An Opportunity to Make Sure Massachusetts Enforces the RRP Rule
The Commonwealth of MA Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development will be holding public hearings where interested parties can attend to provide suggestions to Joanne F. Goldstein, the Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development, regarding how the money appropriated to the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Division of Occupational Safety (DOS) should be spent in Fiscal Year 2012.
So far I have been very pleased with the efforts of the DOS regarding the RRP Rule. Under the leadership of Heather E. Rowe, the Department’s Acting Commissioner, we have seen significant progress and improvements here in Massachusetts as compared to EPA’s efforts and the EPA RRP rule. I have been fortunate to work with several DOS employees regarding the rule. In my opinion, the ability to work with and interact with the same people who not only enforce the rule, but also have the ability to help shape the rule, has been a major plus for those Massachusetts contractors affected by the rule. We have discussed many ideas I feel will help level the playing field for legitimate and honest contractors who are challenged by being in competition with those contractors who are operating illegally. I find the DOS to be open to many of these ideas and they have great ideas to offer as well.
Proper and effective administration and enforcement of the RRP rule will take money. Because the amount of money the DOS and DOL will get in 2012 is already decided, contractors must voice their opinion as to how they think the money should be spent. It is my opinion that the money could actually be invested in the health and safety of Massachusetts citizens to protect them from the dangers associated with contractors who ignore lead-safe work practices. And, if properly and adequately enforced, the RRP rule would not only help to eliminate the underground construction economy here in Massachusetts, it would also help bring in additional revenue for the state in fees to those who get licensed to do the work, in fines to those who operate illegally and in taxes collected if all construction businesses doing RRP work have to pay their equal share of payroll and income taxes.
I will being going to the hearing on Thursday December 16th. I hope you will join me in my efforts and attend one of the hearings to express your opinion. Remember, the purpose of the hearing is to discuss the budget. Please keep your comments pointed towards constructive solutions, protecting the health of MA children and other citizens, and stress support for protecting the interests of legitimate contractors who already contribute their fair share of taxes to support our government.
Here is the Notice:
The Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development will hold two public hearings to allow interested parties to provide their comments to Secretary Joanne F. Goldstein as part of our fiscal year 2012 budget recommendation. These hearings are scheduled as follows:
Hearing 1 – Boston, MA
Thursday, December 16th, 2010
Charles F. Hurley Building, Minihan Hall
19 Staniford Street, 6th floor
11:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M.
Hearing 2 – Taunton, MA
Tuesday, December 21st, 2010
Taunton Career Center
72 School Street
4:30 P.M. to 6:30 P.M.
Written comment is encouraged prior to the hearing. Parties may also submit written comments at the hearing or through December 22, 2010. Please address comments to:
Secretary Joanne F. Goldstein
Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development
One Ashburton Place, Suite 2112
Boston, MA 02108