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Newsletter
Volume 179
October 1, 2018

Jim Fitzgerald Receives The Urbanowski Grassroots Award

Congratulations to Jim Fitzgerald, president of the Far West Agribusiness Association (FWAA), who recently received the Urbanowski Grassroots Award at the joint CropLife America and RISE 2018 Annual Meeting.  The award honors the outstanding grassroots contributions made by an individual or organization at the local, state or federal level.  We are proud to be affiliated with FWAA and extend our congratulations to Jim for receiving this award.

Good Things Come to Those Who Wait...

With the introduction of our new EZ-Update “Hub” feature comes what many of you have been waiting for... Clients can now scan and upload driver file paperwork, along with their licenses and medical examiner certificates.  The original paperwork containing the “wet-ink signature” is no longer required to be mailed to the Asmark Institute.

With more and more audits performed off-site and electronic files being requested by the auditors, the importance of wet-ink signatures has outlived its usefulness.  An automated receipt will be provided instantly for each submission using the EZ-Update Hub confirming we’ve received a file.  If there are any issues with your file, for example you accidentally scanned and sent us your grocery list, someone from the Asmark Institute will contact you by the end of next business day.

If you have any questions, you can contact the Driver File Department at 270-926-4600 Ext 501 and they will be glad to assist you.  Happy Uploading!

Heads Up! DVD Exchange Underway

Clients will be receiving their new DVD Number 4 during the first week of October as part of our annual update and exchange.  Please keep an eye out for UPS to deliver the package and follow the instructions to complete the exchange by the deadline.

The new DVD Number 4 includes a completely updated and re-shot version of the topic When A Crisis Strikes, which trains employees on how to properly address questions from the media during a crisis. This new and improved version was given a fresh new look, complete with assistance from our local fire department’s hazmat team, police and actors.

Draft Senate Bill Recognizes Programs Like ResponsibleAg

The draft Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) Program re-authorization bill includes creating a new recognition program for those that participate in programs like ResponsibleAg.  This could result in fewer facility inspections allowing incentives such as reducing the risk tier level for participating facilities.  The bill would also make the Personnel Surety Program mandatory for Tier 1 and 2 facilities but optional for Tier 3 and 4 facilities.  Also of interest, notice of proposed rulemaking would be required for any proposed changes to the list of chemicals, amounts, concentrations or thresholds in Appendix A.

There is still a long way to go before all of this comes to fruition but these are positive steps along the way.  Our thanks go out to Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) and The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) for keeping this ball rolling.

RMP 5-Year Update - Heads Up!

It’s that time of year again where we will be gathering the information necessary to prepare Risk Management Plan (RMP) updates for ammonia facilities during Annual Compliance Visits.  Watch your mail for details on what can be done now to prepare for the update.

New RMP Tutorials for Program 2 and Program 3 facilities are now available in the Tutorials section on Snapshots.  An effective Risk Management Program takes time to maintain properly.  Start your preparations early to ensure an efficient compliance visit this winter.

For questions, please contact Dustin Warder at 270-926-4600 Ext 203 or dustin@asmark.org.

It's Time to Register With ResponsibleAg

More than 2,500 facilities have registered with the ResponsibleAg Certification Program, with 1,192 facilities already receiving their certification. We encourage you to register your facilities today! For more information and to register, go to: www.responsibleag.org

New DOT & EPA AG-30 Hour Course - Registration Now Open!

The Asmark Institute is proud to announce the new DOT & EPA AG-30 training program designed to foster participants' understanding of the DOT and EPA regulations.  Experience shows our clients simply have an easier time with compliance issues when they understand how the regulations came about and what the agency expects of them.  This is another first-of-its-kind course and is expected to provide participants with a solid understanding of the DOT and EPA rules.

“We patterned this course after the popular OSHA AG-30 course that was launched two years ago,” said Amber Duke, Vice President of the Asmark Institute.  “Participants of the OSHA version provided feedback indicating they wanted another course to cover the DOT and EPA topics.  We have actively pursued new opportunities like this to educate, provide a better understanding of the issues and help change the safety culture in our industry.”  Just like the OSHA version, the new DOT & EPA AG-30 course will increase the understanding of the requirements by all employees at a facility, not just the management and EH&S personnel.

The new four-day course provides a “facilitated training experience” using a combination of classroom lectures, scenarios and hands-on exercises.  The training is conducted at the Ford B. West Center for Responsible Agriculture in Owensboro, KY, a retired agrichemical facility specifically designed and retrofitted for training purposes.  The facility is one huge “prop,” used in the course to reinforce the learning process and help to familiarize the participants with the practical application of the DOT and EPA regulations.  Discover how the agencies work and what violations they pose that can adversely affect your company.  Participants learn to assess their organization's level of compliance and utilize safety-audit tools to significantly reduce, and potentially eliminate, accidents and violations.

This course provides an in-depth learning experience and covers important topics related to the ag industry.

Topics include:
  • Introduction to DOT & EPA - How They Operate
  • Driver Qualification Files
  • Vehicle Maintenance Files
  • Commercial Drivers License
  • Drug & Alcohol Program
  • Hazardous Materials
  • Rail Shipments
  • Security, DOT
  • Hazardous Material Registration
  • Hazardous Material Safety Permits
  • Security Plan, DOT
  • Shipping Documents
  • US DOT Markings
  • Cargo Tank Inspections
  • Financial Responsibility
  • Motor Vehicle Records
  • Cargo Securement
  • SARA Tier II Reporting
  • Repackaging of Pesticides
  • EPA Establishment Numbers
  • Risk Management Program (RMP)
  • Process Safety Management (PSM)
  • Worker Protection Standard (WPS)
  • Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC)
  • Federal & State Restricted-Use Products
  • Containment Area Management
  • Rinsate Management
  • Portable Refillable Containers
Dustin Warder, Manager of Regulatory Affairs for the Asmark Institute, will serve as the lead instructor.  With more than fourteen years experience in the ag industry, Dustin brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to this course.  Upon successful completion, participants will receive a certificate from the Asmark Institute.

The new DOT & EPA AG-30 Hour course kicks off in December, with several classes planned for the spring of 2019. We are currently looking for key individuals to participate in the first trial-run course.  If you are interested, please call Patricia at 270-926-4600 Extension 234.  Classes are limited to 24 participants, so register today.  For more information, or to register, click here.

2018 International Roadcheck Results Released

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) recently released the results of Roadcheck 2018, held June 5-7, 2018.  This year’s special emphasis was placed on hours-of-service compliance.  CVSA inspectors carried out 67,502 truck and bus inspections across Canada and the United States in the 3 day inspection and enforcement event.  Of those inspections, 45,400 were North American Standard Level I Inspections.  Level I Inspections involve a 37-step procedure that includes an examination of both driver requirements and vehicle safety, making it the most thorough of the levels inspections performed by enforcement.  During the event, 21.6 percent of commercial motor vehicles that received Level I Inspections were placed out of service.

The top vehicle out-of-service conditions were for brake systems, tires and wheels, and brake adjustment.  If you combine brake adjustment and brake system violations, it accounts for 44.7 percent of all out-of-service vehicle violations.  The top driver out-of-service conditions were for hours of service, wrong class license and false record of duty status.  In addition, there were 729 safety belt violations.

Food Safety Modernization Act - Biennial Registration

The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) requires Biennial Registration for Food Facilities. FSMA requires the Bioterrorism Act registration to be renewed between the months of October and December of even-numbered years. With 2018 falling into that category, each facility must re-register between October and December of this year. This registration is required by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and applies to domestic and foreign manufacturers, processors, packers or holders of food for human or animal consumption.

Types of food companies required to re-register include grain-handling, feed manufacturing, grain processing, biofuels manufacturers, export facilities and a wide array of other domestic and foreign facilities that store, manufacture or process commodities used as food or feed in the United States. Food producers and manufacturers have long been required to register with the FDA. There is no fee to register or renew the registration of a food facility, and facilities can register online by clicking here.

Washington Driver's License Changes

If you’re a Washington state driver, have you noticed your driver’s license number changed?  Beginning on Tuesday, September 4, 2018, all newly issued or renewed Washington state driver’s licenses will be given a new license number, changing the look of the license.  The new numbers will begin with “WDL” followed by a string of nine randomly assigned letters or numbers.  Previously, license numbers were associated with a person’s first and last name and birth date, so the change aims to add privacy and security for drivers.

For DOT drivers in Washington state that are Asmark Institute clients, please remember to send us a copy of your new license so that we can update your driver file information.  You can scan and upload driver's licenses using the EZ-Update Hub feature on Snapshots or fax a copy to 270-926-0011.  If you have any questions, please call the Driver File Department at 270-926-4600, ext 501.

GAO Report on CFATS Program Released

A new Government Accountability Office (GAO) encourages the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to share more information with first responders for facilities that are covered under the DHS Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program.  DHS developed a secure interface called the Infrastructure Protection Gateway that provides access to CFATS facility-specific data on chemical inventories, but the report points out that the gateway is underutilized.

By encouraging wider use of the gateway, DHS would have greater assurance that responders have information about high-risk facilities and the chemicals they have on site.  The report also recommends changes to the CFATS site security scoring methodology that would take into account security measures implemented by the facility during the compliance inspection process.  Click here to read the full report.

Various Recommendations Sent to EPA Regarding Dicamba

The reports abound of state regulators, trade associations and companies all sending in letters of their recommendations on how EPA should handle the registration renewal for the dicamba herbicides XtendiMax (Bayer), Engenia (BASF) and FeXapan (Corteva) for 2019.  The Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) suggests restrictions based on crop growth stage, weed size, temperature or other variables that are tied to the growing season while the American Association of Pesticide Control Officials (AAPCO) asked the agency to set an “early-season” cutoff date — but only if states are permitted to use Special Local Needs (24-C) labels to adjust those dates.

AAPCO represents the state officials tasked with enforcing herbicide labels and dicamba complaints have seen significant increases the past two years.  Their recommendations also address the difficulty in enforcing the current labels and the problem for state regulators in handling the volume of dicamba complaints.  While EPA has received plenty of information, the hope now is that a decision will come soon enough for growers to make seed decisions for 2019.  Click on the following to view the recommendation letters from ARA and AAPCO.

National Labor Law Poster Updates

Considering the magnitude of state and federal agencies in existence today, it’s no surprise that labor laws are constantly changing.  The Federal Wage and Labor Law Institute (FWLLI) tracks these updates for us and we provide results for you.  Wondering if you need a poster update?  Click here to check for the latest Federal and/or State updates to the labor law posters.

Jim Fitzgerald Receives The Urbanowski Grassroots Award

Congratulations to Jim Fitzgerald, president of the Far West Agribusiness Association (FWAA), who recently received the Urbanowski Grassroots Award at the joint CropLife America and RISE 2018 Annual Meeting.  The award honors the outstanding grassroots contributions made by an individual or organization at the local, state or federal level.  We are proud to be affiliated with FWAA and extend our congratulations to Jim for receiving this award.

Good Things Come to Those Who Wait...

With the introduction of our new EZ-Update “Hub” feature comes what many of you have been waiting for... Clients can now scan and upload driver file paperwork, along with their licenses and medical examiner certificates.  The original paperwork containing the “wet-ink signature” is no longer required to be mailed to the Asmark Institute.

With more and more audits performed off-site and electronic files being requested by the auditors, the importance of wet-ink signatures has outlived its usefulness.  An automated receipt will be provided instantly for each submission using the EZ-Update Hub confirming we’ve received a file.  If there are any issues with your file, for example you accidentally scanned and sent us your grocery list, someone from the Asmark Institute will contact you by the end of next business day.

If you have any questions, you can contact the Driver File Department at 270-926-4600 Ext 501 and they will be glad to assist you.  Happy Uploading!

Heads Up! DVD Exchange Underway

Clients will be receiving their new DVD Number 4 during the first week of October as part of our annual update and exchange.  Please keep an eye out for UPS to deliver the package and follow the instructions to complete the exchange by the deadline.

The new DVD Number 4 includes a completely updated and re-shot version of the topic When A Crisis Strikes, which trains employees on how to properly address questions from the media during a crisis. This new and improved version was given a fresh new look, complete with assistance from our local fire department’s hazmat team, police and actors.

Draft Senate Bill Recognizes Programs Like ResponsibleAg

The draft Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) Program re-authorization bill includes creating a new recognition program for those that participate in programs like ResponsibleAg.  This could result in fewer facility inspections allowing incentives such as reducing the risk tier level for participating facilities.  The bill would also make the Personnel Surety Program mandatory for Tier 1 and 2 facilities but optional for Tier 3 and 4 facilities.  Also of interest, notice of proposed rulemaking would be required for any proposed changes to the list of chemicals, amounts, concentrations or thresholds in Appendix A.

There is still a long way to go before all of this comes to fruition but these are positive steps along the way.  Our thanks go out to Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) and The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) for keeping this ball rolling.

RMP 5-Year Update - Heads Up!

It’s that time of year again where we will be gathering the information necessary to prepare Risk Management Plan (RMP) updates for ammonia facilities during Annual Compliance Visits.  Watch your mail for details on what can be done now to prepare for the update.

New RMP Tutorials for Program 2 and Program 3 facilities are now available in the Tutorials section on Snapshots.  An effective Risk Management Program takes time to maintain properly.  Start your preparations early to ensure an efficient compliance visit this winter.

For questions, please contact Dustin Warder at 270-926-4600 Ext 203 or dustin@asmark.org.

It's Time to Register With ResponsibleAg

More than 2,500 facilities have registered with the ResponsibleAg Certification Program, with 1,192 facilities already receiving their certification. We encourage you to register your facilities today! For more information and to register, go to: www.responsibleag.org

New DOT & EPA AG-30 Hour Course - Registration Now Open!

The Asmark Institute is proud to announce the new DOT & EPA AG-30 training program designed to foster participants' understanding of the DOT and EPA regulations.  Experience shows our clients simply have an easier time with compliance issues when they understand how the regulations came about and what the agency expects of them.  This is another first-of-its-kind course and is expected to provide participants with a solid understanding of the DOT and EPA rules.

“We patterned this course after the popular OSHA AG-30 course that was launched two years ago,” said Amber Duke, Vice President of the Asmark Institute.  “Participants of the OSHA version provided feedback indicating they wanted another course to cover the DOT and EPA topics.  We have actively pursued new opportunities like this to educate, provide a better understanding of the issues and help change the safety culture in our industry.”  Just like the OSHA version, the new DOT & EPA AG-30 course will increase the understanding of the requirements by all employees at a facility, not just the management and EH&S personnel.

The new four-day course provides a “facilitated training experience” using a combination of classroom lectures, scenarios and hands-on exercises.  The training is conducted at the Ford B. West Center for Responsible Agriculture in Owensboro, KY, a retired agrichemical facility specifically designed and retrofitted for training purposes.  The facility is one huge “prop,” used in the course to reinforce the learning process and help to familiarize the participants with the practical application of the DOT and EPA regulations.  Discover how the agencies work and what violations they pose that can adversely affect your company.  Participants learn to assess their organization's level of compliance and utilize safety-audit tools to significantly reduce, and potentially eliminate, accidents and violations.

This course provides an in-depth learning experience and covers important topics related to the ag industry.

Topics include:
  • Introduction to DOT & EPA - How They Operate
  • Driver Qualification Files
  • Vehicle Maintenance Files
  • Commercial Drivers License
  • Drug & Alcohol Program
  • Hazardous Materials
  • Rail Shipments
  • Security, DOT
  • Hazardous Material Registration
  • Hazardous Material Safety Permits
  • Security Plan, DOT
  • Shipping Documents
  • US DOT Markings
  • Cargo Tank Inspections
  • Financial Responsibility
  • Motor Vehicle Records
  • Cargo Securement
  • SARA Tier II Reporting
  • Repackaging of Pesticides
  • EPA Establishment Numbers
  • Risk Management Program (RMP)
  • Process Safety Management (PSM)
  • Worker Protection Standard (WPS)
  • Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC)
  • Federal & State Restricted-Use Products
  • Containment Area Management
  • Rinsate Management
  • Portable Refillable Containers
Dustin Warder, Manager of Regulatory Affairs for the Asmark Institute, will serve as the lead instructor.  With more than fourteen years experience in the ag industry, Dustin brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to this course.  Upon successful completion, participants will receive a certificate from the Asmark Institute.

The new DOT & EPA AG-30 Hour course kicks off in December, with several classes planned for the spring of 2019. We are currently looking for key individuals to participate in the first trial-run course.  If you are interested, please call Patricia at 270-926-4600 Extension 234.  Classes are limited to 24 participants, so register today.  For more information, or to register, click here.

2018 International Roadcheck Results Released

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) recently released the results of Roadcheck 2018, held June 5-7, 2018.  This year’s special emphasis was placed on hours-of-service compliance.  CVSA inspectors carried out 67,502 truck and bus inspections across Canada and the United States in the 3 day inspection and enforcement event.  Of those inspections, 45,400 were North American Standard Level I Inspections.  Level I Inspections involve a 37-step procedure that includes an examination of both driver requirements and vehicle safety, making it the most thorough of the levels inspections performed by enforcement.  During the event, 21.6 percent of commercial motor vehicles that received Level I Inspections were placed out of service.

The top vehicle out-of-service conditions were for brake systems, tires and wheels, and brake adjustment.  If you combine brake adjustment and brake system violations, it accounts for 44.7 percent of all out-of-service vehicle violations.  The top driver out-of-service conditions were for hours of service, wrong class license and false record of duty status.  In addition, there were 729 safety belt violations.

Food Safety Modernization Act - Biennial Registration

The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) requires Biennial Registration for Food Facilities. FSMA requires the Bioterrorism Act registration to be renewed between the months of October and December of even-numbered years. With 2018 falling into that category, each facility must re-register between October and December of this year. This registration is required by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and applies to domestic and foreign manufacturers, processors, packers or holders of food for human or animal consumption.

Types of food companies required to re-register include grain-handling, feed manufacturing, grain processing, biofuels manufacturers, export facilities and a wide array of other domestic and foreign facilities that store, manufacture or process commodities used as food or feed in the United States. Food producers and manufacturers have long been required to register with the FDA. There is no fee to register or renew the registration of a food facility, and facilities can register online by clicking here.

Washington Driver's License Changes

If you’re a Washington state driver, have you noticed your driver’s license number changed?  Beginning on Tuesday, September 4, 2018, all newly issued or renewed Washington state driver’s licenses will be given a new license number, changing the look of the license.  The new numbers will begin with “WDL” followed by a string of nine randomly assigned letters or numbers.  Previously, license numbers were associated with a person’s first and last name and birth date, so the change aims to add privacy and security for drivers.

For DOT drivers in Washington state that are Asmark Institute clients, please remember to send us a copy of your new license so that we can update your driver file information.  You can scan and upload driver's licenses using the EZ-Update Hub feature on Snapshots or fax a copy to 270-926-0011.  If you have any questions, please call the Driver File Department at 270-926-4600, ext 501.

GAO Report on CFATS Program Released

A new Government Accountability Office (GAO) encourages the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to share more information with first responders for facilities that are covered under the DHS Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program.  DHS developed a secure interface called the Infrastructure Protection Gateway that provides access to CFATS facility-specific data on chemical inventories, but the report points out that the gateway is underutilized.

By encouraging wider use of the gateway, DHS would have greater assurance that responders have information about high-risk facilities and the chemicals they have on site.  The report also recommends changes to the CFATS site security scoring methodology that would take into account security measures implemented by the facility during the compliance inspection process.  Click here to read the full report.

Various Recommendations Sent to EPA Regarding Dicamba

The reports abound of state regulators, trade associations and companies all sending in letters of their recommendations on how EPA should handle the registration renewal for the dicamba herbicides XtendiMax (Bayer), Engenia (BASF) and FeXapan (Corteva) for 2019.  The Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) suggests restrictions based on crop growth stage, weed size, temperature or other variables that are tied to the growing season while the American Association of Pesticide Control Officials (AAPCO) asked the agency to set an “early-season” cutoff date — but only if states are permitted to use Special Local Needs (24-C) labels to adjust those dates.

AAPCO represents the state officials tasked with enforcing herbicide labels and dicamba complaints have seen significant increases the past two years.  Their recommendations also address the difficulty in enforcing the current labels and the problem for state regulators in handling the volume of dicamba complaints.  While EPA has received plenty of information, the hope now is that a decision will come soon enough for growers to make seed decisions for 2019.  Click on the following to view the recommendation letters from ARA and AAPCO.

National Labor Law Poster Updates

Considering the magnitude of state and federal agencies in existence today, it’s no surprise that labor laws are constantly changing.  The Federal Wage and Labor Law Institute (FWLLI) tracks these updates for us and we provide results for you.  Wondering if you need a poster update?  Click here to check for the latest Federal and/or State updates to the labor law posters.
Asmark Institute, Inc. This information is believed to be reliable by the Asmark Institute, however, because of constantly changing government regulations, interpretations and applicability or the possibility of human, mechanical or computer error, the Asmark Institute does not guarantee the information as suitable for any particular purpose.