYSDOL), called "Common ICR 56 Violations"

Mr. David Ramos' presentation "Common ICR 56 Violations".  Mr. Ramos' presentation showed us what some contractors and consultants try to get away with during asbestos abatement projects.  Some of the violations were so bad they were very funny.  That presentation put everyone in a good mood for the Happy Hour in the Mohawk Room - Presented by Aramsco.  Stay tuned for the second day!  

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