Thursday, October 18, 2018

New Jersey Bill Could Create New Mold Certification Standards

If passed, Senate 2897 will create a new mold inspection
and abatement training program as well as present
new requirements for the mold removal industry in New Jersey.

Last week, the State of New Jersey proposed a new bill on mold regulations. If passed, Senate 2897 would create a state-specific mold inspection and mold abatement training program, as well as require workers performing these types of professional mold jobs to be certified with the state of New Jersey.

Mold can cause illnesses ranging from migraines to respiratory infections As a result, many states are tightening their regulations for mold inspection and mold remediation. Improper mold testing can allow mold to grow in a dwelling, while improper mold removal techniques can send toxic mold airborne. This is a concern especially in residential homes and schools as children do not have fully developed immune systems and can be prone to the effects of mold. Stricter standards on mold certification can keep New Jersey communities safe and healthy.

Although Senate 2897 has not yet passed, the legislature sets a time table for the proposed changes. The time table has been summarized below:

Within 6 months of the effective date, the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs will establish new industry standards for mold inspection and abatement of the interior residential buildings and school facilities in New Jersey.

Within one year of the effective date, New Jersey will have a new mold inspection training program. The new required training for mold inspectors would include:

  • scientifically recognized procedures and new technologies for the collection of air and surface samples;
  • methods for the identification of locations of moisture infiltration to locate likely areas for mold infestation;
  • all applicable State and federal laws, rules and regulations; and
  • any other area the Department of Community Affairs deems relevant.
Within one year of the effective date, New Jersey will also have a new mold abatement training program. The new required training for mold abatement would include:

  • mold hazard abatement procedures developed by the department pursuant to subsection b. of section 2 of this act;
  • specialized cleaning, repairs, maintenance, painting, temporary containment and ongoing monitoring of mold hazards or potential hazards;
  • removal of mold and the abatement of the underlying cause of mold and associated water intrusion and water damage in indoor environments;
  • removal or cleaning of contaminated materials in a manner that protects the health of the person performing the mold hazard abatement, including requirements for the use of protective clothing or equipment;
  • all applicable State and federal laws, rules and regulations; 
  • and any other training or education the department deems appropriate, including but not limited to the successful completion of an outreach training program for the construction industry or general industry that has been approved by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration in the United States Department of Labor as an orientation to the occupational safety and health of workers covered by part 1926 of title 29, Code of Federal Regulations
If approved, establishing these new certification programs would give the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs the authority to:
  • charge an annual fee for holding a mold inspection or mold abatement license;
  • require a refresher course every two years;
  • maintain a list of registered mold inspectors and/or abatement workers; and
  • enforce these rules through fines
If passed, this bill would not apply to:
  • residential property owners performing mold work on their own property
  • employees performing routine maintenance on a multiple dwelling where they find mold; however, this does not exempt owners of multiple dwellings from complying with the rules above when seeking abatement work
But within six months of the mold training programs going into effect, anyone performing these types of works would have to be certified by the Department of Community affairs:
  • inspecting a residential building interior or school facility for mold
  • performing mold abatement in a residential building or school facility
  • presenting themselves to the public as an expert of these types of works
As of now, the bill has only been introduced to the Senate and referred to the Community and Urban Affairs Committee.

To read more about Senate 2897, review the official proposal here. To learn more about mold inspection certification and mold abatement certification, visit Zack Academy's website.

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