IEC Federal Government News
Global Harmonization Is Replacing MSDS Sheet
New changes to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) Hazard Communication Standard are bringing the United States into alignment with the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS), further improving safety and health protections for America's workers. Building on the success of OSHA's current Hazard Communication Standard, the GHS is expected to prevent injuries and illnesses, save lives and improve trade conditions for chemical manufacturers. The Hazard Communication Standard in 1983 gave the workers the 'right to know,' but the new Globally Harmonized System gives workers the 'right to understand.'
You have until December 1, 2013 to train employees on the new label elements and SDS format. Click here for more details
2013 Georgia Legislative Mid-Session Report
The 2013 Georgia Legislative Session has been one of the most active for our industry in all my years with the IEC. Like always, some have been good, some bad, and others have been a compromised mix with lawmakers. While the session is not over, today, Thursday, March 7 is cross-over day, meaning if a bill has not passed in either the House or Senate, it cannot be voted upon this year. This means whatever has passed one chamber may be passed, but it still has a ways to go.
VETERANS LICENSING - First, the Governor's Office of Workforce Development introduced HB 188 that would allow veterans to obtain their electrical contractors license with no civilian experience or testing. This not only included electrical contractors, but mechanical, plumbers and general contractors. IEC lobbied together with the entire construction industry to establish a review group comprised of industry professionals to determine if the military training and experience is comprable to that needed to obtain their civilian license. The group will also determine the testing in the military to assure it is also equilent to the civilian test they must pass for licensing. The licensing with also be available to the spouse of a veteran. Status: Passed House on March 5
LICENSE RENEWAL - Next HB 205 would elminate the continuing education requirement for license renewal unless their are disciplinary issues, and changes the renewal period from 2 to 6 years. HB 205 died in committee. IEC will be working with the author, Representative Crane before the 2014 session to revisions to the bill.
LOW VOLTAGE LICENSE - Another licensing bill that was proposed, but never introduced, would allow licensed electrical contractors (class I or II) to apply for the low voltage license and obtain it without testing, but paying the application fee. IEC will be working with author, Representative Crane before the 2014 session on the details of this proposed legislation. Here's the proposed bill. Give us feedback
Recess Appointments to the NLRB Unconstitutional
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit Court ruled unanimously that President Obama violated the U.S. Constitution when he appointed members to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) during a Senate recess. IEC actively opposed the appointments and applauds the Appeals Court’s decision (Official case name is Noel Canning v. National Labor Relations Board). Read more here.
IEC Analysis on the American Taxpayer Relief Act (ATRA). The Fiscal Cliff has been averted…for now. President Obama signed the deal January 2nd, but what is really involved in the American Taxpayer Relief Act (ATRA) of 2012? What is the outlook for construction? The outlook for the energy sector? What now and what is next?
Attached is the review of the Fiscal Cliff Deal. Take a look and decide what might be the next step for your business.
The Affordable Care Act: Where Do We Go From Here?
The Affordable Care Act will soon affect how you conduct your business. Ruth Anne Collins Michaels of Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., provided IEC members with a short summary of how the new laws could impact their business.
Items will be implemented as soon as 2012 in areas of Summary of Benefits and Coverage, W-2 Reporting Update, MLR Rebates, and Small Business Health Care Tax Credit.
The information is abundant, so IEC is providing links to give you access to information on the upcoming changes.
Link to DOL website: http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/healthreform/
IRS Notice 2011-36 regarding the employer mandate: www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/n-11-36.pdf
Link to general information regarding health care reform: http://www.healthcare.gov/
It is important to be prepared and avoid potential fines. Find out how changes apply to your business.