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Volume 188
July 1, 2019

Annual Lighthouse Executive Summary Headed Your Way

The 2019 Lighthouse Executive Summary (LES-2019) will be mailed out July 5th.  LES-2019 is a dynamic service which uses unique logic to identify potential areas of concern specific to each facility.  It highlights areas of compliance proactively where attention may be needed to address issues not otherwise identified until you are being audited by one of the agencies.  LES-2019 is designed to prompt the facility to action before an inspector or auditor shows up and before there is a problem.

Together, LES-2019 and MyScore are designed to effectively promote the continuous process of proactively identifying and tracking your risk management efforts to ensure a safe work environment and reduce your risk and liability.  Each page of the summary is dedicated to a specific topic and contains a brief explanation of the requirement and how to proceed in completing it. We encourage you to review the summary and take action to address any areas of concern in a timely manner - then check MyScore to see proof of your accomplishment.

1959 - Oh what a year it was!

1959 was quite the memorable year for several reasons.  Alaska became the 49th state, Hawaii became the 50th state and Joann McCarty was born! The way things are looking, 2019 is shaping up to be quite a year as well - Joann recently celebrated her 10 years with Asmark on April 9, 2019 - the same year she celebrates her 60th birthday- and it marks her eleventh year as a breast cancer survivor!  In recognition of her 10th anniversary and a decade of service to our industry and the Asmark Institute, Joann recently went on an Alaskan cruise where she participated in whale watching, city tours, enjoying many hours of unbelievable scenery and meeting various people from all over the world.

Joann started with the Asmark Institute working in the Driver File Department, helping to ensure that your drivers remained qualified and ready to drive at all times.  She then accepted the opportunity to help in Customer Service, where she has talked with nearly every facility at one time or another.  She is Asmark's expert on troubleshooting issues that occur when uploading training certificates through the Hub.  Joann can help with just about any scanner settings that a facility might have.  She is a true problem solver in her role in Customer Service.  Joann is also in charge of the Respirator program, where through countless hours of follow-up and working with locations, she has brought the total number of employees qualified in the Respiratory Program to over 6,000 to date.

While the Alaskan cruise was an adventure of a lifetime, Joann would tell you that her entire life has been one big adventure!  She has 7 children, 21 grandchildren and 2 great granddaughters.  While in Alaska, she was thanked for supporting the local economy by purchasing 52 shirts - enough to clothe her entire clan!

Progressive Agriculture Celebrates 25 Years

Congratulations to our friends at the Progressive Agriculture Foundation as they celebrate 25 amazing years in ag safety education.  Progressive Ag is the largest rural safety and health education program for children in North America and has been providing education, training and resources to make farm, ranch and rural life safer and healthier for children and their communities since the early 1990s.

At the heart of this effort is the Progressive Agriculture Safety Day program.  This educational program provides training and resources for local communities to conduct one-day safety and health programs.  Safety Days are designed to be age-appropriate, hands-on, fun and safe for children.  By the end of 2019, there will have been nearly 7,800 Safety Days conducted across the United States, Canada and U.S. Territories.  To date, this program has impacted over 1,788,000 children and adults.

Here at the Asmark Institute, we are proud to be affiliated with this wonderful organization and look forward to celebrating their next 25 years!  To learn more about the Progressive Agriculture Safety Day program please visit progressiveag.org.

MO-AG Celebrates 50 Years

The Missouri Agribusiness Association (MO-AG) turns fifty years old this year.  Congratulations to our friends as they celebrate this milestone!  With an office in Jefferson City, MO-AG has been the eyes, ears and voice of agribusiness since 1969.  Agriculture is a big and diverse business and MO-AG members are involved in every aspect of it, from providing the products needed to run a successful agricultural operation, to marketing the grain, and everything in-between.  Today, more than ever, policymakers and regulators are becoming more and more interested in and how we do business.  MO-AG works closely with various national affiliates and other state associations to educate policymakers regarding the business of agriculture and impacts of proposed policy.

The Asmark Institute works to support the retail agricultural industry through a special partnership with MO-AG and we believe membership and participation in your state association is more important now than ever before.  We are proud to be affiliated with the Missouri Agribusiness Association and look forward to another great 50 years in continuing this partnership!

The Future of Video Based Training

DVDs are quickly becoming a thing of the past, while streaming services provided by Apple, Netflix, Hulu and Amazon replace them.  Even TV subscription services like DIRECTV and Spectrum have been required to adapt to this ever-changing marketplace with their own apps allowing you to stream live TV over the internet rather than satellite or coax cable.  The Asmark Institute has been researching options available to stream video training content and have plans to offer this new service to our clients within the next few years.  Options may include the ability to stream training content to a TV or computer/projector for use during safety monthly meetings, while also having the option to stream content on an individual computer for a new hire.

There are a number of benefits with a new service like this, such as better-quality video and quicker turn around for updated or new content, eliminating the shuffling back and forth of DVDs each year during the annual update exchange process.  However, in order for this new option to work well for clients, quality high speed internet will be required for a good overall experience.  For that reason, streaming content will be optional by facility since many don't have the necessary bandwidth required due to their rural location.  Internet speeds, even for rural locations, will only continue to get better over the next few years making this new service a good option for everyone over time.  Stay tuned for more details!

Register Today for the National Safety School

The 41st annual National Agronomic, Environmental, Health & Safety School will be held August 20-21, 2019 in Bloomington, Illinois at the Asmark Institute Agricenter. The school provides EHS&S professionals in the agricultural industry a unique opportunity to gain valuable insight into a host of regulatory topics facing our industry.  This year's keynote address will be given by John Buckley, President & CEO of Wilbur Ellis.  Other notable speakers during the day and half meeting are:  Tom Bray with J.J. Keller & Associates, Brian Bothast with OSHA, Dr. Fred Whitford with Purdue Pesticide Programs and  J. Billy Pirkle with Pirkle Solutions, Inc.  Please visit naehss.org to learn more and to register.

The Safety School is held in conjunction with IFCA’s annual MAGIE Show, the industry’s premier outdoor equipment show in the United States.  We encourage you to consider attending while in Bloomington.  Go to ifca.com for more information.

Reminder: HazMat Annual Registration Expires June 30th

If your company transports, or offers for transport, hazardous materials that require placarding by DOT, they must be registered with DOT.  If your company registers with DOT annually, then your HazMat Registration expires on June 30th each year.  The 2019-2020 registration year covers the period between July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020.  If your company registers for a two or three year period, check your registration for the expiration year.

The annual fee for small businesses and not-for-profit organizations is $250 per year plus a $25 processing fee, while the fee for all others remains $2,575 per year plus a $25 processing fee.  A copy of the current registration must be carried in every company vehicle used to transport hazardous materials. Past copies of the certificate of registration must be kept for three years at the office.  You can register and pay the fee online at DOT's website.

OSHA AG 30 Course - Registration Now Open

The OSHA AG 30 Course is the only ag specific OSHA training in the country and is designed for facility managers or assistant managers, safety and health coordinators, EHS&S staff and personnel with responsibilities for safety and health at the facility. Understanding OSHA's requirements will save your company money - but more importantly, it will reduce the number of injuries and it may even save lives. This course is conducted at a retired agrichemical facility specifically designed and retrofitted for training purposes.

The course is led by Brian Miller, President of Miller Risk Management, who has more than 35 years experience.  Brian holds a Certified Safety Professional (CSP) designation, is a Certified Professional EHS Auditor (CPEA) and is OSHA-authorized to provide this training. Brian has a talent for turning what could potentially be a boring subject, into training that grabs your attention and keeps you riveted.  We encourage at least one person per facility receive this training.  Upon completion of the course the participants will receive a 30 hour General Industry Health and Safety OSHA card.

Classes are limited to 24 participants, so register today!  For more information or questions, please contact Patricia at patricia@asmark.org or 270-926-4600 Ext 234.

Illinois DOA Extends Dicamba Application Deadline

The Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) has extended the deadline for dicamba application on soybeans in Illinois for the 2019 growing season until July 15th.  IDOA has also accepted revised 24(c) Special Local Needs (SLN) labels from the four registrants of dicamba for the products Engenia, FeXapan, Xtendimax and Tavium.

"Due to the extraordinary wet weather seen in this state during the spring planting season and with still over 50% of the soybean crop to be planted, the IDOA will extend the application date to apply dicamba until July 15th," said John Sullivan, Director, IDOA.  "This decision was not taken lightly, however, farmers have been under intense pressure related to the extreme wet weather conditions and hopefully this decision will provide some relief."  Anyone who planted before June 1st will remain subject to the original dicamba application cutoff date, which was planting date plus 45 days.

Our thanks to the Illinois Fertilizer & Chemical Association (IFCA) staff for monitoring these new developments.  Click here to read IFCA's full update.

It's Time to Register With ResponsibleAg

More than 2,780 facilities have registered with the ResponsibleAg Certification Program, with 1,425 facilities already receiving their certification. We encourage you to register your facilities today! For more information and to register, go to: www.responsibleag.org

DHS to Expand PSP to Tiers 3 and 4

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been given the green light from the White House Office of Management and Budget on a proposal to expand the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program’s Personnel Surety Program (PSP).  DHS received the authorization to expand the program to cover CFATS facilities in risk Tiers 3 and 4, which consists of more than 3,000 CFATS facilities.  Most agricultural retailers that are subject to CFATS are considered Tier 3 or 4.

DHS plans to rollout this expansion to the PSP over the course of the next three years and to circulate some additional tools to assist with compliance, including a set of best practices informed by lessons learned from implementing the program for Tiers 1 and 2.  The department also plans to host a few sessions on the program expansion at the upcoming Chemical Security Summit, which will take place in New Orleans on July 16-18, 2019.

DHS will send out notices to CFATS facilities on a monthly basis, which will be randomly selected.  Once facilities receive the notice, they will have 30 days to modify their pre-existing Site Security Plan (SSP) to incorporate the PSP obligation.  The updated SSP will then be sent to DHS for review and approval.  Once a facility receives DHS approval for the updated plan, the facility will have 60 days to implement the PSP requirement. The PSP requirement exists under the CFATS risk-based performance standard 12, Part 4, which requires employees at, and visitors to, CFATS regulated facilities be vetted against the federal terrorist screening database.

NTSB Releases Preliminary Report on Beach Park Accident

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) released a preliminary report on the anhydrous ammonia spill in Beach Park, Illinois that occurred on April 25th.  About 750 gallons of anhydrous ammonia were accidentally released from two 1,000-gallon nurse tanks mounted on a farm trailer that was being pulled by a John Deere tractor.  The driver was operating the tractor in combination with an applicator tool bar.  As a result of the hazardous materials release, 41 people, including 11 first responders, were injured and treated for various degrees of injury at local hospitals.  The driver of the tractor was not injured.

The NTSB says a hazardous materials team found the liquid withdrawal valves on top of the tanks and a shut-off valve on the manifold, where the two hoses from the nurse tanks joined, to be fully open.  The liquid supply hose was also disconnected from the union coupler.  The hazardous materials response team closed the shutoff valve on the manifold, which stopped the release.  The team then proceeded to close the liquid withdrawal valves, which secured the scene.  Investigators plan to examine the valves at a laboratory in Washington DC.

EPA Announces FY 2020-2023 Priorities

EPA has announced seven enforcement and compliance assurance priority areas for fiscal years 2020-2023.  Six of the seven priorities are National Compliance Initiatives (NCI), which will be led by EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA).
The newly announced National Compliance Initiatives are:

Improving Air Quality
  • Creating Cleaner Air for Communities by Reducing Excess Emissions of Harmful Pollutants from Stationary Sources - will focus on reducing emissions of volatile organic compounds and hazardous air pollutants.
  • Reducing Hazardous Air Emissions from Hazardous Waste Facilities - continue to focus on improving compliance by hazardous waste Treatment Storage and Disposal Facilities and Large Quantity Generators with regulations that require effective control and monitoring of organic air emissions from certain hazardous waste management activities.
  • Stopping Aftermarket Defeat Devices for Vehicles and Engines - will focus on stopping the manufacture, sale, and installation of aftermarket defeat devices on vehicles and engines used on public roads as well as on nonroad vehicles and engines.
Ensuring Clean and Safe Water
  • Reducing Significant Noncompliance with National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permits - will focus on increasing the percentage of all NPDES permittees in compliance with their permit.
  • Reducing Noncompliance with Drinking Water Standards at Community Water Systems (CWS) - initial focus is to work with the EPA’s Office of Water to increase capacity in states, tribes and the EPA to address drinking water violations.
Reducing Risk from Hazardous Chemicals
  • Reducing Risks of Accidental Releases at Industrial and Chemical Facilities - will continue to focus on reducing risk to human health and the environment by decreasing the likelihood of chemical accidents. EPA has found that many regulated facilities are neither managing adequately the risks they pose nor ensuring the safety of their facilities to protect surrounding communities as required under Clean Air Act Section 112(r).
For the seventh priority area, OECA will contribute to the agency’s implementation of the Lead Action Plan, which was issued by the President's Task Force on Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks to Children in December 2018.

Lead Action Plan
  • Rather than develop an NCI to address lead exposure, EPA’s enforcement and compliance assurance program will contribute to the agency’s goal of reducing childhood lead exposures and associated health impacts as outlined in the Federal Lead Action Plan.

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.

Annual Lighthouse Executive Summary Headed Your Way

The 2019 Lighthouse Executive Summary (LES-2019) will be mailed out July 5th.  LES-2019 is a dynamic service which uses unique logic to identify potential areas of concern specific to each facility.  It highlights areas of compliance proactively where attention may be needed to address issues not otherwise identified until you are being audited by one of the agencies.  LES-2019 is designed to prompt the facility to action before an inspector or auditor shows up and before there is a problem.

Together, LES-2019 and MyScore are designed to effectively promote the continuous process of proactively identifying and tracking your risk management efforts to ensure a safe work environment and reduce your risk and liability.  Each page of the summary is dedicated to a specific topic and contains a brief explanation of the requirement and how to proceed in completing it. We encourage you to review the summary and take action to address any areas of concern in a timely manner - then check MyScore to see proof of your accomplishment.

1959 - Oh what a year it was!

1959 was quite the memorable year for several reasons.  Alaska became the 49th state, Hawaii became the 50th state and Joann McCarty was born! The way things are looking, 2019 is shaping up to be quite a year as well - Joann recently celebrated her 10 years with Asmark on April 9, 2019 - the same year she celebrates her 60th birthday- and it marks her eleventh year as a breast cancer survivor!  In recognition of her 10th anniversary and a decade of service to our industry and the Asmark Institute, Joann recently went on an Alaskan cruise where she participated in whale watching, city tours, enjoying many hours of unbelievable scenery and meeting various people from all over the world.

Joann started with the Asmark Institute working in the Driver File Department, helping to ensure that your drivers remained qualified and ready to drive at all times.  She then accepted the opportunity to help in Customer Service, where she has talked with nearly every facility at one time or another.  She is Asmark's expert on troubleshooting issues that occur when uploading training certificates through the Hub.  Joann can help with just about any scanner settings that a facility might have.  She is a true problem solver in her role in Customer Service.  Joann is also in charge of the Respirator program, where through countless hours of follow-up and working with locations, she has brought the total number of employees qualified in the Respiratory Program to over 6,000 to date.

While the Alaskan cruise was an adventure of a lifetime, Joann would tell you that her entire life has been one big adventure!  She has 7 children, 21 grandchildren and 2 great granddaughters.  While in Alaska, she was thanked for supporting the local economy by purchasing 52 shirts - enough to clothe her entire clan!

Progressive Agriculture Celebrates 25 Years

Congratulations to our friends at the Progressive Agriculture Foundation as they celebrate 25 amazing years in ag safety education.  Progressive Ag is the largest rural safety and health education program for children in North America and has been providing education, training and resources to make farm, ranch and rural life safer and healthier for children and their communities since the early 1990s.

At the heart of this effort is the Progressive Agriculture Safety Day program.  This educational program provides training and resources for local communities to conduct one-day safety and health programs.  Safety Days are designed to be age-appropriate, hands-on, fun and safe for children.  By the end of 2019, there will have been nearly 7,800 Safety Days conducted across the United States, Canada and U.S. Territories.  To date, this program has impacted over 1,788,000 children and adults.

Here at the Asmark Institute, we are proud to be affiliated with this wonderful organization and look forward to celebrating their next 25 years!  To learn more about the Progressive Agriculture Safety Day program please visit progressiveag.org.

MO-AG Celebrates 50 Years

The Missouri Agribusiness Association (MO-AG) turns fifty years old this year.  Congratulations to our friends as they celebrate this milestone!  With an office in Jefferson City, MO-AG has been the eyes, ears and voice of agribusiness since 1969.  Agriculture is a big and diverse business and MO-AG members are involved in every aspect of it, from providing the products needed to run a successful agricultural operation, to marketing the grain, and everything in-between.  Today, more than ever, policymakers and regulators are becoming more and more interested in and how we do business.  MO-AG works closely with various national affiliates and other state associations to educate policymakers regarding the business of agriculture and impacts of proposed policy.

The Asmark Institute works to support the retail agricultural industry through a special partnership with MO-AG and we believe membership and participation in your state association is more important now than ever before.  We are proud to be affiliated with the Missouri Agribusiness Association and look forward to another great 50 years in continuing this partnership!

The Future of Video Based Training

DVDs are quickly becoming a thing of the past, while streaming services provided by Apple, Netflix, Hulu and Amazon replace them.  Even TV subscription services like DIRECTV and Spectrum have been required to adapt to this ever-changing marketplace with their own apps allowing you to stream live TV over the internet rather than satellite or coax cable.  The Asmark Institute has been researching options available to stream video training content and have plans to offer this new service to our clients within the next few years.  Options may include the ability to stream training content to a TV or computer/projector for use during safety monthly meetings, while also having the option to stream content on an individual computer for a new hire.

There are a number of benefits with a new service like this, such as better-quality video and quicker turn around for updated or new content, eliminating the shuffling back and forth of DVDs each year during the annual update exchange process.  However, in order for this new option to work well for clients, quality high speed internet will be required for a good overall experience.  For that reason, streaming content will be optional by facility since many don't have the necessary bandwidth required due to their rural location.  Internet speeds, even for rural locations, will only continue to get better over the next few years making this new service a good option for everyone over time.  Stay tuned for more details!

Register Today for the National Safety School

The 41st annual National Agronomic, Environmental, Health & Safety School will be held August 20-21, 2019 in Bloomington, Illinois at the Asmark Institute Agricenter. The school provides EHS&S professionals in the agricultural industry a unique opportunity to gain valuable insight into a host of regulatory topics facing our industry.  This year's keynote address will be given by John Buckley, President & CEO of Wilbur Ellis.  Other notable speakers during the day and half meeting are:  Tom Bray with J.J. Keller & Associates, Brian Bothast with OSHA, Dr. Fred Whitford with Purdue Pesticide Programs and  J. Billy Pirkle with Pirkle Solutions, Inc.  Please visit naehss.org to learn more and to register.

The Safety School is held in conjunction with IFCA’s annual MAGIE Show, the industry’s premier outdoor equipment show in the United States.  We encourage you to consider attending while in Bloomington.  Go to ifca.com for more information.

Reminder: HazMat Annual Registration Expires June 30th

If your company transports, or offers for transport, hazardous materials that require placarding by DOT, they must be registered with DOT.  If your company registers with DOT annually, then your HazMat Registration expires on June 30th each year.  The 2019-2020 registration year covers the period between July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020.  If your company registers for a two or three year period, check your registration for the expiration year.

The annual fee for small businesses and not-for-profit organizations is $250 per year plus a $25 processing fee, while the fee for all others remains $2,575 per year plus a $25 processing fee.  A copy of the current registration must be carried in every company vehicle used to transport hazardous materials. Past copies of the certificate of registration must be kept for three years at the office.  You can register and pay the fee online at DOT's website.

OSHA AG 30 Course - Registration Now Open

The OSHA AG 30 Course is the only ag specific OSHA training in the country and is designed for facility managers or assistant managers, safety and health coordinators, EHS&S staff and personnel with responsibilities for safety and health at the facility. Understanding OSHA's requirements will save your company money - but more importantly, it will reduce the number of injuries and it may even save lives. This course is conducted at a retired agrichemical facility specifically designed and retrofitted for training purposes.

The course is led by Brian Miller, President of Miller Risk Management, who has more than 35 years experience.  Brian holds a Certified Safety Professional (CSP) designation, is a Certified Professional EHS Auditor (CPEA) and is OSHA-authorized to provide this training. Brian has a talent for turning what could potentially be a boring subject, into training that grabs your attention and keeps you riveted.  We encourage at least one person per facility receive this training.  Upon completion of the course the participants will receive a 30 hour General Industry Health and Safety OSHA card.

Classes are limited to 24 participants, so register today!  For more information or questions, please contact Patricia at patricia@asmark.org or 270-926-4600 Ext 234.

Illinois DOA Extends Dicamba Application Deadline

The Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) has extended the deadline for dicamba application on soybeans in Illinois for the 2019 growing season until July 15th.  IDOA has also accepted revised 24(c) Special Local Needs (SLN) labels from the four registrants of dicamba for the products Engenia, FeXapan, Xtendimax and Tavium.

"Due to the extraordinary wet weather seen in this state during the spring planting season and with still over 50% of the soybean crop to be planted, the IDOA will extend the application date to apply dicamba until July 15th," said John Sullivan, Director, IDOA.  "This decision was not taken lightly, however, farmers have been under intense pressure related to the extreme wet weather conditions and hopefully this decision will provide some relief."  Anyone who planted before June 1st will remain subject to the original dicamba application cutoff date, which was planting date plus 45 days.

Our thanks to the Illinois Fertilizer & Chemical Association (IFCA) staff for monitoring these new developments.  Click here to read IFCA's full update.

It's Time to Register With ResponsibleAg

More than 2,780 facilities have registered with the ResponsibleAg Certification Program, with 1,425 facilities already receiving their certification. We encourage you to register your facilities today! For more information and to register, go to: www.responsibleag.org

DHS to Expand PSP to Tiers 3 and 4

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been given the green light from the White House Office of Management and Budget on a proposal to expand the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program’s Personnel Surety Program (PSP).  DHS received the authorization to expand the program to cover CFATS facilities in risk Tiers 3 and 4, which consists of more than 3,000 CFATS facilities.  Most agricultural retailers that are subject to CFATS are considered Tier 3 or 4.

DHS plans to rollout this expansion to the PSP over the course of the next three years and to circulate some additional tools to assist with compliance, including a set of best practices informed by lessons learned from implementing the program for Tiers 1 and 2.  The department also plans to host a few sessions on the program expansion at the upcoming Chemical Security Summit, which will take place in New Orleans on July 16-18, 2019.

DHS will send out notices to CFATS facilities on a monthly basis, which will be randomly selected.  Once facilities receive the notice, they will have 30 days to modify their pre-existing Site Security Plan (SSP) to incorporate the PSP obligation.  The updated SSP will then be sent to DHS for review and approval.  Once a facility receives DHS approval for the updated plan, the facility will have 60 days to implement the PSP requirement. The PSP requirement exists under the CFATS risk-based performance standard 12, Part 4, which requires employees at, and visitors to, CFATS regulated facilities be vetted against the federal terrorist screening database.

NTSB Releases Preliminary Report on Beach Park Accident

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) released a preliminary report on the anhydrous ammonia spill in Beach Park, Illinois that occurred on April 25th.  About 750 gallons of anhydrous ammonia were accidentally released from two 1,000-gallon nurse tanks mounted on a farm trailer that was being pulled by a John Deere tractor.  The driver was operating the tractor in combination with an applicator tool bar.  As a result of the hazardous materials release, 41 people, including 11 first responders, were injured and treated for various degrees of injury at local hospitals.  The driver of the tractor was not injured.

The NTSB says a hazardous materials team found the liquid withdrawal valves on top of the tanks and a shut-off valve on the manifold, where the two hoses from the nurse tanks joined, to be fully open.  The liquid supply hose was also disconnected from the union coupler.  The hazardous materials response team closed the shutoff valve on the manifold, which stopped the release.  The team then proceeded to close the liquid withdrawal valves, which secured the scene.  Investigators plan to examine the valves at a laboratory in Washington DC.

EPA Announces FY 2020-2023 Priorities

EPA has announced seven enforcement and compliance assurance priority areas for fiscal years 2020-2023.  Six of the seven priorities are National Compliance Initiatives (NCI), which will be led by EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA).
The newly announced National Compliance Initiatives are:

Improving Air Quality
  • Creating Cleaner Air for Communities by Reducing Excess Emissions of Harmful Pollutants from Stationary Sources - will focus on reducing emissions of volatile organic compounds and hazardous air pollutants.
  • Reducing Hazardous Air Emissions from Hazardous Waste Facilities - continue to focus on improving compliance by hazardous waste Treatment Storage and Disposal Facilities and Large Quantity Generators with regulations that require effective control and monitoring of organic air emissions from certain hazardous waste management activities.
  • Stopping Aftermarket Defeat Devices for Vehicles and Engines - will focus on stopping the manufacture, sale, and installation of aftermarket defeat devices on vehicles and engines used on public roads as well as on nonroad vehicles and engines.
Ensuring Clean and Safe Water
  • Reducing Significant Noncompliance with National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permits - will focus on increasing the percentage of all NPDES permittees in compliance with their permit.
  • Reducing Noncompliance with Drinking Water Standards at Community Water Systems (CWS) - initial focus is to work with the EPA’s Office of Water to increase capacity in states, tribes and the EPA to address drinking water violations.
Reducing Risk from Hazardous Chemicals
  • Reducing Risks of Accidental Releases at Industrial and Chemical Facilities - will continue to focus on reducing risk to human health and the environment by decreasing the likelihood of chemical accidents. EPA has found that many regulated facilities are neither managing adequately the risks they pose nor ensuring the safety of their facilities to protect surrounding communities as required under Clean Air Act Section 112(r).
For the seventh priority area, OECA will contribute to the agency’s implementation of the Lead Action Plan, which was issued by the President's Task Force on Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks to Children in December 2018.

Lead Action Plan
  • Rather than develop an NCI to address lead exposure, EPA’s enforcement and compliance assurance program will contribute to the agency’s goal of reducing childhood lead exposures and associated health impacts as outlined in the Federal Lead Action Plan.

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.